Local Sports

  • Elite showing

    MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The Florida Gators are back where their last three seasons have ended with yet another chance to go to the Final Four.

  • Notebook: Questions remain in softball

    C.J. Risak

    In just over two weeks, the real softball season — the state tournament — will begin. The question for each of the county’s four teams can be taken from one of the following:

    How can you maintain what impetus you’ve manufactured?

    How can you tweak things to make a promising run into the tournament?

  • Can the Rays win it all?

    ST. PETERSBURG — The Tampa Bay Rays feel they have everything it takes to win the World Series and aren’t afraid to say it.

    The budget-minded franchise that’s played into October four out of the past six seasons boosted payroll instead of cutting back this winter in hopes of making another strong run for the playoffs.

    “The goal is to be the team that plays the last game of the year and win,” third baseman Evan Longoria said.

  • Hook up with this

    Capt. Rick Burns
    Fishing report

  • 'Canes, Pirates baseball teams both triumph

    The Citrus baseball team took a 3-2 victory over Jacksonville Episcopal on Tuesday in the Central Florida Spring Break Slam in Orlando.

    Chad Dawson threw 5 1/3 innings to snag the win. Dawson gave up two earned runs on six hits while striking out three and walking five walks.

    Trae Adams tossed 1 2/3 innings and struck out two for the long-relief save.

  • Two and done

    STATE COLLEGE, Pa. — Florida’s return to the NCAA tournament has it longing for a deeper run the next time.

    The Gators expect to be back soon.

    “It just continues to generate a high expectation for our program,” coach Amanda Butler said. “It’s just huge, huge strides being in the position that we’re in.”

  • High school baseball briefs

    Warriors remain undefeated
    The Seven Rivers baseball team defeated a pair of opponents Monday in Mount Dora to improve to 13-0 on the season.

    In a 10-1 opening win over Umatilla, Cory Weiand struck out 15 in seven innings and allowed just one base hit.

    Adam Gage had a single, double, home run and two runs scored to lead the offense. Garrett Griggs, Weiand and Tyler Pillsbury also scored two runs each, while Alan Rivers drove in a pair of runs.

  • The 'dirty work guy'

    GAINESVILLE — Will Yeguete is one valuable player for top-seeded Florida. You just have to dig a little deeper than statistics and box scores to see how much he means to the Gators.

    The 6-foot-8 senior forward from Bordeaux, France, is what coach Billy Donovan calls a “dirty work guy,” doing things in the press and the paint that rarely make headlines or highlight clips.

  • Close call for Rays' Moore

    FORT MYERS — Matt Moore walked off the field after being hit in the mouth by a line drive that he partially blocked with his glove in the fourth inning of the Tampa Bay Rays’ 9-2 win over the Boston Red Sox.

    Moore got his glove up just in time to deflect a line shot by Boston’s Xander Bogaerts, recovering to throw out Bogaerts for the final out of the inning. Moore lifted his jersey up to his lip, which was bleeding.

    But that also ended Moore’s outing as he was driven from the field, sitting up in a cart.

  • Larson holds off Harvick at Fontana for first career win

    FONTANA, Calif. — Kyle Larson won his first Nationwide Series race Saturday, holding off Kevin Harvick and Kyle Busch in a thrilling finish at Fontana.

    The 21-year-old Larson became the first California native to win a Nationwide race at the 2-mile oval, surviving a three-man derby in the final laps that had the fans on their feet.