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Madness Shootout Black: Top Seeds Fall

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The quarterfinal round of the Shootout was tough on the favorites of the Black Bracket. Top-seeded Hialeah Educational Academy, and second seed Coral Glades both lost on Monday. Mater Lakes Academy continued its win streak by upsetting the Bulldogs 6-0, while Hialeah Gardens secured a big 7-1 victory over the Jaguars.

North Broward Prep dispatched Coral Springs 11-1 and SLAM Academy defeated Mourning 10-6 to complete the Final Four. These four teams play again on Tuesday to determine who will advance to the championship of the March Madness Shootout presented by Galeo Spices.

The Bears got a complete-game shutout from starter Jesus Hernandez. Hernandez allowed just two hits and struck out six. Mike Rodriguez was 2-for-3 with a home run, and Marlon Romero went 3-for-4 with a walk.

“It was another great game for us and our starting pitcher, Jesus Hernandez,” Mater Lakes Manager Cesar Temes said. “The defense was on again as we continue our winning streak. The team is getting more confident with every game that goes by.”

Danny Ramos was 2-for-3 with a double for Hialeah Educational.

Mater Lakes will take its five-game win streak into a tough showdown with North Broward Prep. The Eagles continued a strong tournament start with a second big win, outscoring the opposition 23-3. North Broward got an early lead, and then put the game away with a six-run fifth inning. Kevin Thomas reached base three times, while Jared Schwait, Andreas Sierra and CJ Roth each scored twice.

“It was a good team win and a good performance from Brian Fagan,” North Broward Manager Brian Campbell said.

Fagan picked up the win, allowing one run in four innings. He struck out four and surrendered four hits.

SLAM also got a strong pitching performance, as freshman Chris Galan put in a complete-game effort to lead the Titans past the Sharks. Galan came on in relief with no outs in the first, and proceeded to go the rest of the way for his team. He allowed three unearned runs and struck out three.

Jeter Downs went 2-for-3 with two runs to lead the SLAM offense. Brian Frias also scored twice on a 3-for-3 day, and Andrew Velez had a two-RBI single.

Alex Perez was 3-for-4 with three RBIs and Jim Varona was 2-for-3 with two RBIs for Mourning.

The Gladiators will now face off with the Titans, after Hialeah Gardens got a nice balanced day to win and advance. Gardens had 10 hits, as Brandon Puig, Jose Gaston and Pedro Ravelo all had two hits each. Chris Clara had an RBI double and scored, and Tommy Torres picked up the win with just over six innings pitched while allowing one unearned run.

“Today was almost a complete game for us,” Hialeah Gardens Manager Tino Burgos said. “We got some pitching, our defense made the routine plays and we got some timely hitting. Obviously when you combine those things you usually get a good result. I’m happy for our kids. We’ve had some tough losses, so to string a few wins together is good for us.”

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