Academy at the Lakes savors first winning season

After five seasons of varsity baseball, senior Eric Hutchison can finally say he was part of a winning team. “It’s always nice to be the first success in something. The fact that I’m a senior makes it much better,” said Hutchison, a team captain pitcher/infielder who’s played for Academy at the Lakes (AATL) since eighth grade. The Wildcats just wrapped up its first winning season in program … [Read more...]

Area baseball players to watch

The high school baseball season in Florida has kicked off. Some of the top players — and teams — in the state reside right here in our coverage area. From Steinbrenner and Gaither to Land O’ Lakes High, there’s no shortage of prep baseball talent. Here’s a look at some players to keep an eye on as the season progresses: RHP (right-handed pitcher)/INF (infielder) CJ Van Eyk, Sr., … [Read more...]

Big player, bigger game

Darin Kilfoyl has been on a tear this season. The Academy at the Lakes junior right-hander is sporting a 1.84 ERA with 45 strikeouts in 19 innings pitched — statistics buoyed by an incredible performance on March 3, when the 6-foot-8 flamethrower fanned 19 batters in a complete game, one hit shutout against Victory Christian (Lakeland). “All my stuff was working,” said Kilfoyl, who once … [Read more...]

Young coach leads Academy at the Lakes baseball

Just a few years removed from playing college baseball, John DiBenedetto already is thriving in his first varsity baseball head-coaching gig. Over the summer, DiBenedetto, 24, was hired as the new coach for the Academy at the Lakes baseball program. Previously, he assisted Carrollwood Day School’s varsity baseball program. DiBenedetto heard about the job opening when he was helping … [Read more...]

Local student finds trip to China enlightening

When Darin Kilfoyl found out about the possibility of traveling to China to learn more about its language and culture, he seized the chance. The 15-year-old, who attends Academy at the Lakes, is deeply interested in expanding his knowledge about the country and its language. His teacher, Wei Wang, told him about the two-week program sponsored by the University of South Florida and the … [Read more...]

In Print: Is Cypress Creek outlet mall ready to go?

Some site work on land across the road from the proposed outlet mall at Cypress Creek Town Center had some people mistakenly excited that work was finally beginning on the long-awaited project. But while actual dirt has yet to be moved on the 482,000-square-foot project from developers that include Simon Property Group, there is still plenty of work being done behind the scenes that could … [Read more...]