Pro Hockey News

Saturday, February 21, 2015

MBB: Late Lipscomb Run Foils Dolphins Bid

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - A 9-1 run in the closing minutes by Lipscomb proved to be the difference in a high scoring back and forth contest on Saturday at Historic Swisher Gymnasium. Jacksonville posted a third straight 80+ point game, but came out on the short end falling 87-83 to end a two game win streak.

"You are not going to win many games when you give up 87 points," said Head Coach Tony Jasick. "I am a firm believer that you have to earn everything in life. Give them credit, they shot the ball well, but we still gave up 87 and that is not what we are trying to do."

In a game that featured 10 ties and 15 lead changes, the Dolphins (3-9 A-Sun; 9-20) held a 40-37 lead at the break before Lipscomb (6-6 A-Sun; 12-15) shot 63 percent (17-27) and erupted for 50 second half points. Jacksonville led 52-45 three minutes into the second half and was still in front 72-71 with four minutes remaining before the decisive 9-1 run. After the Bisons took the lead they would seal win by hitting 7-8 from the foul line in the final minute.

"We did a poor job on their screening action with a lack of awareness which allowed them to get into a rhythm," added Jasick

Lipscomb initially built up a 20-10 first half lead before Jacksonville used a 17-4 run over the next five minutes to gain a three-point, 27-24 advantage following two free throws from Kori Babineaux at the 6:41 mark. Marcellous Bell, who had 15 first half points, knocked down three of his four three-point attempts during the run. The rest of the half stayed tight before two more three-pointers by Bell in the final two minutes gave the Dolphins the 40-37 lead at the break.

Babineaux posted his second straight double-double with 25 points and 10 assists. Bell meanwhile added 18 points and Marcel White had 17 points as the duo anchored another string showing from the Dolphins bench.

"Give Marcellous credit, he has stayed the course," Jasick said. "There were some guys ahead of him at the beginning of the year. Five-six games back he was given an opportunity and he grabbed it and ran with it. He did exactly what you preach as a coach."

The loss ended a seven game winning streak for the Jacksonville in Swisher Gymnasium.

The Dolphins travel to Stetson on Wednesday and will return to Swisher for the regular season finale on Feb. 28 at 2 p.m. against Florida Gulf Coast

No. 5 Florida Edges No. 8 Miami, 4-3, on Walk-Off Single by Reed

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Sophomore Buddy Reed delivered a two-out single in the bottom of the ninth to score senior Josh Tobias from second base as No. 5 Florida (5-0) defeated No. 8 Miami (4-2), 4-3, on Friday night at McKethan Stadium. Junior right-hander Taylor Lewis (1-0) picked up his first win as a Gator by stranding a Hurricane on third to complete the eighth and then retired the side in order in the ninth before Reed’s heroics.

Tobias was hit by a pitch from freshman Michael Mediavilla (0-1) to start the final frame, was sacrificed to second base on a bunt by sophomore Ryan Larson and came home with the decisive run on Reed’s base-hit into left center field with two strikes. The Gators had tied the game in the sixth inning on a two-run single with two down by freshman Mike Rivera and used Reed’s game-winning hit for their first walk-off victory since April 27, 2014 (Missouri).

UF had grabbed a 1-0 lead in the fourth inning when freshman Jesse Lepore committed a balk to bring home junior Richie Martin (1-for-3, two runs). Martin had opened with a base-hit up the middle and junior Harrison Bader was hit by a pitch, prompting a pitching change. Lepore took over for redshirt junior Ryan Otero (3.0 IP, 2 H) and a fly ball by freshman JJ Schwarz had advanced Martin to third.

Miami seized a 3-1 lead in the sixth on a passed ball, an RBI single by junior David Thompson (2-for-4) and a wild pitch. Junior Ricky Eusebio led off with a single into left field before senior left-hander Bobby Poyner matched his career high with his seventh strikeout. A double to right field by sophomore Willie Abreu (2-for-4) brought redshirt sophomore Mike Vinson into the contest with a pair of runners in scoring position. After Eusebio came in on a passed ball, Thompson sliced a single through the left side to move the Hurricanes in front. Thompson went to second on a balk, took third on a grounder and scored on a wild pitch by sophomore Kirby Snead.

Rivera countered with a game-tying, two-run single with two down in UF’s sixth. Reed (3-for-5) led off with a single and Martin walked before sophomore Cooper Hammond replaced Lepore (2.0 IP, 1 H, 2 R). After the Gators executed a double steal, the Hurricanes’ reliever had back-to-back strikeouts. Sophomore A.J. Puk was walked intentionally to fill the bags and Rivera responded with a knock into right field to plate Reed and Martin.

Although sophomore Zack Collins singled with one down in the eighth off of freshman Alex Faedo, he was thrown out at the plate on a textbook relay from Reed-Martin-Rivera on a deep ball into right center field by Abreu. With Abreu advancing to third on the relay home as the potential go-ahead run, Lewis had Thompson fly out to preserve the stalemate.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Armada FC Topped by Charleston Battery 1-0 in Preseason Friendly

CHARLESTON, S.C.  - Despite having several scoring opportunities, the Jacksonville Armada FC endured its first preseason defeat, falling 1-0 in a preseason friendly to the Charleston Battery on the road at Blackbuad Stadium.

Even with the slow pace of the match and the Armada FC's attempt to control possession, the Battery managed to notch one past goalkeeper Miguel Gallardo in the 47th minute. As is typical to most preseason matches, both teams made multiple substitutions and poured players into the match to offer trialing players time.

"I think we can take some positives from this match." said co-head coach Guillermo Hoyos. "The style and pace of play was slower. These types of matches, the slower ones, help us focus on learning our style. The players need to get to know each other better as we play these preseason matches."

Regardless of the final result, the coaching staff was impressed with the turnout of Armada FC supporters in the stands. Members of the club's supporters group Section 904 made the trip up to Charleston to show their support and outnumbered the home fans in attendance.

"We didn't play to the fans' standard," said co-head coach José Luis Villarreal. "We have been doing a lot of physical work, but this is still no excuse.We could have played better today. I did like seeing the fans come all the way up here to show their excitement for the team."

The Armada FC return home at 7:30 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 28 to take on North American Soccer League rival Fort Lauderdale Strikers in a preseason friendly in the Armada FC's first match at their full-time home, Community First Park at the Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville.

 Tickets start at $10 per match and can be bought by calling 1.844.2ARMADA or visiting

Thursday, February 19, 2015

COLLEGE BASEBALL: Seminoles Suffer First Loss of 2015 Season at JU

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A late ninth inning rally was to no avail Wednesday night in Jacksonville as No. 12 Florida State (3-1) suffered its first loss of the 2015 season falling to the Dolphins (2-2) 5-3 inside John Sessions Stadium.

The Seminoles had the tying run at second base in the ninth but Nathan Disch struck out Josh Delph for the final out of the game to preserve the win and pick-up his first save of the season.

Trailing by three heading into the ninth, the Seminoles pushed a run across when Danny De La Calle smashed a bases loaded RBI single over the out stretched glove of JU left fielder Austin Hays. With the base runners not sure if Hays would come up with the catch, the runners advanced just one base resulting in a run down with De La Calle being thrown at first.

“It was just a great fight that we put up (in the ninth),” Florida State head coach Mike Martin said. “Unfortunately things did not go our way. We have to throw this one away and be ready to go this weekend.”

The Seminoles, who finished the game with just four hits, registered two in the ninth including De La Calle’s RBI single and an infield single by Taylor Walls for his first collegiate hit. The loss Wednesday night snapped Florida State’s nine-game win streak in the series as it marked Jacksonville’s first win over FSU since April 14, 2010.

“You have to credit Jacksonville,” added Martin. “They did a good job; we made some mistakes that were unfortunate but it’s over with and we have to put our attention to a very, very good Georgia team.”

Jacksonville starter Jeff Tanner (1-0) was the story on Wednesday as the redshirt junior right hander worked 5.0 strong innings giving up just two runs on two hits as he walked two and struck out a career-high eight batters.

“He really did a nice job tonight,” said Martin. “For a guy that hasn’t played in a long time he was very impressive tonight.”

Making just his second appearance since missing the entire 2014 season due to Tommy John surgery, Tanner kept the Seminole bats at bay as seven of his eight strikeouts were recorded in the first three innings. The eight strikeouts eclipsed Tanner’s previous high of four set on three separate occasions in 2013.

The JU bullpen was equally impressive as three relievers combined for seven more strikeouts. Spencer Stockton worked the sixth and seventh innings striking out five of the seven batters that he faced. In all, four Jacksonville pitchers combined to register 15 strikeouts on the evening.

Bryant Holtmann (1-1), making his first start of the year, suffered the loss as the senior southpaw allowed three runs, two earned, on four hits in 3.0 plus innings of work.

Florida State used five pitchers on the night. Drew Carlton followed Holtmann and worked 3.0 innings allowing an unearned run on one hit as he finished with four strikeouts. Derek Vail, Alec Byrd and Jim Voyles all saw action Wednesday night. Voyles worked a perfect eighth inning retiring the side in order on a pair of groundouts and a strikeout.

Jacksonville grabbed the early lead on Wednesday afternoon taking advantage of a Seminole error to plate a run in the first. Holtmann issued walks to the first two Dolphin hitters that he faced before getting Connor Marabell to hit a groundball right back to the mound. But an errant throw by the Seminole southpaw over to the bag at second brought home Cameron Gibson for the first run of the ballgame.

It wasn’t until the top of the fourth when the Seminoles recorded their first hit of the afternoon as DJ Stewart led off the inning with a double to the gap in right center. The junior outfielder would score three batters later to tie the game at 1-1 on a sac fly to the warning track in left by Quincy Nieporte for his first RBI as a Seminole.

The tie was short lived as the Dolphins answered with a pair of runs in the bottom of the inning to retake the lead at 3-1. JU recorded three straight hits off Holtmann to open the inning with the third hit, a two-run double down the line in left by former Seminole JJ Gould, giving Jacksonville a two-run cushion.

Holtmann would exit after the hit by Gould coming out of the game due to a blister on his throwing hand. Carlton came in and got the Seminoles out of further danger retiring the side in order with three consecutive groundouts to end the inning.

Florida State drew within one of the JU lead in the fifth plating a run on its second sac-fly of the afternoon. Walls drew a walk off Tanner to open the inning and moved to third on a single to left center by De La Calle. Delph followed with a sac-fly to left to score Walls and cut the deficit to 3-2.

Jacksonville got the run back in the bottom half of the inning taking advantage of FSU’s second error of the game. Gibson led off the inning with a double to left off Carlton, moved to third on a groundout to second by Marabell and scored when Sansone could not squeeze a short pop fly over his shoulder off the bat of Hays.

The Dolphins pushed their lead to 5-2 with a run in the seventh off Vail but it could have been more if it wasn’t for a pair of nice defensive plays from the left side of the infield. With the bases loaded and a run already in, Alec Byrd got Hays to hit a groundball to short that Walls turned into a double play with an out at home and then to first. Dylan Busby followed with a nice back handed play at third and then made a strong throw to first to get Dillard for the third out of the inning.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

COLLEGE BASEBALL: FSU Faces Jacksonville in Early Road Test

After a three-game sweep of the Oakland Golden Grizzlies on opening weekend, No. 12 Florida State (3-0) makes the trek east on I-10 to face Jacksonville (1-2) on Wednesday, February 18 at 4 pm for the first of an early four-game road swing for the Seminoles.

The Seminoles outscored the Grizzlies 27-6 this past weekend as Florida State hit .323 as a team, while posting a team ERA of 1.00 allowing just three earned runs in 27.0 innings. DJ Stewart and Josh Delph paced the Florida State offense hitting .556 and .500, respectively. FSU’s starting pitchers allowed just two earned runs and struck out 21 over a combined 16.0 innings of work.

Wednesday’s meeting marks the first of two games between the Seminoles and Dolphins over a seven-day span. The two teams will complete the season series in Tallahassee on Tuesday, February 24.

The Seminoles enter the game winners of nine in a row over the Dolphins. FSU has won five straight inside John Sessions Stadium with JU’s last win on its home turf coming on March 3, 2009 (9-4). Over the nine-game win streak, FSU has outscored JU 79-41 while five of those contests have been decided by three runs or less.

Last year, Florida State doubled up the Dolphins in Jacksonville (12-6) before closing out the regular season series with a 6-1 victory in Tallahassee.

JU’s last win in the series came on April 14, 2010 as the Dolphins defeated the Seminoles 10-8. The series has been closely contested as of late with 13 of the last 22 games decided by three runs or less including eight of the last 12.

Wednesday’s game, which marks the 161st all-time meeting between these intra-state rivals, also marks the return of two area locals in DJ Stewart and Will Zirzow - both products of The Bolles School.

Jacksonville dropped two of three from Middle Tennessee State over the weekend to open the 2015 season. The Dolphins salvaged the series with an 11-2 victory on Sunday. Former Seminole JJ Gould started all three games for JU – two games at second base and one at shortstop. Gould finished the weekend series hitting .333 with four hits and an RBI.

LHP Bryant Holtmann (0-0, 0.00 ERA) will be on the hill for the Seminoles making his first career start against Jacksonville. The Dolphins will send out RHP Jeff Tanner (0-0, 3.86 ERA).

Saturday, February 14, 2015

NHRA: The Amalie Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals is Circuit's East Coast Opener

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — The NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series season is in full force and arrives in Florida for one of the most tradition-rich drag races in the world, the Amalie Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals at Auto-Plus Raceway at Gainesville, March 12-15, the third of 24 races in the 2015 season.
The Amalie Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals, the traditional East Coast opener on the Mello Yello Series circuit, will feature the biggest stars in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series as they set out to conquer “The Swamp.” A win at this event can mean great momentum as drivers pursue NHRA Mello Yello world championship glory during the season that crisscrosses the United States. Doug Kalitta (Top Fuel), Robert Hight (Funny Car), Allen Johnson (Pro Stock) and Steve Johnson (Pro Stock Motorcycle) were last year’s winners of the event that will once again be televised on ESPN2.

Celebrating its 46th running, the Amalie Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals has entertained spring-break-loving fans for parts of five decades and brings lots of star power to the historic dragstrip including many of the sport’s greatest legends, like “Big Daddy” Don Garlits, and this year will be no different. Along with the brightest personalities in the track’s history, fans will be treated to an All-American nitro spring break and with kids 12 and younger admitted free to the general admission areas with a paid adult, the event is a perfect family getaway.

Long considered one of the fastest tracks on the NHRA circuit, it was from this legendary point that drivers clocked the first 260-, 270- and 300-mph Top Fuel runs. Perhaps the most memorable of those was Kenny Bernstein’s historic first 300 mph Top Fuel pass in 1992.
The Amalie Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals will also be the season’s first of 16 events for the Pro Stock Motorcycle category. Riders will be looking to knock reigning series champion Andrew Hines off his title perch. Last year, Hines and his Screamin’ Eagle Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson teammate Eddie Krawiec dominated the series by combining to win 11 of the 16 events. Hines won his fourth world championship and first of the Countdown to the Championship era and sits two titles behind Dave Schultz.

Others to watch in the two-wheel category include three-time Gainesville winner Krawiec, defending race winner Steve Johnson, father and son duo Hector Arana Jr. and Hector Arana, three-time world champ Angelle Sampey, and husband and wife duo Matt and Angie Smith.
In Top Fuel, Doug Kalitta defeated Antron Brown in a thrilling final last season to claim his second Gatornationals victory. The win propelled Kalitta and his Mac Tools dragster to the top of the leaderboard in points and he would enter the Countdown as the No. 1 seed. Kalitta, the winningest Top Fuel driver to have not won a world championship, is looking for a repeat performance in Gainesville and is always a threat in the East Coast opener.
Brown, driver of the Matco Tools dragster, won Gainesville in 2013 and came close again in 2014. Fresh off a runner-up finish at the season-opening Circle K NHRA Winternationals in Pomona, Calif., Brown and his Don Schumacher Racing teammates, Spencer Massey and reigning world champ Tony Schumacher, will be among the top challengers. Joining them in the field will be 2014 rookie of the year Richie Crampton, three-time world champ Larry Dixon, Amalie Motor Oil fan-favorite Terry McMillen and Brittany Force.

Robert Hight was the hero of Funny Car at Gainesville in 2014 defeating team owner John Force in the final. The John Force Racing Funny Cars come to Gainesville with an all new look. With longtime supporters Ford and Castrol departing at the end of 2014, Chevrolet and PEAK Antifreeze stepped in for 2015. Hight will bring his new look Auto Club Chevy Camaro SS to Gainesville looking to repeat. Courtney Force, who unveiled a wildly colorful paint scheme on her Traxxas Chevy Camaro SS at Pomona, is looking to become the first female Funny Car winner at the Gatornationals. John Force will display his new look PEAK Chevy Camaro SS to all the East Coast fans for the first time.
Reigning world champ Matt Hagan figures to be a major factor at Gainesville but has yet to record a win at the historic facility. He opened 2015 on a high note with his season-opening victory at Auto Club Raceway at Pomona. DSR teammates Ron Capps and Tommy Johnson Jr., three-time national event winner Alexis DeJoria and two-time world champ Cruz Pedregon will all be competitive in Gainesville.
Allen Johnson, the 2012 Pro Stock world champ, got the best of eventual world champ Erica Enders-Stevens in the final at Gainesville last season. Johnson struggled at the end of 2014 and comes to Gainesville looking for progress in his Magneti-Marelli Dodge Dart. Enders-Stevens shined during the Countdown, claiming her first world championship in a final round winner-take-all showdown with two-time world champ Jason Line. Enders-Stevens is looking for her first Gainesville victory and the East Coast fans will get their first glimpse at the third pro female world champion in NHRA history. Winternationals winner and four-time Gatornationals winner Line, Shane Gray, Greg Anderson, Vincent Nobile and Jonathan Gray always provide tough competition in the parity-filled factory hot rod category.

As always, fans will have the opportunity to interact with their favorite drivers as they’re granted an exclusive pit pass to the most powerful motorsports attraction on the planet. While visiting the pits, interactive NHRA Nitro Alley and the NHRA Manufacturers Midway, fans will also want to check out NHRA’s popular Hot Rod Junction presented by the Wally Parks NHRA Motorsports Museum that offers a spectacular display of many nostalgic dragsters, race cars and hot rods on display, including vintage machines that were driven by ‘Big Daddy’ Don Garlits, K.S. Pittman, Big John Mazmanian and Bruce Larson, among others. There will also be several NHRA Legends of Drag Racing autograph sessions, allowing fans the rare opportunity to meet drag racing stars of the past.

Fans of the numerous legends of NHRA drag racing will have the chance to meet their favorite drivers of NHRA history during the legends autograph sessions on both Friday and Saturday at 11 a.m. Members of the Top Eliminator Club will have their own special autograph session on Saturday.

On Sunday, fans also will want to take advantage of the popular Darrell Gwynn Track Walk with Top Fuel legend and Florida resident Darrell Gwynn at 9:45 a.m. Fans will be able to get “up-close and personal” with Gwynn and other NHRA stars by walking with them on the famed track for a donation of $20 or more to the Foundation. Money raised will support the Darrell Gwynn Foundation’s ongoing work to provide education about spinal cord injury prevention, offer support to those afflicted by spinal cord injuries and debilitating disease, and raise funds to help find a cure. The Darrell Gwynn Wheelchair Give Away will provide a wheelchair to a child with disabilities during pre-race ceremonies as well.

Fans are also urged to be in their seats for pre-race activities that include driver introductions, the singing of the national anthem by upcoming country singer Natalie Nicole Green and that will culminate with the exciting visual of Jason Peters skydiving into the facility to deliver the American flag in spectacular fashion.

NHRA’s new campaign, “Baptism by Nitro” will be making its first appearance at Gainesville in 2015. Inspired by the popular phrase “Baptism by Fire”, a commonly used phrase to describe when an individual is thrust into a new situation, experience or environment, “Baptism by Nitro” is NHRA’s call to encourage long-time fans to bring a family member or friend who hasn’t yet experienced the heart-pounding atmosphere of the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series.

Throughout the 2015 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series season, NHRA fans are encouraged to share first-time fan “Baptism by Nitro” experiences on social media. Prizes will be given away all year to the best nitro rookie reactions captured in the pits or in the grandstands and posted to Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. All posts should include the hashtag #BaptismbyNitro and tag @NHRA.

Prior to the Amalie Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals, fans are encouraged to go online and nominate a nitro rookie and explain why their designated candidate deserves a VIP “Baptism by Nitro” experience. The winning entry will receive four tickets to the 2015 Amalie Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals, VIP “Inside the Ropes” access for a nitro warm-up and starting line access where each new fan will be truly baptized by nitro. Fans can log on to or visit NHRA’s Facebook page for their chance to win this VIP experience starting February 24. An exciting visual preview of the campaign can be seen and shared at

Pro qualifying begins on Friday, March 13, with sessions at noon and 3 p.m. The final two qualifying sessions will take place Saturday, March 14, also at noon and 3 p.m. Final eliminations will begin at 11 a.m. on Sunday, March 15.

Saturday, February 7, 2015

NASL: Jacksonville Armada 3, Philadelphia Union 1


JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- The Jacksonville Armada FC jumped out to a quick lead over the Philadelphia Union and went on to 3-1 preseason victory in their first-ever match before 13,934 at EverBank Field.

Lucas Trejo's penalty shot in the closing seconds of the first half was Jacksonville's final goal.

Philadelphia kept the pressure on goalkeeper Miguel Gallardo that eventually ended the shutout. The visitors put points on the board when Andrew Wegner scored on a perfect pass from Sheanon Williams.

Gallardo was spelled in goal in the second half by David Garcia.

Jacksonville's Fabrico Ortiz was assisted by Bochy Hoyas and Alhassane Keita was aided by a pass from Pascal Millien as each scored in the season's first exhibition game.

Saturday's attendance set a new NASL preseason attendance record.

The Armada play at home again on Feb. 28 at 7:30 p.m. against Fort Lauderdale at the Baseball Grounds of Jacksonville.


Friday, February 6, 2015

Armada FC to Host the MLS' Philadelphia Union at EverBank Field.

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- This Saturday promises to be a historic and spectacular day for not only the Armada but also for the City of Jacksonville and First Coast region.

Armada FC will take to the pitch for the first time ever when they host the MLS' Philadelphia Union at EverBank Field. The Armada's launch into professional soccer is presented by Community First Credit Union and will be supported by the three branches of the sea-faring military in the U.S. Navy, U.S. Marines and U.S. Coast Guard. Five hundred members of the military and their families have been invited to attend the match.

Stadium gates will open at 2:30 p.m. for the Community First Pre-Match Experience - three hours of fun-filled entertainment that will include autograph-signing sessions with both teams in the Sea Best Cool Zone, a chance to hear from Armada FC co-head coach Jose Luis Villareal on stage, live music from The Band Be Easy, interactive fun for kids of all ages on the Armada Soccer Experience, displays from the Marines, Armada FC merchandise and food and drinks specials.

The Pre-Match Experience will climax with the first-ever Armada March to the Match at 5 p.m. where drummers from the Armada FC supporters group, Section 904, will lead fans inside the East side of the stadium. The Pre-Match build up, hosted by Beat 93.3 DJ T-Roy, continues with big screen video entertainment, pre-match ceremonies and the first raising of the Armada Flag by former Tea Men and U.S. National Team goalkeeper and U.S. National Soccer Hall of Fame member Arnie Mausser, before the team introductions and National Anthem sung by Navy Counselor First-Class Marlene Ciesielski. The Colors will be presented by the U.S. Marines.

Rear Admiral George W. Ballance, Commander of U.S. Naval Forces Southern Command and the U.S. Fourth Fleet, will join the team captains and officials at mid-field for the historic coin toss before the match action gets into full swing with the scheduled 5:33 p.m. kickoff.

Fans will be able to follow the match action on the "world's biggest scoreboards" and half-time will feature a spectacular fireworks and laser lights show presented by Community First. There will also be a special guest for the Armada FC fans to meet for the first time during the break. Fans will also be able to pick up a souvenir inaugural match poster as they leave the stadium after the match.

Armada FC President, Steve Livingstone, looked forward to the big kickoff, saying: "It's really going to be spectacular launch. We're expecting in-excess of 10,000 fans on Saturday and between our Pre-Match Experience, Half-Time Show and a great match-up between our boys and the Union on the pitch, it's going to be a memorable day for Jacksonville."

Thursday, February 5, 2015

MBB: Flagler rallies Past Armstrong for 64-59 Win

SAVANNAH, Ga. – Lydell Manigo came off the bench to score all of his 15 points in the second half to help rally Flagler College past Armstrong State University 64-59 in a Peach Belt Conference men’s basketball game Wednesday night at Alumni Arena.

Flagler snapped a three-game losing streak and improved to 9-11 overall and 4-9 in the Peach Belt. The Saints are now tied with the Pirates for fifth place and is one game out of fourth place in the PBC’s East Division. Armstrong suffered its second consecutive loss and has now dropped four-of-its-last-five games to go to 6-13 overall and 4-9 in conference play.

Manigo came off the bench for the first time this season, after starting the previous 19 games, played sparingly in the first half, but erupted in 14 minutes of play in the second half with 5 of 7 shooting from the field and he made four three-pointers. He added five rebounds to his line.

Kessler Bell tallied 15 points on 4 of 6 shooting and he knocked down three treys and made 4 of 5 from the free throw line. Bell also grabbed seven rebounds. Keshaun Hamilton recorded 12 points and a pair of blocked shots while Jerrell Oxendine chipped in with 10 points, four rebounds and four assists. Dennis Diaz contributed eight points and seven rebounds.

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Jacksonville Men’s Tennis Team Advances to USTA Tri-Level League Championships in Indian Wells

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – USTA Florida Tri-Level League teams from Orlando and Jacksonville advanced to Indian Wells, Calif., to represent the USTA Florida Section after capturing men's and women's titles at the USTA Florida Tri-Level Playoff Championship, held Jan. 30-Feb. 1, 2015 at the Florida Tennis Center in Daytona Beach.

Tri-Level League is a doubles format designed to provide a unique team league opportunity to members by combining players of differing NTRP levels (3.5/4.0/4.5) on teams in local and sectional competition. For more info go to www.ustaflorida/leagues.

The women's winners were comprised of players from Orlando, but representing Marion County and finished first in a six-team round robin. The Marion County/Orlando team and a team from Orange/Seminole counties finished tied with 4-1 win-loss records, but the tiebreak of more individual match wins went to the Marion County/Orlando women.

Captained by Stephanie Schwartzberg, the Marion County/Orlando squad included players Shannon Hurley, Teresa Ferrarini, Corin Rombach, Bobbi Carter, Cristina Shams, Susan Silberbusch, Stephanie Weinard, Mimi Tran and Kristee Garrity.

The regional men's winners from Duval County/Jacksonville, the only men's Tri-level league in the USTA Florida Section in 2014, automatically advanced to the 2015 BNP Paribas Open Tri-Level Championships on March 20-22 in Indian Wells, Calif., held during the ATP/WTA BNP Paribas Open.

Captained by Chris Neblett, the Jacksonville team is comprised of Jason Collins, Carlos Celis, Claudio Carrara, Richard Levin, Durga Goodupu, Louis Saig, Mike Dailey, Anthony Pizzi, Steve Lucas, David Boehm, Flavio Soares, Michael Abernathy, Andres Gutierrez, Butch Ross, and Chase Foy.

The Florida men's and women's winners will compete against teams from the 17 USTA sections across the country to determine the men's and women's national champions.

Monday, February 2, 2015

CFB: News and Notes from the National Football Foundation

New Football Schools
Kennesaw State held a spring tryout for current KSU students today. With just over 200 days remaining until Kennesaw State kicks off its inaugural football season, will begin a weekly segment featuring members of the football team. This week’s feature is on quarterback Chandler Burks, the school’s first-ever recruit… Kennesaw State also added Shorter (Ga.) to its inaugural 2015 schedule… Morthland College (Ill.) officials say they have closed on the purchase of 10 acres of land in West Frankfort that will become the site of the school's football field and athletic complex…

The ACC announced its 2015 football schedule… Conference USA announced its 2015 football schedule… UCF and Florida Atlantic announced a home-and-home series in 2018 and 2019… Purdue and Wake Forest University announced a home-and-home series in 2026 and 2027…  Clemson has added games against Georgia Southern and Charlotte to its future football schedules…

Lee Stapleton was installed as the Orange Bowl Committee's 77th President and Chair for 2015… Northwestern University Vice President for Athletics & Recreation Jim Phillips has been elected to chair the new NCAA Division I Council, and serve as the representative athletics director on the NCAA Division I Board of Directors. In the newly redesigned Division I governance structure, the Council is intended to conduct the day-to-day business of the division, a roster of 345 colleges and universities… Prairie View A&M Director of Athletics Ashley Robinson was named the new chair of the SWAC Athletic Directors Committee… Tim Pernetti was named president of IMG College Multimedia… Stonehill (Mass.) announced Cindy MacDonald will serve as Interim Director of Intercollegiate Athletics… ACC Coordinator of Football Officiating Doug Rhoads has announced his retirement following nearly 40 years of service…

Awards and Honors
Former football players Jeff Bostic (Clemson), Joe Bostic (Clemson), Freddie Combs (North Carolina State) and Jerry McGee (Duke) were announced as members of the 2015 State of North Carolina Sports Hall of Fame Class… The 2014 Football Academic All-MAC team was announced… Ray Anderson, Arizona State’s athletics director, was recognized by the NFL with both the 2015 Paul J. Tagliabue Award and the John Wooten Lifetime Achievement Award, two of the NFL’s most prestigious honors, on Jan. 29 at an awards ceremony dinner in Tempe, Ariz…

USC and ESPNLA signed a four-year contract extension, ensuring that Trojan football will continue to be heard live on Southern California's ESPNLA 710AM through the 2018-19 season…

College sports programs received a record $1.26 billion in donations in 2014, according to the results of a survey conducted by The Chronicle of Higher Education… UCLA announced a commitment of $10,000,000 from longtime philanthropists Jim and Carol Collins that will be put toward the Wasserman Football Center project. In honor of Jim and Carol’s generosity, UCLA will proudly name an aspect of the Wasserman Football Center in their honor... UCLA also announced a commitment of $1,000,000 from philanthropists Marilyn Silva-Lund and her husband, UCLA Alumnus David Lund, that will be put toward the Wasserman Football Center project. UCLA will name the Wasserman Football Center’s Recruiting Lounge & Terrace in their honor… The Campaign for Appalachian raised $42.8 million to support athletics at Appalachian State… An anonymous donor is providing $20 million to LSU’s Tiger Athletic Foundation with the intent of funding student-athlete scholarships and facilities… Former Louisiana-Monroe football player Pat Mitchell recently donated $480,000 towards the end zone facility project and an additional $175,000 to fund the new lockers for the locker room…

UCF announced plans for the East Side Club, a premium seating area, the first major addition/renovation to Bright House Networks Stadium since it was opened in 2007…

The College Football Playoff has launched a random drawing for fans who would like to purchase face-value tickets for the 2016 College Football Playoff National Championship in Glendale, Ariz. All entries must be received by May 1, 2015… The third-annual SEC Symposium will be held Sept. 20-22 at the Hyatt Regency Atlanta, and this year's event is entitled Creativity, Innovation & Entrepreneurship: Driving a 21st Century Economy… Menlo College, a small NAIA school in California, announced its football program is ending…

Dartmouth All-American Don McKinnon passed away Jan. 25. He was 73… Jakie Sandefer, a halfback on Bud Wilkinson’s 1956 national championship team at Oklahoma, passed away Jan. 27. He was 78… Former North Dakota State fullback Tyler Jangula passed away Feb. 1. He was 28… Broadcaster Dick Nelson, “the voice of Lakers football” at Grand Valley State (Mich.) for 37 years, passed away Feb. 1…