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Local Sports

  • Cash: Honor to follow Maddon as Rays’ manager

    SAN DIEGO — Kevin Cash says he is excited, rather than nervous, about replacing Joe Maddon as manager of the Tampa Bay Rays.

    Cash, who has no managerial experience, was hired Friday to take over a team that made the playoffs four of the last seven seasons under Maddon.

    “I look at it more as kind of an honor to be following him in what he’s done over the course of his career here,” Cash said Monday at baseball’s winter meetings.

  • Citrus slips by Lecanto

    Larry Bugg

    Correspondent

    LECANTO — The Citrus girls weightlifting team narrowly avoided an upset Monday, beating Lecanto 49-48 in the Lecanto High School cafeteria.

    Citrus has not lost a regular season meet in six years. Crystal River finished third with 12 points.

  • Girls basketball notebook: Area squads receive wake-up calls

    C.J. Risak

    Correspondent

    Wake-up call.

    For Lecanto and Crystal River, it’s been delivered. Now they must react.

    Such a message was also sent to Seven Rivers Christian and Citrus prior to the season, and thus far they’ve handled it successfully. The Warriors have taken a different route this season, one that required reshaping their approach to the game. 

  • The quiet leader

    C.J. Risak

    Correspondent

    Tessa Kacer now finds herself in a role she never truly aspired to.

    The senior Seven Rivers Christian guard never had that overwhelming desire to carry her team, to lead with an emotional and eagerly expressed determination. In the past she would defer to others, without complaint.

  • Florida, East Carolina to play in Birmingham Bowl

    BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — Florida will play in the Birmingham Bowl to begin the Jim McElwain era, even if he won't be leading the team.

    The Gators will face East Carolina in the Jan. 3 game at Legion Field, the teams announced Sunday. Defensive coordinator and interim coach D.J. Durkin will coach Florida in the game.

  • Points titles decided at CCS

    INVERNESS — Michael Lawhorn, Jay Witfoth, Bill Ryan and Larry Welter Sr. celebrated championship seasons, while former track champions Curtis Flanagan and Chris Allen offered impressive wins on the final night of points racing on the season on Saturday at the Citrus County Speedway in Inverness.

  • Turnovers cost Bucs in 34-17 loss to Lions

    DETROIT — Not even the mediocre NFC South can keep the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in playoff contention any longer.

    The Bucs were officially eliminated Sunday when they lost 34-17 to the Detroit Lions. Tampa Bay turned the ball over three times in the second quarter of a game it never led.

  • Pirates make up for preseason with 5th place finish

    Tony Castro: Correspondent

    WEEKI WACHEE – Crystal River’s veteran mat skipper Craig Frederick called the Pirates’ performance last week at the preseason Springstead Classic “pathetic”.

    On Saturday night, Frederick was in much better spirits following the conclusion of the two-day, season-opening Weeki Wachee Duals III Wrestling Tournament.

  • Suh, McCoy anchor lines for Lions, Bucs

    DETROIT — They entered the league together in 2010 — one drafted second, the other third.

    Ndamukong Suh and Gerald McCoy have lived up to those lofty expectations, becoming two of the NFL’s top defensive tackles, and they’ll both be on the field today when Suh’s Detroit Lions host McCoy’s Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

  • Thrice is nice

    CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Florida State has made its case to play for a second straight national championship.

    Jameis Winston threw for 309 yards and three touchdowns, and second-ranked Seminoles held off No. 12 Georgia Tech 37-35 Saturday night to win their third consecutive ACC championship.