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Land O'Lakes coach Calvin Baisley gets career win No. 400

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Fri. April 23, 2010 | Izzy Gould | Email

The slumping Land O'Lakes Gators got a nice boost Thursday afternoon in an 8-1 win over Gulf.

This wasn't simply another victory for coach Calvin Baisley, it was a benchmark: career victory No. 400 in his 26th season.

Baisley, 52, said he knew the milestone victory was within reach at the start of the season, but paid little attention to it until his wife and one of his three sons unexpectedly came to Wednesday's loss to Pasco.

"They said they came because they thought it might be No. 400," Baisley said.

Instead, the victory came on the road the following afternoon in New Port Richey. Afterward, the team took a snapshot to commemorate the event Baisley holding a sign that read "400" surrounded by his players.

What does 400 mean to him?

"It means I've been here a long time," Baisley said. "We've had a really good run with some great players, and it wouldn't have happened without them."

Baisley said he's kicking around the thought of entering the Deferred Retirement Option Program, which serves as financial incentive for teachers to retire. Now in his 31st year teaching physical education at Pineview Middle, Baisley said he hopes to coach as long as he teaches.

And now, he's simply focused on rallying his team, perhaps even using this milestone victory as momentum.

"That's for when you're done," Baisley said of reflecting on the accomplishment. "When the season's going on, I have enough on myplate. Districts are coming."

igould@tampabay.com

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