Joe Carlino

Bears rally from early deficit to keep season alive

Baseball is a sport best defined by a quote from the legendary Yogi Berra: “90% of the game is mental, the other half is physical.” Essentially, players can be cream of the crop prospects, but one mistake here, their judgment gets clouded there, and a domino effect takes place with their teammates.

For Al Sorrentino and the Central Bears, while that did happen early against the visiting Port Orange-Atlantic Sharks (yes, there’s another one), it’s what happened afterwards that set the tone.

NCT survives battle of Sharks, advances to region semi-final

by JOE CARLINO

Hernando Sun Sports Reporter

Last season, the Nature Coast Sharks were riding high and flying on all cylinders, potentially boasting a squad which could’ve had a chance at seeing Lakeland and the state semifinals again. However, they lost a humongous lead to the now-defunct Ridgewood Rams on their home court in the Sweet 16.

Despite runner-up finish, 6th annual Sharks Christmas tournament a rousing success

BY JOE CARLINO
HERNANDO SUN WRITER

Last week, the Nature Coast Sharks played host to their 6th-annual Christmas tournament, which sees some incredible talent come out to have some fun and get some more experience under their belt. Sharks head coach Dave Pisarcik continues to gain knowledge and tactics for future years, and always seems to get some incredible squads to participate, most notably the Alonso Ravens and Zephyrhills Bulldogs.

Sharks season ends on last-second field goal attempt

Going into Friday night’s FHSAA Class 5A, Region II final, the Nature Coast Sharks were already enjoying an incredible season. The Sharks, after falling to Ridgeview High in the opener, railed off 11 straight wins en route to usurping the Zephyrhills Bulldogs and North Marion Colts of the top seed in the region.

Unfortunately, though, NCT would have to face off against one of those two squads, welcoming in the Colts to the Shark Tank, with the winner facing off against either Trinity Christian or Bolles in the state semifinals.

After slow start, Sharks surge their way into the second round

by JOE CARLINO,

Hernando Sun Sports Writer

Photography by CHERYL CLANTON

The Nature Coast Sharks entered the FHSAA Class 5A, Region II quarterfinal as the best team in their district (5A-7) and the region, which enabled the squad to ensure home field advantage throughout the first three rounds of the playoffs. Their first opponent: the Gainesville-Eastside Rams, a squad who, despite their 7-3 record and #8 seed, was a very formidable foe.

Weekend span of contests results in clean district sweep for Sharks

by JOE CARLINO,

HERNANDO SUN SPORTS WRITER

photography by CHERYL CLANTON

Due to Hurricane Michael’s pathway a couple of weeks ago, the Nature Coast Sharks game against the Lecanto Panthers was unfortunately pushed back to October 29, which put the Sharks in an interesting predicament: playing three games in a span of seven days, two of which were district opponents.  The Sharks needed to only win one to secure the championship and a first-round home playoff game.

Rarely utilized aerial attack powers Sharks to second half victory

Coming into last Friday’s contest against the Citrus Hurricanes, the Nature Coast Sharks offense has usually been well-documented: the team will have a workhorse-style running back to lead a dominant ground attack en route to close wins or blowouts. That said, in recent years, the team has been experimenting more with an aerial attack, hoping it will enable the defense to open the field more and create bigger lanes to run.

And it was this exact passing attack which proved fruitful for the Sharks in Friday’s bout against the Citrus Hurricanes.

Two-day district contest dooms Leopards with critical loss

On Friday night, the Crystal River Pirates travelled to Brooksville for a district contest with the Hernando Leopards. Both teams had a critical district loss last week and were looking to bounce back in a must-win game for either side. This game would be contested on two consecutive days, as inclement weather postponed the second half of the contest to Saturday with the Leopards leading 7-0.