TARPON SPRINGS – On May 17, the East Lake High School baseball team came home empty-handed.
After a 22-10 regular season run, the Eagles had high hopes for the class 7A state championship, as did their school.
The team beat Sarasota 2-1 in the regional quarterfinals, then shutout Northeast 9-0 in the regional semifinals a week later. They were named regional champions after a 7-3 win over Melbourne and moved onto the finals after beating Osceola 1-0 in 13 innings.
But last weekend, ELHS’ run ended suddenly with a 5-2 loss to Hialeah American, who had gone 28-6 in the regular season. The Eagles fell behind early after giving up four fourth-inning runs, then gave up a two-out single in the fifth inning to go behind 5-0. In the sixth inning, East Lake scored two runs on a single and a wild pitch to make the score 5-2. The team set up a comeback in the seventh inning with runners on first and second with one out but was unable to drive in the runs.