Coral Glades High School Advance to Regional Semi-finals with 6-5 win

Coach Franco talks to his team following a 6-5 win for Coral Glades in their first regional game. Photo by Matt Rothman.

By: Matt Rothman

After winning a district championship last week, Coral Glades was back in action defeating the South Plantation Paladins 6-5. The Jaguars now have won a regional game in back-to-back seasons after beating the Fort Lauderdale Flying L’s last season.

Trace Thelwell, who has been spectacular this season, was on the mound and did not get much help early on. He gave up four runs in the first inning on a couple of errors from his defense and was taken out in the second, as they trailed 4-0.

“I tell these kids all the time if you are down, chop up the game and make it a game late in the innings,” said Head Coach Joe Franco. “I was really proud of the way we came back.”

The Jaguars got the first two runners on and with one out in the bottom of the second, Cole Lea looked to have hit into an inning ending double play, but the ball was booted, and the deficit was cut to three. Coral Glades was not done yet, as Tomas Batista walked with the bases loaded and Gavin Werner hit a run scoring infield single trimming the lead to just one run.

The offense continued to produce base runners as the game went on. The Jaguars loaded the bases after a perfect bunt down the third base line from Batista in the fourth. Werner nearly broke the game open with a grand slam but would settle for a long sacrifice fly to tie the game up at four.

An inning later, with two men, Aaron Cornieles doubled to plate two runs to give the Coral Glades their first lead of the game despite being thrown out at third trying to stretch his double into a triple.

“I was very tense up there,” Cornieles said. “I got it done. That’s all that matters. Once I got the hit, I had a lot of adrenaline running through my system.”

Oscar Contreras came into the game in the sixth and got a double play ball to preserve the lead. In the seventh with the bases loaded and two outs, Cornelius gave up an RBI single, but right fielder Gabriel DaSilva threw out the tying running at the plate, as the Jaguars picked up their 13th win of the season.

It was pretty special,” said DaSilva. “You don’t see that very often. I was wishing for the ball from there. You always got to expect the ball and execute the play and it happened.”

Up next, Coral Glades will face the winner of Spanish River and St. Thomas Aquinas. Those teams
were supposed to play Wednesday night, but the game was postponed. If Spanish Rivers win, the
game will be played in Coral Springs. If St. Thomas Aquinas win, the game will be on the road at 7 p.m. regardless of the location.

Matt Rothman

Matt Rothman is a 2018 graduate from Florida Gulf Coast University receiving his bachelor degree in journalism. Originally from Long Island, he moved to Parkland shortly after high school. Matt worked as the  assistant sports editor for his school paper, eaglenews.com in college becoming just one of nine students in his graduation class to serve over 1,000 community service hours.  His goal is to travel to every Major League Baseball stadium, and has been to multiple US Open finals. He hopes to one day to be a beat writer for a professional team.