East, Dehn and Hinz key 2-1 win for Viera in Class 7A softball semifinals


It’s been quite a run for the Viera High softball team this season.

And thanks to Wednesday night’s 2-1 road victory over Fort Myers in the Class 7A regional quarterfinals, the Hawks are still rolling.

Ashley Dehn hit a game-tying solo home run in the top of the fifth inning for Viera. Haley Hinz followed with a double and scored on a high chopper by Kiana East to put Viera in front.

The rest was up to East, who retired the last 10 batters she faced to close it out. East struck out four on the night and was helped by what coach Dale Pierce referred to as a defense that was “stellar, making every play.”

Viera (25-4) will be on the road again Tuesday when it faces Charlotte (16-9) in the regional semifinals. Charlotte defeated Melbourne 1-0 Wednesday night.

It was just a few weeks ago that Viera was ranked No. 1 in the state in Class 7A and No. 15 in the country, something that had never been done before in the program’s successful history.

The team returned from spring break and lost a couple of games, and then lost to Melbourne in the district championship game before rebounding Wednesday night against No. 2 Fort Myers (22-3).

There have been a number of players who have stood out for the Hawks this season.

East is batting .455 with four home runs, 32 RBIs and is also Viera’s No. 1 pitcher with a record of 16-3 and an ERA of 1.38.

Hinz is hitting .452 with nine doubles, three triples and 21 stolen bases.

Sydney Brooks is also among Brevard County’s top hitters with a .377 average.

Kaitlyn Jensen is tied with East for the most home runs in the county with four and ranks among the leaders in RBIs with 25. Not far behind is Kim Sugarman, who has 21 RBIs.

Kelly Bishop and Delaney Goff have each hit two home runs

Now the Hawks, ranked No. 4 in Class 7A, are headed back to the regional semifinals where a win against Charlotte would put them into the regionals finals and one step closer to what would be their first Final Four appearance.

So while it’s been a great season already … it has a chance to get even better.