Recreation notebook: BMX racing has become a family affair

A couple of years ago, Spring Hill resident Tyler Knight, now 12, was thrilled to be among the best BMX racers in the sport. Now, his sister, Madison, is the same age he was then — 10 — and is just getting into the competitive side of riding.

Tyler, still one of the top class riders, recently competed at the state championships in both the 12 Cruiser and 12 Expert divisions and placed third and eighth, respectively. He has big-name sponsors such as Monster Energy Drink and EVS Sports assisting his efforts — rare for a racer his age.

Madison, a straight-A student at Challenger K-8 School of Science and Mathematics, used to tag along and sometimes ride her BMX on the track while Tyler practiced, but she never really considered competing until recently.

In November 2010, she rode in her first sanctioned race and has been on a bike ever since, competing in eight local races and 10 state qualifiers. She even competed at the state championships in the 10 Challenger division, placing fifth.

"Sometimes people fall and break their bones, and one time I fell and broke my bike," Madison said, "but I don't worry about that. I just have to get faster."

SPRING HILL DIXIE SOFTBALL: Spring Hill Dixie is sending two softball teams to the World Series in Louisiana.

Because of the costs associated with the trip, there is a great deal of fundraising to be done. The Debs and Angels will be holding a carwash at Chili's on U.S. 19 in Spring Hill from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday. A percentage of proceeds from money spent in the restaurant will also be donated to the teams.

On the other side of town at Beef O'Brady's on County Line Road, starting at 4 p.m., the league will be holding a corn hole tournament, with proceeds going toward the trip. The registration fee is $10 per team. There is a possibility of two tournaments with $500 in prize money, based on the level of participation.

PBA SPRING HILL OPEN: Pro bowlers will be returning to Spring Hill Lanes this month for the 23rd-annual Spring Hill Open.

A stop on the Professional Bowlers Association Southern Region Tour, the tournament, which takes place July 29-31, is the only regular professional event in Hernando County.

In years past, it has featured some of the best bowlers in the sport, including Walter Ray Williams Jr., Jason Couch and Patrick Allen.

To start the weekend on July 29, local bowlers can compete alongside the pros in the nine-pin No-Tap Pro-Am.

For an entry fee of $17 for junior bowlers (youth league competitors), $25 for senior bowlers (age 55 or older) or $30 for all others, amateurs can bowl on the same lanes with three professionals. Winners will receive trophies, scholarships or cash prizes.

Starting July 30, about 125 of the tour's best bowlers will battle for the championship. The finals should start about 2 p.m. July 31.

Last season, St. Petersburg native and Tallahassee resident Richard Langton won the tournament for the first time, and he is expected to return to defend his crown.

For information, call Spring Hill Lanes at (352) 683-7272.

SENIOR SOFTBALL: The West Hernando Softball Club for Seniors League is looking for new members for the season that starts in September.

The league is open to players 55 and older. Games are played on Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings at Veterans Memorial Park in Spring Hill.

For information, call Tony Passanesi at (352) 686-6812.

MORE SENIOR SOFTBALL: The Senior Softball Invitational League will start its season in September and is looking for new players.

The league meets at 9:30 a.m. every Tuesday and Thursday at Veterans Memorial Park in Spring Hill.

The fee is $60 for approximately 40 games, and a player must be 50 or older.

For information, call Sal Ficarra at (352) 688-1605.

ACE PERFORMANCE TENNIS: Ace Performance Tennis is hosting two events this summer.

QuickStart Drills will be offered from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. Mondays at Delta Woods Park in Spring Hill. The cost is $10 per class. There will be drills and games designed for beginning players, using USTA-approved strategies for 60-foot court players. Participants will learn to play tennis quickly with age- and size-appropriate equipment and modified courts.

Ladies Night Out will be offered from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. Mondays at Delta Woods Park. The cost is $10 per class. Women of beginning and intermediate skill levels will learn to play in a social setting.

For information, call John or Louise Downey at (352) 666-0658 or visit louisedowney.usptapro.com.

BROOKSVILLE BULLDOGS: The Brooksville Bulldogs are seeking players for the coming baseball season, which runs from September through February.

The team plays doubleheaders in Brooksville and tournaments in the Central Florida area. The two age divisions are 13-and-under and 14-and-under.

For information, call Bruce Price at (813) 714-1054 or send e-mail to bruce67price@hotmail.com.

UMPIRE CLINICS: The Hernando-Sumter Umpires Association has scheduled its annual baseball/softball umpires clinics.

The clinics are designed to train anyone who wants to become an umpire, and also can help seasoned umpires improve. Local clinics will take place at the Anderson Snow Sports Complex in Spring Hill on Aug. 21 and 28.

The sessions are open to men and women age 16 and older. Registration will begin at 12:30 p.m. each day, with the clinics starting at 1 p.m. There is a $20 charge for each participant, and everyone will receive a Major League Baseball rule book, along with other handouts.

Visit hernandosumterumpire.com to register. For information, call (352) 593-6998 or send e-mail to clinics@hernandosumterumpire.com.

ADULT BASKETBALL LEAGUE: The Brooksville Parks and Recreation Department is playing host to an adult basketball league at the Jerome Brown Community Center in Brooksville, beginning Aug. 23.

The league is open to participants 18 and older. Games will take place at 6:30, 7:45 and 9 p.m. on Tuesdays. The registration deadline is Aug. 12, and players will be taken on a first-come, first-served basis. The cost is $400 per team, with an eight-player minimum.

For information, call (352) 540-3835.

To notify us of community sports achievements or coming events, contact Derek J. LaRiviere at derekjlariviere@gmail.com or (352) 584-6337.

Recreation notebook: BMX racing has become a family affair 07/20/11 [Last modified: Wednesday, July 20, 2011 5:46pm]

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