Local Sports

  • Dunnellon blasts Bradford in 4A opener

    David Pieklik


    DUNNELLON — Dunnellon made its first visit to the playoffs in five years a memorable one with a dominating 35-6 win over Bradford in the Class 4A football regional semifinal Friday night.

  • No. 11 Florida seeking more

    COLUMBIA, S.C. — Now that No. 11 Florida has wrapped up the Southeastern Conference Eastern Division, coach Jim McElwain said the Gators can relax, get back to business and chase even bigger goals ahead.

    Maybe not totally relax, but the Gators (8-1, 6-1 SEC; No. 11 CFP) do plan to get back to business today when they play at struggling South Carolina (3-6, 1-6).

  • Boys soccer preview: Four teams lacing ’em up

    David Pieklik


    For the first time in eight years, four county schools have boys lacing their cleats and taking the pitch in competitive matches, with three in the same district.

    With a few weeks of action behind them, each program finds itself in a different situation. The Citrus Hurricanes had a remarkable season last year that ended unremarkably; after going 13-1 in the regular season, they were eliminated in the first round of district playoffs.

  • Changing of the guard at Crystal River HS

    C.J. Risak


    It doesn’t happen often. In fact, it’s been 10 years since it last occurred, and it’s happened only twice in more than 30 years.

  • Lecanto takes all 10 weights in win at CR

    CRYSTAL RIVER — Amid a full Crystal River High School weight room, Pirates coach Randy Owens and Lecanto coach Bob LeCours both saw what they wanted as the Panthers opened the season with a 72-14 victory over their county opponent.

  • Dual-threat QBs lead teams into playoffs

    With a couple of experienced, dual- threat stars behind center, the Lecanto and Dunnellon football teams both enjoy a strong foundation at the most key position on the field.

    Panthers senior Travis McGee and Tigers senior Kobie Jones are a large reason behind the success of those two playoff teams, as a quick glance at the third-year starters’ numbers would indicate.

  • Winning them over

    A coaching change in football often signals a difficult rebuilding phase ahead for a program, with lingering divided loyalties and inevitable growing pains.

    Such were the challenges facing Greg Harper and Price Harris when they each took over a local program in early 2014. While their circumstances were unique from one another, winning over their new players — achieving that proverbial “buy-in” — would be equally at stake in the early days.

  • Adding to history

    Upon returning to district play after a two-year hiatus as an independent, the Lecanto football team notched three major team milestones for its program this fall — its most wins in a season, its second playoff berth in school history, and its first county championship.

  • Untamed Tigers

    Dunnellon enters its first playoff slate since 2010 with a sterling resume. The top-ranked Tigers posted their first undefeated season since 2002 in style, winning by an average margin of 32 points per game on their way to this week’s No. 1 ranking in Class 4A.

  • The Rex is back in town

    EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — Here comes Rex.

    It’s a game just about anyone rooting for either the Buffalo Bills or New York Jets has had their eye on for months.

    It’s Rex Ryan’s return to the place where he became one of the NFL’s biggest headline-makers with his showman style and brash and bold approach.