Land O’ Lakes hoops coach retires after 31 years

Land O’ Lakes High School varsity boys basketball coach Dave Puhalski is ready for a timeout. After 31 years roaming the Gators sidelines, barking orders, drawing up plays, and molding boys into young men, the longtime coach announced his retirement following the 2019-2020 season. Puhalski’s swan song was a memorable one — sending off eight seniors to the tune of a 21-6 record, a 5A-7 … [Read more...]

Zephyrhills hoops product earns All-American honors

Zephyrhills High product and Southeastern University (SEU) men's basketball senior point guard Jeremy Oppenheimer has been named NAIA (National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics) Division II men's basketball All-American honorable mention. The Zephyrhills native averaged 15.9 points, 6.0 rebounds, 4.5 assists, and 1.5 steals per game this season, all single-season career-highs. He … [Read more...]

Local wrestlers stand out at states

Several area wrestlers put together top-notch performances at the 2020 Florida High School Athletic Association (FHSAA) Wrestling State Championships earlier this month at Silver Spurs Arena in Kissimmee, including first-place titles from Carrollwood Day’s Jonathan Conrad (160-pound) and Zephyrhills Christian’s Malik Jones (285-pound). Here is a closer look at top results from local teams and … [Read more...]

Solid hauls

Bob Rick and Joe Marchese (not pictured)  won the South Pasco Bassmasters (SPBM) March tournament on Crooked Lake, hauling in five bass for a total weight of 15.38 pounds. The haul included an 8.93-pound bass that also won the tournament’s Big Bass Award. The duo caught their fish in two feet to three feet of water, using assorted plastic worms, frog, tubes and spinner baits. For more information, … [Read more...]

East Pasco municipalities declare local states of emergency

Responding to concerns about coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) , the City of Zephyrhills passed a resolution declaring a local state of emergency — taking steps to implement protocols suggested by state and federal agencies. The measure allows Zephyrhills flexibility to act quickly, if needed. However, its primary purpose is to allow the city to seek future reimbursement for costs … [Read more...]

Coronavirus cancels many sports events

As fears regarding coronavirus disease-2019 (COVID-19) continue to ramp up, so do cancellations on the sports landscape — nationally, regionally and locally. The unexpected cancellations began on March 10 when The Ivy League, a Division I collegiate athletic conference comprised of private schools in the Northeast, announced the cancellation of its men’s and women’s basketball tournaments, … [Read more...]

Locals named to All-State football teams

Athletes within The Laker/Lutz News coverage area were well-represented on the’s All-State teams for the 2019 season. In total, 18 players from four local schools in Hillsborough and Pasco counties were named first-team, second-team, third-team or honorable mention for their respective classifications. The All-State teams were compiled by, along … [Read more...]

Perfect game!

Braden Jones, 11, recorded a perfect game for the Land O’ Lakes Little League  (LOLLL) White Sox, retiring all 18 batters faced in a 5-0 win over the LOLLL Nationals. Jones fired 62 pitches, striking out nine batters, while allowing no hits, walks or runs across six innings. … [Read more...]

Tampa Lucky Run rescheduled

The third annual Tampa Lucky Run has been rescheduled to May 31 at Tampa Premium Outlets, 2300 Grand Cypress Drive in Lutz. Hosted by Speed Starz Track/Running Club, the event will include an 8K run, 5K run/walk, Lucky Challenge (8K and 5K), 1-mile run/walk, and kids fun run. Race times vary between 7 a.m. to 10 a.m. All participants will receive a T-shirt, finishers medal, water bottle, PDQ … [Read more...]

Summer basketball league

Registration is open for the Catholic Youth Sports Summer Basketball League. There will be  boys and girls leagues, for players age 5 to 18, as well as an adult league for those 18 and older. The season runs from June 1 to July 31. Games will be played on Saturdays at the St. John Paul II Youth Center, 17520 Lakeshore Road in Lutz. Costs range from $50 to $90 per player. The league is seeking … [Read more...]