Sports Scene

South Florida football homecoming for Northern Illinois Jamaal Bass, Victor Jacques, Demetrius Stone

 

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About this feature

Sports Scene is a Miami Herald feature that spotlights news and notes from all youth sports activities in your neighborhood. The aim of the section is to feature game notes from any sport and the accomplishments of athletes from Miami-Dade County.

We rely on the directors and coaches of each league to send information for Sports Scene. We also accept photos, but we ask that everyone pictured be identified with a first and last name and the name of the team or park they represent.

The section is free and open to anyone. Email sportsscene@MiamiHerald.com or send a fax to 305-376-5287.


Be honored at Miami Heat game

The Miami Herald and the two-time world champion Miami Heat in partnership with Gatorade are sponsoring the Academic/Sportsmanship Team Player spotlight in Sunday’s youth sports pages in the Neighbors Sunday print section of the Miami Herald and online at MiamiHerald.com/sports/youth/miami_dade.

Youth league coaches, team representatives, teachers or family members can nominate any recreational, travel league, elementary school, middle school or junior varsity basketball player from fall, winter, spring or summer seasons who displays sportsmanship and good grades or shows improvement in the classroom.

Include school, grade level and grades or interim report. Each selected academic team player will receive a certificate of achievement, a Heat gift pack, two Heat tickets and will be recognized on the court. Plan accordingly as there are three designated ceremony dates during the regular season, and no make-up dates.

To nominate a Team Player, e-mail jvarsallone@herald.com or call 954-538-7153. Winners will be selected by random drawing from nominees who meet the above requirements.

Be sure to include a contact telephone number and complete mailing address in your correspondence and mail or e-mail a photograph to us. For Heat ticket information, call 786-777-HEAT and log on to HEAT.com.


MiamiHerald.com/sports/youth/miami-dade

Orange Bowl means so much to Miami’s Victor Jacques.

His stellar high school football career came to a close at the legendary venue, which is now Marlins Ballpark. Ironically, baseball was where he excelled growing up near Suniland Park.

Five years later, Orange Bowl again was significant. His standout college football play ended at the BCS Discover Orange Bowl Game. It marked the first BCS game for Northern Illinois, quite the accomplishment and a nice surprise for Jacques’ family and friends.

Jacques started at middle linebacker for Northern Illinois University against Florida State in the Discover Orange Bowl. His Homecoming brought 40 supporters, matching his uniform number, to Sun Life Stadium, the game’s host venue in Miami Gardens.

One of those 40, reluctant to let her ‘little boy’ play youth football, cheered loudest when he ran onto the Sun Life Stadium field.

Fearing of injuries, Maria Jacques, his mom, did not allow him to play football growing up, so he opted for baseball. He became a talented catcher, starring in the travel leagues.

Once Victor attended high school at Christopher Columbus, coaches lured him to football, something he longed to do. Victor loved it so much that football became his calling. He helped the Explorers win two district titles, including his senior season where he was captain and team MVP.

At Northern Illinois, Victor red-shirted at fullback in 2008 but eventually moved to linebacker. By 2011, he was the second team middle linebacker. In 2012, he made the starting line-up, playing a pivotal role in the Huskies outstanding 12-2 season.

The Orange Bowl’s outcome was not what he hoped, but Victor was happy to play his final collegiate game at home. Miami to Northern Illinois is a long road trip, so earning a bid to the Orange Bowl made it so much easier for his family.

His father, Victor Sr., sat proudly with his wife, watching his son play in the Discover Orange Bowl. His sister, Marcela, made a sign, rooting loudly from the front row.

• Victor wasn’t the only Miami kid starting on defense for Northern Illinois.

Outside linebacker Jamaal Bass and defensive back Demetrius Stone also were greeted tremendously by their hometown fans.

Like so many colleges around the country, South Florida is a hotbed for football talent. Northern Illinois recruited many here including Bass, Jacques and Stone.

The school, a member of the Mid-American Conference, is not widely known for football like its Orange Bowl opponent, the Florida State Seminoles of the ACC, but with the help of the three Miami standouts, Northern Illinois is now on the college football map.

Born in Miami, Bass played youth football for the East Miramar Wolverines in the South Florida Youth Football League and Miami Gardens Chargers in Miami Xtreme. He helped Miramar High School win a state title and earned a GPA Award prior at Monsignor Pace High School. The sophomore had a large turnout, too, of family and friends (led by his dad Keithly, mom Cheryl, and brother Isaiah) at the Orange Bowl as did Stone, a senior.

About 32 family and friends of Stone attended including his mom Natasha Lewis, grandma Armentha Lewis, aunt Yvonne Dixon and Coach Peter Brown. For the Golden Glades Panthers in Miami Xtreme, Stone did it all, playing receiver, cornerback, safety, kick returner. He excelled even more at American High School.

Bass and Stone are majoring in Sociology and Jacques in Corporate and Organizational Communications.

•  Some of YouTube (the jimmyv3 channel) with Bass, Jacques and Stone

Bass: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_tzLCev8B08

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SpgE6L4y7Yc

Jacques: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W0ZTr9csRMA

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LZdF8xiwtVk

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jCkNBdi0yas

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RSdlO1lj8Zo

Stone: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=COkrez5f3ao

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Dz_nA3cO3s

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DHz9mzp-ju8

Discover Orange Bowl

Practice Week

NORTHERN ILLINOIS

At Barry University in Miami Shores

Demetrius Stone - Sr - DB

5-10, 203

Sociology Major

American Senior High School

Golden Glades Panthers Youth Football (Miami Xtreme)

• How does it feel to be back in Miami, and did you ever feel that you would be playing at Sun Life Stadium?

“Honestly, it was unexpected but it’s great to be home, especially playing in front of family and friends. It’s been a long time since I’ve done that so it’s a great feeling. “

• On the excitement of the team

“It’s a good change in atmosphere for the team. I’ve been introduced to the cold and snow so for the rest of them to be introduced to what I’ve been use to my whole life is good.”

• How does being in a BCS bowl compare to your prior bowl experiences?

“You just know this is a big opportunity, the opportunity to play in the Orange Bowl is bigger than the last two we played, but we’re still coming out and practicing hard, running hard, and running through our plays. We understand that the opportunity in front of us is bigger than the last two bowls we’ve played in.”

• How are the players from Florida taking this chance

“We always practice hard, but we don’t get to come home often, especially being up in Illinois. Other players are able to have their families come there and watch them play or practice; so we finally get our chance to have our families see us practice and come to the game. So it’s just a little different.”

• On playing in the Orange Bowl in his hometown of Miami

“It’s exciting for NIU, exciting for the team, exciting for the NIU students and the NIU program. I’m especially excited for my family for me to come back home and play in front of them. It’s been a long time since I’ve done that.

“It’s something that you always think about, especially growing up here in Miami, you want to play in the Orange Bowl. We finally got the chance to make it here, and we’re going to make the most of it.”

• On the new game uniforms for the Orange Bowl

“It’s nice. It’s nice to get new uniforms going into this big game. It was a nice thing for them to do for us.

• What do you think is going to be the key to contain Florida State.

“We have to make sure we are physical. That is going to be the main thing, be physical. We know they are going to try and run the ball because that is one of their strengths; so we want to make sure we are physical swarming to the ball.”

• How has it been like bouncing around from different positions.

“We actually were kind of prepared for it; so when the situation happened, I knew that I was going to have to move to safety. Once I stepped into the role it was a comfortable transition.”

• What are your thoughts on NIU quarterback Jordan Lynch.

“He’s a playmaker. Sometimes you don’t even expect some of the plays the he makes to happen. You don’t really get to see it in practice as much as you see it in the game because you can’t really tackle the quarterback in practice, but we know what he is capable of.”

• What do you as a defense take pride in most.

“How we really prepare and focus when it comes to game time. It doesn’t matter which position. All-around we are pretty excited to prepare for the game and being mentally prepared for the game.”

Victor Jacques - Sr - MLB

5-11, 228

Corporate and Organizational Communications major

Christopher Columbus High School

How did you end up at NIU?

“Going through the whole recruiting process, I wanted to see something different. I had a couple of offers from here in Florida, but I wanted to see what the rest of the country had to offer. I wanted to see something new; so I took my chance at NIU.”

• What was the transition like?

“It was quite a culture shock. Definitely the weather was one of the biggest parts of that. The people were different. There’s a lot more of diversity here in Miami, which is considered a melting pot; so it was a little different.”

How would you characterize the play of the [NIU] defense this year?

“It’s a physical, swarming defense. We’re fundamentally sound, and everyone has a job to do, and as long as we each do our job, we should be fine.”

• Is there a common thread in the games in which the defense did not play well?

“[In those games] we played unsoundly, screwed up a little bit, and that leads to bad things. So we’re focusing on those mistakes and staying fundamentally sound to play well in this game.”

• How giddy were you when it was announced that you would be playing in the Orange Bowl?

“Oh man I was smiling from ear to ear. It was almost hard to control sometimes, you know almost emotional.

“Especially being from here it was quite an experience. The emotions are still going [and] coming here — just brings them all back up.”

• Overall there is a clear favorite and a clear underdog. How do you feel in that role?

“We expected it. We knew what we we’re getting ourselves into, but we’ve prepared well. This is a well solidified program coming up; so this is not the first time we will be playing a good team. Over the years we’ve been preparing well [and] playing well. So we’re ready, definitely ready.”

• How important was it to have guys from South Florida with you at Northern Illinois?

“It was very comforting. It’s a different type of bond. You bond with your teammates of course, but being able to come back home and still interact with some of your teammates is quite special.”

Jamaal Bass – R-So - OLB

5-10, 225

Sociology Major

Miramar High School

Monsignor Pace High School

East Miramar Optimist Wolverines (South Florida Youth Football)

Miami Gardens Chargers (Miami Xtreme)

• Is this a dream come true to play in the Orange Bowl in your hometown?

“It’s a Blessing. Last year with West Virginia, with [South Florida talents] Geno Smith and Stedman Bailey [and Ivan McCartney], they played in it, so to come back the following year is a tremendous blessing.”

Bass, Bailey, McCartney and Smith are Miramar High School graduates, playing for coach Damon Cogdill.

• How does it feel to be practicing in the Florida weather again?

“I got use to the weather in Illinois; so coming back home is different for me, but I’m enjoying it.”

• On playing in front of family and friends

“Growing up near Sun Life Stadium, it’s going to be great. It’s going to be something to remember.”

• How does it feel, being from Miami, to play against Florida State, a team you watched growing up and how does it

motivate you?

“You know growing up I was a Miami Hurricanes fan; so I never really liked Florida State. So getting to play against them is going to be great.”

Discover Orange Bowl

FSU 31, NIU 10

At Sun Life Stadium in Miami Gardens

Game Stats For

NIU Players From Miami

NIU sophomore linebacker Jamaal Bass (5-10, 225) recorded seven tackles (five solo, two assists) with one for a loss.

NIU senior defensive back Demetrius Stone (5-10, 203) had four tackles (three solo, one assist) with a fumble recovery.

NIU middle linebacker Victor Jacques (5-11, 228) totaled three tackles (two solo, one assist).

Post Game

NORTHERN ILLINOIS

At Sun Life Stadium in Miami Gardens

Victor Jacques - Sr - MLB• On the game

“Well, we had a good game plan. We just didn’t execute it the way we wanted to. We got into some looks where we weren’t fundamentally sound, so [we] got to put the blame on us. That’s a good offense so when you aren’t fundamentally sound, things don’t work out too well.”

• On his return to his hometown of Miami

“It was a good homecoming, something I looked forward to. But, this isn’t the ending I wanted.”

• On keeping head up high

“We won back-to-back MAC Championships. We’ve been there three times losing a heartbreaker the first time, but you definitely learn from this process, and the team is going to always grow.”

• On fighting to the very end

“We always go out fighting and swinging. We like to do things the hard way unfortunately, and it didn’t work out the way we wanted.”

• On how he felt after his team recovered the onside kick

“You definitely want to get points when you get that onsides, and not being able to was a let down.”

Opa-locka basketball

Youth basketball players competed in Opa-locka Vice Mayor Joseph L. Kelley’s Annual Basketball Classic at the Sherbondy Village Gymnasium, 215 North Perviz Ave., Opa-locka.

The three-day event featured several age divisions. the Trinity Titans Church team won the 16-and-under and 14-and-under titles, defeating Opa-locka Parks & Recreation in each final, 40-35 and 53-36, respectively.

The basketball teams, comprised of community youth, practiced throughout the year to prepare for this anticipated tournament.

Vice Mayor Kelley said: “All these athletes are winners. The Basketball Classic is a great way to encourage our youth to engage in productive activity during the holiday break.”

The Vice Mayor clarified the challenge is for everyone who qualifies, noting 14-year-old Vernisha Jenkins, a starter on the Opa-locka team.

Charles Brown, director of Opa-locka Parks & Recreation, said: “While taking a break from the television and video games, our kids learn sportsmanship and attitude control during these games. Participating in local park programs also leaves less time for mischievousness, and it is a clean, healthy way of competing through physical activity.”

Several parents expressed appreciation for the opportunity to see their children’s talents on the court. One parent inquired if an adult division can be incorporated in the basketball challenge next year.

The three Opa-locka park facilities are open year-round, during park hours for Opa-locka residents of all ages to enjoy.

Tournament results: 16U: Winners: Trinity Church. Runners-up: Opa-locka Parks & Recreation.

14U: Winners: Trinity Church. Runners-up: Opa-locka Parks & Recreation.

12U: Winners: Opa-locka Parks & Recreation. Runners-up: Liberty Square Colts.

10U: Winners: Opa-locka Sherbondy Park. Runners-up: City of Opa-locka Ingram Park.

8U: Winners: Opa-locka Parks & Recreation. Runners-up: Moore Park.

Semper Fidelis Bowl

Miami Central High School senior standout Ahmad Thomas helped the East defeat the West 17-14 in the second Semper Fidelis All-American Bowl at The Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif.

More than 100 student athletes from across the United States were chosen to compete in the all-star game, featuring the top high school senior footballs who also excel in the classroom and community.

The game, televised live on the NFL Network, was proudly supported by the U.S. Marine Corps.

Players spent four days practicing with top college and high school coaches from their respective coasts. Marines integrated Marine Corps drill instructors and officers as mentors. Marines and coaches engaged with players to develop skills and values important to football and a successful life.

Heath Evans, honorary Semper Fidelis All-American Bowl coach and retired NFL Super Bowl winner, said: “The true leaders are the ones who give back. Your legacy will be determined by your success not only as a football player, but by your character as a role model in the community.”

Coaches nominated players from each all-star team who demonstrated leadership in their daily lives and embodied the Corps’ values of honor, courage and commitment. Marine officials then selected Thomas as one of the two Excellence in Leadership award recipients.

Thomas, a defensive back, helped lead the Rockets to the Class 6A state title. He will attend the University of Oklahoma in the fall.

“You’re successful anytime you get in front of young men and teach them the Marine Corps’ core values,” Evans said. “The key ingredient on any team is a sound discipline structure. All those little details of discipline, if those kids take that out of this week, they’re much better young men.”

Metro-Dade track

The Metro-Dade Track Club had an outstanding 2012 season.

Daesha Rogers won the Joel Ferrell award for most outstanding female at the 2012 AAU Track & Field Junior Olympics in Houston. She set two national records (800-meter run in 2:07.65, 1500-meter in 4:36.79) in the girls’ 13-14 age group. She also was a member of the winning Youth Girls 1,600 relay team (3:48.20) along with A’sja Baker who was runner-up in the 800, Taranique Alexander eighth in the 200 and Jazmin Smith sixth in the long jump.

Lloydricia Cameron finished first in the discus in girls’ age 15-16 at 150 feet and was fifth in the shot put. Ulani Toussaint placed second in the 200 and fourth in the 400 in Midget Girls (age 12). In Bantam Girls (age 9-10), Jinah Mickens-Malik took fourth in the 800 and fifth in the 1500. Sunniah Capers was seventh in the 1500 in Sub-Bantam Girls.

In Sub-Midget Boys (age 11), Jacquez Stuart ran sixth in the 100. Fredrick Jones was runner-up in the shot put in boys’ age 15-16. Aaron Hanna was sixth in the shot put. Omar Lewis placed fifth in the shot put in the Young Men Division (age 17-18).

Carol Hardemon, founder and CEO of the Metro-Dade Track Club, was awarded the Col. William Tooke Memorial Award for Track & Field, 2012 AAU Florida Gold Coast District Volunteer of the Year, AAU President’s National Leadership Award for outstanding service and the USA Track & Field Florida Henry Mancini Lifetime Achievement/Outstanding Service Award.

Miami Country Day top athletes

Miami Country Day School: Middle School Female Athlete of the Week: Channise Lewis (basketball) was named tournament MVP in leading the high school girls’ varsity team to the Florida Christian Slamfest Championship title.

Middle School Male Athlete of the Week: Matthew Liebowitz (basketball) scored 10 points in a boys’ junior varsity win against Cushman.

Upper School Female Athlete of the Week: Onika Swaby (basketball) was named to the All-Tournament team in helping the Spartans win the Florida Christian Slamfest Championship.

Upper School Male Athlete of the Week: Brandon Parizo (basketball) combined for 84 points, 12 rebounds, eight steals and eight assists in Holiday Tournament games against North Miami, Miami Christian, and Calusa Prep.

Spartan Super Fan: Peter Konen (Upper School Science Teacher).

Our Lady of Lakes basketball

The Our Lady of the Lakes Catholic School girls’ JV basketball team (fifth-sixth grade) is off to a good start after the Christmas break. The Cheetahs beat visiting Blessed Trinity 14-8 in the opener. Carolina Arevelo, who scored two points, anchored the defense with 10 steals. The defense, which totaled 10 blocked shots, held Blessed Trinity scoreless in the third quarter.

North Miami Tennis Play Day

Sans Souci Tennis, 1795 Sans Souci Blvd., in North Miami hosts the North Miami-Dade Kids Tennis Play Day from 11:30 a.m.-4 p.m. on Jan. 27. Participants age 18 and younger are welcome for the free event featuring 36-foot and 60-foot courts using low-compression ball play for children 10-and-younger and full-size court play for kids 11-and-older.

“Parents can come out and learn more about our junior leagues for kids of all ages and levels,” said Cathy Nordlund, USTA Florida Tennis Program Coordinator for the Miami area. “This event will kick off our Jr. Team Tennis and 10 and Under Tennis seasons. Kids already in our program can come out for the festivities, and kids and parents new to the programs can come out and learn more and have a great time.”

Children age 10 and younger, who are new to USTA play, can also receive a free one-year membership for 2013. The free USTA membership for children 10-and-younger includes an annual subscription to the Bounce newsletter for children, eligibility to participate in USTA Jr. Team Tennis leagues and eligibility to participate in USTA junior tournaments.

The day will also feature raffles and prize give-aways for children. Registering online at http://tennisfestival.eventbrite.com automatically enters the raffle. For information on this and other Miami-area tennis events and programs, go to www.ustamiami.com or contact Cathy Nordlund, area tennis program coordinator, at Nordlund@florida.usta.com.

Golf tournament

The annual Father Izquierdo Memorial Golf Tournament is Jan. 25 at the International Links Miami Melreese Country Club, 1802 NW 37th Ave. in Miami.

Registration begins 11 a.m. The event starts with lunch, followed by tournament play and then culminate with a cocktail reception.

The mission is to raise funds for the Belen Jesuit Preparatory School Scholarship Program. The fund provides financial aid to more than 300 students yearly, distributing more than $1.8 million annually.

“Thanks to the cooperation of past participants, this tournament has funded more than 100 scholarships providing young men in our community a chance to attend Belen,” said Mariano Loret de Mola, Executive Director, Belen Alumni Association of Jesuit Schools from Cuba and Miami.

Registration and sponsorship information is available www.belenjesuit.org/golfclassic. Contact Mariano Loret de Mola at 786-621-4667 or mdemola@belenjesuit.org.

The Jesuits founded Belen Jesuit Preparatory School in 1854 in Havana, Cuba. In 1961, Belen and all private schools were confiscated by the new political regime. The school was re-established in Miami that same year and has grown the last five decades. Currently the enrollment is 1,500 male students in grades 6 to 12 with more than 6,000 alumni.

For the seventh consecutive year, Belen Jesuit has been named one of the Top 50 U.S. Catholic High Schools by the National Catholic High School Honor Roll.

Miami Herald youth sports online

For more area sports news and photos, go to www.miamiherald.com/sports/youth/miami-dade.

More events, leagues, programs

Tennis Campus Kids’ Day

St. Thomas University hosts a USTA Campus Kids’ Day on Feb. 15 in Miami Gardens.

Free and open to the public, USTA Campus Kids Days are designed to expose current and aspiring junior players (and their parents and coaches) to college tennis. Food and refreshments are provided, and fans are encouraged to participate in a variety of activities such as raffles, contests, racquet stenciling, autograph signings, clinics, etc., as well as watching a college tennis match.

On Feb. 15, St. Thomas University hosts Ave Maria University at 2 p.m. on its campus in Miami Gardens. Contact Bruce Carrington at bcarrington@stu.edu.

• Campus Kids’ Day is an opportunity for the relationship between junior tennis and college tennis to grow, and for players to experience college tennis. The program occurs around the United States throughout the tennis season, from top Division I programs to Division II and III programs, bringing the community together and raising excitement for the game of tennis.

Campus Kids’ Days and all promotions are open to all attending, and do not conflict with NCAA compliance issues for junior players.

For information on USTA Campus Kids’ Days go to www.usta.com/Play-Tennis/College-Tennis/Campus_Kids_Days.

Tennis classes, programs

Tennis classes and programs for all ages are at the Penny Sugarman Tennis Center at Sans Souci, 1795 Sans Souci Blvd., North Miami. Call for information on group lessons, annual passes, court rates and private lessons. Tennis pro is Ross Dubins. Call 305-893-7130.

Jai-Alai

Jai-alai is open to anyone, age 10 to 80.

With a rubber ball and cestas, the amateur jai-alai facility is at 1935 NE 150th St. in North Miami, near FIU’s north campus.

It is indoors, air-conditioned and open to all. Contact Luis at 305-389-2313 or Bob at 786-556-3574.

More Jai-Alai

Who said you have to be a male to play Jai Alai? Just as many females play the sport in Spain, France and Mexico, and gals can play it in South Florida at an amateur indoor air-conditioned fronton.

There are also leagues for males and children. Rubber or plastic balls used with free lessons by former pros. Cestas and balls also provided free with a nominal court fee. Open everyday. Email admanUSA@aol.com or call Brucio 786-629-5428. The American Amateur Jai-Alai Academy is a not-for-profit organization.

JCC Maccabi Games

The Adolph & Rose Levis Jewish Community Center seeks participants for the JCC Maccabi Games.

JCC Maccabi Games: Athletes age 13-16 (as of July 31, 2013) can represent the Boca Raton Mitchell Dobbin Maccabi Team in boys’ and girls’ basketball, boys’ baseball, swimming, tennis, boys’ and girls’ soccer, girls’ volleyball, boys’ and girls’ lacrosse (depending on interest) and girls’ softball in Austin, Texas from July 28-Aug. 2 and Orange County, Calif. from Aug. 4-9.

Participants will display their skills as well as be inspired by the values of community involvement, teamwork, creativity, integrity and pride.

Tryouts for Team Sports are Feb. 3 and 10 at the Adolph & Rose Levis JCC, 9801 Donna Klein Blvd., Boca Raton and South County Regional Park, Boca Raton. Cost is free. Visit www.levisjcc.org for details.

Athletes interested in competing in individual sports must contact Lesley Surfer, the Levis JCC Maccabi Games Delegation Head, at 561-852-3212 or lesleys@levisjcc.org.

Tamiami basketball

Tamiami youth basketball registration is open for girls and boys, age 5-16. Email Tamiamibasketball@gmail.com or call 305 -273-1145.

Miami Lady Express basketball

The Miami Lady Express girls’ basketball team needs funding to continue competing in tournaments throughout the United States. The coaches volunteered to train the girls, giving them something positive to do, and the parents have been fundraising.

Travel costs, food, tournament fees and lodging are very expensive for these girls. They practice at the Keys Gate Gym in Florida City and South Dade High School where their coaches teach. Contact Coach Larry Hicks at 786-301-2577.

Howard Palmetto baseball, softball

Registration for the 2013 Howard Palmetto Baseball & Softball winter season has started. Go to www.howardpalmetto.com to sign up.

The season starts in January and continues through April/May. Registration fees are $219 for baseball, $195 for softball and $185 for T-ball. Registration includes T-ball Titans for boys and girls age 4-6; baseball for boys age 6-15; high school boys’ baseball for grades 10-12; fast-pitch softball for girls age 6-17.

Games are at Evelyn Greer Park, Suniland Park, Palmetto Bay, Coral Reef and Chapman Field. Register online or for information, visit www.howardpalmetto.com.

Marlins Tours

The Miami Marlins offer behind the scenes tours of Marlins Park. The tours are open to the public on non-event days for $10 a person.

The tour includes visits to the field (behind home plate), home clubhouse, home batting cage area and Diamond Club, Promenade Level featuring the art in the facility, the bobblehead museum and the premium areas including the Suites.

Tours operate from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Saturday, except when the Marlins play at home or when other major events are scheduled at Marlins Park. Group tours, accommodating between 10 and 25 people, are available by appointment.

For information, fans can call 1-877-MARLINS or e-mail tours@marlins.com. Tickets can be purchased at the ticket windows on Felo Ramirez Drive (NW 6 Street between NW 14 Avenue and NW 15 Avenue) and are for the time and date specified.

Tickets are non-exchangeable and non-refundable.

HOF baseball

Hall Of Fame Baseball is sponsoring travel baseball teams for 11-12, 13-14, 15-18 (high school) for the fall season.

Hall Of Fame Coach Rich Hofman and his staff will coach the teams which will practice and play in tournaments and leagues. Register for a tryout at www.hofball.net or call David Hofman at 954-804-5600 or Ed Tisdale at 803-463-2591.

Youth Rugby South Miami

The Miami Rugby Youth Division, boys age 6-18, practices 6-8 p.m. Mondays at Murray Park and Wednesdays at Palmer Park, 6120 SW 67th Ave., South Miami. Call 305-400-0134, ext. 101. Visiti www.miamirugbykids.com.

Rebelle volleyball

Rebelle Athletics Club offers girls’ volleyball tryouts at Archbishop Curley Notre Dame High School, 4949 NE 2nd Ave.

The volleyball club, a member of the United States Volleyball Association, is under the direction of Mandi Tate, Dee Rey and former Barry University player Kelly Dantas. They are former coaches with South Florida Volleyball Club and currently coach at Alonzo & Tracy Mourning Senior High School in Biscayne Bay.

Rebelle Athletics is dedicated to providing developmental and participatory athletic sports programs beginning at the youth development level. It offers a progression of sports activities for persons of all ages, races and creeds. It strives to enhance the physical, mental and moral development of amateur athletes at all levels, promoting sportsmanship and active citizenship.

Visit www.rebelleathletics.com.

Soccer

South Kendall Sun Blazers (sksoccer.org) at Kendall Indian Hammocks Park, 11395 SW 79 St. (305-630-3314).

Miami Dade Soccer League (miami-dadesoccer.com) at Three Lakes Park, 13375 SW 136 St. (786-488-5216).

Soccer 5 (ussoccer5.com) at Kendall Soccer Park, 8011 SW 127 Ave. (1-888-575-2976).

Club Atletico De Miami (camsoccer.com) at Kendall Soccer Park, 8011 SW 127 Ave. (305-764-5783).

Soccer Academy of the Americas (socceraa.com) at Tamiami Park, 11201 SW 24 St. (786-486-3804)

Pinecrest Premier Soccer (pinecrestpremier.com) at Deerwood Bonita Lakes, 11511 S. Dixie Hwy. (305-255-3422).

Optimist Club of Westchester (tropicalsoccer.org) at Tropical Park, 7900 SW 40 St. (786-370-4222).

Coral Estates Soccer Club (coralestatessoccer.org) at Coral Estates Park, 1411 SW 97 Ave. (305-279-2328)

South Kendall Soccer Club (sksoccer.org) at Kendall Indian Hammocks Park, 11395 SW 79 St. (305-630-3314).

Southern Soccer Coalition-AYSO (kendallsoccer.com) at Millers Pond Park, 13350 SW 47 St. and Westwind Lakes Park, 6805 SW 152 Ave. (305-965-0083).

Got Milk

The National Milk Mustache “got milk?” campaign launched the call for entries for the 15th annual Scholar Athlete Milk Mustache of the Year (SAMMY) Awards.

The SAMMY scholarship recognizes 25 student-athletes who excel in academics, athletics, community service, leadership and who fuel their daily success with milk.

Milk Mustache celebrity judges will help select 25 winners from across the country who will receive a $7,500 college scholarship, an awards ceremony at Walt Disney World and an opportunity to appear in their own special Milk Mustache ad.

For complete contest rules and applications log onto facebook.com/MilkMustache where visitors can also learn more about the exclusive SAMMY awards weekend and view behind the scenes footage.

Health program

Stand Up! For Those Who Can’t, a nonprofit organization dedicated to empowering children, families and communities through (w)holistic programs in education, culture and the arts, and as fiscal agent for the Sunshine Child Wellness Collaborative, has received a $50,000 grant from the Aetna Foundation to implement “Sunshine Fit for Tots,” an obesity-prevention program developed by SCWC for 3-year-old children.

“One in five preschool-age children in the United States are overweight or obese. We recognize the need to start prevention at the earliest age possible to promote lifelong habits of health and wellness,” said Mary Rae Smith, president and founder of SCWC. “We want to bend the curve on childhood obesity and are grateful to the Aetna Foundation for this opportunity to enhance obesity prevention through exercise and nutrition programming.”

Through March 2013, 60 children from four early childhood centers in Miami-Dade will receive nutritional education and obesity-prevention activities through art classes and dance lessons. The centers selected to receive the program are Fantasyland Learning Center in Westchester; Happy Kids in Miami Beach; Happy Children of Overtown; and Alberto’s Dream Childcare in North Miami.

“We thank the Aetna Foundation for awarding us this grant,” said Jeannette Egozi, president of SUFTWC. “In the United States, low-income families are the most affected by the alarming obesity trend. With these funds we can teach children how to eat healthfully and be physically active throughout their lives.”

For information about “Sunshine Fit for Tots” call the Sunshine Child Wellness Collaborative at 305-807-5229 or Stand Up! at 305-864-5237, e-mail jeannette@ecqc.biz.

CB Sports Leagues

CB Sports Club offers Youth Basketball, Flag Football, Youth Soccer, Adult Soccer and Adult Basketball. Visit cbsportsclub.com. Call 786-273-5639.

Physically Challenged

Miami-Dade Parks welcomes children with disabilities in its youth leagues. If you need accommodations to participate, call 305-735-7847 (V/TDD).

Read more Miami-Dade Youth Sports stories from the Miami Herald

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