Tuesday, February 20, 2018
Sports

Strawberry Crest, East Bay meet in pivotal district matchup

W e've got some good games with playoff implications on this side of the county tonight. The winners of Newsome-Plant and Bloomingdale-Riverview will help to clear up 8A-6, while East Bay-Strawberry Crest might decide the district winner in 7A-8. Seffner Christian will attempt to get back on track after dropping its first game of the season last week, and Armwood should breeze through another opponent to remain the county's lone unbeaten team. All games kick off at 7:30 p.m.

East Bay (5-2) at Strawberry Crest (5-2)

Last week: East Bay defeated Bloomingdale 13-12; Strawberry Crest defeated Riverview 24-7.

Why you should go: This game will go a long way in determining the 7A-8 winner. The Chargers and Indians are both undefeated in district play. For Strawberry Crest, a win tonight and next week against Plant City gives them the district title. East Bay, having already downed Plant City, would need wins against Brandon and Durant to capture the title.

Newsome (4-3) at Plant (5-1-1)

Last week: Newsome defeated Durant 9-3; Plant defeated Sickles 24-20.

Why you should go: How about to show some love for the kicker? Newsome's Austin Cobb connected on field goals of 24, 18 and 41 yards against Durant, accounting for the Wolves' only points last week. Of course, Newsome will need to score more if it hopes to upset Plant.

Plant City (4-2) at Spoto (0-6)

Last week: Plant City lost to Tampa Bay Tech 38-21; Spoto did not play.

Why you should go: After a pair of tough losses to East Bay and TBT, the Raiders get a bit of a breather before a big matchup with Strawberry Crest next week. The Raiders' defense continues to be opportunistic. Defensive back Sawyer Dawson returned a fumble 20 yards for a touchdown against the Titans.

Windermere Prep (4-3-1) at Seffner Christian (5-1)

Last week: Windermere Prep lost to Foundation Academy 38-6; Seffner Christian lost to International Community School 20-19.

Why you should go: Marcus Richardson had a huge game in the Crusaders' first loss of the season last week. Richardson had a handful of tackles behind the line of scrimmage, a sack and a pair of blocked extra points.

Bloomingdale (3-3) at Riverview (2-4)

Last week: Bloomingdale lost to East Bay 13-12; Strawberry Crest beat Riverview 24-7.

Why you should go: A week after a tough one-point loss to East Bay, can the Bulls rebound? A playoff spot is still within reach, but it starts tonight with a rough three-game district stretch against Riverview, Newsome and Wharton. Interesting side note: This will be Bloomingdale's second game at Riverview. It played on the Sharks' field earlier this season because of wet conditions on its own field, and lost to Plant City.

Brandon (3-3) at Durant (1-6)

Last week: Brandon did not play; Newsome beat Durant 9-3.

Why you should go: The scrappy Eagles have won two in a row and had two weeks to prepare for Durant. Sophomore Robert Enmon leads the Eagles with eight tackles for loss, and Brandon still has a chance to make the playoffs if it can win out, starting tonight.

Armwood (6-0) at Lennard (0-7)

Last week: Armwood beat Leto 74-0; Lennard lost to Jefferson 55-13.

Why you should go: Wow. The Hawks get to tee up Lennard a week after pulverizing Leto. Prediction for two-week score: Hawks 144, opposition 0.

Brandon Wright can be reached at [email protected]

Comments
Could Detroit’s Mike Green be next domino to fall at deadline?

Could Detroit’s Mike Green be next domino to fall at deadline?

The Red Wings have started wheeling and dealing, shipping goalie Petr Mrazek to the Flyers for a package of conditional draft picks.That has shifted focus to a potential Lightning target, Red Wings defenseman Mike Green, who is expected to be moved b...
Updated: 15 minutes ago
Nationally revered runners to appear at Gasparilla

Nationally revered runners to appear at Gasparilla

Two of the national running society's most inspirational figures are set to make guest appearances this weekend at the Publix Gasparilla Distance Classic.Four-time U.S. Olympic marathoner Meb Keflezighi, who retired from the sport last year, and comp...
Updated: 2 hours ago
U.S. biathletes, who shoot guns to compete, speak out on gun control for America

U.S. biathletes, who shoot guns to compete, speak out on gun control for America

DAEGWALLYEONG, South Korea — For his profession, Lowell Bailey wears a .22 caliber rifle strapped to his back. It has taken him across the world and to four Olympic Games, most recently to the biathlon mixed relay Tuesday night at Alpensia Biathlon C...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Age is a valued number for motocross rider Chad Reed

Age is a valued number for motocross rider Chad Reed

Chad Reed is set to break one of the most impressive records in motorsports, but it’s not the mark he wants most.The Dade City resident and native Australian has started 227 main events in the Monster Energy Supercross 450 cc series, tying former rid...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Rays tread new turf (literally) for second straight year

Rays tread new turf (literally) for second straight year

PORT CHARLOTTE — Tropicana Field is getting new turf — again.Shaw Sports will replace the surface installed last spring in a mutual decision with the Rays that it did not look as good — from the stands or on TV — as expected.T...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Some big Bucs roster decisions are looming

Some big Bucs roster decisions are looming

The Bucs plan to release running back Doug Martin and defensive tackle Chris Baker sometime before the NFL scouting combine which begins Feb. 27 in Indianapolis.There likely will be more, but they still are undecided on the future of defensive ends R...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Here’s really how to fix Major League Baseball

Here’s really how to fix Major League Baseball

ST. PETERSBURG — Major League Baseball has a problem. A big problem.The games are too long. They are too boring. They are too slow.Something needed to be done and, well, Major League Baseball did something.The brain trust put those big brains t...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Bucs release two-time Pro Bowl running back Doug Martin

Bucs release two-time Pro Bowl running back Doug Martin

TAMPA — After six up and mostly down seasons, Doug Martin's run with the Bucs is over.The two-time Pro Bowl running back was released by Tampa Bay Tuesday, a move that was expected after he failed to rush for less than 500 yards in four of the ...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Steven Souza on Rays roster moves: ‘This is not a shocker’

Steven Souza on Rays roster moves: ‘This is not a shocker’

RF Steven Souza Jr., returned to camp today after missing four days to attend to family matters in Seattle.He did not go into detail about why left. When asked if everyone in his family is okay, he said, "Right now. We'll just leave it at that."Souza...
Updated: 3 hours ago
HomeTeam 25-ish: Tampa Bay baseball players to watch

HomeTeam 25-ish: Tampa Bay baseball players to watch

Baseball season is here, and it is clear that the Tampa Bay area is chock full of talented players. So many talented players, in fact, that the usual Top 25 players to watch is now the Top 25(ish) players to watch. It should be a competitive season.R...
Updated: 3 hours ago