Players of the week — Feb. 21-26
Owen Haripersad, Jr., Springstead
Season stats: 3.50 ERA, 18 strikeouts
The lowdown: Two weeks ago, Haripersad threw five innings, allowing one unearned run and two hits while striking out six in a win over Lecanto. Fans were impressed. Haripersad had more than 1,000 votes in the Hernando County player of the week poll to finish in a tie with Hernando Christian’s Ethan Higgins (the two were within a percentage point of each other).
Ethan Higgins, Jr., Hernando Christian
Position: First base/pitcher
Season stats: .562 average, 12 RBIs
The lowdown: The versatile player went a combined 6-for-9 with four doubles, eight RBIs and six runs scored to lead the Lions to a 3-0 start. Fans paid attention. Higgins had more than 1,000 votes in the Hernando County player of the week poll to finish in a tie with Springstead’s Owen Haripersad (the two were within a percentage point of one another).
Top returning hitter
Anthony Talpa, Jr., Hernando
The outfielder hit .346 last season with 22 RBIs and nine doubles. Fans took notice. Talpa finished with 62 percent of the votes (102) in the Hernando County top returning hitter poll to beat out teammate Gabe Tafelski, who had 33 percent (55 votes).
Top returning pitcher
Tristan Legg, Sr., Hernando
Last season, Legg posted a 2.05 ERA while striking out 43 in 27 ⅓ innings. Fans were impressed. Legg dominated the Hernando County top returning pitcher poll, winning with 95 percent of the votes (93).
Top three rankings
|2. Nature Coast||5-1|
Tuesday night rewind (March 8)
Springstead 9, Citrus 3
Crystal River 2, Weeki Wachee 1
Nature Coast 6, Lecanto 0
Hernando 16, Central 1
Prime time team of the night
Thanks to a prolific offense, the Leopards have cruised through their seven games, outscoring foes by a combined 80-16. The latest rout came Tuesday against Central. Gabe Tafelski drove in two runs. Michael Savarese had a homer and two RBIs. And Nico Janssens, Carlos Gonzalez and Tristan Legg combined on a two-hitter with eight strikeouts in a 16-1 victory that kept Hernando’s perfect record (7-0) intact.
Prime time player of the night
Sean Keegan, So., Nature Coast
For the first time this season, Keegan went the distance, finishing with a no-hitter — one walk away from a perfect game — in a 6-0 win over Lecanto. Keegan needed just 87 pitches for the complete game and finished with nine strikeouts.
Thursday’s matchups (March 10)
Springstead at River Ridge, 7
Zephyrhills at Hernando, 7