The Opa-locka Hurricanes track & field team participated in the AAU Club National Championships at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Lake Buena Vista.
There were 3,183 participants from 30 states and four countries (Bahamas, Canada, Puerto Rico, Jamaica). The top eight in each event received a medal.
First-year thrower Markayla Brown surprised the field with her best performance of the season in the 7-8 girls’ shot put. Throwing her personal best 15 feet, 11 inches, Markayla earned a silver medal.
In the Young Women’s 17-18 age group, Markeisha Lewis placed fifth in the shot put and discus, making her a double medalist.
Runner Gregorianna Fraser, 8, another first-year performer, was also a double medalist. She finished with a gutsy performance in the 100 and 200-meter finals. She overcame sore heels on both feet to place sixth in the 200 and eighth in the 100.
Aniya Aikens, 12, was 31st in the 100 and 39th in the 200.
For the boys’ team, Ivory Aikens, 10, qualified for the semifinal round in the 100 and 200-meter races. He finished 13th in the 100 meters and 18th in the 200.
Jordan Taylor, 14, a favorite to medal in the 100 and 200, qualified for the 100 semifinals with the 15th fastest time but was injured during the race and scratched himself from both events.
Marlon Brown, 8, ran a blistering 200 meters during the preliminaries but was later disqualified for stepping inside his lane. Marlon set a personal best in the 100 meters, running 15.69 seconds. Dylan Taylor, 10, was .002 seconds from reaching the semifinals in the 100.
Upper Keys Storm baseball
The Upper Keys Storm U12 travel baseball team competed in the National Youth Hall of Fame Baseball Tournament at Cooperstown Dreams Park in Cooperstown, N.Y.
Cooperstown Dreams Park is a majestic 24 field youth baseball complex. The week-long tournament became the home of 104 teams from throughout the country.
In the Skills Competition, each team had a representative for each event.
The Storm was represented by:
Zak Filpes entered “The Road Runner” competition, running 14.68 seconds, missing the finals by 1.6 seconds.
Dillon Walters entered “The Golden Arm” competition missing the finals by one point.
Isaiah Cosme entered “The King of Swat” Home Run Derby reaching the finals and finishing 17th of 104 with four home runs.
Vincent Biondoletti, Jonathan Bradman, Dominic DiMaggio, Hunter Dixon, DJ Jensen, Mario Menendez, Anthony Ovalle, Evan Tiedemann, and Zack Webb entered the “Around the Horne” Team Competition finishing 22nd in 37 seconds.
In the tournament opener, the Upper Keys Storm beat the Solon Cyclones (Ohio) 8-3. The Storm then edged the North Georgia Sluggers 4-3. Tied at three in the bottom of the final innings, Isaiah Cosme reached base and advanced to third base on a sacrifice bunt by Jonathan Bradman. With one out, Coach Tiedo called a suicide squeeze, and Zak Filpes successfully executed the bunt, scoring Cosme with the winner.
The Oviedo Knights (Florida) defeated the Storm 8-3, and the BC Wolverines (Colorado) came from behind to edge the Storm 7-6. Upper Keys rebounded with an 8-4 victory over the Houston Slam. Jacob Horne pitched his second gem of the tournament, a complete game win.
The Acadiana Angels (Louisiana) beat the Storm 13-8. Trailing 9-0 early, Upper Keys rallied to make thinngs close. Hunter Dixon was outstanding in relief. The Salt Lake Chasers (Utah) ended the Storm’s tournament 7-4. Behind 6-0, the Storm fought back but fell short.
Ranked as high as 19th, the Storm finished 42nd of 104 teams. They are Vincent Biondoletti, Jonathan Bradman, Isaiah Cosme, Dominic DiMaggio, Hunter Dixon, Zak Filpes, Jacob Horne, DJ Jensen, Mario Menendez, Anthony Ovalle, Evan Tiedemann, Dillon Walters, and Zack Webb. The manager is Brian Tiedemann, and the coaches are Alan Dixon, Sam Ovalle, and Jesus Perez.
“Through the week, we had parents, players and fans of other teams come up to us asking if we were the Upper Keys Storm,” Tiedemann said, “and they took the time to watch us play because they heard around the complex that we were a scrappy team that kept every game entertaining.
“This was an amazing experience not only for the players, but the coaches and parents as well. My original goal was to find a group of boys from the Upper Keys that were fully dedicated to the game and agreed to commit 100 percent to their team and reward them with a trip to a national tournament so they could see ‘real competitive baseball’ being played and give them the understanding of what it will take to succeed at a high level in this amazing game. Not only did I do that, but to have them actually show me how ‘real competitive baseball’ is played was a true gift for me, the coaches, parents and fans who made the trip.”
Kendall Hammocks baseball
The Kendall Hammocks Optimist baseball program has registration for the upcoming fall season from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. on Aug. 8, 15, 22 and 29 at Hammocks Community Park, 9885 Hammocks Blvd.
Registration is $190 per player or $1,600 for a team with a maximum 12 players. Registration includes games, participation trophy and secondary insurance.
The Kendall Hammocks baseball program is sponsored by the Optimist Club of Kendall Hammock, providing youth sports in the community since 1987.
For information, visit
National Senior Games
They traveled anywhere from 1,300 to 1,800 miles to represent Florida, and the 469 Florida senior athletes made their presence known, winning 346 medals at the 2015 National Senior Games in Bloomington/Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minn.
The 346 medals won ranked third among the 50 U.S. states and six Canadian provinces competing, just behind host-state Minnesota and California. Florida athletes won 123 gold, 107 silver and 116 bronze medals, according to the “Medal Count,” posted on
The biennial event featured 13 days of competition with nearly 10,000 athletes competing in 19 sports. Two sports, disc golf and judo, were contested as demonstration sports.
Florida swimmers led the way with 57 medals (14 gold, 25 silver, 18 bronze) followed by track & field athletes with 39 medals (10 gold, 18 silver, 11 bronze). Florida’s bowling athletes won 30 medals and cyclists won 20 medals. The State of Florida won at least one medal in each of the 19 sports and two demonstration sports.
“The fact that Florida is typically in the top 5 state delegations represented at the National Senior Games and in the top three of the medal count, shows that our state is home to many outstanding competitors who just so happen to be 50 and over,” said FSF Senior Vice President, Stephen Rodriguez, who also serves as Board Chairman for the National Senior Games Association.
Besides being represented by athletes, Dave Zarco of Miami served in an administrative capacity at the 2015 National Senior Games. He was the Badminton sport director.
Some Miami medalists
Basketball – Women’s Division I 50-54: Bronze medalists: Broward Heat (Mattie Lenhardt, Hallandale; Veronica Lakatos, Lauderhill; Cordelia Fulmore, Miami Gardens; Kimberly Land, Fort Lauderdale; Ida Montgomery, West Park; Gale Peterson, Miami).
Pickleball – Women’s Singles 80-84: Silver medalist: Essie Faria, North Miami.
Table Tennis – Women’s Singles 80-84: Bronze medalist: Essie Faria, North Miami. Women’s Doubles 80-82: Gold medalists: Essie Faria, North Miami and Phyllis Hughes. Mixed Doubles 75-79: Bronze medalists: Essie Faria, North Miami and Martin Sundel, Cooper City.
Track & Field – 1500 Meter Run: Men 65-69: Silver medalist: Pedro Enriquez, Miami, 5:24.47.
Volleyball – Men 55-59: Bronze medalists: Ref Shop (Charles Coulter, Bradenton; Scott Goyer, Clearwater; William Locy, Largo; Jamie Tichenor, Largo; Mike Haak, Longwood; Chris Halliday, Ocoee; Michael Decker, Palmetto Bay; Jay Rourke, Homestead.
The Florida athletes traveling to Minnesota qualified for the 2015 National Senior Games at the 2014 Florida International Senior Games & State Championships in December in Lee County.
The Florida Senior Games Series calendar of events begins again in September as nine local qualifying series events occur between September and November. The events will qualify athletes for the 2015 Florida Senior Games Dec. 5-13, in Clearwater.
Visit www.flasports.com for a list of local qualifiers and competition and registration information as it becomes available.
Forty-eight local USTA League champion teams entered, and four exited (including a Miami team) with USTA Florida League Sectional titles and berths to the USTA League National Championships.
South Miami-Dade County (Alper Jewish Community Center, Miami) won the Men’s 4.0 title during the USTA Florida Adult 40 & Over 3.0/4.0 League Sectional Championships at Sanlando Park in Altamonte Springs and at the Florida Tennis Center in Daytona Beach.
South Miami-Dade County was just short of collecting two sectional titles, falling in the finals of the Women’s 3.0 Division.
The Florida 4.0 men’s and women’s champions will advance to the 2015 USTA League Adult 40 & Over 4.0 National Championships on Oct. 30-Nov. 1 in Indian Wells, Calif.
The Florida 3.0 men’s and women’s champions will advance to the 2015 USTA League Adult 40 & Over 3.0 National Championships on Oct. 16-18 in Tucson, Ariz.
- 40 & Over 4.0 Men
Final: South Miami-Dade County (Alper Jewish Community Center, Miami) d. Broward County (City of Oakland Park) 3-2.
Championship Match Results:
No. 1 Singles: Lisardo Garcia (SMD) d. Jamilee Armbruster 7-6, 7-6. No. 2 Singles: Javier Dugarte (SMD) d. Ronald Sica 4-6, 6-1, 1-0 (super-tiebreak)
No. 1 Doubles: Michael Curry/Christian Reyes (Broward) d. Christopher Kurtz/Glen Thomas 6-2, 6-2. No. 2 Doubles: Troy Tom/Tony AhChow (SMD) d. Jason Dalbo/Robert McCartha 6-4, 6-4. No. 3 Doubles: Dennis Docil/Mike Tichacek (Broward) d. Frank Fernandez/Nick Newbury 4-6, 6-2, 1-0 (super-tiebreak)
SMD Season Roster: Glen Thomas (captain), Christian Walker, Robert Andersen, Gary Paulin, Nick Newbury, Heverth Rios, Troy Tom, Javier Dugarte, Juan Alvarez, Christopher Kurtz, Frank Fernandez, Gustavo Tijerino, Antony Smith, Tony AhChow, Lisardo Garcia, Neil Chinyou.
- 40 & Over 3.0 Women
Final: Marion County (Fort King Tennis Center, Ocala) d. South Miami-Dade County (Shula’s Athletic Club, Miami Lakes) 4-1
Championship Match Results:
No. 1 Singles: Jennifer Boyd (Marion) d. Purisima Paulino 5-7, 6-1, 1-0 (super-tiebreak). No. 2 Singles: Andrea Gil (SMD) d. Dina Sapienza 6-1, 6-4
No. 1 Doubles: Natalie Petsche/Lauren Joyce (Marion) d. Michelle Diaz/Paula Isola 6-4, 6-3. No. 2 Doubles: Carol Mecca/Renuka Swaminathan (Marion) d. Marta Torres/Judith Gallo-White 6-3, 6-3. No. 3 Doubles: Michele Saxon/Lori Croley (Marion) d. Ana Maria Espinal/Maria Dominguez 6-3, 6-0
- The National Tennis Rating Program scale progresses from 2.5 (beginner) to 5.0 (advanced) for USTA Florida League championship events. For more information on NTRP levels go to
- For info visit www.USTAFlorida.com/leagues.
Listed are the Week 8 tournament results from the First Tee Miami-Dade Amateur Golf Association Summer Series at the International Links Miami-Melreese Golf Course.
BOYS: 1st Flight, 18 Holes Blue Tees: 1. Sharif Amastha, 76; 2. Lisandro Gil, 78; 3. Paolo Ariano, 80.
2nd Flight, 18 Holes White Tees: 1. Luis Suarez, 74; 2. JP Mehu, 77; 3. Dax Fontana, 84.
4th Flight, 9 Holes Red Tees: 1. Jack Miller, 39; 2. Alex Moscoso, 44; 3. Lance Loredo, 44.
5th Flight, 5 Holes Green Tees: 1. Sebastian Lanz, 27; 2. Ricardo Pereira, 29; 3. Alejandro Leiva, 30.
GIRLS: 1st Flight, 18 Holes Red Tees: 1. Chloe Horton, 79; 2. Bianca Mangravite, 82; 3. Christine Dominguez, 84.
2nd Flight, 9 Holes Red Tees: 1. Sofia Alfonso, 55.
3rd Flight, 5 Holes Green Tees: 1. Alessandra Lanz, 33.
Three-time NBA champion and Miami Heat hometown hero Udonis Haslem signed autographs for fans during the sixth annual Kids Week at Southland Mall.
Kids Week is an annual kids’ convention each summer at Southland Mall. It consists of a full week of family-friendly entertainment, educational activities and interactive games.
Haslem, a talented power forward who grew up in Miami, starred in basketball and graduated from Miami Senior High School and the University of Florida.
Kendall Hammocks football
The Kendall Hammocks Warriors conducted their 15th Annual Rookie Camp for 54 participants, age 5-13.
The camp is an introduction to youth tackle football. Sponsored by the Optimist Club of Kendall Hammocks, the Kendall Hammocks Warriors are members of the Miami Xtreme Youth Football League.
More events, leagues, programs
Palmetto Bay cheerleading/football
Registration for Palmetto Bay Broncos cheerleading and tackle football is 6-7 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays and 10 a.m.-noon Saturdays at the Football Shed at Coral Reef Park.
The Broncos are members of the Greater Miami South Florida Pop Warner League.
Visit www.GoPurpleGetGold.com for information.
Palmetto Bay Broncos Football implemented USA Football Head’s Up Football Safety Program.
The Broncos will host a “My Mommy Tackles Better Than Your Mommy” event 10-11:30 a.m. Aug. 8 at Sports Authority at Dadeland Station. This special, fun Saturday activity will demonstrate to the mothers (and fathers) the proper techniques being taught to their
children and allow them to participate in learning them as well to reinforce safety protocols.
For information visit www.MomstackleBetter.com
The Bronco football program from its youngest players, age 4 and 5, in the intramural division through age 15 in the Varsity travel program will begin the season implementing the USA Football Heads Up teaching techniques.
Park Commissioner Frank Gowin and Coach Fred Farrington completed the USA Football Player Safety Coach training course at Columbus High School taught by Columbus Head Coach Chris Merritt. The techniques and fundamentals demonstrated at this program proved to significantly reduce the injury rate for young players.
Gowin, who has been associated with the Broncos since 1990, said: “Coach Fred and I were extremely impressed when certifying with the USA Football ‘Player Safety Coach’ course. The detailed instruction on proper head and body placement is groundbreaking and a safety breakthrough for the game of football.”
The 2015 Bronco season will emphasize basic safety fundamentals and proper tackling and blocking techniques across all age divisions. All practices will employ special drills to ensure players know how to get into a proper three-point stance, and to keep the head in appropriate position throughout the play to reduce the risk of injury.
Football has changed dramatically in the way it is taught and practiced, according to Gowin.
“In the old days, the helmet was used as a weapon especially when tackling. Those days are gone.”
The amount of time devoted in practice to full-contact action has been strictly limited as to minutes per practice and number of days per week. Most of practice is devoted to proper technique using tackling dummies and fundamentals of football.
The Broncos Intramural program is three days a week (Monday, Wednesday, Friday) beginning Aug. 3 at Coral Reef Park in Palmetto Bay. The Jr Varsity and Varsity teams for players age 6-15, started practice Aug. 1.
For information visit the Broncos website at
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 122 Ave.
For information email Football Commissioner Mike Pintado at email@example.com
or visit the web site at www.khwarriors.org
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.
St. Jude Run/Walk
South Florida walkers and runners are lacing up their sneakers to join participants in nearly 60 communities nationwide for the St. Jude Walk/Run to End Childhood Cancer during September's Childhood Cancer Awareness Month to help St. Jude Children's Research Hospital® continue to find cures and save the lives of children battling cancer and other life-threatening diseases.
The Walk/Run begins at 7 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 26 at Zoo Miami. The event will feature a scenic 5K, family friendly activities and live entertainment. Participants are encouraged to form teams and raise funds to help support the lifesaving mission of St. Jude, where no family ever receives a bill for treatment, travel, housing or food, so that families can focus on helping their child live.
Registration for the event is $10 for adults and children ages 6 and up. Participants who raise $100 will earn an official event T-shirt, and participants who raise $250 will become members of the St. Jude Fearless Fundraiser Club and earn additional St. Jude gear as they fundraise.
All South Florida community members are invited to participate. National series sponsors for the event include: Target and America Airlines. National Walk/Run teams include: Tri Delta, NYCO, Brooks Brothers, Delta Sigma Theta, Autotrader.com, Epsilon Sigma Alpha, Chili’s Bar & Grill, The Limited, Westfield and Destination XL Group.
St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is leading the way the world understands, treats and defeats childhood cancer and other life-threatening diseases. Thanks to fundraisers like St. Jude Walk/Run to End Childhood Cancer, St. Jude has the freedom to focus on what matters most – saving kids regardless of their financial situation.
To make a donation, volunteer or register, visit
USTA Florida is bringing tennis to Miami parks through a new partnership with the City of Miami as part of the USTA Florida Section’s Diversity Outreach initiative in 2015. The initiative is designed to bring programming to diverse populations and provide the opportunity to learn and play the sport of tennis for a lifetime.
As part of the partnership, the USTA Florida Foundation has provided an equipment grant to the city for $5,606 to be distributed among 16 parks. The equipment will allow children to learn the sport of tennis with right-sized equipment for their age and ability, including smaller racquets, reduced-bounce balls, mini nets, and Tennis Skillastics games.
“Tennis is a great way for folks of all ages to stay fit, socialize and have fun,” Director of Parks and Recreation for the City of Miami Kevin Kirwin said in a release. “The Parks and Recreation Department with the help of a generous grant from the USTA Florida Foundation has embraced tennis as a lifetime sport that will be incorporated into their summer and after-school program curriculum.”
USTA Florida Diversity Outreach efforts are specifically targeting Henderson and Armbrister parks in Miami for 2015 — facilities do not currently offer tennis, but will be introducing tennis basics this summer as part of their program activities, including an after-school program to be launched in September. Along with these two parks, 14 other City of Miami parks will also include an after-school program that will serve more than 500 children. City of Miami staff attended Kids Tennis Clubs training offered by USTA Florida earlier this year to learn the skills and tools necessary.
“I am excited about this new partnership and the City of Miami dedication to bring this lifetime sport to the community,” said Cathy Nordlund, USTA Florida tennis program coordinator. “Most tennis is played on public park courts, and this is giving so many children a chance to be introduced to this amazing sport.”
Armbrister and Henderson parks are part of the target markets USTA Florida is working with to grow tennis participation among diverse populations in Central and South Florida. As part these efforts, USTA Florida will be hosting events throughout the year, including free festivals, USTA Play Days, round robins, and USTA Florida will also offer scholarships for tennis providers to attend PTR Ace workshops and obtain teaching certifications.
A full list of events is posted at
For information about programs and places to play, visit
Florida ushered in 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
MLB Bat Girl contest
Nominate someone who is Going to Bat Against breast cancer.
Winners will receive MLB game tickets and the opportunity to be recognized on-field during the game. Vote for nominees affected by the disease.
To support Miami Marlins star pitcher José Fernández on his road to recovery, the Marlins announce the return of the José’s Heroes season ticket package for the 2015 season.
For $499, José’s Heroes receive:
-A ticket to all 81 Marlins regular season home games. That’s about $6 a seat.
-A special edition José’s Heroes T-shirt each month.
-A complimentary ‘K’ Card!
-A meet-and-greet event with the man himself, José Fernández.
-Purchase the José’s Heroes season ticket package and travel to Marlins Park to support the Fish, 25 men strong.
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 marlins.com/gsquad.
NFL, USA Football, GENYOUth
NFL, USA Football, GENYOUth and Fuel Up to Play 60 today 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.
“We want all kids to have the chance to get active and flag football is a fun way to play 60 and learn the fundamentals of football,” said Commissioner Goodell. “We know many children are physically inactive and the critical need in schools and communities for equipment and ways to increase participation in physical education. We want to make this a positive experience by offering NFL FLAG Kits to inspire kids to play football and be active today and in years to come.”
Results from the program’s first year include:
· 98% of teachers reporting using the Kits in PE class for more than one semester
· 47% using Kits after school
· 28% using Kits during recess
· 21% using Kits weekend activity and/or sporting activities
· 12% using Kits before school, leading to an increased number of physically activity kids
NFL FLAG provides children of all ages with the opportunity to be active and learn the basics of football in a fun environment. With the tremendous reach of Fuel Up to Play 60, the nation’s largest in-school nutrition and physical activity program, an additional 1,000,000 children in more than 2,500 schools will be able to participate in the coming 2015-16 school year via the new Kits. The program will culminate with the NFL FLAG National Championships at Super Bowl 50 in San Francisco.
“GENYOUth is proud to support this partnership by bringing this fresh and exciting sport to schools nationwide through our flagship program, Fuel Up to Play 60,” said Alexis Glick, CEO of GENYOUth. “Flag football is a fun, fast-paced, skills-based and strategy-driven game that inspires more kids to get active. It allows physical education teachers and communities to introduce a new curriculum that has already inspired more physical activity among both boys and girls during and outside of the school day.”
Schools can apply for the Kits starting in early May via the Fuel Up to Play 60 website:
www.FuelUpToPlay60.com 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.
About NFL FLAG
NFL FLAG powered by USA Football (http://www.nflflag.com/) provides opportunities for children ages 5-17 to enjoy America's favorite sport.
With more than 250,000 participants nationwide, players benefit by being physically active through non-contact, continuous action while learning the fundamentals of football, lessons in teamwork and sportsmanship. NFL FLAG is a program of PLAY 60, the NFL’s campaign to encourage kids to be active for 60 minutes a day in order to help reverse the trend of childhood obesity.
About Fuel Up to Play 60
Fuel Up to Play 60 is an in-school nutrition and physical activity program launched by National Football League (NFL) and National Dairy Council (NDC), which was founded by America’s dairy farmers, in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). Fuel Up to Play 60 is designed to engage and empower youth to take action for their own health by implementing long-term, positive changes for themselves and their schools.
The program additionally encourages youth to consume nutrient-rich foods (low-fat and fat-free dairy, fruits, vegetables and whole grains) and achieve at least 60 minutes of physical activity every day. As a result of the program, last year 14 million students made better food choices and are getting more physically active during the school day. Fuel Up to Play 60 is further supported by several health and nutrition organizations: Action for Healthy Kids, American Academy of Family Physicians, American Academy of Pediatrics, Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Association/Foundation, National Hispanic Medical Association, National Medical Association and School Nutrition Association.
Visit FuelUpToPlay60.com to learn more.
About GENYOUth Foundation
A leading nonprofit, GENYOUth brings leaders in health and wellness, education, government and business together in a movement to empower America’s youth to achieve a healthier future by uniting partners, raising funds and uplifting the student voice.
GENYOUth has established itself as a thought leader in youth health and wellness and collaborates with its partners to convene experts, conduct research, publish perspective reports, and build programs that make a lasting difference in the pursuit of healthy, high-achieving youth. Founded in 2010 through a public-private partnership with the National Dairy Council and the NFL, GENYOUth has raised funds, increased visibility and commitment to school wellness among health and wellness leaders, educators, students, parents, community leaders and businesses.
Learn more about GENYOUth partnership, volunteer and donation opportunities at
www.genyouthfoundation.org or contact
About USA Football
Indianapolis-based USA Football (www.usafootball.com) is the sport’s national governing body, leading the game’s development for youth, high school and other amateur players. The independent nonprofit partners with leaders in medicine, child advocacy and sport to establish important standards rooted in education. USA Football trains more high school and youth football coaches combined than any organization in the U.S., advancing coaching education and player skill development for safer play and positive experiences through athletics.
Follow USA Football at
www.facebook.com/usafootball or on Twitter
About SHAPE America
SHAPE America - Society of Health and Physical Educators is committed to ensuring all children have the opportunity to lead healthy, physically active lives. As the nation's largest membership organization of health and physical education professionals, SHAPE America works with its 50 state affiliates and national partners to support initiatives such as the Presidential Youth Fitness Program, Let's Move! Active Schools and the Jump Rope For Heart/Hoops For Heart programs.
Since its founding in 1885, the organization has defined excellence in physical education, and our resources provide the leadership, professional development and advocacy that support health and physical educators at every level - from preschool to university graduate programs.
For information, visit www.shapeamerica.org.
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 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.”
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.
Florida Christian lacrosse
Florida Christian School Athletic Director Ed Riggan, announced that FCS Athletics will offer lacrosse at the JV level for the spring of the 2014-15 school year. For information call 305-226-8152 or visit www.floridachristian.org.
Thunder Athletix and Brain Gymnasium LLC teamed to offer a complete fitness program of body and mind at the new ThunderPlex, 1440 NW 82 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,
For information on Brain Gymnasium, visit www.braingymnasium.org or call 305-788-7339.
Thunder Basketball opened its new year-round facility at ThunderPlex, 1440 NW 82th 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 www.jointhunder.com
Registration is open.
Email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 786-505-5585.
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 youth basketball registration is open for girls and boys ages 5 to 16.
Email Tamiamibasketball@gmail.com 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 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.
The Miami Marlins offer behind-the-scenes tours of Marlins Park. The tours are open to the public on non-event 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 email@example.com. 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 non-exchangeable and non-refundable.
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 www.hofball.net or call David Hofman at 954-804-5600 or Ed Tisdale at 803-463-2591.
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 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 pick-up 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 www.miamisoccer5.com.
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.
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 admanUSA@aol.com or call Brucio 786-629-5428. The American Amateur Jai-Alai Academy is a not-for-profit organization.
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.