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Phillips is latest to sign


© St. Petersburg Times, published April 10, 2001

NEW PORT RICHEY -- Four west Pasco players recently signed to play for Pasco-Hernando Community College. On Thursday, River Ridge's Billy Phillips made it five.

"This is a big sign for us, because he obviously does a lot of good things," PHCC coach Steve Winterling said. "Besides catching, he does a lot of good things on the mound."

Phillips will join River Ridge third baseman/catcher Tom Dillon along with Ridgewood's Dave Hancox, Derek Kuryliw and Justin Libecap as PHCC freshman next season.

A starting catcher and closer for the Royal Knights, Phillips entered the weekend leading county relievers with three saves. He also had a 1.45 ERA and 35 strikeouts.

At the plate, Phillips was hitting .418 with 5 home runs, 16 RBI and 14 runs scored.

Winterling, who has watched Phillips come up through the ranks of the West Pasco Little League and coached him at PHCC's fall and winter camps, ranks the River Ridge senior among the top prospects in the county.

"He just gets better every year," Winterling said. "He'll hit the ball fine at (the junior college) level."

Two former Knights, Chris Langlois and Joel Sayre, are among PHCC's top pitchers.

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