Advertisement
  1. Sports
  2. /
  3. Lightning

Lightning add one more title for Champa Bay

Here’s a look at the notable titles and triumphs Tampa Bay has celebrated in the past year, from the Bucs and Bolts to the Rays, Bulls and more.
Tampa Bay teams have celebrated several championships this past year and earned the Lombardi Trophy and Stanley Cup, among many, many others.
Tampa Bay teams have celebrated several championships this past year and earned the Lombardi Trophy and Stanley Cup, among many, many others. [ DIRK SHADD | Times ]
Published Jul. 8
Updated Jul. 9

The Lightning’s second straight Stanley Cup championship is the latest Tampa Bay triumph. If you need a reminder, here’s a look at the notable titles and victories the area has celebrated in the past year:

The Bucs won Super Bowl 55

The Bucs made NFL history by winning Super Bowl 55 at home this year.
The Bucs made NFL history by winning Super Bowl 55 at home this year. [ DIRK SHADD | Times ]

Behind Tom Brady and a strong supporting cast, Tampa Bay earned its second NFL championship with a 31-9 win over the Chiefs at Raymond James Stadium. The victory came against arguably the game’s best player (superstar quarterback Patrick Mahomes) and the reigning Super Bowl champions. Even more remarkably, the Bucs became the first team ever to win the Super Bowl at their home stadium.

The Rays won the American League

The Rays added new decorations to Tropicana Field with their strong 2020 season.
The Rays added new decorations to Tropicana Field with their strong 2020 season. [ DIRK SHADD | Times ]

No, the Rays were not World Series champions. But Kevin Cash’s club still outlasted the defending AL champion Astros to win the pennant for the second time in franchise history and first time since 2008. Tampa Bay lost to the Dodgers in six games.

Related: Most Valuable Ray in the first half? Well, it’s complicated.

The Rowdies won their conference

Sebastian Guenzatti and the Rowdies won the Eastern Conference title last year.
Sebastian Guenzatti and the Rowdies won the Eastern Conference title last year. [ SCOTT PURKS | Special to the Times ]

The USL championship was canceled after multiple positive coronavirus tests within the Rowdies. That meant Tampa Bay didn’t get a shot at another league title; instead, the Rowdies had to settle for winning the Eastern Conference.

Colton Herta won the Grand Prix

Belleair resident Colton Herta (left) won the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg this spring.
Belleair resident Colton Herta (left) won the Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg this spring. [ IVY CEBALLO | Times ]

The 21-year-old IndyCar Series hotshot is a California native but lives in Belleair Beach. His performance elsewhere in Pinellas County landed him on this list: He won the pole at April’s Firestone Grand Prix of St. Petersburg and led 97 of the race’s 100 laps to cruise to a dominant victory.

USF had its best run in decades

The USF women's basketball team was a big part of the Bulls' most successful year in decades.
The USF women's basketball team was a big part of the Bulls' most successful year in decades. [ USF Athletics ]

Four teams (women’s basketball, baseball, men’s golf and women’s soccer) combined for six AAC championships to give the Bulls their biggest haul in 23 years. The baseball team advanced to the super regional, while the women’s basketball team’s tournament championship was its first ever, after four previous runnerup finishes to UConn. USF’s coed cheer team added to the trophy collection with a national title.

Related: USF athletic director pleads for more fan support after successful spring

Trayvon Bromell won the 100 meters

Trayvon Bromell finished first in the U.S. Olympic trials and will be the gold medal favorite in Tokyo.
Trayvon Bromell finished first in the U.S. Olympic trials and will be the gold medal favorite in Tokyo. [ CHRIS CARLSON | AP ]

The Gibbs High alumnus finished first in the U.S. Olympic track and field trials last month with a blazing time of 9.80 seconds. Bromell hopes that’s a prelude of what’s still to come. He has the fastest time in the world this year (9.77 seconds) and will enter the Tokyo Games as the favorite to win gold in one of the Olympics’ marquee events.

The Lightning won the Stanley Cup (twice)

Lightning goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy, also this year's Conn Smythe winner, holds the Stanley Cup while celebrating the Lightning’s 1-0 victory over the Canadiens.
Lightning goaltender Andrei Vasilevskiy, also this year's Conn Smythe winner, holds the Stanley Cup while celebrating the Lightning’s 1-0 victory over the Canadiens. [ DIRK SHADD | Times ]

The first one was significant on its own. After years of regular-season success but postseason failures, the Lightning finally broke through in September, beating the Stars in six games, then repeated by topping the Canadiens. Tampa Bay became the eighth franchise in NHL history to win back-to-back Stanley Cups and only the second this century (joining the 2015-16 and 2016-17 Penguins). The quirky scheduling from the coronavirus pandemic makes the Lightning’s accomplishment even more noteworthy: They hoisted the Cup twice in a 10-month span.

• • •

Sign up for Lightning Strikes, a weekly newsletter from Bolts beat writer Eduardo A. Encina that brings you closer to the ice.

Never miss out on the latest with the Bucs, Rays, Lightning, Florida college sports and more. Follow our Tampa Bay Times sports team on Twitter and Facebook.