Spring Hill National advanced to the Florida State Dixie Baseball Double-A Rookies Tournament last week in Marianna, but was ousted and did not qualify for the Dixie World Series.
Spring Hill (ages 7 and 8), the lone Hernando County representative to advance to state in this division, went 2-2 over the course of the event. Coached by Eric Smith, National was 6-0 entering the weekend as the District 6 champion, but the team lost its opener 14-1 to Sebring.
The double-elimination bracket gave Spring Hill a second chance, and the local team went on to eliminate Paxton (21-12) and Blountstown (19-4).
However, Spring Hill lost momentum and went home after a 12-8 loss to Highlands County on June 3.
The format of this age division uses a pitching machine during tournaments instead of having the kids pitch, which Smith felt cost his team. Spring Hill's strengths were pitching and defense.
Aiden Leskauskas, Joey Goebel and Brant Davis were the most dominant players at the plate for Spring Hill.
NATURE COAST BASKETBALL CAMP: Nature Coast Technical High School will have a youth summer basketball camp Aug. 6 to 9.
The camp will take place from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. each day for children age 5 through those students entering seventh grade.
For information, call Nature Coast coach David Pisarcik at (727) 385-2194.
TRI-5K CHALLENGE: The Red Mule Runners Club is hosting the inaugural Brooksville Tri-5K Challenge Croom Doom. The final race in what has been a three-race series will take place at 6:45 p.m. Friday.
The course starts at the Tucker Hill Fire Tower off Croom Road. Race day registration will begin at 5 p.m., with an entry fee of $15. T-shirts will be guaranteed to all runners.
Proceeds will help support local high school summer running camps. Any team interested in receiving support must come up with $500 in sponsors per team per gender.
Individual medals for each race (men and women) will be awarded for each age group.
For information, contact Eric Milholland at (352) 573-7731 or [email protected]
SPRING HILL DIXIE FUNDRAISER: The Spring Hill Dixie Baseball All-Star squads are holding a fundraiser today at Rookies Sports Bar and Grill, 3095 Anderson Snow Road, Spring Hill.
There will be a corn hole tournament in the parking lot at 8 p.m., with registration starting at 7 p.m. The entry fee is $10 per player.
Proceeds will help league youth as they head to the Florida State Dixie Tournament.
BROOKSVILLE BULLDOGS BASEBALL: The Brooksville Bulldogs, an AAU travel club, are seeking players for the coming baseball season, which runs from September through February.
The team plays doubleheaders in Brooksville and tournaments in Central Florida in the 14-and-younger age division.
For information, contact Bruce Price at (813) 714-1054 or [email protected]
UMPIRE CLINICS: The Hernando-Sumter Umpires Association has scheduled its sixth annual umpires clinics.
The clinics are designed to train anyone who wants to become an umpire, and also can help seasoned umpires improve. Clinics will take place at the Anderson Snow Sports Complex in Spring Hill on Aug. 12 and Sept. 2, at Ernie Wever Youth Park in Brooksville on Aug. 5 and at Ridge Manor Park in Ridge Manor on Aug. 19. All sessions run from noon to 3 p.m.
The clinics are open to men and women age 16 and older. Registration will begin at 11:30 p.m. each day. There is a $20 charge for each participant, and everyone will receive a Major League Baseball rule book, along with other handouts.
With more than 90 umpires on its roster in 18 leagues throughout Citrus, Hernando and Pasco counties, the association continues to grow. This year, the organization will include Mike "Bugsy" Segal, the owner of umpireteacher.com, who has more than 36 years of experience in the field.
Visit hernandosumterumpire.com to register in advance. For information, call (352) 593-6998 or email [email protected] terumpire.com.
WEST HERNANDO SENIOR SOFTBALL: The West Hernando Athletic Club for Seniors is looking for new players for its 55-and-older softball league.
Games are played on Monday, Wednesday and Friday mornings at Veterans Memorial Park in Spring Hill. The season begins in September and ends in April. New players are invited to try out during the next two months, prior to the official start of the season.
For information, call Ray Krisa at (352) 596-7505.
POKER AND BILLIARDS FUNDRAISER: Compassion for All His Creatures, a rescue and sanctuary south of Brooksville, will have its fourth annual Texas Hold 'Em Poker and 8-Ball Billiards Tournament on July 21 at Capone's Billiards in Spring Hill.
The event will begin at 1 p.m., with $1,500 in donations to be given away; prizes will go to the top six finishers in each division. Doors will open at noon for early registration. There will be other raffles and door prizes throughout the tournament.
For information, call Peggy Ghezzi at (352) 754-9692.
HERNANDO SPORTS CAMPS: The Hernando County Department of Recreation has several sports camps available for children this summer.
The basketball camp will be taught by Marion Jones, Michael Jones and Calvin Brown. The clinic will put an emphasis on fundamentals of the game, skill and drills, followed by scrimmage games. It will be Monday through July 19 at West Hernando Middle School.
The fee is $65 per week, with hours from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Extended hours from 7:30 a.m. to 9 and 3 to 4 p.m. are available for an extra $10.
The volleyball camp has one remaining session, from July 30 to Aug. 2 at Challenger K-8 School of Science and Mathematics, taught by Hernando High School girls volleyball coach Patti Martin and assistant Robin Bailey. The instructors will cover fundamentals with daily drills and skills, followed by interleague games.
The cost is $65 per week. Camp hours are from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., with extended hours from 7:30 to 9 a.m. and 3 to 4 p.m. for an additional $10.
The sports camp will allow kids to enjoy a variety of indoor and outdoor sports activities, including basketball, flag football, tennis, dodgeball and kickball. Campers will spend each day learning the rules and playing games.
The cost is $65 for each of the two sessions, with a limit of 50 campers. The camp will take place from July 23 to 26 at West Hernando Middle School and is open to ages 8 to 14.
The activities will run from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., with extended hours available from 7:30 to 9 a.m. and 3 to 4 p.m. for an additional $10.
For information, call the Recreation Department at (352) 754-4031 or visit hernandocounty.us/parks_rec.
BADDEST MUDDER: The Baddest Mudder 5K will be coming to Brooksville on Nov. 3 & 4.
Baddest Mudder is a group that runs obstacle races around the Suncoast. It will be holding its first event at the Hernando County Fairgrounds on U.S. 41 in Brooksville.
The race is open to all ages, teams and skill levels. Sign-up prizes will be offered to all participants. The event includes a well-marked and defined course, food, drinks, music and field games.
The two-day event starts at 7 a.m. and runs until 4:30 p.m. both days.
Participants may sign up at baddestmudder.com. There are discounts for groups, and early-bird registration is currently open for a price of $49.95 per runner.
Kids are also welcome; organizers are offering a kids-only "Mini Mudder" pit for free.
YOUTH SOFTBALL CLINICS: The Spring Hill Sting travel softball team is hosting a series of clinics for youth this summer, with proceeds benefiting the club.
The clinics are being organized to teach and emphasize the basics of the game. The girls will be divided by Dixie Softball age divisions (Sweeties, Darlings, Angels and Ponytails).
Sting coach Dianne McClellan will lead the instruction, with assistance from members of the Sting. The remaining camp will run from Aug. 1 to 3. The registration fee is $25 per player.
For information, contact McClellan at (352) 442-3047 or [email protected]
Contact Derek J. LaRiviere at [email protected] or (352) 584-6337.