Pinellas News

Youth trumps experience again in charity hoops game

PALM HARBOR — The boys of Palm Harbor Middle School proved that last year was no fluke.

The Panthers once again used their abundant supply of youthful energy to run circles around firefighters from Palm Harbor Fire Rescue and Oldsmar Fire Rescue, winning with ease, 64-34.

Friday evening marked the second Battle of Palm Harbor charity game between the boys and men — and the second straight blowout. Just like in last year’s 46-21 win, the Panthers never trailed.

Palm Harbor Middle School Coach Macho Liberti said prior to the game the firefighters have been eager for their rematch, though a revised strategy may be beneficial for next year.

Liberti, a Largo firefighter himself, tried to jump-start a comeback bid by leaving the Panthers’ bench and playing against his team, but it was not nearly enough.

The good-spirited, fun night is designed to raise money for the basketball team. Money from last year’s game helped pay for an end-of-year awards ceremony, warmups and jerseys.

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