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Wesley Chapel organizing girls lacrosse team for national tournaments

Girls can show how well they move the lacrosse ball for spots on the Panther team.

Edmund D. Fountain | Times

Girls can show how well they move the lacrosse ball for spots on the Panther team.

The Wesley Chapel Athletic Association will hold open tryouts this spring for the Panthers, a national recruiting tournament select lacrosse team for girls.

Lesley Graham, head coach of the women's lacrosse team at Saint Leo University, will coach the Panther program. Mike Diaz, who coaches the University of South Florida women's club lacrosse and the Wesley Chapel Lady Wildcats, will serve as assistant coach. The Panther Program has been developed as a vehicle for high school sophomores, juniors and seniors to be seen at major college recruiting tournaments in the South as well as the Northeast.

"It's time for the best of the best in Tampa Bay to be seen by NCAA and NAIA college lacrosse coaches at all divisional levels," said Renee Diaz, assistant lacrosse director for the Wesley Chapel Athletic Association. "We have athletes in the Tampa Bay area who have been playing lacrosse for almost 10 years and whose talents may go unseen unless they are given the opportunity that the Panther Program provides."

To be eligible for this year's program, student athletes must graduate in 2014, 2015 or 2016. They must live within a 100-mile radius of Wesley Chapel District Park. Open tryouts will be held from 9 a.m. to noon April 7 and 14 at Wesley Chapel District Park.

If chosen for the Panther team, players must commit to attending all four national recruiting tournaments. For information or to receive the tryout registration form, email

SHOOTING: The Hernando Sportsman's Club is hosting a 4-H Benefit Trap Tournament on March 23 at the club's trap range, 16121 Commercial Way (U.S. 19), Brooksville. Proceeds will benefit the youth of the Hernando Sportsman's 4-H Club. The trap tournament consists of four rounds of 25 shots each for a total of 100 shots. Trophies will be awarded in the youth, adult and senior categories. The winner is determined by most targets hit. Cost is $40 per trap shooter, $35 if pre-registered by March 16. Lunch is provided to all participants. Registration for shooters begins at 8 a.m. and shooting will start at 9 a.m. Shooters must bring their own shotgun, ammo, and lawn chair. For information, call (352) 797-0409.

MORE SHOOTING: The Hernando Sportsman's Club will also offer a special NRA Safety Officer course on March 24 from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. The course develops NRA Certified Range Safety Officers with the knowledge, skills and attitude essential to organizing, conducting and supervising safe shooting activities and range operations. Range Safety Officer candidates will learn roles and responsibilities of a Range Safety Officer (RSO); range standard operating procedures, range inspection, range rules, range briefings, emergency procedures and firearm stoppages and malfunctions. The cost of the course is $150. For information, call (352) 597-9931.

i9: i9 sports is holding open registration for its spring leagues in baseball, basketball, soccer and flag football. The non-competitive league is open to kids ages 3-16 with a focus on fun, safety and good sportsmanship with no fundraisers or tryouts. To register or for information, visit or call Pasco league director Jimmy Barbarise at (813) 532-1507.

To submit items on community sports events, contact David Rice at

Wesley Chapel organizing girls lacrosse team for national tournaments 02/26/13 [Last modified: Tuesday, February 26, 2013 8:07pm]
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