Commentary | IMG Soccer Cup lures college coaches

March 5, 2013 

IMG Academy is scheduled to host more than 55 high school club teams from across the country and Puerto Rico when the second annual IMG Cup-College Showcase begins Friday.

The three-day soccer tournament pits teams in four different age divisions for a chance to showcase their skills to college coaches.

"We take a lot of pride in hosting high-level, professional quality events at IMG Academy that give players the best chance to compete and get the best college exposure," IMG director of soccer Scott Dean said in a news release. "The IMG Cup-College Showcase is no different, and we are expecting a large turnout of coaches from some of the nation's best programs."

Programs such as Akron, Ohio State and the University of South Florida are scheduled to attend.

Games begin Friday at 2:30 and 4:30 p.m. Saturday's action starts at 10:30 a.m., with afternoon kickoffs at 12:30, 2:30 and 4:30.

The event concludes Sunday with games slated for 8:30 a.m., 10:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.

BEACH DAWGS stumble

The Bradenton BEACH DAWGS ran into some

stiff local competition this past weekend in both the 10-and-younger and 11-and-younger divisions.

The youth baseball outfit, though, received a sparkling no-hitter from Logan O'Leary against the Lakewood Ranch Marauders 11-and-younger team.

The result was significant, because O'Leary is a member of the 10-and-younger BEACH DAWGS.

He fired 39 strikes out of his 70 pitches, while racking up four strikeouts over six innings in the 5-0 win.

In the BEACH DAWGS second 10-and-younger game on Sunday, the team lost 15-2 to the Silver Hawks 11-and-younger squad. Wyatt Sevin produced a two-home run for Bradenton's only runs.

Sevin (2-for-3, two runs, home run, three RBIs, triple, three stolen bases, three walks), Lucas Hartman (2-for-4, RBI, walk) and O'Leary (2-for-4, walk, stolen base) led the offense on the day.

Meanwhile, the 11-and-younger team dropped two games on Sunday at Buffalo Creek.

Two home runs contributed to the lopsided 16-1 loss to the Parrish Piranhas.

And against the Southwest Florida Gators, the BEACH DAWGS fell 10-9.

Aidan Williams (four hits, two RBIs, four stolen bases) and Corbin Holmes (four hits, three runs, two stolen bases, double) led the offense, while Luke Williams pitched a complete game.

New adventure race begins

The Pound the Ground 5K obstacle challenge is scheduled for Saturday at Sarasota's Celery Fields (6893 Palmer Blvd.).

This is the first Pound the Ground event, and it's in the same vein as the Tough Mudder race.

The cost is $50 on the day of the event, which is for ages 14-and-up. Gym teams are welcomed.

There are monthly challenges planned following the debut this Saturday, and proceeds benefit local charities.

Some obstacles include wall climbs and pipe crawling through the 3.37-mile course. There is no time limit.

Instead, a wave format beginning at 7:30 a.m. and lasting until the final wave at 10:30 a.m. is being used.

Participants receives a Pound the Ground wristband upon completing the course, and awards for the top three male and female racers in each age division are handed out.

A "Top Gym Trophy" goes to the gym with the most participants, and there is an after party to celebrate the day's activities at Evie's on Bee Ridge Road.

Jason Dill, sports reporter, can be reached at 745-7017 or via email at jdill@bradenton.com. Follow him on Twitter @Jason__Dill

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