Softball sweeps Daytona, clinches first-ever conference title

Softball sweeps Daytona, clinches first-ever conference title

DAYTONA BEACH- For the first time in program history, the College of Central Florida softball team has earned the Mid-Florida Conference championship.

Leading Seminole State by one game entering the day, the Patriots clinched the championship outright with wins of 8-2 and 10-0 on the road at Daytona State.

CF (49-7, 20-4) had never finished higher than fourth entering last season and just missed out on the title a year ago with a second-place finish behind rival Santa Fe.

This time around, the Patriots left no doubt, as they rallied from down 2-0 in the opener and scored 18 unanswered runs over the course of the rest of the doublehader.

CF took the lead for good in the opener, as it scored three runs in the top of third. Mariah Wise tied the game with a two-run double and the Patriots went ahead for good on an error by the Falcons.

From there, the Patriots blew the game open with four more runs in the fourth. The big hit in the inning was a three-run homer by Cheyenne Blaha.

CF then turned the ball over to pitchers Holly McKinnon and Autumn Hanners over the remainder of the doubleheader and totally shut down the Falcons.

With the sweep, the Patriots swept Daytona for the first time in school history.

It also marked the end of the conference slate, which saw CF sweep rival Santa Fe for the first time in school history and achieve a 16-game conference winning streak, also a school record.

The Patriots turned things on in the doubleheader after losing three of their last four games coming into the contest with the Falcons.

For last year's conference, state and national runner-ups, it also marked a school record for most conference wins in a season at 20.

CF will now prepare for the state tournament with a road doublehader against St. Pete on April 23.