Friday, November 16, 2018


Rodney Page, Times staff writer

Rodney Page, Times staff writer

Rodney Page joined the Times as a full-time staff writer in 1996. Since then, Page has not only covered the preps sports scene in Pinellas County but also the Tampa Bay Mutiny of Major League Soccer and local professional golf tournaments on the PGA and Champions Tour. Page was also involved in creating a golf website that featured reviews of all public courses in Hernando, Pasco, Hillsborough and Pinellas counties. Growing up in Clearwater, Page learned to love most outdoor activities, from boating and fishing to baseball and golf. He is the father of two children, who also love to spend time outdoors when not glued to their phones.

Shorecrest Prep's Jacqueline St Cin (10) spikes the ball set by Taylor Waldmann (1) against Indian Rocks Christian during the regular season. (MARTHA ASENCIO RHINE | Times)

State volleyball: Shorecrest, Bishop McLaughlin look for first titles

Two more local teams vie for state titles Saturday in Fort Myers.Class 4A : Shorecrest (22-3) vs. Palm Beach Gardens Benjamin (21-4)When/where: 10 a.m. Saturday, Suncoast Credit Union Arena, Fort...
Updated: 8 hours ago
Plant’s Birdie Frierson, center, takes control of the ball during the second set against St. Thomas Aquinas. “We’re proud of what we did, although we obviously know we could’ve done better,

Plant’s hot start fizzles in Class 8A volleyball championship

The Panthers take Game 1, but can't find the winning formula vs. Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas.
Published: 11/15/18
Clearwater Central Catholic quarterback Rory Hicks utilized a play called

Will Tampa Catholic-CCC, Plant-Viera rematches live up to playoff predecessors?

The play was designed for desperation."We call it Hero," Clearwater Central Catholic coach Chris Harvey said.Quarterback Rory Hicks dropped back, throwing the ball to the end zone. Receiver Brett Seither looked up, awaiting the...
Published: 11/15/18
Plant High's Molly Fleming (13) sets the ball for Birdie Frierson (6) during a regular-season match. (TAILYR IRVINE  | Times)

Class 8A volleyball: Plant vs. Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas

A look at Thursday's Class 8A state final between a pair of powerhouses:Plant (27-1) vs. Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas (26-5)When/where: 7 p.m. Thursday; Suncoast Credit Union Arena, Fort...
Published: 11/14/18
Lakewood High sophomore Phillip Pierre has become a valuable commodity to the football team. Pierre, who grew up in Sweden playing soccer, is lending his kicking talents to the gridiron. (RODNEY PAGE | Times)

How a Swedish soccer transplant became Lakewood’s football MVP

Lakewood coach Cory Moore needed a kicker. The season was already a game old, so he did what any responsible coach would do. He asked boys soccer coach Brandon Vaughan if there was anybody on his team who could kick.Moore was told to...
Published: 11/14/18
Zephyrhills High has never been past the second round of the football playoffs. The Bulldogs hope to change that Friday night at home.  (MARTHA ASENCIO RHINE | Times)

Pasco County’s playoff football honor falls to two Zephyrhills programs

In the first round of the high school football playoffs, both teams from Zephyrhills made a statement. Zephyrhills High defeated Crystal River 35-0, in Class 5A while Zephyrhills Christian Academy defeated Gainesville St. Francis Catholic 55-0...
Published: 11/13/18
Zephyrhills Christian’s Kavbion Marbra is one interception from the Pasco County record.  (Courtesy of Zephyrhills Christian)

Sunday Morning Quarterback: Playoff performances to remember from Round 1

Highlights from the first round of the playoffs:Player of the WeekKavbion Marbra, Zephyrhills Christian: It was a good night for area defensive backs. Armwood picked off three passes, returning all three for...
Published: 11/11/18

State volleyball: Shorecrest advances to first final in 23 years

ST. PETERSBURG — Shorecrest has played well all season, but the Chargers clearly saved their best volleyball for the postseason.After defeating district rival Calvary Christian in the Class 4A region final more than a week...
Published: 11/10/18
Bishop McLaughlin's Adrianna Lopez leads the team with 414 kills this season. (ALICE HERDEN | Special to the Times)

Four local volleyball teams left to vie for state final spots

Games Saturday at 2 p.m.Class 8A: Tallahassee Leon (27-3) at Plant (26-1)Up next: Winner plays Venice/Fort Lauderdale St. Thomas Aquinas winner  on Thursday at 7 p.m. in Fort Myers for the state...
Published: 11/09/18
CHRIS URSO   |   Times
Pinellas Park's Rico Holmes sits along the edge of the track during the final minutes of Pinellas Parks 38-21 loss to Palmetto Friday, Nov. 9, 2018 in Largo.

Class 7A-3 football: Palmetto 38, Pinellas Park 21

PINELLAS PARK — It was the kind of postgame speech Pinellas Park coach Kenny Crawford didn’t expect to make. But after the Patriots’ 38-21 loss to Palmetto in the first round of the Class 7A region playoffs, he had to talk to his team about offseason...
Published: 11/08/18
Updated: 11/10/18