Saturday, February 6, 2010

Preps: Terrapins, Buccaneers book final four places

Tampa Prep is returning to the FHSAA Girls final four for the third straight season, and Berkeley Prep will be joining them, making its first appearance since 2005, after both sides won on Friday night in their respective region finals.

Tampa Prep got a little bit of luck, Mackenzie Logan's 59th minute goal coming somewhat fortuitously, but the Terrapins were outstanding defensively to defeat West Palm Beach King's Academy 1-0.

The Terrapins will face Maclay, 5-0 winners against Rocky Bayou Christian, in the state semifinals on Thursday. While Maclay has been impressive in its run to the final four, it will be important for the Terrapins to remember that King's Academy had the same resume coming into Friday night's game, and not get overawed by Maclay's scores.

Berkeley Prep certainly shouldn't have any jitters entering their state semifinal against Pensacola Catholic after a dominant display against Fort Myers Bishop Verot led to a 4-1 victory. Pensacola Catholic advanced in a penalty shootout after its game against Jacksonville Bolles ended 0-0 after overtime.

The Buccaneers girls have never won a state final four game, being eliminated in the semifinals in their three previous appearances. This season should be different, especially with U.S. Women's Under-17 goalkeeper Bryane Heaberlin returning after the sides training camp in Miami to what is already a powerful squad.

Hudson won't be joining the Terrapins and Buccaneers at Pepin stadium as the Cobras were unable to remove the hex Eustis has over them. For the third straight season, Eustis eliminated the Cobras from the region playoffs, this time in a 5-1 victory.

As was alluded to in the Berkeley Prep story, the remaining three region finals involving local teams were all postponed to Saturday, with Seminole facing Venice at 3 p.m. and Newsome facing Lakeland George Jenkins at 5 p.m. in Class 5A, and Palm Harbor University facing Apopka at 5 p.m. in Class 6A.

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