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District tournament could mean more this year

By BRANT JAMES, Times Staff Writer
© St. Petersburg Times
published October 27, 2002

BROOKSVILLE -- This could be the most pressure-filled district tournament in Hernando coach Pete Lahey's memory,simply because it very well could be the region event at the same time.

Unwillingness or inability among the 29 coaches in the two districts that comprise Class A, Region III to volunteer as host for the region tournament could lead to the Nov. 4 event's cancellation. If that happens, instead of the top four teams and top four individuals not associated with those teams advancing to the region tournament, the top two in each category will jump to the state tournament.

"No coach has stepped forward yet," Lahey said. "They say the courses will not give up time in the afternoon."

Even staging a district event proved to be difficult for the 16 teams in District 6: Citrus, Crystal River, Dunnellon, Gulf, Hernando, Hudson, Pasco, Saddlebrook Prep, St. John Lutheran, Seven Rivers Christian, South Sumter, Trinity Catholic, Wesley Chapel, West Port (Ocala), Wildwood and Zephyrhills.

South Sumter was originally designated district host, but three weeks ago the school sent out an SOS looking for a replacement. Lahey arranged to hold the event at The Dunes at Seville north of Weeki Wachee on Tuesday.

There apparently is no deadline to find a region site. That creates this possible scenario: A team finishing third or fourth could volunteer knowing its season would be over without a region tournament.

-- Staff writer Keith Niebuhr contributed to this report.

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