Jeremy Adams, Osceola
His senior season did not start as planned. Adams, a starting pitcher and top hitter for the Warriors, took the loss in a 4-1 game against Inspiration Academy of Bradenton in the Steve Georgiadis opener. He was 0-for-4 at the plate.
His slump lasted just one game. Adams went 4-for-4 with a triple in a win against Clearwater and followed that with a 3-for-4 night in a win over Lakewood.
"I wasn't happy with how things started," he said. "They had a good pitcher, but I still didn't want to go 0-for-4. After that things turned around. It does a lot for confidence."
Adams is in his second season as a full-time starter. He will get the start tonight at Sunlake. When he is not on the mound, he plays third base. Wherever he's playing, Adams bats second in the lineup. He is a lef-handed contact hitter with speed who can spray the ball to all corners of fields.
The Bethune-Cookman said he doesn't mind hitting, even when he's the starting pitcher. In fact, he's going to enjoy his plate appearances this season because he plans to focus on pitching only in college.
"This is probably my last time hitting," Adams said. "I like pitching the most, and since I won't be hitting after this season I want to do the best I can."
The season is only a week old, but so far Adams is encouraged.
"We're an unselfish team," he said. "Everybody plays for each other. I think it's going to be a good season."
Tiasia McMillan, Carrollwood Day
Last year, when McMillan was an eighth-grader, she went to the Lakeland Center to watch Academy at the Lakes play in the Class 2A state tournament. The arena was bigger than any she had ever played in, but at the time she never figured she would be back there just one year later.
But there she was last week, suited up in a Carrollwood Day uniform and playing against Bradenton Christian in the Class 3A state semifinal. If she was nervous, it didn't show. The 6-foot freshman forward scored 22 points and helped lead the Patriots to a 73-37 win.
"It was really kind of unreal," McMillan said. "I'd only been there to watch. I never thought that we'd be playing there this year. I actually didn't know what was going to happen."
What happened was a group of six freshmen, two sophomores, an eighth-grader and a seventh-grader went all the way to the state championship. They lost to Tallahassee FAMU 46-37 in the final. But still, not bad for a team that had never won a district championship before.
McMillan ended her first high school season with 16 points and 7.6 rebounds per game. She said she now gets a little bit of a break before playing in an AAU tournament at the end of March.
"It seems like the season was kind of short," McMillan said. "It was fun doing what we did. Now we want to keep going back."