P.K.'s Anderson twins deliver in the clutch


Published: Monday, May 1, 2006 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Monday, May 1, 2006 at 12:00 a.m.
With the Class A state track and field title on the line, P.K. Yonge's Michael and Geoffrey Anderson stepped up when it mattered the most.
Going into the 3,200-meter race, the Blue Wave trailed the leader, Dade Christian, by eight points.
"They had an idea (how close the meet was)," coach Randy Hollinger said. "Going into the two-mile, Michael and Geoffrey knew what was on the line."
Michael and Geoffrey finished 1-2 in the race, to give their team 18 points to help clinch the Blue Wave's second consecutive state title. While some athletes would have been nervous or cracked under the pressure, the Anderson twins thrived under the spotlight.
"The bigger the meet, the more smiles they have on their face," Hollinger said. "They were basically having a blast."
What makes the accomplishment even more impressive is the fact that Michael ran the 1,600 earlier in the day, finishing third.
"I actually think it kind of helped him a little bit," Hollinger said. "Michael is really a strength kind of runner." He added that Michael recovers quickly, which gave him an advantage over the other runners who ran both races.
Michael's quick recovery, coupled with the fact that Geoffrey was completely fresh, allowed them to run aggressively and push the pace.
Hollinger credited the duo with contributing to the team at a crucial juncture.
"To them, I think it meant responsibility," Hollinger said. "They felt like it was their job to go out and perform for the team."
- Daniel Shanks
HIGH SCHOOL PLAYERS OF THE WEEK

Softball

  • KELLIE SPAULDING, KEYSTONE HEIGHTS - In two regional playoff wins, the junior third baseman went 9-for-10 with two doubles, six runs scored and four RBIs.

    Baseball

  • RYAN HARVEY, OAK HALL - The junior pitcher earned both of the team's wins in the district tournament. He went 6 2/3 innings, allowing four hits while striking out eight. At the plate, Harvey went 3-for-6 with four runs and three RBIs. He hit a walk-off, two-run homer to beat Bronson 6-4 in the semifinals.

    Girls Track & Field

  • VALERIE FLOURNOY, P.K. YONGE - At the 1A state meet, the senior won the 100 hurdles and placed fourth in the 100, the 200 and the long jump. Her performance helped the team finish third overall.

    Honorable mention

  • Softball Lindsay Whitlock, Gainesville - In the team's 2-1 regional quarterfinal win over Ed White, the sophomore catcher went 3-for-3 with two doubles, one run scored and one RBI.
  • Baseball Danny Calais and Luke Smierciak, Gainesville - Calais, a senior pitcher, threw a shutout in the team's 1-0 win over Ocala Forest in the district championship. He went nine innings with seven hits and no runs. Smierciak, a junior, threw a complete game in the 4-2 semifinal win over Ocala Vanguard. In the two games, Smierciak went 4-for-5 with a RBI and a run scored.
    Jeremy Harrell, Fort White - In two district tournament games, the senior pitcher/catcher picked up a win and a save. He threw 6 innings, with two hits and five strikeouts.
  • Girls Track & Field Stevie Uribe and Alison Babb, Oak Hall - At the 1A state meet, Uribe, a junior, set a personal best in the 1,600 with a time of 5:05, good for third place. She also anchored the eighth-place 4x400 relay team. Babb, a senior, finished third in the 3,200 (11:19). Babb also ran on the third-place 4x800 team.
    Wilamena Hopkins and Natalie Doss, Buchholz - At the Region 1-4A meet, Hopkins, a freshman, won the discus (125'11") and was the runner-up in the shot put (41'2 3/4"). Doss, a senior, won the 3,200 (11:26.69).
  • Boys Track & Field Ryan Harris and Taylor Stringer, Oak Hall - Harris, a sophomore, turned in two winning performances at the 1A state meet. Harris won the 1,600 with a time of 4:23 and ran on the first-place 4x800 relay team (8:16). Stringer, a season, anchored the winning 4x800 team. He also finished second in the 800 (1:59) and sixth in the pole vault (13'0"). The duo led the Eagles to a third-place finish overall.
    Sean Bedford, Buchholz - At the Region 1-4A meet, the senior won the discus with a throw of 151'6".
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