Bob Putnam, Preps Reporter

Bob Putnam

Preps Reporter

I've been a staff writer since 1996. My career started before that as a correspondent with the St. Petersburg Times. I covered former Tampa Bay Buccaneer and current USF assistant Shaun King's first start as a quarterback at Gibbs High. Writing about locals is a passion. I'm a fourth-generation Floridian who graduated from Dixie Hollins High. My great grandfather owned a farm in Pinellas Park. My father was among the first graduating classes at Boca Ciega. Sometimes I venture into other sports. Once, I tried out for the Tampa Bay Devil Rays. I was even assigned to one of their minor league affiliates. Well, sort of. Dan Jennings, the team's director of scouting at the time, said he was sending me to Walla, Walla, Wash. He was kidding. I think. Well, either way, I'm still here doing what I love to do.

St. Petersburg maintains postseason mastery of Tampa Bay Tech

But it was dicey this time around, with the Titans leading late and in line for the potential winner at the buzzer.

HomeTeam 25: Softball players to watch in Tampa Bay

Academy at the Lakes shortstop Brooke Blankenship (4) screams in celebration after being scoring on game-winning double from Alexis Kilfoyl during last year's Class 2A state softball championship. (ANDRES LEIVA | Special to the Times)
Tampa Bay is loaded with talent, as usual, and here is just a sampling of what teams have to offer this season.

East Lakeís most important softball game isnít about the outcome

Signs honoring loved ones who are battling or have battled cancer dot the field as part of East Lake's ’11th annual Strike Out Cancer Game. (BOB PUTNAM | Times)
The Eaglesí opener against Palm Harbor University raises money to support cancer research and hits home for players on both sides.

HomeTeam Hot Shot winners: Mykenna Corbett and Chase Barrs
This basketball pair helped spark their teams to postseason wins last week.

Softball journal: Florida State locked in on Tampa Bay recruits

FSU pitcher Kathryn Sandercock (32), left, talks with head coach Lonni Alameda during the St. Pete/Clearwater Elite Invitational at the Eddie C. Moore Complex in Clearwater. (DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD | Times)
Last seasonís World Series champion attracts the cream of the local crop.