Each week, our HomeTeam staffers will nominate male and female Hot Shot athletes from each of the counties we cover. These nominations span Saturday, Jan. 5 through Friday, Jan. 11. The winners get a free T-shirt and bragging rights over every other school in the area. Read up on what made our nominees stand out, then look for our writers’ picks for overall winners in Tuesday’s Times. And feel free to lend your favorites support in the comments area.
Caroline Bado, Plant soccer: The senior midfielder scored three of the Panthers’ five goals in their senior night shutout of Freedom.
Kalynne Heyer, East Bay soccer: The senior forward scored two goals in the Indians’ 4-1 win over Freedom on Thursday. Heyer has scored 41 points this season for East Bay, which is tied for first place in District 4A-9.
Quinn Lombard, Palm Harbor University soccer: The junior defender helped keep a dangerous Osceola team off the scoreboard in the Hurricanes' 2-0 victory in the Pinellas County Athletic Conference championship game. Lombard has been key for a smothering PHU defense that has allowed just eight goals this season.
Rachel Preble, Countryside soccer: The junior midfielder/defender scored a goal and had six assists in the Cougars’ 8-0 win over Dixie Hollins. Overall, Preble has eight goals and 11 assists playing mostly as a defender.
Tara-Lyn Vasquez, Springstead soccer: One of Hernando County’s top players scored both of her team’s goals in the final 12 minutes to help the Eagles earn a 2-1 comeback victory over rival Nature Coast on Thursday. She also tallied four goals against Central on Tuesday.
Ashley Webster, Pasco basketball: The junior post scored only five points against River Ridge, but she hit the biggest shot of the night. Her put-back in the closing seconds kept the Pirates perfect with Thursday’s 43-42 victory.
Junior Francis, St. Petersburg soccer: The sophomore forward has a knack of scoring big goals, with two against East Lake on Wednesday night in a key 3-2 district win. The winner came in extra time when he outleaped a defender and headed in a long cross. Francis also had a late winner against Seminole earlier in the season.
Joey Galvis, Jesuit basketball: In three games over a four-night stretch, Galvis totaled 76 points and 19 treys in victories against Robinson, Winter Haven and Spoto. The 6-foot-2 shooting guard had a career-best 28 points and collected nine steals in Friday's 86-28 win against Spoto.
Connor Gilboy, Sunlake soccer: Pasco County’s top scorer (49 goals) had a milestone night against rival Land O’Lakes. He hit both goals in a 2-1 win — and the winner with 13:30 left was the 100th of his career.
Rico Kerney, Wiregrass Ranch basketball: The senior guard hit a tip-in as time expired to give his Bulls a thrilling 65-64 win over Ridgewood on Thursday in a battle between two of the Sunshine Athletic Conference’s top teams. He added 22 points and 15 rebounds in a win over Chamberlain.
Caelen Watts, Lennard basketball: The junior scored 16 in Friday's 73-52 win at Robinson to eclipse the 1,000-point mark for his career. The night before, in a 71-67 win vs. King, he scored 22, going 4-for-7 from 3-point range.
David White, Boca Ciega basketball: The senior guard scored 23 points in an 82-80 district win over Lakewood on Tuesday. White’s biggest basket came with 40 seconds left, when he buried a 3-pointer that tied the score at 70 and eventually sent the game into overtime.
Give us a shout at email@example.com if you have a Hot Shot we should consider next week.