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Local Sports

  • What’s next?

    The only thing left for Marcus Mariota to win at Oregon is the national championship.

    The Ducks’ star quarterback is The Associated Press college football player of the year, adding yet another honor to his spectacular season.

  • Quite the year

    NEW YORK — The NFL’s troubles with domestic violence were selected the sports story of the year Tuesday in an annual vote conducted by The Associated Press.

    Ninety-four ballots were submitted from U.S. editors and news directors. Voters were asked to rank the top 10 sports stories of the year, with the first-place story receiving 10 points, the second-place story nine points and so on.

  • Titans lead Buccaneers for top draft pick

    You can win for losing in the NFL. The Tennessee Titans are proving it.

    Thanks to a nine-game slide, the Titans (2-13) are in line for the top overall pick in next spring’s draft. They hold the edge, according to the latest NFL calculations, on equally inept Tampa Bay because of strength — uh, make that weakness — of schedule.

  • GBB notebook: FHSAA fails to act on scheduling problem

    C.J. Risak

    Correspondent

    Here’s the question: Two girls basketball teams schedule a game. On the day of the game, just hours before it’s supposed to start, the visitors notify the home team they can’t make it.

    So what happens next?

    The obvious answer is reschedule it. But that won’t work; the home team hasn’t any open dates. What now?

  • Another level

    C.J. Risak

    Correspondent

    Alyssa Gage is one of the best girls basketball players in the county. She was last year and she has retained that title this season.

    However, that carryover label wasn’t guaranteed. As a junior, Gage averaged nearly 18 points, as well as eight rebounds, 2.3 steals and one assist a game. This season, the 5-foot-9 senior is averaging more than 20 points, eight boards, five steals and 2.4 assists per contest.

  • Bucs can still earn No. 1 draft pick after 20-3 loss to Packers

    TAMPA — Tampa Bay coach Lovie Smith understands the reality: Green Bay fans have a large presence at a Buccaneers’ home game.

    With the NFC North title still up for grabs, Aaron Rodgers and the Packers couldn’t afford a slip-up against the struggling Bucs (2-13).

    Rodgers threw for 318 yards and one touchdown and Eddie Lacy scored on a 44-yard run to pace a 20-3 victory that clinched at least a wild-card playoff berth Sunday.

  • Citrus’ Franklin shines at all-star contest

    Sam Franklin was prepared to make the most of a special opportunity last week. 

    As one of 73 players — and just one of four from the area’s five adjoining counties — selected to play in the 60th annual FACA North-South All-Star Classic football, the Citrus senior receiver was determined to showcase his skills for prospective college recruits, build on his education of the game, and boost the reputation of Citrus County’s football talent. 

  • Gators come up big in win over Wake Forest

    SUNRISE — Dorian Finney-Smith scored 16 points and had four of the Florida Gators’ season-high 17 steals to help beat sloppy Wake Forest 63-50 Saturday in the Orange Bowl Classic.

    Wake Forest tied a season high with 24 turnovers and shot just 37 percent. Codi Miller-McIntyre converted a four-point play to cut the Demon Deacons’ deficit to 52-49 with 5:10 left, but they were then shut out until the final seconds.

  • Pick or pride?

    TAMPA — A late-season loss already knocked Green Bay off-stride, and the hungry Packers know they can’t afford to stumble again against the lowly Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

  • ’Canes blank Pirates

    CRYSTAL RIVER — Heading into the Christmas break, the Citrus boys soccer team wanted to get a leg up in the District 3A-7 standings.

    Against Crystal River on Friday night, the visiting Hurricanes used their heads to accomplish that goal.

    Citrus scored once around the midway point of each half to take a convincing 2-0 victory in Earl Bramlett Stadium at Crystal River High School.