SEC Hoops Preview

SEC Hoops Preview

It will be a night of SEC hoops as eight teams meet on the court in just a few hours.

Florida at LSU 7 p.m.

SEC Network

The Florida Gators are coming off an upset win against SEC opponent Auburn. At the time, Auburn was ranked No. 4 in the country. Florida knocked off the Tigers 69-47 in Gainesville Saturday.

The Gators will face the LSU Tigers in Baton Rouge tonight. LSU currently leads the SEC hoops world. They are undefeated in conference play and are led by senior guard Skylar Mays. He’s averaging 15.9 points a game.

Georgia at Kentucky 7 p.m.

ESPN

No. 15 ranked Kentucky is seeking its fifth SEC win of the season as they host Georgia tonight. Calipari’s Wildcats are back at home after a road win against the Arkansas Razorbacks Saturday. Kentucky survived the Razorback’s efforts at a second-half comeback.
Georgia is 1-3 in the SEC. They fell to Mississippi State 59-91 Saturday. Anthony Edwards leads the Dawgs averaging 23 points per game.
The Wildcats are an 11.5 point favorite over Georgia.

Texas A&M at Missouri 9 p.m.

ESPNU

Missouri is coming off a close loss against the Alabama Crimson Tide. They fell to the Tide 88-74 in the final minutes. Missouri is currently 9-8 overall and 1-4 in the SEC.
The Aggies are also looking to bounce back after a loss. South Carolina beat Texas A&M 81-67 Saturday. A win against Missouri would certainly help the Aggies, especially if they have any hopes of making a postseason appearance.

Ole Miss at Tennessee 9 p.m.

SEC Network

Ole Miss is seeking its first win in conference play and hoping to break their five-game losing streak. The Rebels will meet the Tennessee Volunteers in Thompson-Boling Arena. The Vols are coming off a win against in-state rival Vanderbilt.

Jordan Bowden, Tennessee guard, broke out of his shooting slump against the Commodores and accounted for 21 points in the Vols 66-45 win Saturday. Bowden is a key player to watch tonight against the Rebels.

 

Story can also be found at wruf.com for ESPN Gainesville. 

 

 

 

The Little Things

The Little Things

As my freshman year at the University of Florida comes to a close I’d like to take a moment and reflect on a few things.

At the end of Fall semester I knew I needed to get involved in anyway possible. I was eager, and still am, to learn and further develop my skills. I had no idea what ESPN Gainesville really was or how it operated, but I knew it was covering sports. In my mind, that’s all I needed to know. So, I went to register for the program and was told I’d be put on a waiting list. Long story short, I basically begged the man in charge to put me in the program and get me off that waiting list! Okay, I didn’t ACTUALLY beg, but I did go to his office numerous times inquiring about getting involved with sports media.

This Spring I have had the opportunity to work with ESPN Gainesville’s introductory program covering local high school sports. I’ll admit I was slightly apprehensive at the beginning. I’m not from Gainesville. I’m not even from the state of Florida. What did I know about high school sports in Alachua county!? Well, honestly…nothing.

Life’s about taking chances, right?

Here I am now… months later. I had no idea that this opportunity would provide so much for me.

Mostly, I have been writing for ESPN Gainesville, wruf.com, while covering Buchholz and Newberry High School. I’ve also insisted on doing a few interviews!

As many of you know, I love sports and have had the dream of becoming a college football sideline reporter for basically my entire life. I’m not exaggerating! Ask… anyone. However, it wasn’t until these past few months that I developed a love for storytelling. I knew I “liked” journalism, but now I have a passion for it.

There’s just something special about telling a story.

It may not mean something to everyone, but it means something to someone. These stories that I’ve worked on, stories on local high schools and student athletes, mean nearly nothing to the world as a whole. It’s the truth. But, as long as they mean something to just one person, as long as I get to tell someone’s story, then that’s all that matters to me.

It’s the little things.

Triple Threat of Buchholz

Triple Threat of Buchholz

Gainesville, FL-

Whether it’s swim season or not, odds are you’ll find Talia Bates, Caitlin Brooks, and Katie Cronin together. The three have swimming to thank for their friendship.

Both Talia and Katie have been swimming together for nearly a decade. It wasn’t until Katie took a year off from Gator Swim Club and swam at High Tide Aquatics that she met Caitlin. They instantly became friends. Flashforward. The three train nearly everyday together at Gator Swim Club. It’s no surprise that they’ve grown so close over the years. They share the same goals and passions.

Katie Cronin

“We’re always cheering for each other”, says Talia. That’s something that won’t change, even after they begin their collegiate swimming careers. Talia, daughter of former Florida Gator Linebacker James Bates and former Gator Swimmer Tina Bates, signed with UF her junior year. When asked about the recruitment process, she stated, “I looked around at a lot of schools, but just being at UF nearly every day, I felt like it was the best fit for me. I am so excited to be able to contribute to this team!” Katie will be roughly 744 miles away. She will be continuing her swimming career at The University of Virginia. Because Katie has plans to attend med school following college graduation, she felt as if she needed an “elite institution, one that balanced both academics and swim”. Ultimately, there was “just something about Virginia” that called to her. Caitlin is also heading quite far away from Gainesville. She signed with The University of Kentucky. Although this trio will each be on different teams next year, it doesn’t mean they’ll never see each other. They’re already looking forward to meets and NCAA’s.

Their Time At Buchholz

The three have definitely made their mark on Buchholz High School’s Swim team. They’ve won a state championship every single year of their high school careers. That’s not something everyone can say. This past season a lot of people were counting the Bobcats out, but Katie said that the team “believed in themselves, got behind one another, and rallied”. They treated every race like it was the one that determined everything and it worked.

When asked about how it feels to have been a part of such a successful program, Talia, Katie, and Caitlin agreed that their time at Buchholz has been “so unusual and organic”. Katie stated, “None of us moved here to swim. None of us went to Buchholz just for their swim team. None of this was planned. It’s just where we lived. It’s how the cards fell, and I am so grateful”. Without a doubt this team and this trio’s friendship is something special.

More Than the Swimming Pool

Outside of swimming Katie, Caitlin, and Talia can be found either trying the latest and greatest breakfast restaurant or playing wii. Their go to wii game is Just Dance. One of Katie’s favorite breakfast date memories is at Mi Apa. After their meal, they got a little bored and began combining random foods and condiments, something I am sure we’ve all done a time or two. Caitlin dared to taste their lime/hot sauce/ketchup and who knows what else combination. Needless to say they shared a laugh. It’s just one of many genuine memories that the three will look back on.

Caitlin, Katie, and Talia have been their for each other in the good times and the bad. They’ve stuck together through it all. According to Katie that’s how you know you have a quality friendship.

 

Not only are these girls leaving Buchholz High School as 4-peat State Champions, but they’re leaving with a bond like no other.