Football

Bill Vonada steps down as Hernando head football coach

BROOKSVILLE- In what was somewhat of a shocker, Bill Vonada has stepped down as Hernando’s head football coach early last week and penned a letter of resignation. Below is the letter of resignation obtained by the Hernando Sun from Vonada to the school, as he points out that the ever growing demands of coaching high school football are being met with dwindling resources. 

Questions heading into Hernando County spring prep football

As many of the county’s spring sports begin to wind down, in less than a couple weeks football will be back on the practice fields of Hernando County. There’s plenty of questions to be asked about each of the county’s five teams heading into spring football, as Central, Hernando, Nature Coast, Springstead and Weeki Wachee are all coming off solid 2017 campaigns. Hernando and Nature Coast both clinched playoff berths. For awhile Springstead wasn’t too far off from nabbing one themselves.

Philadelphia Eagles win Super Bowl LII on the late Jerome Brown’s birthday

Tim Jenkins’ photo of Jerome Brown. Jenkins, former owner of Red Mule Pub in Brooksville and Brown were good friends.

(BROOKSVILLE)- June 25, 1992 was a tragic day for all those who knew of former Philadelphia Eagles’ great Jerome Brown.

At the prime, young age of 27, Brown died in an automobile accident in Brooksville and his death hit Hernando County, Philadelphia and the National Football League hard. This past Sunday would’ve marked Brown’s 53rd birthday and with the Eagles playing the New England Patriots in Super Bowl LII, Philadelphia delivered the ‘City of Brotherly Love’ it’s first championship.

SHAA Playoff Games

Photography by CHERYL CLANTON

Division 2 Knights celebrate after earning the championship  trophy

SHAA playoff games were held this year at Veterans Memorial Park 12254 Spring Hill Drive, Spring Hill, Fl 34609. Playoff games started at 9 am and went on into the night. Teams battled it out from each division to take this year’s 2017 Championship. Cheerleaders were cheering for the teams as they played, and performed an outstanding halftime performance.

SHAA consist of 3 age divisions. Division 1 ages 5-8, division 2 ages 9-10 and division 3 ages 11-13.

Eagles make incredible comeback, shock Leopards in finale

photography by Cheryl Clanton

FILE PHOTO: SHS Football Team charges onto field in a preseason match

Nov. 4, 2017 - On the final night of regular-season football at the high school level in the Tampa Bay area, county opponents Hernando and Springstead met up in a matchup for the ages. The 39th meeting between the two teams was important for both teams because of the ramifications: a win for Springstead would keep their slim playoff hopes alive, while a win for Hernando would give them an 8-1 record and just about guarantee the district title and a home playoff game.

Sharks clip Eagles’ wings en route to FHSAA playoffs

photography by Cheryl Clanton

NCT's Michael Weston is taken down by Springsteads Damian Giles 10/31/17

Oct. 31, 2017- In a rare instance of scheduling purposes due to Hurricane Irma, the Nature Coast Sharks and their bitter county rival Springstead Eagles met up on Halloween night at the Shark Tank for another classic entry into their rivalry. It was also “Senior Night” for the Sharks, as they honored their football players, dancers, and cheerleaders on their final regular season home game as students.

What transpired right after kickoff was a classic game that etched its name into the history books for this rivalry.

Sharks shock Leopards, sets up wild finish to district

photography by Cheryl Clanton

HHS No. 55 Rodney Owens shakes hands with NCT No. 50 Michael Smith before the coin toss on Friday night 10/27/17.  Photo by Cheryl Clanton

Going into Thursday’s pivotal 5A-7 matchup between the Nature Coast Sharks and the undefeated Hernando Leopards, Hernando was attempting to do something that hasn’t been done in three years: dethrone the “Crew from California Street” of the title. A win not only would’ve continued Hernando’s undefeated season, but clinch the district title and a FHSAA home playoff game in two weeks’ time.

Once the game concluded, Hernando (6-1) just couldn’t close the door.

Game preview: Nature Coast at Hernando

Photography by Cheryl Clanton

Hernando's David Hale Bronson running the ball

BROOKSVILLE- There hasn’t been a game in quite some time that’s quite caught the attention of prep football fans in Hernando County like Thursday night’s Class 5A, District 7 meeting between Hernando and Nature Coast at Tom Fisher Stadium. 

The last time Nature Coast lost to an in-county opponent was 2014 against Springstead in a 23-20 affair early in the regular season. Fast forward to 2017 and the Sharks are in a precarious spot after losing a crucial district contest to Inverness Citrus 37-27 on the road. It’s made this Thursday’s game that much more meaningful. 

Sharks streak broken by Hurricanes, 5A-7 to be decided this week

photography by CHERYL CLANTON
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FILE PHOTO: NCT quarterback Fabian Burnett warms up prior to game against Lecanto 10/13/17

Going into a district matchup against Citrus High School on their field, the Nature Coast Sharks knew ahead of time that a win tonight would not only eliminate the Hurricanes from title contention, but would also set up a showdown with undefeated Hernando next Thursday night for the FHSAA Class 5A-7 district championship. Nature Coast went into this game riding on a district winning streak dating back to 2014, the first season for former head coach Justin Worden.

Friday night recaps 10/6/2017

Photography by Cheryl Clanton

Nature Coast against Central last Tuesday night

There was plenty of exciting action on the prep football gridiron last week, as Nature Coast and Central started off the slate on Tuesday night and had to suit up again a couple days later. With Hernando off on a bye week, we take a look at games played on Tuesday and Friday nights in Hernando County. 

Nature Coast 28, Central 26 (Tuesday night) 

In a contest rescheduled because of Hurricane Irma and both teams also slated to play later in the week, the Tuesday night tilt between Class 5A, District 7 rivals Nature Coast and Central lived up to the annual billing.