Monday, February 19, 2018

North of Tampa prep notes: Freedom girls win district track title


Last week's district track and field meets featured a clean sweep, a double dip and a historic title for North of Tampa-area squads.

Freedom's girls team recorded its first-ever district crown by topping second-place Plant 166.50-144 last week in the Class 4A, District 6 event. Seniors Sandra Akachukwu and Faith Woodard led the way for the Patriots, winning five events combined.

Akachukwu, who scored 38 points by herself in the meet, won three events and placed second in a fourth. She took district medals in the 200 meters (25.35 seconds), 100 meters (12.27) and long jump (19 feet, 3 inches). Akachukwu was second in the high jump at 5-feet-8 behind teammate Woodard, who posted a 5-foot-10-inch leap. Woodard also ran to a first-place win in the 400 meters with a 58.40 time.

Senior Alexandra Mitchell also collected a title, taking first place in the 800 meters (2:23.76).

Athletes from Wharton and Alonso also performed well.

Wharton's Britainey Smith captured the pole vault title, clearing 10 feet, and Alonso's Quatasia Fantroy won the triple jump with a leap of 36 feet, 1.5 inches.

Meanwhile, Wharton sprinters Mikayla Barber and Tyler Watson finished first and second, respectively, in the 100-meter hurdles and 300-meter hurdles and helped the 4x400-meter relay team to a first-place finish (4:02.28).

On the boys side, Alonso and Freedom had individual winners but placed third and fourth, respectively, in the team totals.

Alonso's William Taylor-Haynes won the high jump (6-2) and the 110 hurdles (14.65). The Ravens also won the triple jump with Brandon Robinson (41-10.75) and 400 meters with Roosevelt Lawrence (50.82).

Freedom dominated the boys relays, winning both the 4x400 meters and 4x800 meters events.

At the Class 3A, District 8 meet, Steinbrenner's boys and girls both took home team championships.

The Warriors' boys dominated the distance events, with Matt Magee, Tanner Biles, Tyler Bess-Lima and Zach Bess-Lima finishing first through fourth in the 1,600 meters. Magee also took first place in the 800 meters while Tyler Bess-Lima won the 3,200 meters.

Steinbrenner was so dominant in the distance events, it earned 71 of 139.5 points in those events.

On the girls side, Steinbrenner won just one event, but placed enough athletes in other events to post a 161-144 advantage against second-place Hillsborough.

Steinbrenner's Jazmin Sobotker won the pole vault by clearing 9 feet.

Meanwhile, Chamberlain's Andrea Aaron turned in an outstanding performance in the meet, winning both the discus (124-3) and the shot put, posting a Hillsborough County season best throw of 43-5.5.

CDS tennis has rough time at state

Carrollwood Day School's standout girls tennis team and top boys player reached the state tournament last week in Central Florida, but struggled at the event.

Eric Fitz-Randolph ended his prep career at the Class A state tournament by losing to Fort Pierce Carroll's Andrew Blair 3-6, 6-4, 10-6. Fitz-Randolph entered the tournament as his bracket's top seed.

Also, the Berkeley Prep doubles team of Stephen Jordan and Gray Aloian made an early exit with a loss to a Fort Myers Canterbury tandem.

On the girls side, the entire CDS team advanced to state but only managed two first-day victories.

The Patriots lost four singles matches before No. 5 Casey Brynjolfsson advanced with a victory. On Day 2, Brynjolfsson was eliminated 6-1, 6-2 while the doubles team Jackie and Lauren Fitz-Randolph were ousted by the same score.

The CDS girls, composed entirely of sophomores and freshmen, had one of the state tournament's toughest draws, facing tough Central and South Florida squads.

Basketball postseason awards announced

Chamberlain senior guard Reggie Hart has been named the Player of the Year by the Tampa Bay Basketball Coaches Association.

A 6-foot-1 player with 2,000-plus points in his prep career, Hart led the Chiefs to their third straight district title this past season.

Hart led Hillsborough County at 25 points per game, while also averaging eight rebounds and four assists.

Also, the coaches association named Alonso's Malachi Christopher, Berkley Prep's Justin Gray, Sickles' Dan Harris, Steinbrenner's Keyshawn Ingram and Wharton's C.J. McGill and Sir Patrick Reynolds to its all-star team.

Berkeley Prep's Rob Freedy and Aaron Hannon, along with Wharton's Tyler Langston, were named academic all-stars.

Meanwhile, Tommy Tonelli, who guided Wharton to its first state final four appearance in program history, was named the Class 8A Coach of the Year by the Florida Association of Basketball Coaches.

Wharton finished 25-5 en route to falling in the state semifinals.

Roundup of softball district tournaments

District tournament play wrapped up last week with five North of Tampa teams advancing to regional play. And two them, Chamberlain and Carrollwood Day School, won district championships.

In Class 8A, District 7, Wharton used tournament wins against Plant and Bloomingdale to advance to the district final, where it was blanked 5-0 by Durant. Still, sixth-seeded Wharton's run was good enough to earn the runner-up region berth.

Defending Class 7A state champ Chamberlain defeated rival Freedom 4-2 to claim the Class 7A, District 9 title. The Chiefs got a one-hitter from pitcher Rachel Dwyer and RBIs from Jenna Brownell, Elizabeth Diaz and Izzy Ordorica. Both the Chiefs and Patriots move on to region play.

Despite shutout losses, both Sickles and Cambridge Christian also are moving on to regional play. Sickles lost 3-0 to Strawberry Crest in the Class 6A-11 final, mostly victimized by three errors in the sixth inning that led to two Strawberry Crest runs. Cambridge, meanwhile, struggled in the 2A-9 final, mustering only one hit while having 10 players strike out in the five-inning contest.

Meanwhile, Carrollwood Day is heading to region play on the strength of its first district crown in program history. CDS topped Seffner Christian 2-1 for the championship. CDS junior pitcher Amanda Rose threw a five-hitter, striking out 10 and giving up just two walks.

Live from Port Charlotte: First full squad workout

Live from Port Charlotte: First full squad workout

The Rays held their first full squad workout today, though RF Steven Souza Jr., did not work out because of a family matter. He had already reported to camp.More fallout from Saturday's Jake Odorizzi trade and DFA'ing of Corey Dickerson. This time fr...
Updated: 19 minutes ago
Better ‘D’ starts at home with Lightning

Better ‘D’ starts at home with Lightning

TAMPA – The Lightning still might land that top tier defenseman it certainly needs by the Feb. 26 trade deadline. But if that player was wearing a Tampa Bay sweater Saturday, would the outcome against the Devils have been any different?The Ligh...
Updated: 28 minutes ago

Boys basketball: Top seed Carrollwood Day dominant from start

CLEARWATER — Pressure, intensity and energy.In Saturday's Class 4A-4 district title game at Calvary Christian, Carrollwood Day's six-man rotation put the heat squarely and constantly on Tampa Prep. Playing up-tempo offense behind savvy poi...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Rumor mill: What Lightning might do at trade deadline

Rumor mill: What Lightning might do at trade deadline

Reports and rumors involving the Lightning leading up to the NHL trade deadline on Feb. 26:Feb. 17A smaller move could pay big dividendsIf you look at the history of recent Stanley Cup champions, their pivotal moves were subtle, not splashy, the Time...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Florida Gators to start spring ball with two open practice sessions

Florida Gators to start spring ball with two open practice sessions

The Florida Gators will begin the first spring practice of the Dan Mullen era with two sessions open to the public.The team's March 16 and 17 workouts will be open for fans to attend. UF hasn't yet announced the start times.UF also announced that it ...
Updated: 1 hour ago
HomeTeam 25: Softball rankings for Tampa Bay

HomeTeam 25: Softball rankings for Tampa Bay

1. Land O'Lakes (2-0)Up next: Tuesday vs. Wesley Chapel; Wednesday vs. Cypress CreekThe buzz: The Class 6A defending state champion is in a good position to make another run at a title. A majority of the starting lineup returns, including the Ta...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Kevin Kiermaier sounds off on Rays’ weekend moves: ‘I am 100 percent frustrated and very upset’

Kevin Kiermaier sounds off on Rays’ weekend moves: ‘I am 100 percent frustrated and very upset’

Standout CF Kevin Kiermaier made very clear Monday what he thought of the Rays' weekend decisions to part ways with veteran OF/DH Corey Dickerson and RHP Jake Odorizzi:"I am 100 percent frustrated and very upset with the moves. No beating around the ...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Fergie’s NBA All-Star Game national anthem confuses, amuses

Fergie’s NBA All-Star Game national anthem confuses, amuses

LOS ANGELES — Fergie tried something different with her national anthem at the NBA All-Star Game, and not everybody was cheering.The Black Eyed Peas singer's slow, bluesy rendition of "The Star-Spangled Banner" on Sunday night wasn't particular...
Updated: 3 hours ago
U.S. women’s hockey team back in gold medal game after 5-0 win over Finland

U.S. women’s hockey team back in gold medal game after 5-0 win over Finland

GANGNEUNG, South Korea — The Americans played their way back into the only women’s hockey game that matters: a showdown with Canada for the Olympic gold medal. The Americans are back in the title game for a third straight Olympics after ...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: Goodbye, Jake Odorizzi and Corey Dickerson

Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: Goodbye, Jake Odorizzi and Corey Dickerson

The Rays continue their salary dump as they trade Jake Odorizzi to the Twins for a Single-A shortstop and designate All-Star Corey Dickerson for assignment, saving about $10 million in the process.In his latest podcast, Rick Stroud breaks down the mo...
Updated: 4 hours ago