Youth Sports

Student athletes honored during the Orange Bowl Impact and Excellence Awards

OBIES SCHOLARSHIP WINNERS: Six high school senior student athletes were awarded scholarships during the Orange Bowl Impact and Excellence (OBIES) Awards: A Taste of South Florida, presented by Florida Blue, at the Greater Fort Lauderdale/Broward County Convention Center. Pictured are from left, Orange Bowl Mascot OBIE, Orange Bowl CEO Eric Poms, scholarship recipients Elizabeth Defelice, Amarys Sanchez, Prince Destinobles, Samantha Perez, and Austin Cameron and Orange Bowl Member Jeff Rubin. Not pictured scholarship recipient Wolky Belancourt.
OBIES SCHOLARSHIP WINNERS: Six high school senior student athletes were awarded scholarships during the Orange Bowl Impact and Excellence (OBIES) Awards: A Taste of South Florida, presented by Florida Blue, at the Greater Fort Lauderdale/Broward County Convention Center. Pictured are from left, Orange Bowl Mascot OBIE, Orange Bowl CEO Eric Poms, scholarship recipients Elizabeth Defelice, Amarys Sanchez, Prince Destinobles, Samantha Perez, and Austin Cameron and Orange Bowl Member Jeff Rubin. Not pictured scholarship recipient Wolky Belancourt. Orange Bowl Committee

The Orange Bowl Impact and Excellence (OBIES) Awards: A Taste of South Florida, presented by Florida Blue, was held at the Greater Fort Lauderdale/Broward County Convention Center. During the OBIES, six high school senior student athletes from Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties received scholarships toward their college education from the Orange Bowl Committee.

The student/athlete scholarships were awarded to:

▪ Wolky Belancourt, Coral Springs High School (football, wrestling, track & field);

▪ Austin Cameron, William T. Dwyer High School (football, wrestling, track & field);

▪ Elizabeth Defelice, South Broward High School (softball);

▪ Prince Destinobles, North Miami Sr. High School (basketball, cross-country, track & field);

▪ Samantha Perez, Olympic Heights Community High School (softball);

▪ Amarys Sanchez, South Miami Sr. High School (badminton, cross-country, soccer)

Also at the OBIES, the Orange Bowl Committee honored former Miami Dolphins great Dwight Stephenson and his foundation with the Orange Bowl Keith Tribble Community Service Excellence Award for the significant impact they have made in the community.

Orange Bowl Keith Tribble Community Service Excellence Award:

Miami Dolphin great and NFL Hall of Famer Dwight Stephenson is the Founder of The Dwight Stephenson Foundation. The 501 (c) 3 organization combines the sports and business communities in an effort to generate increased funding for charities that provide educational, health and human services to support the needs of children and families. The foundation generates funding for a variety of charitable organizations including United Cerebral Palsy, The Urban League of Broward County, The Boys and Girls Clubs and The American Diabetes Association, to name a few. Stephenson has successfully achieved his vision of combining his two passions – business and sports – to generate funds to further increase his support of charities that are near and dear to his heart.

Over the years, the Orange Bowl has been able to invest millions of dollars toward South Florida youth and sports through support of intercollegiate athletics, education, events, organizations and causes, in addition to the tremendous economic impact it provides. At this year’s event, approximately $100,000 was given back to the South Florida community with the event proceeds going toward Make-A-Wish Southern Florida, Special Olympics Florida and the Orange Bowl Leadership Academy.

Much of the success and longevity of The OBIES can be attributed to Florida Blue, the presenting sponsor, which is joined by associate sponsors Capital One, AutoNation, Anheuser-Busch, Deloitte, Florida Prepaid College Board, Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau, Keurig, NCCI, and Sun Life Stadium / Miami Dolphins.


Carol City wins Dolphins Academy tourney

Miami Carol City defeated Dillard 31-28 to win the 8th annual Miami Dolphins Academy 7-on-7 High School Football Tournament at Plantation Central Park.

This marks the second time in the past three years that Miami Carol City has won the Miami Dolphins 7-on-7. In 2013, Carol City defeated Miami Jackson 28-21 to advance to the National Tournament.

“Every year we put this event on our calendar,” Carol City coach Aubrey Hill said. “We’re so excited to be part of this tournament and compete against the best high schools in the area.”

Carol City came out on top from a field more than 40 schools from the tri-county area that participated in the three-day event. They advanced to the championship game after defeating Fort Lauderdale 24-14 in the quarterfinals and Pahokee 31-21 in the semifinals.

In the championship game, Carol City trailed 21-10 with less than seven minutes remaining but scored two consecutive touchdowns to take a 24-21 lead with 40 seconds left. Dillard drove the ball down the field and scored with six seconds left to go ahead 28-24. With time for only one play, Carol City quarterback Steven Calvert threw a Hail Mary pass into the end zone, which was caught as time expired.

The three-day event began with the mandatory HSPD Symposium on June 12, which focused on character development and life skills training. A variety of guest speakers, including Miami Dolphins Senior Director of Community Affairs Twan Russell, Miami Dolphins Manager of Youth Programs Troy Drayton, former Miami Dolphins fullback Lousaka Polite, Dave Brosseau of the Sun Sentinel, Jim Berry from CBS4 and Francisco Urrutia, gave the students practical life lessons and advice aimed to help them as they enter adulthood. The tournament got underway June 13 with round robin games and the first round of the playoffs.

The weekend also included youth tournaments in three different age groups. In the 10-and-under division, the Miramar Hotboyz defeated the Miramar 9U team 16-0 in the championship game. In the 12-and-under division, Gwen Cherry defeated the PPO Dreamkillers 20-10 after barely holding on against PAL 12U in the semifinals. In the oldest age group, 14-and-under, Red Zone Elite beat PPO Fire 13-3 after losing in the championship game a year ago.

USTA Bobby Curtis Tennis

Miami players fared well during the 2015 USTA Florida Bobby Curtis Junior State Championships at the Florida Tennis Center in Daytona Beach and area sites.

Number14 seed Alexander Knight of Miami Shores, who returned to the “Bobby Curtis” event from the University of Michigan where he is a freshman on the varsity team, upset No.7 seed Pietro Rimondini of Boca Raton 6-1, 6-3 to reach the final in the Boys’ 18s. He faces No.15 Davey Roberts of Palm Coast, who in the semifinals upset No.3 seed Alfredo Perez of Coral Gables 3-6, 6-4, 6-1.

Perez beat No.5 seed Peter Litsky of St. Petersburg 7-6 (12-10), 7-6 (7-4) in the qaurterfinals. Knight eliminated No.6 seed Kaden Funk of Windermere 6-1, 6-3.

In the Boys’ 12s semifinals, No.6 seed Michael Nicholls of Aventura beat No.3 seed Andrew Pereverzev of Hallandale Beach 6-4, 6-2.

In the Girls’ 18s quarterfinals, unseeded Shene Disbergen of Fort Lauderdale upset No.12 Adriana Reami of Miami 6-3, 6-3.

In the Boys’ 16s quarterfinals, unseeded James Ignatowich of Wellington defeated unseeded Nicolas Ramirez of Miami 6-2, 6-0.

In the Girls’ 16s quarterfinals, unseeded Whitney Osuigwe of Bradenton beat No.10 seed Yekaterina Martens of Miami 6-2, 6-1.

In the Boys’ 14s semifinals, No.7 seed Dylan Breslaw of Port St Lucie defeated No.11 seed Randy Wilson of Miami 7-5, 6-1.

In the Girls’ 12s semifinals, No.1 seed Charlotte Owensby of Boca Raton beat No.8 seed Nyjah Head of Miami 6-0, 6-0.

Final results next week. Visit

Area programs receive tennis grants

Community tennis organizations throughout the state of Florida received approximately $10,000 in community tennis grants in the month of May from the USTA Florida Foundation, the charitable arm of the United States Tennis Association-Florida Section (USTA Florida).

USTA Florida Foundation grants offer funding for youth tennis programs, adaptive tennis programs for those with special needs, community tennis programs in economically challenged areas, along with facility assistance in the renovation, refurbishment and building of quality public tennis facilities.

“It is my hope and dream that one or more of our children will remain passionate about tennis throughout high school, college, and maybe beyond,” said Kevin Bochenek of Kids in Distress, a grant recipient in Wilton Manors providing school and after-school play opportunities for at-risk children. “This award will definitely help us to continue our ‘Tennis Tuesday’ program. I humbly thank your organization for supporting our tennis efforts with our children.”

Since 2010, USTA Florida and the USTA Florida Foundation have awarded more than $1 million in grants for tennis programs serving people of all ages and abilities throughout Florida.

USTA Florida Foundation grants in South Florida were:

Miami — City of Miami Parks and Recreation. The grant was for tennis equipment for youth tennis, including the After School Kids Club including services for socially- and economically-challenged youth.

Wilton Manors — Kids in Distress, The grant was for equipment for “Tennis Tuesday,” providing school and after-school play opportunities.

J.D. Redd receives grant

Friends of Miami Tennis, Inc., was named the recipient of a $4,000 USTA Facility Funding grant for the purchasing and installing of windscreens at the J.D. Redd Tennis Center in Homestead.

“A goal of the grant is to provide communities access to safe, appealing and functional tennis environments, and we are happy to partner with Friends of Miami Tennis, Inc., to accomplish this in Miami,” said USTA Senior Director, Market Development & Collegiate Tennis, Virgil Christian.

Miami Country Day water polo

The Miami Country Day School boys’ varsity water polo team surprised many by capturing its third district championship in five years by defeating rival Miami Beach Senior High School.

The Spartans (9-13) were led by the defense of sophomore goalie Christian Claramonte (214 saves) and the offensive prowess of sophomore Jonathan Abramowitz (61 goals), freshman Eric Bernstein (26 goals), junior Sebastian Mellado (24 goals) and junior Lucas Cea (30 assists). The team returns everyone next season as it looks to make a run at states.

Miami Country Day tennis

The undefeated Miami Country Day Middle School girls’ tennis team won the South Florida Middle School Conference Championship for the first time in the program’s history.

The Spartans went 12-0 including wins over Gulliver Prep, Ransom Everglades, Carrollton and Palmer Trinity. Lolita Bell led the team at No.1 singles and No.1 doubles with Elizabeth Stone.

Stone won the conference title at No.4 singles, and Maria Salazar and Mariapia Onorato were outstanding throughout the season. Danni Bernstein and Yakira Wardlaw were fantastic contributors to the success of the program.

Miami Country Day lacrosse

The Miami Country Day Middle School varsity lacrosse team was the runnerup of the South Florida Middle School Conference.

The Spartans (9-1-2) were led by captains Sean Fuller, Riley Weiss, Maximo Eriksson and Noah Reines. The offense was guided by Sean Fuller (15 goals, 8 assists), Nas Dean (15 goals), Noah Reines (11 goals) and Evan Mendelson (19 assists). Corso Luciano and Igor Zelenko anchored a solid defense.

Next season watch for seventh graders Jack Finvarb, Dylan Turk and Noah Markofsky.

More Miami Country Day lacrosse

The Miami Country Day School varsity lacrosse team showed signs of improvement throughout the season. Its 4-9 record does not reflect the tenacity the team displayed.

Offensive leaders were senior Austen Weinberg (35 goals, 11 assists), freshman Ryan Finvarb (16 goals, 13 assists) and junior Matthew Barron (11 goals). Sophomore Matthew Hanson and senior Alex Hansen powered the defense. Team captains Paul-Julien Giraud, Pablo Mejia, Tyler Grosman, Auaten Weinberg and Alex Hansen kept the Spartans in each game during the season.

Next season watch for eighth grader Sean Fuller and freshmen Zach Hart, Blaise Pronesti and Noah Florin.

Miami fencing team repeats

It was a big day for Miami’s Masters Fencing Club at the SSG Palm Beach County Festival as the club won its fifth consecutive Sunshine State Games Fencing Team Trophy.

Eighteen-year old Gabriel Mejia contributed to the team effort, winning the gold medal in the Men’s Epee event, advancing out of a field of 32 fencers. He had eight bouts Sunday and concluded the day with a 15-12 win over Winston Akins, of Melbourne, in the final.

The Championship round did not go more than two points in either of the competitor’s favor. But with the score tied 12-12, Mejia scored the next three points for the gold medal.

“He was too quick for me,” said Akins, a five-year member of the University of Florida Fencing Club, while at school in Gainesville. “I couldn’t defend against him there at the end. He had very good endurance and blade control.”

Mejias was eager to bounce back in the Epee event after a disappointing finish in the Foil competition Saturday.

“I was fencing for fun today after being too stressed yesterday,” said Mejias, a recent graduate of the College Academy in Weston. “I have a lot of speed from my foil fencing. The epee fencers are very technical. That was my strategy today, to use my speed.”

Mejias was recruited by NYU for his fencing abilities and will begin in the fall to study finance.

The 2015 Sunshine State Games calendar of events continues next weekend with the SSG Track and Field Championships at Punta Gorda High School and the SSG Table Tennis Championships at the Simpson Park Community Center in Lakeland. Over 7,500 of Florida’s Finest Amateur Athletes have competed in events of the Sunshine State Games on the 2015 Calendar.

The Sunshine State Games are a program of the Florida Sports Foundation, the state’s lead sports promotion and development organization. Now in its 36th year, Florida’s only Olympic-style Sports Festival is the longest consecutive-years running State Games in the United States.

For information about the Sunshine State Games, visit

Kendall Hammocks Flag Football

Iverson De La Nuez (U12 Colts) and Marc Quarrie (U10 49ers) were the top performers in Week 4 of Kendall Hammocks NFL Flag Football.

Standings: U6: 49ers 8-0; Giants 2-6; Dolphins 2-6; U8: Cardinals 4-0; Giants 6-1; Dolphins 5-1; Raiders 6-2; Panthers 2-5; Falcons 1-7; Cowboys 0-8; U10: Rams 7-1; Broncos 6-2; Bengals 6-2; Dolphins 4-4; 49ers 4-4; Seahawks 2-7; Jets 0-9; U12: Falcons 7-1; Cowboys 6-2; Seahawks 5-3; Dolphins 5-3; 49ers 5-3; Eagles 6-4; Vikings 2-5; Patriots 2-6; Colts 1-6; Broncos 0-6; U14: Seahawks 8-0; Cowboys 5-1; Ravens 5-3; Dolphins 3-5; Colts 3-5; Raiders 2-6; Eagles 1-7.

Summer Fun Runs

The 19th annual Summer Fun Runs, hosted by the Archbishop Curley Notre Dame Prep cross-country team, returns to Miami Shores. Last year, the team welcomed its largest of number of community participants.

Runners and walkers of all abilities meet Tuesdays and Thursdays at 6:30 p.m. at the Miami Shores Recreation Center, 9617 Park Dr., Miami Shores, 33138. The runs are free and continue through July 30.

This school and community tradition has grown from a small following of about seven runners per week to a total record-breaking turnout of 354 runners in 15 gatherings. Athletic experience ranges from a 25-time participating marathoner, to a tri-athlete, to someone who had never run recreational before. The age range of the participants is 11-60.

There are three courses of gradually increasing mileage: one for beginner runners or walkers, a second for recreational runners and joggers, and a third for advanced or competitive runners. By the end of July, the distances covered a range from three to seven miles, with no pace ever being set.

For information call the school at 305-751-8367 or visit

More events, leagues, programs

Miami Dolphins reading

The Miami-Dade Public Library System kicked off its Summer Reading program with the Miami Dolphins.

Now through Aug. 1, you can participate in the library’s heroic summer reading program by finding your inner hero within an inspiring biography, unmasking a mysterious novel or escaping the ordinary with a marvelous book. No matter your age, everyone is eligible for a chance to win a fabulous prize with the library’s Summer Reading Program by reading or listening for a minimum of two hours, attending a library program or downloading an eBook.

Stop by your neighborhood library to pick up an entry form with official contest rules or visit

The Summer Reading Program is made possible with the generous support of the Miami Dolphins Foundation and the Friends of the Miami-Dade Public Library.

NFL, USA Football, GENYOUth

NFL, USA Football, GENYOUth and Fuel Up to Play 60 have announced the expansion of their commitment to youth health and wellness by giving NFL FLAG Essentials Kits to one million students across 2,500 schools nationwide, including 10 focus cities: Atlanta, Boston, Buffalo, Chicago, Jacksonville, Miami, Minneapolis, Phoenix, Pittsburgh and San Francisco. The expansion is made possible by a $1 million commitment from NFL Foundation.

The announcement was made by Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, CEO of GENYOUth Alexis Glick and NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell at the 2015 NFL Draft Youth Football Clinic in Chicago’s Grant Park.

During 2014 Kickoff, NFL, USA Football, GENYOUth and Fuel Up to Play 60 announced a commitment to providing children in elementary schools and after-school programs nationwide with NFL FLAG Essentials Kits enabling kids and communities to “Play 60.” The kits which include footballs, flag belts, posters and a PE curriculum designed for elementary and middle school students, garnered enthusiasm, reaching 1,800 schools nationwide, resulting in 500,000 kids getting more active, and the demand for NFL FLAG powered by USA Football to be played before, during and after school.

The goal of the partnership between the NFL and Fuel Up to Play 60 is to give children more opportunities to be physically active and to “Play 60” by offering PE teachers and school administrators the equipment, curriculum, training and recognition they need to uplift and support physical education. This extension of the program provides a million more students across the country with the tools to play NFL FLAG, which combines the strategy of football with the lessons of teamwork, resiliency and respect.

Schools can apply for the Kits starting in early May via the Fuel Up to Play 60 website: and will be provided at the beginning of the 2015-16 school year while supplies last. Additionally, in-person FLAG trainings using the curriculum developed by USA Football and SHAPE America will be held in the 10 NFL markets this fall.

Heads Up Football

USA Football’s Heads Up Football program for high schools and youth organizations will include sudden cardiac arrest protocols and Heads Up Blocking fundamentals in 2015.

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.”

Follow USA Football at

or on Twitter @USAFootball

NFL Football Matters

The National Football Foundation announced the launch of, 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. “ 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. will enable us to directly capture those stories and inspire the next generation to further their educations.”

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.

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.





Kendall Hammocks cheer, football

The Kendall Hammocks Warriors Tackle program offers registration for the 2015 football and cheerleading season.

Tackle fee $185 which includes home game jersey that players keep, secondary insurance, participation awards, and the rental of helmet, shoulder pads, game pants. Issued equipment to be returned at season’s end. Also, the NFL’s Stephen Tulloch Football Camp as well as the Rookie Camp.

Cheer registration fee $385 which includes $185 initial deposit for practice T-shirt, shorts, game day socks, hair bow, cheer brief, and shoes, secondary insurance, and participation awards. The remaining $200 is for competition, body liner, shoes, socks, warm up, cheer bag, and uniform rental.

Registrations and practices are at Devonaire Park, 10411 SW 122nd Ave. Tackle season starts July 6.

For information, email Football Commissioner Mike Pintado at

or visit the web site at

The Warriors Football program, under the Optimist Club of Kendall Hammocks, is an all volunteer organization, serving the community in sports for more than 28 years. The Warriors compete in the Miami Xtreme Football League.

Play Action Sports cheer, football

Play Action Sports bought the Coral Gables Cavaliers Youth Football & Cheer Program and is re-rebuilding it.

The group seeks a cheer director and cheer coaches as well as football coaches, volunteers and team moms and dads to assist with the 2015 season in the Miami Xtreme Youth Football League. Home games will be played at Coral Gables High School.





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.

MLB Bat Girl contest

Nominate someone who is Going to Bat Against breast cancer.

Winners will receive Major League Baseball game tickets and the opportunity to be recognized on-field during the game. Vote for nominees affected by the disease.

Nominate at



Giancarlo Stanton’s G-Squad

To support Miami Marlins powerhitter Giancarlo Stanton, join Giancarlo Stanton’s All-New G-Squad.

For $27, you can be a member of the G-Squad, which will unite during five Saturday games.

For more information and to purchase tickets, visit


Thunder Athletix and Brain Gymnasium LLC teamed to offer a complete fitness program of body and mind at the new ThunderPlex, 1440 NW 82nd Ave. in Doral.

Students can improve their basketball skills and physical fitness, as well as strengthen their academic skills through specialized tutoring programs. They can have fun and finish their homework.

The mission is to teach the principles, fundamentals and basic skills of the game to children age 5-17.

Brain Gymnasium offers specialized tutoring, homework help, FCAT Prep, SAT/ACT Prep, and Entrance Exam Prep. Their degreed, professional and experienced teachers provide a simple and exciting approach to learning.

For information on special packages, after school programs and summer programs,

visit ; or call 786-505-5585.

For information on Brain Gymnasium, visit or call 305-788-7339.

Thunder basketball

Thunder Basketball opened its new year-round facility at ThunderPlex, 1440 NW 82nd Ave., Doral.

The mission is to teach the principles, fundamentals and basic skills of the game. It stresses the importance of team and sportsmanship.

Thunder also encourages players to succeed in the classroom and all aspects of life.

For information visit

Registration is open.

Email or call 786-505-5585.

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 raising funds.

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.

Tamiami basketball

Tamiami youth basketball registration is open for girls and boys ages 5 to 16.

Email or call 305 -273-1145.


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-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

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.

Marlins Tours

The Miami Marlins offer behind-the-scenes tours of Marlins Park. The tours are open to the public on nonevent days for $10 per 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 of 10 to 25 people are available by appointment.

For more information, fans can call 1-877-MARLINS or e-mail Tickets can be purchased at the ticket windows on Felo Ramirez Drive (Northwest Sixth Street between 14th and 15th avenues) and are for the time and date specified.

Tickets are nonexchangeable and nonrefundable.

HOF baseball

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

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 or call David Hofman at 954-804-5600 or Ed Tisdale at 803-463-2591.

Youth Rugby South Miami

The Miami Rugby Youth Division, for boys ages 6-18, practices from 6 to 8 p.m. Mondays at Murray Park and Wednesdays at Palmer Park, 6120 SW 67th Ave., South Miami. Call 305-400-0134, ext. 101.


Soccer 5 Academy

Soccer 5 Academy Mini Soccer Program, also referred to as small-sided soccer, is at three Miami-Dade County-owned parks — Tropical Park (7900 Bird Rd.), Kendall Soccer Park (8011 SW 127th Ave.) and Amelia Earhart Park (401 E. 65th St., Hialeah).

Headed by Soccer 5’s Director of Coaching Development Alan Georgeson, who has more than 15 years of experience in Europe in mini/small-sided soccer, kids 3 to 12 years old will learn the history of mini soccer, the basics of how to play, reasons why mini soccer is the preferred form of soccer for kids, youth and even adults, and will have the opportunity to play in “3v3” to “7v7” matches.

The three locations make mini/small-sided soccer available across the county, providing a greater opportunity for children and families to access the proper 4G turf game fields specifically designed for “5v5,” “6v6” and “7v7” games.

With smaller fields, mini soccer is much easier for young children or children who have never played. In addition, mini soccer is designed for competition among teams with fewer players, providing more opportunity for pickup games, as well as more opportunity to play the ball making mini soccer popular with older players, too.

For more information or to register, visit

Rebelle volleyball

Rebelle Athletics Club offers girls’ volleyball tryouts at Archbishop Curley Notre Dame High School, 4949 NE Second 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 the Alonzo & Tracy Mourning Senior High School Biscayne Bay Campus.

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.



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. Call Luis at 305-389-2313 or Bob at 786-556-3574.

Jai-Alai for women

Who said you have to be a male to play jai-alai? Just as females play the sport in Spain, France and Mexico, women can play it in South Florida at the amateur indoor, air-conditioned fronton at 1935 NE 150 St., North Miami, near FIU’s North Campus.

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

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).