tony tussing honored 58 years basketball
58 YEARS OF SCORING — Tony Tussing, second from right, is honored by the Stetson University Athletic Department for the 58 years he kept score for the men’s and women’s basketball teams. From left are John B (Stetson’s mascot), Stetson President Dr. Christopher Roellke, Tussing, and Stetson Athletic Director Jeff Altier. Tussing started scoring for Stetson in 1962, when the Hats played in the DeLand Armory, and retired a year ago due to mask restrictions of COVID. PHOTO BY STEVE SIMONEAU/SIMONEAU PHOTOGRAPHY

The Deltona Parks and Recreation Department is starting an Adult Basketball League, which will play in March and April this year. The registration deadline is Friday, Feb. 18, and the cost is $400 per team.

No team? Join an interest list to be placed on a team for those 18 years old and older.

Go to for more information.

Madison Miller, an academic coach who teaches at Chisholm Elementary School in New Smyrna Beach, has been named Volusia County’s Teacher of the Year for 2023. She was selected from the 70 nominees.

Miller is a product of Volusia County schools. She earned her undergraduate degree from Daytona State College and is currently completing a second master’s degree at Stetson University.

Special awards were also presented to three teachers who represent Volusia County Schools’ three guiding principles: Suzanne Boss, an English/language arts teacher at Silver Sands Middle School in Port Orange, who represents Guiding Principle No. 1 – Dedication to increased student achievement; social studies teacher Joseph Brennan of Deltona High School, who represents Guiding Principle No. 2 – Commitment to finding solutions to problems; and third-grade teacher Vanessa Emers of Spruce Creek Elementary School in Port Orange, who represents Guiding Principle No. 3 – Mutual respect and positive relationships with all stakeholders.

The presenting sponsor was AdventHealth, along with co-host FUTURES Foundation and Volusia County Schools.

DeLeon Springs Community Association Merit Scholarship

The DeLeon Springs Community Association Inc. is accepting applications for the 2022 DSCA Inc. Merit Scholarship. A completed application must be postmarked by March 31.

The purpose of this scholarship is to grant funds to a deserving high-school student currently attending a secondary school in the DeLeon Springs area, in order that they may further their education in the postsecondary realm. The scholarship is for a minimum of $1,000.

An applicant must be a resident of DeLeon Springs and a high-school senior who is enrolled in a DeLeon Springs-area private or public high school or is being home-schooled and has been accepted into an accredited two-year or four-year college, university or vocational school. The applicant must be a citizen of the United States and must maintain at least a 3.0 GPA during the applicant’s senior high-school year.

The applicant must submit: two letters of reference from nonrelative school personnel or extracurricular advisers; a list of leadership positions held; a list of work experiences; community/religious volunteer activities; and a personal essay (500 words or fewer) on the applicant’s personal interests and career goals and why this scholarship is important.

For additional information or to ask questions, email your request to

FHSAA district soccer action

FHSAA district soccer action began Jan. 27. Four West Volusia girls’ teams and five boys’ teams are participating, with chances to advance to the regional competition and eventually to the state title game. It’s the time of year when you either win and advance or you retire for the season.

In the girls’ competition, Sanford defeated the DeLand High School Lady Bulldogs, 6-2, in the first round of District 2-7A, while Orange City University was topped by Lake Howell, 7-0, in District 5-6A, and Deltona was downed by Eustis, 8-0, in District 6-4A, all having their season closed out.

The one girls’ West Volusia team advancing to the second round of district competition was Pine Ridge of Deltona, who defeated Mount Dora, 4-2, in District 6-4A, and was slated to face Bishop Moore Jan. 31.

In the boys’ competition, DeLand had a bye in the first round of District 2-7A, and was slated to play the winner of the Lake Mary-West Port game Jan. 31.

Orange City University was halted by Lyman, 1-0, in District 5-6A; Deltona defeated Eustis, 4-2; and Pine Ridge of Deltona downed Mount Dora, 2-1, in District 6-4A. On Feb. 1, Deltona faced Bishop Moore and Pine Ridge of Deltona met Seabreeze.

Pierson Taylor dominated Umatilla, 8-0, advancing to play Crescent City Jan. 31 in District 5-3A competition. Junior Steven Aguirre scored four goals for the Taylor Wildcats, junior Ricardo Jaimes scored twice with two assists, and senior Gary Solis and freshman Alfredo Galarza made the other two goals for Taylor.

DeLand High School

Two members of the DeLand High School FFA gained district championships, qualifying for state competition in June: Izabella Moss won the Creed Speaking Contest, and Logan Levon claimed his title in the Tractor Driving Contest. Lori Smith is one of the club directors.

DeLand High graduate Jeremiah Birch, who is now a student at the University of Central Florida, was named Most Valuable Player in the Lone Star Rugby Bowl. This is his first year playing rugby, after playing football and being a state finalist in weightlifting while a DeLand Bulldog.

The Lone Star Rugby Bowl was played at Aveva Stadium in Houston, where more than 20 teams competed at different collegiate levels, sponsored by the Men’s Collegiate Rugby Championship League. The women’s competition was held at another location.

DeLand High School athletics

The DeLand High School Bulldog boys’ basketball team stopped Pine Ridge of Deltona, 53-47, and Lake Mary, 62-47, while the DeLand High School Lady Bulldogs were topped by Father Lopez, 44-30, and Mount Dora Christian Academy, 59-54, in overtime, while the game ended in regulation with a knotted score of 46 all.

On Friday, Feb. 18, the Bulldog wrestlers go to Gainesville Buchholz for district competition.

The DeLand High tennis season has started, and the boys’ and girls’ teams will face Spruce Creek at home Thursday, Feb. 17.

Bulldog varsity baseball opens preseason competition Monday, Feb. 14, when the Bulldogs face Oviedo, and on Tuesday, Feb. 15, against Windermere. Both games will be played at Oviedo at 6 p.m.

The DHS boys’ weightlifting season has also opened. The Bulldogs will play host to Atlantic at 4 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 16, in the Bulldog gym.

Three members of the DeLand High Lady Bulldog weightlifting team competed in the 3A FHSAA State Weightlifting Championships: Zachiyah Banton-Dofflemyer in the 119-pound division, Jendaya Talton in the 129-pound division, and Summer Rank in the 139-pound classification. All three qualified to compete in the snatch lift event.

The next 3A competition takes place Thursday, Feb. 10, at Port St. Joe High School in Port St. Joe, which is just west of Apalachicola on the Gulf of Mexico. Damion Dunn is the DHS coach for girls’ and boys’ weightlifting.

The 2A competition takes place Friday, Feb. 11, and the 1A division competes Saturday, Feb. 12, all at Port St. Joe.

Deltona High School

The School Advisory Council at Deltona High School will meet at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 15, in the Learning Commons. For more information, go to

Pine Ridge High School

The Panther boys’ basketball team of Pine Ridge High School in Deltona was stopped by DeLand in a very competitive game, 53-47. Senior Elijah Zuniga scored 18 points for Pine Ridge, while pulling down 11 rebounds. He was assisted in scoring by senior Treyvon League with 13 points and 13 rebounds.

Stetson University

Stetson University had a topping-out ceremony Jan. 7, marking a construction landmark in the building of the Cici & Hyatt Brown Hall for Health and Innovation. The building is scheduled to open in late November. The topping-out ceremony is a builder’s rite traditionally held when the final beam is placed atop a structure during construction.

Brown Hall will be home to several College of Arts and Sciences areas of study, including the Center for Optimal Health Across the Lifespan, and Environmental Science and Studies, and a graduate program in counselor education.

The different areas of Brown Hall will be connected through internal glass walkways.

Stetson University Athletics

The Stetson University women’s basketball team won two games by downing Bellarmine, 64-53, and Eastern Kentucky, 70-52. In the Bellarmine game, Tatiana Streun scored 14 points, while gathering 10 rebounds and making three blocked shots. Alyssa Hargrove scored 12 points, and Jamiya Turner gathered 15 rebounds.

In the Eastern Kentucky game, Yazz Wazeerud-Din scored 23 points, with Turner getting 13 points and 13 rebounds, while Hargrove added 12 points, while recording six rebounds and making two steals.

Bellarmine defeated the Hatter men, 72-47, with Chase Johnston scoring 13 points. The Stetson men avenged their loss to Bellarmine with a big win over Eastern Kentucky at home, 113-95. Christiaan Jones scored 25 points while grabbing nine rebounds. Wheza Panzo accounted for 20 points, while Johnston scored 19 points, followed by Josh Smith getting 12 points. Alvin Tumblin also scored 12 points, and grabbed six rebounds as well.

The Stetson men’s tennis team defeated Samford, 4-1, lost to Florida State, 4-1, and topped Wofford, 4-0, and Florida National, 7-0. During these matches, those who racked up one or more victories were Clement Hamel, Tristan Dumas, Ervin Haris Eminefendic, Tim Gennes, Sven Thiergard, Fabian Penzkofer, Alexandre Hillhouse, Diogo Marques and Sami Ozzor.

The Lady Hatter tennis team defeated Atlantis University of Miami, 7-0, and Florida National University by the same score. Those winning one or more matches were Nadejda Maslova, Cheri Darley, Laetitia Rizk, Laia Pasini, Elodie Foster, Olivia Talbert, Alanna DiFrancesco, Anais Gabriel, Anna Dovgopolyi and Daliyah Hammoud.

Former Stetson baseball player Jeff Smith will return this spring as the manager of the Bowling Green Hot Rods in conjunction with the Tampa Bay Rays.

Smith played baseball at Stetson 1993-95. He led the Hot Rods to the High-A East Conference championship, the organization’s second title in three seasons, and he was named the High-A East Manager of the Year.

Smith’s son Cooper is a freshman member of the Stetson baseball team.

During the Eastern Kentucky basketball games Jan. 29, the Stetson University Athletic Department honored this writer for 58 years of keeping score for the men’s and women’s basketball teams. This writer started scoring for Stetson in 1962, when the Hatters played in the DeLand Armory, and retired last year due to the COVID requirement of wearing a mask and shield, which would inhibit seeing the ball go into the net and who made the points.

The two Stetson basketball teams travel to Fort Myers to face Florida Gulf Coast on Saturday, Feb. 12, with the men playing at 4 p.m. and the women at 7 p.m.

Then Wednesday, Feb. 16, the men play host to Jacksonville University at 7 p.m.

On Thursday, Feb. 17, the women host Jacksonville at 7 p.m.

On Saturday, Feb. 19, the two teams go to Liberty University, with the women playing at 2 p.m., followed at 7 p.m. by the men.

The Stetson baseball team opens its 2022 season at 3 p.m. Friday, Feb. 18, on Melching Field, when the Hatters face Delaware in the Hatter Classic, which features Stetson, Delaware, Manhattan and Notre Dame. At 7 p.m. Feb. 18, Notre Dame will face off against Manhattan.

On Saturday, Feb. 19, Manhattan meets Delaware at noon, followed by Stetson and Notre Dame at 4 p.m.

On Sunday, Feb. 20, Delaware and Notre Dame take the field at 9:30 a.m., with Stetson facing Manhattan at 1 p.m.

On Tuesday, Feb. 22, see the University of Florida play against the Hatters at 6:30 p.m. on Melching Field.

Then Columbia comes to town for games Friday-Sunday, Feb. 25-27, with games at 6:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday, and at 1 p.m. Sunday.

The Lady Hatter softball team opens its 2022 season Friday, Feb. 11, as the team plays two games, at 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. against Georgia State and Delaware, respectively, as part of the Stetson Lead-Off Classic.

On Saturday, Feb. 12, Stetson faces Delaware at 3 p.m. and Indiana State at 5 p.m., while on Sunday, Feb. 13, the team plays against Georgia State at noon. All games are played on the Stetson campus.

The Stetson women’s lacrosse team will open its 2022 season Saturday, Feb. 12, with a game against Campbell at noon on the Athletic Training Center field. Stetson returns to the field Thursday, Feb. 17, to face Niagara University at 7 p.m.

The men’s tennis team will return to the Mandy Stoll Tennis Center on Friday, Feb. 18, to face Atlantis University at 3 p.m., and again Saturday, Feb. 19, against Georgia Southern at 1 p.m.

College honors

Hailey Echevarria, Robert Echevarria and Lisa Echevarria, all of Deltona, have been named to the dean’s list for the fall 2021 semester at St. Olaf College in Northfield, Minnesota.

— Send school news to Tony Tussing via email: at


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here