Though not as big as Super Bowls or NCAA Final Fours, Little League state tournaments do carry prestige. The 1990 state Little League baseball championship will be in Clearwater.
Charlie Harper, director of District 12, which covers Little Leagues from mid-Pinellas to west Pasco, announced Tuesday that the state's best majors teams (ages 12 and under) will play in a week-long tournament in Clearwater, starting July
30. The games will be at Misty Springs Park, home of Countryside Little League.
"It's a well-attended tournament, and it brings money to the city," said Harper, who said the event could draw between 2,000 to 3,000 spectators a night.
Teams representing the north (from the Panhandle to Jacksonville), east (including Miami), west (Tampa Bay-Orlando) and south (southwest Florida) will play in the tournament. The winner advances to the Southern Regional, in Gulfport. The winner at Gulfport advances to the Little League World Series, in Williamsport, Pa.
District 12 also was named the host of several sectional tournaments (winners of the sectionals advance to state competitions): major boys, senior girls, and Big League girls in Dunedin and Big League baseball in Hudson.
"We got a bunch of (tournaments)," Harper said, "but the jewel is the state tournament."
10 from area reach
state free-throw event
CLEARWATER _ Ten young basketball players advanced to the state championship of the Knights of Columbus Free Throw Championship by winning a regional competition Saturday in Clearwater.
The competition involved district representatives in five counties: Pinellas, Hillsborough, Pasco, Hernando and Citrus.
The winners will step to the line again March
24 at Saint Leo College for the state championship. Their scores then will be compared to those of other states' competitors, and national honors will be awarded.
Saturday's regional winners among the girls were: Leigh Ann Nichols (age 10), Dunedin; Kasmyene Hayes (11), Tampa; April Granholm (12), Palm Harbor; Sarah Cuni (13), Palm Harbor; and Michelle Tornalene (14), Seffner.
The boys winners were: David Muley (10), Tampa; Chris Kyviasis (11), St. Petersburg; Eric Wolf (12), Spring Hill; Dwayne Dobson (13), Clearwater; Louis Kelly (14), Tampa.