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Orlando area softball teams highly ranked entering FHSAA regionals

Five Orlando area softball teams enter Florida High School Athletic Association softball regional tournaments this week as No. 1 seeds.

Class 4A Eustis (21-2), 3A Montverde Academy (23-4) and 2A Cornerstone Charter (24-3) each rank No. 2 in their classifications per FHSAA playoff power rankings.

Windermere High (20-4), a regional finalist last year, is No. 3 behind Wellington (19-3) and Davie Western (22-4-1) in 7A.

Horizon (20-5) ranks No. 8 in 5A.

Those teams have home-field advantage as top seeds throughout regional play, which begins Wednesday with quarterfinal games in 4A, 3A and 2A. Classes 7A, 6A and 5A play Thursday.

Winners this week advance to the semifinal round Tuesday. Regional championship games take place May 17.

Local matchups Wednesday include Orangewood Christian (12-5) at Foundation Academy (14-7) and The First Academy (15-10) at Mount Dora Christian (14-12) in 2A Region 2.

Foundation won five in a row vs. Orangewood in 2022 and ‘23 by a combined 74-8 margin. The Lions are batting .342 as a team with 55 extra-base hits.

First Academy defeated Mount Dora Christian 3-2 on April 8 and 5-4 on April 25 for its fifth straight win in the series since 2021. TFA, which lost last week 5-2 vs. Cornerstone (24-3) in the District 7 title game, opens on the road despite being ranked higher than the Bulldogs.

Four district champions and the next four highest-ranked teams per region based on FHSAA power rankings qualify for the playoffs. The higher seed is the home team in the quarterfinal round unless a lower-seeded district winner is paired with a non-district winner.

On Thursday, Lake Brantley (16-8) hosts Orange City University (14-11-1) and Seminole (14-7) is home against Lake Mary (12-15) in 7A Region 1 outings.

The Rams are 4-3 in the series vs. Seminole since 2022, including a 5-1 win in the district semifinals. The ‘Noles took two regular-season wins this year by two runs each.

Lake Brantley, ranked No. 7 in 7A, defeated University 12-2 on Feb. 27. Sophomore Auriana Turner is batting .405 (30-for-74) with 23 RBI and 21 runs scored for the Patriots.

Lake Brantley, Foundation Academy and Montverde Academy reached the state semifinals last season.

Deltona (18-5), a state runner-up in 2023, opens on the road at Gainesville (20-4) in 5A. The Wolves rank No. 9 in their classification and No. 5 in Region 1.

Hagerty (21-5) ranks No. 6 in 6A and No. 2 in Region 1. The Huskies, a regional finalist a year ago, host Tate (15-11) of the Panhandle in the first round.

Admission to regional games is $9. Tickets are available for purchase at the GoFan app.

Wednesday

Class 4A Region 2

No. 8 Merritt Island (13-11) at No. 1 Eustis (21-2), 7

No. 5 Lake Wales (14-13) at No. 4 Ocala Vanguard (18-6), 7

Class 3A Region 2

No. 8 The Villages (13-12) at No. 1 Montverde Academy (23-4), 7

No. 5 South Sumter (12-10) at No. 4 Crystal River (21-5), 7

No. 6 Trinity Prep (16-6) at No. 3 Ocala Trinity (20-7), 7

No. 7 Astronaut (14-8) at No. 2 Santa Fe (21-4), 7

Class 2A Region 2

No. 8 Hernando Christian (15-4) at No. 1 Cornerstone Charter (24-3), 7

No. 4 The First Academy (15-10) at No. 5 Mount Dora Christian (14-12), 7

No. 6 Melbourne Central Catholic (11-8) at No. 3 Academy at the Lakes (16-11), 4

No. 7 Orangewood Christian (12-5) at No. 2 Foundation Academy (14-7), 7

Thursday

Class 7A Region 1

No. 8 Mandarin (15-8) at No. 1 Spruce Creek (19-3), 7

No. 5 Lake Mary (12-15) at No. 4 Seminole (14-7), 7

No. 6 Timber Creek (18-7) at No. 3 Creekside (20-5), 7

No. 7 Orange City University (14-11-1) at No. 2 Lake Brantley (16-8), 7

Class 7A Region 2

No. 8 Lakewood Ranch (6-20) at No. 1 Windermere High (20-4), 4:30

No. 5 Palm Harbor University (18-6) at No. 4 Newsome (18-8), 7

No. 3 East Ridge (19-7) at No. 6 Durant (17-8), 7

No. 7 Sumner (18-9) at No. 2 Steinbrenner (19-8), 7

Class 7A Region 3

No. 8 St. Cloud (13-14) at No. 1 Wellington (19-3), 7

No. 4 Jupiter (12-7) at No. 5 Boone (12-10), 7

No. 6 Harmony (11-10) at No. 3 Centennial (19-7), 7

No. 2 Palm Beach Gardens (21-4) at No. 7 Osceola (14-10), 7

Class 6A Region 1

No. 8 Oviedo (12-12) at No. 1 Pace (23-2), 7

No. 5 Winter Springs (15-13) at No. 4 Niceville (17-8), 7

No. 6 Lake Howell (14-9) at Orange Park Oakleaf (17-8), 7

No. 7 Tate (15-11) at No. 2 Hagerty (21-5), 7

Class 6A Region 3

No. 8 East River (15-8) at No. 1 Bartow (26-1), 7

No. 4 Viera (18-8) at No. 5 Seminole Ridge (17-7), 7

No. 3 George Jenkins (21-6) at No. 6 South Lake (18-8), 7

No. 7 Dwyer (11-15) at No. 2 Melbourne (27-0), 7

Class 5A Region 1

No. 8 Columbia (13-11) at No. 1 Middleburg (21-4), 7

No. 5 Deltona (18-5) at No. 4 Gainesville (20-4), 7

Class 5A Region 2

No. 8 Wesley Chapel (11-13) at No. 1 Horizon (20-5), 7

No. 5 Springstead (14-7) at No. 4 River Ridge (15-11), 7

This article originally appeared on OrlandoSentinel.com. Email J.C. Carnahan at jcarnahan@orlandosentinel.com.