Month: April 2022

Ayton, Suns Look To End Series Tonight

PHOENIX Suns centre Deandre Ayton reacts to making a basket against the New Orleans Pelicans during the first half of Game 5 of their NBA basketball first-round playoff series on Tuesday, night in Phoenix. 
(AP Photo/Matt York)

PHOENIX Suns centre Deandre Ayton reacts to making a basket against the New Orleans Pelicans during the first half of Game 5 of their NBA basketball first-round playoff series on Tuesday, night in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Matt York)

As of Thursday, April 28, 2022


#Tribune Sports Reporter

#Deandre Ayton said his Phoenix Suns refocused in one particular area to take a 3-2 lead in their best-of-seven first round series against the New Orleans Pelicans.

#Ayton finished with 19 points and nine rebounds in a 112-97 Game five victory Tuesday night at the Footprint Center in Phoenix, Arizona.

#“Defence for sure,” Ayton said. “Accepting the physicality, not worried about calls that’s not going our way, not letting their offence dictate our defence and letting the defence create our offence, that was the main motto out there. We played together and it showed.”

#Ayton scored 13 points in the first half as the Suns built an early 17-point second quarter advantage. They led 59-46 at the half. The Suns maintained an 89-78 lead headed into the fourth and the Pelicans would only pull within seven in the final period.

#Phoenix will have an opportunity to close out the series tonight in game six at the Smoothie King Center in New Orleans, Louisiana at 7:30pm local time.

#It was the third straight game the Suns played without injured All-Star guard Devin Booker, but Ayton credited Mikal Bridges for being the game-five catalyst.

#Bridges finished with 31 points and played 47 of 48 minutes.

#“Thats what ‘Kal do, that’s Iron Man,” Ayton said. “The man take care of his body and he approach the game the same way everyday. He don’t change up nothing. He’s a true student of the game and it’s contagious because we know the type of task he has every game. We need him through every possession, every game and you just can’t take stuff like that for granted having a player like him.”

#Bridges, a top three finalist for the Defensive Player of the Year Award, limited the Pelicans’ Brandon Ingram to 22 points on 7-19 shooting from the field.

#“It made my life easy. Game four, them dudes was comfortable in their pick and rolls and tonight Mikal was in their way,” Ayton said of Bridges’ defensive effort. “All I had to do was mirror them to make sure they’re not getting too deep or Valanciunas wasn’t getting behind me on those pick and rolls but Kal made everybody’s life easy putting pressure on the ball and making those dudes get late into their offence. That’s what created our aggressiveness and getting to our offence in transition.”

#Ayton added that another new addition to the Suns’ game plan was playing him at the power forward spot alongside veteran centre JaVale McGee. “It felt good, having two bigs out there and me popping. It felt good not to roll a little bit but just giving different looks in the game, rebounding as well so we can close out possessions,” Ayton said.

#“Monty introduced it in shootaround and I couldnt wait to take advantage of that. Felt like college. Playing that four position, switching out on them guards with a big dude who can slide his feet a little bit. I love that, I love defending…try to be more like Mikal.”

#Ayton is averaging 20.2 points, 10.4 rebounds and 1.2 blocks per game with one double double through five games of the series.

#“We were running [in game five], we were really in that paint,” he said. “That’s what got us momentum, got the growd going, what made it feel like a regular game in a way. Just attacking the paint, getting paint touches and finding guys.”

Two Bahamian Players Star In Mlb Game: Marlins’ Chisholm, Nats’ Fox

As of Thursday, April 28, 2022


MARLINS’ Jazz Chisholm Jr, left, gestures next to first base coach Keith Johnson (88) after he singled during the first inning of a baseball game against the Washington Nationals last night in Washington. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)


NATIONALS shortstop Lucius Fox stands on the field during the first inning against the Miami Marlins last night in Washington. (AP Photo/Nick Wass)


#Tribune Sports Reporter

#THEY were members of the same International Signing Class in 2015 and now seven years later, Jazz Chisholm Jr and Lucius Fox made Bahamian baseball history once again at the major league level.

#The 24-year-old duo became the first pair of Bahamas-born players to appear in the same Major League Baseball game since 1961 when Fox’s Washington Nationals hosted Chisholm’s Marlins last night at Nationals Park in Washington DC.

#Chisholm had the better individual night and his Marlins won the second game of the series 2-1 last night. He went 2-3 at the plate and scored one run on the night while Fox went 0-4 with three groundouts.

#Chisholm singled to right field in his first at bat and in the seventh inning, singled again to centre on a ground ball that just got by the outstretched glove of Fox. Fox grounded out to Chisholm in his first two at bats. With the Marlins clinging to a 2-1 lead in the bottom of the ninth inning and Victor Robles on first, Fox came up to the plate representing the go-ahead run, but flied out to left to end the game.

#Fox made his MLB debut and his first career start back on August 10, going 0 for 3 with a run-scoring bunt. He is still in search of his first major league hit.

#“There’s been a lot of guys who have been there, and we told him that, and we just say, hey, keep battling,” Davey Martinez told reporters after a weekend matchup against the Giants.

#According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the only other pair of Bahamians to play in the same game were Andre Rodgers and Tony Curry, who faced each other six times during the 1960 and 1961 seasons.

#Game three in the series is set for today at 1:05pm.

#Both players signed out of the Maximum Development Academy in 2015 – Chisholm with the Arizona Diamondbacks and Fox with the San Francisco Giants.

#Chisholm spent just over three seasons in the Diamondbacks organisation before he was traded to the Marlins for Zac Gallen.

#Chisholm, who was called up late in the COVID-19 shortened 2020 season, was an opening day starter this season and quickly became a fan favorite for his production and exuberant personality both on and off the field.

#He was named to MLB Pipeline’s All-Rookie Second team.

#Chisholm appeared in 124 games this season (91 at second base, 37 at shortstop) with 119 starts. He hit .248 with a .728 OPS, slugging .425 with 115 hits, 183 total bases, 70 runs scored, 20 doubles, four triples, 18 home runs, 53 RBI and a team leading 23 stolen bases. After just over a year with the Giants organisation, Fox was traded along with to the Tampa Bay Rays for pitcher Matt Moore and third baseman Matt Duffy.

#After spending just over two seasons with the Royals organisation, Fox was placed on waivers following his 2021 season with the Storm Chasers.

#In a busy offseason, he was claimed off waivers by the Orioles on November 19 before he was released shortly thereafter. Fox was eventually claimed by the Nationals on November 30.

Foster Signs With Barry University Buccaneers

STANDING: Guidance counsellor Stephan Walkin, Physical Plant manager/track and field coach William Johnson, immediate past principal Sonja Knowles, and Physical Education Department head Jason Edwards. SITTING: Jacqueline Foster, Malik Foster and Michael Foster.

STANDING: Guidance counsellor Stephan Walkin, Physical Plant manager/track and field coach William Johnson, immediate past principal Sonja Knowles, and Physical Education Department head Jason Edwards. SITTING: Jacqueline Foster, Malik Foster and Michael Foster.

As of Thursday, April 28, 2022


#Tribune Sports Reporter

#ST Augustine’s College senior Malik Foster made it official with the Barry University Buccaneers and signed his letter of intent to join the men’s baseball programme next fall.

#Foster made his announcement before family, friends and faculty Tuesday afternoon at the Big Red Machine campus.

#“From a young age I knew I wanted to play the sport of baseball. I had a lot of goals for myself and there were times I had to ask myself if this is what I really want to do. There was times I really wanted to quit but I know that God had something in store for me, and to see this in front of me it’s hard to hold back tears to be honest.

#“I know the work is just starting but I’m happy where I’m at right now,” Foster said. “I wouldn’t be here firstly without God, without my parents, they sacrificed the most for me. A lot of money to help me to get exposure and get in front of the eyes who needed to see what I really have. I want to thank my friends because they’re the ones who support me behind closed doors. I really appreciate that.”


ST Augustine’s College senior Malik Foster has made it official with the Barry University Buccaneers and signed his letter of intent to join the men’s baseball programme next fall.

#The Freedom Farm Baseball League product credited his development throughout the programme and the coaches that guided his progression to this point.

#“I remember coach Forbes, when I was young on the Mosquitoes, was one of the first ones to really have faith in me and tell me that I could do this. Coach Fergsuon with the Silver Jacks, I feel like he was my best coach, he really guided me to be the person that I am today. Coach Culmer, he taught me so much about playing the game the right way, coach Moxey is the type that will teach you the hard way and how things are in the real world and I can’t thank him enough for that because any coach can just sugarcoat it and tell you what you want to hear but he tells you reality,” he said.

#“I also want to thank coach Edwards at SAC who never said my dreams were pipe dreams – he told me to keep going at it.”

#A 5’11”, 175-pound infield and right handed submarine pitching prospect, Foster spent the last two years travelling to a number of independent showcases and tournaments in an effort to gain exposure on the collegiate recruiting circuit.

#“The process, it’s tedious. Baseball is a game where you fail more than you succeed. You go to a showcase and you don’t know what’s going to happen. I don’t think I ever went to a showcase and was 100 percent proud of what I did, I always felt like I could have done better and see how I can be better for the next time, but the process, baseball is a hard sport.

#“I’m happy I’m here and I was able to finally achieve this,” he said. “Everytime I wanted to give up I just had to remember (God) is the one in control and that the present might not be what you want, but the future is what you are going to get so just trust in him (God).”

#During the recruitment process, Foster said the Buccaneers coaching staff and volunteer assistant coach Josh Fellerman stood out.

#“The coaches welcomed me with open arms this summer. Coach Fellerman, he came to see one of my games and said ‘I like this kid, I want to see him later.’ Some coaches let you know you can come to their school, he had an attitude of ‘we want you here’ and for me, the number one thing is I want to be somewhere I feel wanted, somewhere I feel at home. I felt that with Barry University.”

#The Bucs are currently 17-26 in NCAA Division II’s Sunshine State Conference.

#Proud parents Mike and Jacqueline Foster were on hand to witness the career milestone.

#“I’m very proud of this moment. This journey has been very long,” his father Michael said.

#“I congratulated him for the effort he has put into what he wanted to do and I pray that he will continue to succeed, particularly with his college education. I would just say that I thank God that he has this opportunity.”

#His mother, Jacqueline Foster added: “It has been a long one but it’s been, I guess an enjoyable one for us as a family, and we look forward to what is to come for him. We want to also thank all who have been a part of the process – all of the coaches at Freedom Farm, the coaches at St Augustine’s College, and the independent coaches who have helped him along the way.”

Baseball Prospect Adari Grant Performs Well In Minor League Camp

As of Thursday, April 28, 2022


#Tribune Sports Reporter

#ADARI Grant has yet to receive his minor league assignment for the 2022 season, but the highly touted St Louis Cardinals prospect made enough of an impression in preseason minor league camp for franchise staff to take notice.

#Cardinals minor-league infield instructor, Jose Oquendo, raved about the progression of the 18-year-old infielder, one of the youngest invitees to minor league camp.

#“Like I told him, ‘you have been the biggest surprise to me,’(From) when I saw him in Santo Domingo for the first time to what he is doing right now is a complete change. He’s gotten better,” Oquendo told Daniel Guerrero of the St Louis Post Dispatch. “He has always wanted it. He has a strong desire to be a professional baseball player — and a good one.”

#Gary Kendall, manager of the club’s Low A affiliate Palm Beach Cardinals, had an opportunity to see Grant for the first time.

#“He plays with a lot of energy, a lot of enthusiasm, a lot of emotion. I see a guy that came over a little bit raw, and through the instruction of Jose Oquendo and the staff, I’ve seen this guy develop and learn the game and make quick adjustments,” he said.

#“You know, guys that go far in this game make quick adjustments. And they’re quick learners. And (Grant) seems to be that type of guy. He’s a very quick learner. So I really like what he brings to the table. He’s a plus runner. You know, he’s coming along defensively. I’ve seen his bat improve, you know, so I mean, he’s got the world in front of them.”

#Grant became the first Bahamian player to join the Cardinals organisation when they signed him in the 2021 class.

#In his rookie season, he was assigned to the Dominican Summer League with the DSL Cardinals Blue.

#He finished with a batting average of .220 with a .691 OPS on the season with 22 hits, one home run, six RBI and seven stolen bases.

#“As soon as I’m on the field, I think I’m the best. I don’t think I’m better than anyone else, but I think I’m the best. I don’t think anybody is better than me. That’s the way to be about it in baseball,” Grant said. Baseball is hard enough, so if you don’t have that confidence (and) you don’t think you’re the best, baseball can really attack you.”

#After Lucius Fox received the call-up he said the Bahamian pipeline is sure to place more Bahamians in the major leagues.

#“It’s motivation for sure,” Grant said. “But people don’t know there’s plenty young talent coming from the Bahamas. Plenty. There’s plenty guys after me that’s coming out.

Coaches Hall Of Fame: Greene To Be Inducted

LEFT: Coach Rolando ‘Lonnie’ Greene shares a moment with World Indoors 100m hurdles silver medalist Devynne Charlton. RIGHT: Coach Rolando ‘Lonnie’ Greene giving instructions to Olympian Megan Moss.

As of Wednesday, April 27, 2022

Rolando “Lonnie” Greene




Senior Sports Reporter



There’s a saying that it’s better late than never. For Bahamian Rolando “Lonnie” Greene, it couldn’t be any better as he looks forward to his induction into the Drake Relays Coaches Hall of Fame.


Greene, who has coached athletes at both Purdue and Kentucky universities to more than 34 championship titles, will be enshrined on Thursday, April 28 at the Courtside Club in the Shivers Basketball Practice Facility on the Drake campus.


He will go in with three-time Olympian Jenny Simpson, who also captured a gold medal in the 1,500 metres at the 2011 World Championships, Aubrey Herring, a seven-time NCAA All-American hurdler from Indiana State, as she will be inducted into the Drake Relays Athletes Hall of Fame.


Greene, who is in his fourth season as head of the track and field and cross-country programmes at Kentucky after six seasons coaching the men’s and women’s teams at Purdue, will be the 89th inductee into the Coaches Hall of Fame.


The Coaches Hall of Fame was established in 1977 with charter members John L Griffith (Drake), Harry Gill (Illinois), Tom E Jones (Wisconsin), Clyde Littlefield (Texas), Leo Johnson (Illinois) and Bill Easton (Drake and Kansas).


“Anytime you’re invited to be enshrined into an organisation or something that is way before you and you are included in it forever, it’s a blessing,” Greene said.


“You get into this business not to be inducted into the Hall of Fame, but just to be a blessing to someone else.


“So for someone to recognise you for your efforts, it’s mind blowing. I can’t wait for that day to come. I don’t know if I would cry. But I am very honoured that they have selected me to be honoured.”


While this is his first induction, Greene said it’s definitely “better late than before” because he remembers how his boss at Arkansas, Lance Harter, was blessed to be enshrined in quite a few inductions, he always told him not to stop looking yet because your time is coming.”


The 55-year-old Greene is a former Bahamian versatile track athlete at Murray State. He has been coaching for more than 20 years, but noted that this honour is something that he will be able to tell his children’s children long after he’s completed his tenure in the sport.


Greene will become the first Kentucky coach to be inducted and the third who coached at Purdue, following Dave Rankin in 1995 and Mike Poehlein in 1998.


The 34 relays titles under Greene’s tutelage all have come in a seven-year period starting in 2013, his first season at Purdue. He took the Kentucky job in the summer of 2018 and brought an outstanding group of athletes to the 2019 Drake Relays, the Wildcats’ first appearance in the meet since 1988.


They made quite a splash.


Greene’s athletes won eight events, highlighted by Daniel Roberts’ victory over world and Olympic gold medallist Omar McLeod – his former training partner – in the World Showdown Invitational 110 hurdles.


“I have viewed coach Greene as a role model since I was a teenager,” Boldon said. “In addition to his many coaching accolades, he is one of the most personable coaches in the country and Drake Relays fans are always excited to watch his athletes perform.”


Kentucky’s Faith Ross became just the third runner and first since 2004 to sweep the university-college 100 hurdles and 400 hurdles and was voted the Outstanding Performer in the women’s division.


The Wildcats also swept the men’s and women’s 4×200 relays. With All-American Abby Steiner anchoring the women’s team, a Greene-coached foursome prevailed in that event for the fourth straight year. His Purdue teams won the women’s 4×200 in 2016-17-18.


With Greene in charge, Kentucky athletes have earned All-America recognition 51 times at the NCAA Indoor Championships, including 23 this year, and 49 times at the NCAA Outdoor Championships. At this year’s NCAA Indoor Championships, the Kentucky women had 13 first-team All-Americans, including Steiner, who won the 200 for the second straight year in a meet record 22.16 seconds.


The Kentucky women placed third in the team standings, matching the best finish in programme history. “We’ve been having a good year. We were third at the NCAAs Indoor Championships as a team on the women’s side,” Greene said. “It’s the first national trophy that I’ve ever won as a Bahamian head coach. “I think it’s the first time that a Bahamian has ever won a trophy, but I think we have a big shot to make a run at the title. Drake is our last regular season meet and then we enter into what I call championship cycle. We have SEC and then Nationals, so our goal right now is just to keep everybody healthy.”


Greene’s Kentucky athletes also have won nine Southeastern Conference indoor championships, including three by Steiner in the 200, and five outdoor titles. Steiner won the indoor 200 this year in a blazing 22.09, the fastest in US history, the fastest in the world this year and the second-fastest ever, trailing only the 21.87 run in 1993 by Merlene Ottey, a member of the Drake Relays Athletes Hall of Fame.


Greene reinvigorated the track and field programme at Purdue, coaching 38 athletes who earned a total of 86 All-America honours, including 21 who earned first-team recognition in 60 events. His athletes won 11 individual men’s Big Ten championships (four indoors, seven outdoors) and 20 individual women’s titles (11 indoors, nine outdoors).


The Boilermakers also won six Big Ten women’s relay titles during his tenure. He was the Big Ten women’s indoor coach of the year in 2017 and guided Purdue to the women’s conference outdoor championship later that year. His women’s team finished eighth at the 2018 NCAA Outdoor Championships, the school’s highest finish ever.


At the Drake Relays in 2018, his Purdue athletes orchestrated one of the greatest performances ever at the meet by winning 11 events, including seven during the Saturday session.


The Purdue women won the 4×100, 4×200, 4×400 and sprint medley relays — setting a meet record of 3:28.42 in the 4×400 — and captured the Hy-Vee Cup. The Boilermakers also got victories from Brionna Thomas in the 200, Savannah Roberson in the 100 hurdles, Janae Moffitt in the high jump and Micaela Hazelwood in the discus.


On the men’s side, Justin Veteto won the university-college 110 hurdles, freshman Rahman Minor won the high jump and Purdue won the 4×200. With the victories by Veteto and Roberson, Purdue became the first school to sweep the high hurdles races.


In all, Purdue athletes won 28 Drake Relays titles under Greene, including consecutive victories in the women’s university-college 400 hurdles (2016 and 2017) by Symone Black. Black had a chance to become the first to win the event three times, but chose to run in the Invitational 400 hurdles in 2018. She finished seventh in 57.24, a time that would have won the collegiate race by 1 ½ seconds.


Prior to Purdue and Kentucky, Greene spent 16 seasons with the women’s programme at Arkansas, eventually becoming associate head coach in charge of sprints, hurdles, horizontal jumps and multi-events from 2000-12. He was named the national assistant coach of the year in 2004.


Before joining the Arkansas staff, Greene was an assistant coach at Missouri State (1991-95) and Minnesota (1995-96).


In April, Greene got his second opportunity to travel as a coach on the Bahamas national team when he went to Belgrade, Serbia for the World Athletics’ Indoor Championships when his protégé Devynne Charlton clinched the silver in the women’s 100m hurdles and Shaunae Miller-Uibo claimed the gold in the women’s 400m.


“To see how Devynne performed, I was proud as a peacock,” said Greene, who previously served as an assistant coach for the NACAC team in San Antonio in 2000. “I was not only proud to serve the Bahamas, but to be there to see one of my athletes perform so well. In my mind, it was a long time coming. I hope to do it again.”


With Drake Relays being what he called an “athletes’-friendly meet,” Greene said he makes it a point every year to take his team there to compete, not as an option, but as an executive decision to prepare them for the “championship cycle.”


While Greene’s induction ceremony will take place on Thursday, members of his Kentucky’s track team will be in action on Friday and Saturday, along with a few other Bahamian collegiate and elite athletes.

Winners crowned at Tim’s Refrigeration Doubles Tournament

 Home|Sports|Winners crowned at Tim’s Refrigeration Doubles TournamentSports

The Nassau GuardianSend an email16 hours ago 270 1 minute readFacebookTwitterLinkedInShare via Email

 Tim’s Refrigeration Doubles Tournament

According to reports, the 15th Annual Tim’s Refrigeration Eleuthera Doubles Tennis Tournament was a tremendous success, with teams coming from Abaco, New Providence, Spanish Wells, South Eleuthera, and the regular players from Central Eleuthera, including quite a few homeowner residents.

The Bahamas Lawn Tennis Association (BLTA) congratulates Coach Artie Johnson and his team on another successful completion of the tournament.

Organizer of the tournament and recent Hall of Fame Coach Johnson said: “We would like to thank our sponsor Mr. Tim Dames, Ms. Darnette Weir for sponsoring the trophies, and Ms. Barbara Johnson for all of the hard work in putting the cook-out together with help from Sonny-Man and Arthur Bethel and all who donated. We thank you.”

In men’s doubles, Kevin Carey and Charles Rolle defeated Vernon Russell and Macquel McDonald in the championship match.

In the ladies doubles, Cameel McDonald and Chavonnne Reid defeated the team of Tracy Penfound and Michelle Walker in the championship match, and Jennifer Psumpas and Mary Atwood-Culmer won the consolation match.

In mixed doubles, the team of Macquel and Cameel McDonald prevailed over the team of Vernon Russell and Chavonnne Reid in the championship match, and Craig Gibson and Tracy Penfound won the consolation match.

The organizer and tournament director was Coach Artie Johnson and he was assisted by Jackie Percentie, Elva Nixon and Rob Atwood.

The winners of the Brent and Eulona Johnson memorial trophies for the top junior male and female tennis players were Ayia Bethel and Alathea-Lele Psumpas. Johnny Psumpas was the runner-up for the trophy in the junior male category.

“Thanks to all who sponsored the food and also to the live streaming tech team led by Mr. Martin Gator and Carlton Moss,” said Coach Johnson.

The tournament has grown from year to year and Coach Johnson expects continued progression for next year’s event.

Bahamian players active in conference championships


Simba FrenchSend an email15 hours ago 137 2 minute readFacebookTwitterLinkedInShare via Email

 Jacobi Bain and Sydney Clarke.

Sydney Clarke and the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB) Blazers women’s tennis team experienced a 4-0 loss to the nationally 33rd-ranked Old Dominion University (ODU) Monarchs in the quarterfinals of the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Division I Conference USA Championships on Friday, thereby ending their season.

Meanwhile, Jacobi Bain and the Xavier University of Louisiana (XULA) Gold Rush punched their ticket to the National Association of Intercollegiate Association (NAIA) Tournament by winning the NAIA unaffiliated group tournament on Saturday, ending with a 4-0 win over the William Woods University Owls in Springfield, Missouri.

Clarke and the Blazers were coming off a 4-2 first-round victory over the Western Kentucky University (WKU) Hilltoppers at the Adams Tennis Center in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. The Monarchs was the top seed in the tournament and showed that prowess against the Blazers. The Blazers ended the season with an 12-11 win/loss record, staying above .500.

Clarke played at the number one doubles slot with partner Maggie White. They played against Yuliia Starodubtseva and Tatsiana Sasnouskaya, and tried to take down the 57th ranked doubles team, but in the end, the Monarch duo won 6-3. A win for the Monarchs in the number three slot gave them the doubles point.

In the singles portion of the matchup, Clarke faced Sasnouskaya. The match was unfinished as the Monarchs had already won three singles matchups for the 4-0 victory. In the first set, Clarke fell 7-5 in a tightly contested opening set. In the second set Clarke struggled a little as Sasnouskaya was up 5-2 before the match was suspended.

The day before, Clarke and White fared well in doubles with a 7-6 (7-2) victory over the Hilltoppers’ duo of Cora-Lynn vonDungern and Paula Cortez. They helped the Blazers to win the doubles point in that duel.

Clarke was in action in the number two singles slot. She went up against Laura Bernardos. The first set went to Clarke as she won 7-5. Bernardos got the better of Clarke in the second set, winning 6-4. In the third set, Clarke struggled as Bernardos won 6-1 to win the match.

In the end, the Blazers won three singles matches to win the matchup 4-2.

Bain and doubles partner Megh Patel lost 6-1 to the Owls’ Vaclav Schneider and Vitek Subert. Despite this loss, the Gold Rush won the doubles point.

The Bahamian then played at the number three singles spot against Patrick Shelepov. That match was unfinished as the Gold Rush had already clinched the victory. Shelepov won the first set 7-6, and they were deadlocked at three in the second set when the match was suspended.

The Gold Rush were dominant in that tournament, winning their previous two matchups 4-0, and then defeating William Woods 4-0. The Gold Rush came in ranked at number one in the tournament, it was their first championship since 2013. They took down Our Lady of the Lake and Missouri Valley after receiving a bye for the first round.

In the 2021-2022 regular season, the Gold Rush finished with a 19-5 record and a streak of eight straight wins to end the season. They were a perfect 8-0 at home on the season.

The NAIA National Championships is set to begin May 17.

Sierra Donaldson and the Lee University Flames (6-10) will kick off their NCAA Division II Gulf South Conference Championships on Thursday against Auburn University Montgomery at 3:30 p.m. That match will be played at the Lagoon Park and O’Connor Tennis Center in Montgomery, Alabama.

On Friday, Abigail Simms and the number one seeded Indiana Tech Warriors (15-1) will begin their defense of their 2021 Wolverine-Hoosier Athletic Conference title. That tournament will be played at the MVP Athletic Club – Crahen in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

The Warriors are trying to secure an automatic bid for the NAIA National Championships.

One final CARIFTA  for awesome foursome

Quartet of Bahamian swimmers ‘age out’ on high note after four-peat

One final CARIFTA for awesome foursome

Quartet of Bahamian swimmers ‘age out’ on high note after four-peat

Simba FrenchSend an email15 hours ago 167 5 minute readFacebookTwitterLinkedInShare via Email

 The quartet of (from left) Jake Thompson, Erald Thompson III, Zaylie-Elizabeth Thompson, and Delaney Mizell, spoke about their experience at their final CARIFTA Swimming Championships in Wildey, Barbados, this year. They were the team captains and helped The Bahamas win a fourth straight title. Simba French

It is just over a week since The Bahamas won its historic fourth straight CARIFTA Swimming Championship title at the Barbados Aquatic Center in Wildey, Barbados. Amongst the 36 swimmers who made the trip to Barbados were team captains and 15-17 age category swimmers Zaylie-Elizabeth Thompson, Erald Thompson III, Jake Thompson and Delaney Mizell who were happy to be a part of history as they aged out of the meet.

The Bahamas won the championship with 975 points, four-peating as champions. The win was also the sixth win for the country in seven championships. Jamaica and the Cayman Islands finished second and third, respectively. Jamaica scored 833.50 points and Cayman finished with 754 points.

Erald Thompson knew there was a lot of pressure coming into this year’s CARIFTA Championships after they won a third straight title back in 2019. The 2020 and 2021 editions were canceled due to the threat of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We knew what we had to live up to and honestly to sum it up, it feels great. It feels good to lead that historic moment – it feels very good,” Erald Thompson said.

Zaylie-Elizabeth Thompson was happy to have help leading the group of swimmers, particularly the younger ones and the first-timers.

“It is thrilling to know that we as team captains were able to lead a team emotionally and lead us to this victory. It is very relieving to know that we did a good job. I am excited to see what they feel about us as team captains. I had a lot of fun with this group and for many of them, they were first-timers and they did not know what to expect. They pulled it together when they needed to and they worked hard. It was fun and exciting to be a team captain,” Zaylie-Elizabeth Thompson said.

For Mizell, she said it was great to come away with the four-peat after four days and eight sessions of swimming.

This was only Jake Thompson’s second CARIFTA. His first was in 2017 when The Bahamas hosted it and started the winning streak. He said he didn’t recall what it was like since there was a gap in the last five years for him. He quickly adopted and was able to help motivate the younger ones.

“Leaving here with a victory is sweet. Being able to say that I was a team captain on a team in the Caribbean is sweet and you can tell all of your friends that. It is an experience on its own,” Jake Thompson said.

He swam in 14 races inclusive of preliminaries, finals and relays. He took part in the middle and long distance races such as the 400 meters (m), 800m and the 1500m freestyle events.

“I swam a lot of distance. It hurt but I got through it,” he said. “Seeing other kids swim made it so much more bearable than swimming it alone. Also, having teammates on the sideline and hearing the cowbells and drums, it really motivates you.”

He finished with six medals – one gold, four silver and a bronze.

Erald Thompson swam a personal best in his final race of his CARIFTA career, the 100m breaststroke. He finished with the silver medal in a time of 1:07.50. Aruba’s Braynsly Dirksz won with a time of 1:06.01.

“That was a good race,” he said. “It went according to strategy so I have no regrets about that. It was nice to close it off with a silver for Team Bahamas,”

The breaststroke specialist finished CARIFTA with a gold medal and two silver medals. He swam in eight races this year including preliminaries, finals and relays, which for him was not a lot.

“It was one to remember. I did not swim in as much events as usual. This was the hardest CARIFTA I have ever been to as I was older and was a team captain. I had to look out for everyone and not just for myself. That part was hard. Other than that, it was a good meet and it was fun to race again. I do not regret it,” he said.

Zaylie-Elizabeth Thompson had her fair share of races that she swam in but the 200m individual medley (IM) stood out the most to her. It was a race where she won silver with a time of 2:28.78, while fellow Bahamian Keianna Moss won the gold medal in 2:28.66.

“I enjoyed the 200m IM the most because I like to swim all the strokes and I like swimming next to my teammate Moss, so that was a lot of fun,” Zaylie-Elizabeth Thompson said.

She came away with one silver medal and three bronze medals.

It was a roller coaster ride for her this year, after the region not having the meet for two years, and then taking on a larger role than usual.

“It was different being a team captain because I am used to being one of the younger kids. We skipped two years and now I am a senior. It was bit of a change. I was excited to shine the light from what I knew from previous CARIFTA meets. I was glad we made our own memories in this last CARIFTA. I had a lot of fun, and the racing was fun. I am proud of what Team Bahamas did,” Zaylie-Elizabeth Thompson said.

Mizell swam in two individual events and three relay events and finished with a silver medal and two bronze medals. She said the race that was the most fun for her was the 4x50m free relay in which she teamed up with Rhanishka Gibbs, Moss and Rachel Lundy, and they won a silver. They swam 1:48.39 while Jamaica won the gold with a time of 1:47.91.

Being the team captain was a lot of fun for Mizell, she said.

“It was definitely one to remember for sure,” Mizell said. “Going into it being my last CARIFTA I was eligible for, it was bittersweet to close out this chapter. I am excited to go on to bigger things. Other than that, my swims were right there where they needed to be.”

All four swimmers agreed that they will miss the camaraderie, the bonding, the energy and the laughs from being at CARIFTA. Most of all, they said they will miss their first experience at CARIFTA. The premier junior swimming meet is where a lot of them got their swimming careers started.

The quartet left some advice for the team captains for next year’s CARIFTA Championships in which The Bahamas will be chasing a fifth straight title in St. Lucia.

“Have fun because your experience qualifies you for the job.They need to remember what they learn and pass it on to the younger kids,” Zaylie-Elizabeth Thompson said.

Erald Thompson said: “Enjoy it and be there for the younger ones. They will not be used to the traditions so be patient. You have to be selfless.”

Mizell said: “Embrace it and take it in while having fun. Make memories because those will last forever. Pass down traditions and always be there for the younger ones. Take time to know the younger ones.”

Jake Thompson simply said: “Motivate.”

Although it is the end of their CARIFTA swimming careers, they are hoping to represent The Bahamas, something they take pride in doing, at other regional and international meets in the future.

Donaldson And Flames Clinch Spot In The Gsu Tourney

As of Tuesday, April 26, 2022

#SIERRA Donaldson and The Lee University Flames clinched a spot in the Gulf South Conference (GSU) Championships tournament with a 6-3 win over Delta State University.

#The Lady Flames garnered one of the final two spots in the GSC postseason. They will play in the GSC Tournament which will be held April 28-30 at Lagoon Park and O’Connor Tennis Center in Montgomery, Alabama.

#Sierra is a senior and will be graduating with honours from Lee University. She was recognised on Senior’s Day by the university.

#The Bahamas Lawn Tennis Association (BLTA) congratulates Sierra on obtaining academic honours and heading to the GSC championships – two awesome feats in her last year in college.

#Continue to shine Sierra.

Ayton And Suns ‘Facing Uphill Battle’

DEANDRE Ayton dunks against the Pelicans in Game 4 of his first-round playoff series in New Orleans Sunday. 
(AP Photo/Matthew Hinton)

DEANDRE Ayton dunks against the Pelicans in Game 4 of his first-round playoff series in New Orleans Sunday. (AP Photo/Matthew Hinton)

As of Tuesday, April 26, 2022


#Tribune Sports Reporter

#Deandre Ayton and the Phoenix Suns are facing an uphill battle in the midst of a physical first round series against the upset minded New Orleans Pelicans.

#Ayton, averaging 20.5 points, 10.8 rebounds and 1.5 blocks per game through four games of the series thus far, said the Pelicans set the tone in Sunday night’s 118-103 win at the Smoothie King Center in New Orleans, Louisiana.

#A pivotal game five is set for tonight at 10pm local time at the Footprint Center in Phoenix, Arizona.

#“They hit first, they played hard, they wanted it more,” Ayton said following the Sun’s 118-103 loss Sunday night in New Orleans, [We have to] Not worry about the refs and just play basketball, play hard and give those second efforts.”

#Ayton finished with 23 points (11-14 field goals), eight rebounds, and one block in 33 minutes Sunday but has struggled at times with his matchup against Pelicans veteran Jonas Valancuinas.

#Valancuinas finished with 26 points (9-15 field goals, 7-11 free throws), 15 rebounds and four assists over 33 minutes Sunday.

#On the series he is averaging 15 points and 16 rebounds per game, highlighted by an 18-point, 25-rebound performance in game one. “He was all over the glass like he was in game one,” Ayton said of Valanciunas in game four. “We just have to make sure we handle him and take him out completely.”

#Ayton has drawn just five total free throw attempts throughout the series and the Suns as a team lost the battle at the charity stripe. The Pelicans held a 42-17 advantage in game four alone and the Suns were called for 12 more fouls.

#“We were fouling. The third quarter we were trading baskets and we were fouling. They were aggressive they got to the bonus early and they did what any team would do, they were aggressive and they were getting calls,” Ayton said. “With the physicality it just feels like we couldn’t do like how we did it in game three with the physicality of the game, it made us let up a little bit on being aggressive and I think that’s what got us. We started to figure that out a little bit too late.”

#The Suns, the No. 1 seed in the Western Conference, now face a No. 8 seed Pelicans team in an even series without leading scorer and MVP candidate Devin Booker.

#Booker missed his second consecutive game due to a hamstring injury and is expected to miss the rest of the series.

#“I just want my dude to be healthy and ready to go. We trust him, we know he’s handling business, we see him handling it everyday. I would just love to be in great shape when he gets out there, super healthy and get this thing back to our norm.

#“Until then, nothing has changed, it’s the next man up. We’re not second guessing anything or any lineups, we’re sticking to how we play.”

#Despite the loss of Booker, Ayton said the Suns’ recent playoff experience helps them to remain focused on the task at hand.

#“It’s very important. Everybody making up stuff on how the series will go, we ignore all of that and we stay the course,” he said. “It’s the playoffs, I mean everybody’s good, that’s how it’s supposed to go,” he said. “Play hard and may the best team win. We just got to get back home, get back on our feet and handle our business at home.”