DeLAND — For the third time in four years, the Olympia Titans came up just short of reaching the FHSAA Final Four in Class 8A.
Olympia (27-2) fell to the University (Orange City) Titans, 7-1, in the Class 8A Region 1 Championship on Tuesday night.
The game was played at Melching Field at Conrad Park in DeLand due to a lack of lights at University’s home field.
In what was billed as a battle of high-level pitchers, it was University ace Logan Allen who stole the show. Allen tossed a complete game for the host Titans, allowing just one run and two hits in seven innings of work.
University, on the other hand, accumulated eight hits and roughed up Titans’ starter Michael Byrne for six runs before he was relieved by Alex Dorso in the bottom of the fifth inning.
The contest had been scoreless through the first three and one half innings, but University broke through for three runs in the bottom of the fourth and then tacked on another four runs in the bottom of the fifth to create a lead it would not relinquish.
The sole run for the Titans came on a sacrifice grounder by Cameron Montgomery that brought in Drenis Ozuna, who had tripled.
The defeat at the hands of University continues a frustrating playoff history for a program that has had a remarkable amount of success in recent years. In 2012 the Titans fell to Spruce Creek in the regional final and in 2013 they were defeated by Lake Brantley at the same point.
Both Spruce Creek and Lake Brantley went on to win the state championship in those years.
The loss ends a 2015 campaign that saw the Titans go undefeated in the regular season, finishing 25-0, while also topping the MaxPreps “Xcellent 25” national poll for a remarkable seven weeks as the best prep team in the country.
Olympia’s 2012 ballclub also went undefeated in the regular season and was atop the same poll for six weeks.
The program has never advanced past a regional final.
The Titans did not lose a game this spring until the district final of the Class 8A District 3 Tournament on April 24, an 8-4 loss to Apopka.
Olympia was the last remaining baseball team from West Orange County and, excluding spring football, its loss ends the 2014-2015 school year of varsity sports for the coverage area.