Kendall’s Jayson Bam Bam Farfan had an amazing season on the youth tackle football field.
Farfan, 8, a member of the West Miramar Patriots 8U tackle football team in the Miami Xtreme Youth Football League, led his team, which consisted of 11 first-time players, to the Miami Xtreme Super Bowl.
Because of his play, Farfan was then chosen for an all-star game and invited to two All American bowls.
At the Diamond All American Bowl in Myrtle Beach, S.C., he competed against older players, age 9-11, from throughout the country. The weight was unlimited; so they had players as heavy as 240 pounds. A starting defensive end, he made six tackles and forced two fumbles.
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As soon as Farfan returned to Miami, he started practicing for the Dade vs. Broward All Star Game, hosted by the Miami Dolphins, Under Armor and Generation Nexxt. He was selected Top 15 in the county to make the main roster, representing Broward County 8U. Even though he was again one of the youngest on the team, he was a team captain and a starting defensive end. He made four tackles.
As one of the Top 50 players in his age group in the country, Farfan was invited to play in New York for the DMaxx All American Bowl in June.
A third grader at Calusa Preparatory School, Farfan is a leader on the field and in the classroom. His work ethic in both is outstanding.
NFL Flag Championships
Thirty-two youth flag football teams (from 14 states) including six teams from Miami will compete in the NFL FLAG Championships, powered by USA Football, in San Francisco.
Eight teams in four divisions (9-10 coed, 11-12 coed, 13-14 boys, 13-14 girls) will participate in the annual culmination of the country’s premiere youth flag football program. Teams qualified for the national championships by winning regional tournaments hosted by USA Football in eight NFL club markets. In 2015, more than 300,000 boys and girls ages 5-17 were part of NFL FLAG powered by USA Football, a fun and dynamic non-contact football experience for kids to enjoy the sport’s fun and fitness while developing skills in an exciting team-centered atmosphere.
Players and coaches will arrive for a three-day trip to the San Francisco area to compete in the tournament. The stay includes hotel, food, transportation and social events for all teams. Flag teams will have the opportunity to practice on Saturday before taking the field to compete for a national championship.
Pool play for all four divisions is scheduled at Beach Chalet Soccer Fields in San Francisco. The championship games will be at the Moscone Center in downtown San Francisco.
Regional tournaments were hosted by the Arizona Cardinals, Houston Texans, Indianapolis Colts, New England Patriots, New Orleans Saints, New York Jets, Oakland Raiders and Washington Redskins.
The 32 teams participating in the NFL FLAG Championships at Super Bowl will wear jerseys representing each of the NFL’s 32 clubs.
Miami teams competing
Division: 9-10 Coed: Ryan Football (Jacksonville Jaguars): Jocob Henry Albert, Jorge Caleb Cascudo, Kevin Andres Cascudo, Stanquan Daron Clark, Jonjon Delgado, Keyone Jenkins, Kiran Ramese Joyner, Jose Luis Leon Junior, Christian Sosa and Nicholas Sosa. Coach Ryan Fernandez.
Division: 11-12 Coed: Mo Steel Seniors (Miami Dolphins): Robert Behar, Aaron Felder, Tyler Gale, Ryan Mendelson, Ethan Negas, Tyriq Streeter, Hakeem Sturrup and Zachary Zibelli. Coach Yossi Behar.
Red Zone All Stars (Minnesota Vikings): Deyzarione Bell, Rashad Davis, Taron Dickens , Derrick Edwards, Jamari Ford, Jermaine Hawkins, Jaiden Mortazavi, Jalen Rogers, Malik Rutherford and Boogie Silveria. Coach Luis Rodriguez.
Ryan Football (New York Giants): Mathew Boston, Dwight Crews, Samaurie Dukes, Kelvon Durham, Matthew Dylewski, Carson Haggard, Travious Latham, Jonathan Nesbit, Floyd Ridgeway and Brashard Smith. Coach Ryan Fernandez.
Division: 13-14 Boys: Mo Steel Vets (Dallas Cowboys): Manny Arias, Max Blair, David Egozi, Kevin Foo, Noah Hickey, Matteo Marcato, Robby Moret, Will Poses and Jesse Scharfer. Coach David Fried.
Ryan Football (Carolina Panthers): Jamari Bernard Brown, Nicholas Casares, Kelvin Durham, Dylan Dylewski, Adrian Garcia, Jahiem Jerry, Sean Moore, Koby Rouviere, Jalen Sloan and Keshawn Washington. Coach Ryan Fernandez.
In 2015, more than 300,000 boys and girls, age 5-17, were part of the NFL FLAG powered by USA Football, which is a fun and dynamic non-contact football experience for kids to enjoy the sport’s fun and fitness while developing skills in an exciting team-centered atmosphere.
For more information about NFL FLAG powered by USA Football, visit
The best FBS College football players from around the country met at the Inaugural Tropic Bowl college all-star game at North Miami Stadium in North Miami Beach.
The FBS all-star game created an exciting scouting opportunity for top level talent from the NCAA's Division 1 FBS levels top seniors who are looking to go pro. The Tropic Bowl was scouted by 27 NFL teams and 4 CFL teams who will flew in for the event which included 50+ total scouts.
The American Team was Head Coached by former NFL Coach Bill Khayat, and the National Team was coached by former NFL Coach Mike Stock. The American Team beat the National Team 38-14.
2016 TROPIC BOWL AWARDS: OVERALL MVP : Jacob Houseman QB Tennessee at Chattanooga. OVERALL LINEMAN MVP : Luke Hayes OL Kansas State University. HONORABLE MENTION LINEMAN MVP: Andrew Zeller University of Maryland. SPECIAL TEAM MVPS : Tre Henderson CB Franklin & Marshall & AJ Hughes Punter Virginia Tech.
TEAM AWARDS: The National Team (Navy): NATIONAL TEAM OFFENSIVE MVP: Quentin Williams QB Bethune-Cookman University. NATIONAL TEAM DEFENSIVE MVP: Royce LaFrance OLB Tulane University. The American Team (White): AMERICAN TEAM OFFENSIVE MVP: Joe Licata QB University of Buffalo. AMERICAN TEAM DEFENSIVE MVP: Kelechukwu Ibe ILB Eastern Michigan
McDonald’s All American
Dewan Huell of Norland High School joined the ranks of high school basketball’s elite as he was selected to the 2016 McDonald’s All American Boys West Team.
Huell’s selection was announced during Selection Show on ESPNU.
Huell joins 23 other top male prep players throughout the country. He is set to attend the University of Miami next season. He now ranks among an impressive list of players who have donned the McDonald’s All American jersey, including: Magic Johnson, Michael Jordan, Kobe Bryant, LeBron James, Kevin Durant, Carmelo Anthony, Chris Paul, James Harden, Candace Parker, Maya Moore, Elena Delle Donne, Skylar Diggins and Breanna Stewart.
Final team rosters can be viewed at
The 39th Annual Boys Game tips off at 8 p.m. CST on Wednesday, March 30 inside Chicago’s United Center and will air live on ESPN. The 15th Annual Girls Game precedes the Boys Game, beginning at 5:30 p.m. CST and will be televised live on ESPNU.
Tickets will go on sale Feb. 6 through Ticketmaster or charge-by-phone at 1-866-909-GAME.
Net proceeds from the Games benefit Ronald McDonald House Charities (RMHC). The Games have raised more than $11 million for RMHC and its network of local Chapters since 1978, and all 48 players will have a chance to visit a local House during Game Week in Chicago. RMHC help keep families close to each other and the medical care their child needs.
The McDonald’s All American Games support and celebrate deserving local athletes as they take their first steps toward basketball greatness, while also strengthening ties and relationships with communities across the country.
For the first time in history, McDonald’s All American Hometown Heroes presented by American Family Insurance will traverse the country recognizing the 24 boys selected to play in the 2016 McDonald’s All American Games.
McDonald’s USA, LLC, serves a variety of menu options made with quality ingredients to more than 25 million customers every day. Nearly 90 percent of McDonald's 14,000 U.S. restaurants are independently owned and operated by businessmen and women.
Customers can now log online for free at approximately 11,500 participating Wi-Fi enabled McDonald's U.S. restaurants. For information, visit
www.mcdonalds.com, or follow on Twitter
@McDonalds and Facebook
About McDonald’s All American Hometown Heroes presented by American Family Insurance
For the first time in history, McDonald’s All American Hometown Heroes presented by American Family Insurance will traverse the country recognizing the 24 boys selected to play in the 2016 McDonald’s All American Game. The program consists of a series of presentations honoring each All American in their local community to recognize the impact the player and community have had on each other.
It takes a special talent to be recognized as a McDonald’s All American. Earning that distinction can be an unparalleled source of joy for not only the player, but also for the friends, family and community that have loved, supported and mentored him every step of the way. The feeling of representing those who have guided each All American will help support him in his future aspirations, while those in his hometown – young and old – will beam with the pride that, “he’s one of ours.”
For 39 years, the McDonald’s All American Games have celebrated the nation’s top high school talent – now the hometown of each of these athletic heroes will have the opportunity to join in that celebration thanks to the support of American Family Insurance.
About American Family Insurance:
Madison, Wisconsin based American Family Insurance is the nation's third-largest mutual property/casualty insurance company and ranks 358th on the Fortune 500 list. The company sells American Family-brand products, including auto, homeowners, life, business and farm/ranch insurance, through its exclusive agents in 19 states.
American Family affiliates (The General, Homesite and AssureStart) also provide options for consumers who want to manage their insurance matters directly over the Internet or by phone.
Miami Country Day basketball
For the first time in Miami Country Day School history, the girls’ middle school basketball team went 17-0.
They completed this historic run by winning three games to win the SFMS Conference Tournament, beating Westminster Christian, Carrollton and Florida Christian. Jordan Fishman was named tournament MVP.
The champs also feature Milani McCormack, Sydney Shaw, Tatiana Barnes, Michelle Jacobo, Jordan Sheppard, Jordan Fishman, Rianna Washington, Rachel Hodes, and Abby Cherenfant. The head coach is Shenequah Johnson, and the coaches are Maria Luis, Slim Lewis and Janet Haas.
The Miami Midnites dominated the Florida All-Stars in a 164-89 rout at the David Posnack Jewish Community Center in Davie.
Guard George Gray scored 35 points (8-of-12 three-pointers) with six rebounds, six assists and four steals to lead six Midnites players who scored in double-figures.
Center Keion Palmer, a former Jacksonville University player, posted a double-double with 29 points and 12 rebounds. He also blocked seven shots, along with former University of Kentucky forward Darnell Dodson who totaled 25 points, 14 rebounds, four assists and five steals. Forward Jonathan Ocasio came off the bench and chipped in 23 points and seven rebounds.
The Midnites (11-3) then reached the 200+ points plateau by routing the Florida All-Stars 202-119 the next night at the new Scheck Hillel Community School Arena in North Miami Beach.
Former University of Kentucky forward Darnell Dodson had 53 points on 19-of-24 shooting from the field (7-of-13 three-pointers). He also grabbed 17 rebounds. Eight Midnites players scored in double-figures. Kevin Thomas (20 points and 14 assists) and Keion Palmer (18 points and 10 rebounds) also recorded double-doubles.
About Miami Midnites
The Miami Midnites, established in 2014, are the official Minor League affiliate of the reining Israeli Basketball Super League runner-up and 2012-13 champions Maccabi Haifa basketball team.
In their first season of existence, the Miami Midnites won the 2014 and 2015 Florida Basketball Association championships and finished as the 2015 ABA runner-up. The Midnites compete year-round, playing their home games at the David Posnack Jewish Community Center in Davie.
For information on the Miami Midnites, visit the team's official website at
The Christopher Columbus High School varsity wrestling team earned two first place trophies at the Destito Tournament in Martin County.
The event featured 16 high school teams from South Florida.
On day one, the Explorers won the Duals defeating Port Saint Lucie 60-18, Centennial 72-6 and Treasurer Coast 55-21. On day two, they captured the individual tourney championship with five-1st, one-2nd, two-3rd and two-4th in the 14 weight classes.
Winning gold were Mikael Codinach (126 pounds), Chris Bentley (138), Anthony Codinach (145), Raul Gonzalez (152) and undefeated Kyle Mann (220). Mike Fernandez at 160 was runner-up.
Freshmen Charlie Huffman (106) and Kane Vandermark (145) each was third in a 16-man bracket. Fourth place went to sophomore Angel Curiel (120) and freshman Ryan Gonzalez (132) who competed in his first varsity tournament.
Highland Oaks track
The Highland Oaks Middle School girls’ track team won the West Kendall Invitational at Ferguson Sr. High.
Led by Jada Joseph, the girls bested 11 other teams. Joseph was third in the high jump and long jump. She also placed fourth in the 100-meter dash. Team captain Vashti Claybrook was runner-up in the 200 and 400. Jadae Joseph won the triple jump and was sixth in the long jump. Brook Couri finished second in the triple jump. Paris Baker took third in the 400 and fourth in the 200.
Jadae Barrett was second in the discus and fourth in the 800. Tekiyah Lyttle was third in the shot put and Kayla Castor fifth. Kyara Walters placed fourth in the discus and Aniyah Brown eighth. Amaya Strange had sixth place finishes in the 200 and 400, and Annika Grosfeld was sixth in 100. In the 1,600-meter run, Anissa Lespinase-Casimir was fifth and Jada Saint-Louis seventh. The girls won the 3,200-meter and 1,600-meter meter relay races and were second in the 400-meter relay.
The HOM boys’ track team was third of 13 teams. Kemani Brown was the team’s top performer as he was third in the triple jump, fifth in the high jump and fifth in the 400. Bradley Mesa won the high jump for the second consecutive meet. Ghana Oboh took second in the shot put and fifth in the 200.
Ezekiel Figueroa placed third in the shot put and fifth in the discus. Giovanni Davis finished sixth in the discus and eighth in the shot put. Cawa Fernandes was sixth in the long jump, and Travis Henry was sixth in the 800.. Bryan Darucaud finished sixth in the 100, and Maleek St. Louis was eighth in the 1,600. Gaethan Bernadel was eighth in the discus. The 1,600 relay was third and the 3,200 relay seventh.
Miami Country Day sports
Miami Country Day School: Middle School Female Athlete of the Week: Jordan Fishman (basketball) combined for 23 points and 15 steals in wins against Ransom Everglades and Carrollton.
Middle School Male Athlete of the Week: Noah Markofsky (basketball) combined for 19 points, nine assists, and 17 rebounds in games against Archbishop Curley and Ransom Everglades.
Upper School Female Athlete of the Week: Amanda Martin (soccer) scored three goals in leading the Spartans to their fourth consecutive District Championship.
Upper School Male Athlete of the Week: Corey Friedman (basketball) combined for 21 points, 28 rebounds, 20 steals, and 10 assists in wins against Doctors Charter, Archbishop Curley and Tampa Prep.
Westwood Christian sports
Westwood Christian School named junior Shelby Osceola its Player of the Month.
Osceola is a second-year starter on the boys’ varsity basketball team. He is also the captain of the team and averages 16 points per game and six rebounds per game.
Leading Westwood to a No.6 ranking in the state, he is also an excellent student with a great attitude.
The National Soccer Coaches Association of America and USA TODAY High School Sports released the newest 2015-16 winter high school national rankings, and the Belen Jesuit boys’ soccer team (18-0-2) is ranked ninth nationally. Visit
Suniland Sports Camp
The Suniland Sundevils Sports Conditioning Camp is Feb. 7-May 29 at Suniland Park, 12855 S. Dixie Hwy.
The fee is $75 for boys and girls, age 5-15. That Includes:T-shirt, awards and secondary insurance.
Registration open 6-8 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays.
For information, contact Jose Regalado 305-458-1966 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
More events, leagues, programs
Gridiron Cooking Challenge
The Dairy Council of Florida is hosting its third annual Gridiron Cooking Challenge, a fun-filled food competition for elementary and middle school students throughout Florida.
The initiative is created and supported by the Florida Dairy Farmers and is part of Fuel Up to Play 60, an in-school nutrition and physical activity program launched by the National Dairy Council and NFL to help encourage today’s youth to lead healthier lives.
Elementary and middle school students in groups of four are encouraged to create and submit an original recipe that features dairy products, such as milk, cheese and yogurt. The deadline for submissions is Feb. 29.
The top four student teams in each Florida NFL market – represented by the Miami Dolphins, Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Jacksonville Jaguars – will compete for the grand prize at the Gridiron Cooking Challenge as they create their recipe on-site in under 60 minutes. The students’ creations will be judged by a select group of distinguished professionals including NFL players, local celebrity chefs, Florida Dairy Farmers and Fuel Up to Play 60 student ambassadors.
The winning team in each NFL market will receive a prize pack for their school valued at up to $2,500. Each student on the team will receive an iPad mini 2, among other prizes.
“The Gridiron Cooking Challenge was developed to highlight the health benefits of dairy products and to emphasize the importance of an active lifestyle,” said Vanessa Hodak, VP School Health & Wellness for the Dairy Council of Florida. “Each year, we look forward to reviewing the recipes submitted and interacting with the students during the competitions in Miami, Tampa and Jacksonville.”
Recipe entry forms can be found on the Florida Dairy Farmers website and can be submitted via mail or email.
For more information, visit
Miami-Dade County Fair sports
The Miami-Dade County Youth Fair and Exposition has released the schedule for its 2016 winter-spring middle school sports invitational meets.
The middle school bowling, track, golf and tennis invitational meets will occur at various locations throughout Miami-Dade County in January and April.
Students competing in the tournaments must be officially enrolled in the school they are representing. If a school is not represented at a Youth Fair sports activity, parents may enter their children with written approval from the school principal.
Bowling - Bird Bowl: Friday, Jan. 29 at 10:30 a.m.
Track - John A. Ferguson Senior High School: Saturday, Jan. 30 at 9 a.m.
Golf - Briar Bay Golf Course: Wednesday, April 6 at 10 a.m.
Tennis - Tropical Tennis Center: Saturday, April 9 at 8:30 a.m.
or call 305-223-7060.
Miami-Dade Fair sports
The Miami-Dade County Youth Fair and Exposition has released the schedule for its 2016 winter-spring middle school sports invitational meets.
The middle school bowling and track invitational meets are in January, and the golf and tennis tournaments are in April. All events will occur at various locations throughout Miami-Dade County.
Bowling teams of at least five players each will participate in the 2016 invitational at 10:30 a.m. Friday, Jan. 29 at Bird Bowl, 9275 SW 40 St., in Miami. Entries are limited to one boys’ team and one girls’ team from each school.
John A. Ferguson Senior High School will play host to the 2016 Middle School Track Invitational beginning at 9 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 30. Participation is limited to the first 20 boys’ team and 20 girls’ team entries. Teams are limited to three entries for each event; relays are limited to one team for each school. Individuals may participate in a maximum of four events.
The Middle School Golf Invitational is 10 a.m. Wednesday, April 6 at the Briar Bay Golf Course, 9373 SW 134th St., in Miami. The nine-hole tournament will accept a four-player team or a maximum of four individuals.
Matches for the 2016 tennis invitational begin at 8:30 a.m. Saturday, April 9 at the Tropical Tennis Center, 7900 SW 40 St., in Miami. Team entries must include one boys’ team and one girls’ team for singles competition, one co-ed doubles team, one girls’ doubles team and one boys’ doubles team. Individual competitors are permitted to enter in one event only.
Students competing in the Miami-Dade County Youth Fair and Exposition sports program must be officially enrolled in the school they are representing. If a school is not represented at a Youth Fair sports activity, parents may enter their children with written approval from the school principal.
Participants must complete a school certified field trip form and be accompanied by a school coach or a school approved chaperone. All Miami-Dade County Youth Fair activities within the department of athletics will be held in accordance with the official rules of the National Federation of State High School Association, Florida High School Activities Association and G.M.A.C. All events are open to students in grades 6-8. Middle school students who participate on high school teams are not allowed to participate in these events.
The Youth Fair and the Miami-Dade County Parks, Recreation and Open Spaces Department work together to promote a year-round athletic program. Annually, there are more than 6,000 public and private school students who participate in the various sporting events: swimming and diving, cross country, tennis, track, golf, bowling, wrestling and badminton. The events are open to middle and high school students.
The Miami-Dade County Youth Fair & Exposition (The Youth Fair) is the largest charity event in South Florida. The not-for-profit association is dedicated to promoting education and agriculture while showcasing and rewarding youth achievement and providing quality family entertainment, all without taxpayer dollars.
The annual Youth Fair exhibits more than 53,000 student projects to more than 650,000 Youth Fair guests and awards more than $300,000 annually in college scholarships, cash premiums and awards to students. To date, The Youth Fair has presented well above $10 million to the Miami-Dade community. It was recognized in 2015 as the Leisure & Entertainment Services Firm of the Year by the Latin Builder's Association, the Non-Profit Organization of the Year by the South Florida Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, and was the Diamond Award Winner for Outstanding Hospitality Entity by the Coral Gables Chamber of Commerce.
The Fair Exposition Center, which is the second largest convention center in Miami-Dade County, hosts an additional 70 community events each year.
or call 305-223-7060.
Panthers hockey clinics
The Florida Panthers announced as part of promoting youth hockey in South Florida, they are holding “Try Hockey for Free” clinics in Broward, Palm Beach and Miami-Dade counties.
Try Hockey for Free clinics are at the Florida Panthers IceDen (Broward County), Palm Beach Skate Zone and Palm Beach Ice Works (Palm Beach County) and Kendall Ice Arena (Miami-Dade County). Boys and girls, age 4-9, are encouraged to learn the game of hockey for the first time free of charge. All equipment including skates will be provided.
To register for one of the clinics or for information, visit
The schedule includes:
Kendall Ice Arena, 10355 Hammocks Blvd., Miami, 33196.
March 6: Noon-2 p.m. March 13: Noon-1 p.m. March 20: Noon-1 p.m. March 26: 1-2 p.m. April 10: Noon-1 p.m.
The Sunshine State Athletic Conference, a multiple sport athletic organization made up of 35 private and charter schools created in 2008, announced that two additional sporting opportunities are being introduced for the 2016-17 school year.
SSAC currently offers four sports, including football and basketball at the middle and high school levels, but in keeping with its pledge to student-athletes and their families, the conference will grow to offer a second football classification and the formation of girls’ beach volleyball.
The second football classification of a Developmental Football League, debuting next fall, will provide member schools that are starting, growing or rebuilding programs with a competitive, but level, playing field in which to compete. This will not replace nor negate the highly successful championship Florida Bowl Series but will instead compliment all football programs and schools in the SSAC. The only criteria for schools to participate in the new Developmental Football League is for teams to have less than 23 players, and the championship Florida Bowl Series will be open to them, if they desire to participate.
The second addition to SSAC athletics is an exciting opportunity that perfectly captures the spirit of Florida’s athletic environment. Starting in spring of 2017, the SSAC will debut girls’ beach volleyball. This up-and-coming sport is quickly spreading around the nation and will undoubtedly be a natural fit for Florida student-athletes. This addition will help build exposure and opportunity for female student-athletes and will add value to SSAC’s independent athletic conference.
“Including girls’ beach volleyball was a decision that just made sense; it only requires a few players and we are blessed with an abundance of sun and sand,” said Stuart Weiss, president of Sunshine State Athletics Conference. “We believe that by adding these two new opportunities for Florida high schools, we are continuing to provide more choice and control to our partner schools addressing the need for a level playing field in high school athletics.”
Visit the SSAC website at
NCSAA academics honors
The NSCAA annually recognizes high school soccer programs that have excelled in the classroom, in addition to their work on the field.
Three hundred and eight nine soccer teams (243 girls, 146 boys) from throughout the United States have earned the NSCAA Team Academic Award for exemplary performance in the classroom as a team during the 2014-15 academic year.
To qualify for the award, the team must have a minimum grade point average of 3.25 for the entire academic year. The team GPA is determined by adding every player's GPA, then dividing by the number of players.
For information about the National Soccer Coaches Association of America, visit
The FIU baseball program announced that former Major League pitcher and current Detroit Tigers color commentator Jack Morris will serve as the featured speaker at the annual Diamond Dinner on Saturday, Feb. 6 at the Graham Center Ballroom.
Morris -- who played for the Tigers, Minnesota Twins, Toronto Blue Jays and Cleveland Indians -- was a five-time all-star and four-time World Series Champion during his 18-year career.
Tickets to the Diamond Dinner cost $120 for an individual and $1,200 for a table of 10.
For information on the Diamond Dinner, contact Carla Garcia by email at email@example.com or phone at 305-348-7297.
Fans can follow the Panthers on Twitter (@FIUBaseball) and become a fan on Facebook (Facebook.com/FIUBaseball) for all the latest FIU Baseball news. Follow all of FIU's 18 athletic teams on Twitter (@FIUAthletics), Facebook (Facebook.com/FIUSports), YouTube (FIUPanthers), and Instagram (FIUathletics).
Join new Miami Marlins manager Don Mattingly and 2003 World Series Champion Jack McKeon at the third annual Jack McKeon Celebrity Golf Classic on Wednesday, Feb. 17 at Crandon Golf at Key Biscayne.
Enjoy a day on the links with your favorite Marlins players, coaches and alumni. Guests will participate in a variety of hole contests, a silent auction, enjoy various food and cocktail stations, and win great prizes throughout the day.
Learn more at:
Proceeds from the third annual Jack McKeon Celebrity Golf Classic will benefit the Marlins Foundation.
Pitch, Hit & Run
Scotts Major League Baseball Pitch Hit & Run is a free, exciting skills event providing boys and girls the opportunity to compete in four levels of competition including Team Championship events at all 30 Major League ballparks and the National Finals at the MLB All-Star Game.
To host a local competition for your community and be involved in the official skills competition of Major League Baseball, go to
North Miami Beach baseball
North Miami Beach Little League is a sound organization run by volunteers to help keep children off the streets and on the fields.
Registration is open for boys and girls, age 4-14. Scholarships are available.
For information go to www.NMBLL.org.
Gifts in Golf
PGA Certified Pro Philip Argianas, program director of GIG-Gifts In Golf, is proud to bring his expertise to special people with special needs to Coral Gables.
GIG programing -- like Golfing with Autism and Kids Swing Into Golf -- enrich the quality of life for families in the community.
Coach Phil said in a release: “Our fun programing impacts kids by teaching them life skills while providing physical and mental training through learning the game of golf.”
For information about registration including schedules and release forms, go to GIG’s website
To volunteer or for any other questions on the Autism and Down syndrome golf programs, call Coach Phil at 888-909-5709, check the website http://www.giftsingolf.org and Facebook page for updates.
GIG was founded in 2009 and has been serving several communities in Miami-Dade County. The organization provides fun instruction and mentoring while empowering special people with special needs. Integrating families and community, it provides all the benefits that golfing delivers with a focus on a person’s ability.
Florida continues a new era of tennis development for tournament players, age 10 and younger, with the introduction of the USTA Florida 10 and Under Tennis Youth Tournament Pathway, a graduated development path with established benchmarks at each level to guide parents and coaches through junior tennis.
From beginning “red ball” play on 36-foot courts, youth progress through “orange ball” and “green ball” at various tournament levels before graduating to full-court “yellow ball” tennis. Each level contains appropriate kids-sized racquets, balls and court sizes, along with participation or achievement benchmarks to progress between age groups or tournament levels.
The Pathway contains a “Grandfather Clause” for players that turn age 11 during 2015 who currently have the skill set to play full-court yellow ball tournaments.
The USTA Florida 10 and Under Tennis Youth Tournament Pathway roll-out is in partnership with the USPTA-Florida Division (United States Professional Teaching Association) and PTR (Professional Tennis Registry), the two largest tennis teaching professional certifying organizations in the U.S.
The USTA Florida 10 and Under Tennis Youth Tournament Pathway was also developed with solicited input from coaches and parents throughout Florida.
The red, orange and green ball levels correspond on the USTA Florida 10 and Under Tennis Youth Tournament Pathway with tournaments beginning at Level 9 (beginner) up to the start of advanced tournaments at Level 6 and higher.
The USTA Florida 10 and Under Tennis Youth Tournament Pathway was recently implemented in Florida tournaments.
For information on the Pathway, go to www.USTAFlorida.com/10UPathway
USTA Florida and the USTA Florida Section Foundation announced a landmark three-way agreement with Special Olympics Florida to provide more tennis playing opportunities to athletes in Florida.
The formal agreement builds on the existing support that USTA Florida and its charitable arm have provided to local Special Olympics programs by offering free 10 and Under Tennis workshops, grants and other resources to providers that offer tennis programs to Special Olympics athletes.
Likewise, Special Olympics Florida will encourage their athletes to participate in USTA Florida programs and events.
To get a program started, Special Olympics coaches may apply for a USTA Florida Section Foundation equipment grant for adaptive tennis equipment and other program needs by contacting Jessica Flynn at Special Olympics Florida.
For additional training opportunities and training resources, contact Linda Curtis at the USTA Florida Section Foundation at www.USTAFloridaFoundation.com.
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.
Olive Garden and the NFHS Network, the nation’s leading high school sports media company, are teaming up to recognize Team Moms and the high school athletes they support. This partnership includes the launch of GoTeamMoms.com, which will serve as a resource and destination to recognize Team Moms.
Team Moms volunteer to assist coaches and often lead team communications, fundraising, travel coordination and more. The website will feature Team Mom’s Best-Kept Secrets and game day highlights from high schools around the nation. In addition, coaches, athletes, family members and the community are invited to contribute shout-outs or photos of their favorite Team Mom using #GoTeamMoms on Twitter and Instagram to be featured on the website.
“The goal of the NFHS Network is to serve and support both the athletes and their fans,” said Christopher Young, senior vice president of sales for the NFHS Network. “There’s no bigger fan than a Team Mom and no better partner for the NFHS Network than Olive Garden, which resonates so deeply with our audience and shares our same commitment to families and the local community.”
To further assist Team Moms, each Olive Garden restaurant in the U.S. will be paired with a local high school to support through two national fundraising nights and Olive Garden VIP Passes that give teams access to exclusive discounts. With dining options that include ToGo and catering, Olive Garden is often the choice for feeding an entire team.
"Our restaurants are excited to support their hometown high schools and give back to their communities," said Jose Duenas, executive vice president of marketing for Olive Garden. “This partnership allows us to thank Team Moms nationwide as well as give families and teams chances to connect over meals and create memories during the busy sports season.”
ABOUT OLIVE GARDEN
Olive Garden is the leading restaurant in the Italian dining segment with more than 800 restaurants, more than 96,000 employees and more than $3.8 billion in annual sales. Olive Garden is a division of Darden Restaurants, Inc., (NYSE: DRI), which owns and operates more than 1,500 restaurants that generate over $6.8 billion in annual sales.
Headquartered in Orlando, and employing more than 150,000 people, Darden is recognized for a culture that rewards caring for and responding to people. Olive Garden is committed to making a difference in the lives of others in the local community. As part of this commitment, Olive Garden restaurants have donated more than 33 million pounds of food to local community food banks across the country. For more information, visit www.olivegarden.com.
ABOUT THE NFHS NETWORK
The NFHS Network (www.nfhsnetwork.com) captures the passion, pride, and energy of the high school experience by delivering live high school sports and events to family members and fans whenever they want, wherever they are.
The NFHS Network celebrates and showcases the unique accomplishments of high schools students, including the student-athletes participating in 27 different sporting events and the student broadcasters from schools around the country that produce events through the School Broadcast Program. The NFHS Network also broadcasts state playoff and championship events in 46 states.
The NFHS Network is a joint venture among the National Federation of State High School Associations (NFHS), its member state associations and PlayOn! Sports. The NFHS is located in Indianapolis, Indiana and is the national leadership organization for high school sports and performing arts activities. PlayOn! Sports is based in Atlanta, Georgia and is the nation’s largest high school sports media company.
Follow the NFHS Network on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram at @NFHSnetwork for the latest news and event information.
Heads Up Football
USA Football’s Heads Up Football program for high schools and youth organizations will include sudden cardiac arrest protocols andHeads Up Blocking fundamentals.
Both topics are now included in USA Football’s Level 1 coaching education course and its high school certification course.
USA Football is the national governing body of the sport and educates more high school and youth football coaches combined than any organization in the United States.
USA Football’s Heads Up Football program is supported by more than two dozen medical and football partners.
“Coaches should be prepared to respond to a life-threatening emergency if needed,” said Dr. Jonathan Drezner, past president of the American Medical Society for Sports Medicine and a member of USA Football’s Medical Advisory Committee.
“With prompt recognition, early CPR and use of an AED, sudden cardiac arrest is largely a survivable event if treated quickly. USA Football is committed to the safety of young athletes, and I am proud that a sudden cardiac arrest training module is being added to the Heads Up Football program. The module provides coaches the information they need to be prepared for sudden cardiac arrest.”
“Blocking is one of football’s basic skills that every player needs to be taught,” said Jeff Saturday, a former NFL All-Pro center and ESPN analyst. Saturday is a member of USA Football’s Football Advisory Committee.
“USA Football’s Heads Up Blocking technique helps coaches teach this fundamental – properly engaging with a defender, driving with the legs and maintaining the correct body position for effective and safer play. This is how blocking should be taught.”
Heads Up Football is a comprehensive collection of resources and medically approved protocols to establish important standards rooted in education to change behavior for the better.
In addition to sudden cardiac arrest and Heads Up Blocking, the program covers concussion awareness and recognition, heat and hydration protocols, proper tackling fundamentals and equipment fitting. More than 5,500 youth leagues and 750 high schools in 2014 participated in the program this past fall, benefiting nearly 1-million players.
Follow USA Football at www.facebook.com/usafootball
or on Twitter @USAFootball
NFL Football Matters
The National Football Foundation announced the launch of FootballMatters.org, a powerful new addition to the organization’s campaign to highlight the good in the game and the lifelong benefits to those who play it.
“Football makes a positive impact on so many levels, and we realized that we needed a centralized resource for capturing and subsequently promoting all the great football stories out there,” said NFF President & CEO Steve Hatchell. “FootballMatters.org provides us a potent platform for addressing that void and delivering compelling content directly to audiences who can help us amplify our messages about the value of football in producing leaders and creating educational opportunities.”
NFF Chairman Archie Manning added: “It’s just gratifying to be part of something that does so much good for our young people. The stories are out there, including the thousands of young kids who could not have gone to college but got some aid because of football, and their lives have been changed for the better. FootballMatters.org will enable us to directly capture those stories and inspire the next generation to further their educations.”
The NFF has linked with Arkleus Broadcasting, a Dallas-based full-service media company, to create the platform, which also encompasses a strong social media component to gain traction for the campaign.
“Arkleus is honored and thrilled to be chosen by such a prestigious American institution as the NFF to build and market an exciting new sports media property,” said Arkleus Broadcasting President Joe Shults. “We are passionately committed to helping the NFF in every way to protect, enhance, and ensure the future of football for generations to come.”
The site focuses on stories, videos, and franchises highlighting the very best in high school and college football, such as: Football Moms, Special Teams, Hook & Corporate Ladder, Man-to-Man, the Quote of the Day and many more. The site will also be the home to exclusive profiles of Campbell Trophy finalists, Leadership Award Winners, Courage Award Winners and all the honors associated with the NFF.
“We are really excited about the Football Matters initiative,” said Hatchell. “I want to thank everybody at Arkleus for their passion for the project. They have done a marvelous job of getting it up and running in a short amount of time, and we have already received great feedback.”
The site focuses on the stories that evoke the qualities of leadership, sportsmanship, competitive zeal, character building and the drive for academic excellence that exemplifies many of the young men who play football and the families who support them.
You can learn more about the site and watch a video featuring NFF Chairman Archie Manning and NFF Board Members Jack Ford, Archie Griffin, Kevin Plank and Rod West by clicking here.
The international sport Footgolf is being introduced to the South Miami-Dade community at Killian Greens Golf Club, 9980 SW 104th St.
Footgolf (18 holes) can be played in two hours and is a great source of exercise for those who enjoy kicking a soccer ball. Times are available everyday of the week after 4:30 p.m. to players of all skill levels, families and groups. Balls are available for rent for $5 to those who do not already own one.
Killian Greens is an accredited Footgolf course with the American Footgolf League. Call 305-271-0917.
Miami-Dade Parks welcomes children with disabilities in its youth leagues. If you need accommodations to participate, call 305-735-7847 (V/TDD).
Submit info to Sports Scene
Sports Scene spotlights news and notes from youth sports activities in your neighborhood. The aim is to feature game notes and the accomplishments of athletes from Miami-Dade County.
We rely on the directors and coaches of each league, as well as community members, parents and schools to submit information. We accept photos but ask that everyone pictured be identified with a first and last name and the name of the team or park they represent.