Local Sports

  • No time for pain

    “No pain, no gain” is not a bumper sticker slogan to Angela Byrne. The Crystal River senior pole vaulter and hurdler knows all about pain.

    She competes in those events despite suffering an injury her sophomore year that might have ended many track careers. She discovered she had a double pars fracture to the fifth lumbar vertebrae, which causes pain in her back.

    Byrne said it is unhealable.

  • Citrus pitcher on to the next level

    C.J. Risak: Correspondent

    Kayla Quesenberry’s softball coach at Citrus, Larry Bishop, knows his pitcher’s greatest asset —­ the factor that sets her apart.

  • Aldridge resigns as Panthers head coach

    B.J. Aldridge resigned as the boys head basketball coach at Lecanto High School last Tuesday, making him the fourth consecutive coach to serve just one season in the position.

    Aldridge spent the final three weeks of the season suspended from his role as active head coach and bench coach for an undisclosed reason.

  • Rare track tie for CR, Lecanto girls

    Larry Bugg


    CRYSTAL RIVER — The Crystal River and Lecanto girls track teams both accomplished something pretty unique Tuesday night.

    They tied for first place in a track meet at Earl Bramlett Stadium with 77 points apiece. The Citrus girls were third with 24 points,

    The host Crystal River boys won with 81.5 points, followed by Lecanto with 52 and Citrus with 44.5.

  • Pirates top Citrus in tough county battle

    David Pieklik


    INVERNESS — The county rivalry took the backcourt to sportsmanship and respect, as Crystal River beat Citrus 4-1 in girls tennis Tuesday.

    Players for the Hurricanes (7-2) and Pirates (4-1) gave hugs and shook hands after respective games, as action for most stretched past two hours of competitive play. With strong seasons coming into the matchup, the teams showed potential for a showdown and didn’t disappoint.

  • Striking back

    C.J. Risak


    LECANTO — In a game between two teams with plans to capture the top prize in the 5A-6 softball race, neither played much like an aspiring champion. In the end, Citrus made fewer mistakes than Lecanto and generated more offensive punch, and that was enough to gain a 9-4 triumph Tuesday at Lecanto.

  • Longoria eyes “bounce-back” year with revamped Rays

    PORT CHARLOTTE — Evan Longoria trusts the Tampa Bay Rays to get it right, so he has no complaints about the club’s winter makeover.

    Not that the star third baseman was happy to see the franchise lose manager Joe Maddon and front office executive Andrew Friedman within a 10-day span of October, then watch their successors spend much of the next three months revamping the roster through a series of trades and free agent signings that have filled the clubhouse with new faces.

  • HS Track preview: Fighting the numbers game

    Larry Bugg


    Crystal River High head boys track coach Tim Byrne is having a hard time getting athletes for track.

    “There are so many other sports,” Byrne said. “They have girls football, plus baseball, softball, tennis. Field hockey will start up before long. What do you blame it on? Video games, internet? You want to be optimistic about the culture. You have to get them to buy into it.”

  • Softball notebook: Midpoint of district action

    C.J. Risak


    It’s the midpoint of the district season in softball, and in 5A-6 Crystal River reigns supreme.

  • Whatever it takes

    C.J. Risak


    If there was a single reason why Crystal River currently sits alone atop the 5A-6 standings, it would be Danielle Gomez.

    The senior, who was a standout catcher last year, has played extensively at shortstop and even third base this year. The reason, according to Pirates’ coach Cassidy Rash, is “we’re trying to work out what works best for us.”