Staff report

More than 2,000 athletes competed in the 26th annual Florida Senior Games in early December in Clearwater and Pinellas County. The athletes were from 38 states, Puerto Rico, the Bahamas and Canada.

The Florida Senior Games are presented annually by the Florida Sports Foundation, a division of Enterprise Florida, Inc. According to Nick Gandy, Florida Sports Foundation Director of Communications, a number of participants were from Marion County, including several who brought home gold, silver and bronze medals.

Among some of the highlights, Gandy noted, were, “The fellows at the horseshoe courts were telling me that Charles “Buddy” Short was probably the best pitcher out there that day. He had 20 ringers in 30 pitches, playing only one match.”

Gandy also said that Mirna Castrejon won her three gold medals in the 5K Road Race and 400- and 800-meter runs pretty handily.

“In the 5K Road Race, she was the top overall women’s finisher by more than a minute. She won the 400-meter run by 29 seconds over the second place finisher in her age group. In the 800-meter, she was 20 seconds ahead of the silver medalist,” he said.

Gandy provided a spreadsheet listing these local residents and their accomplishments:

+ Archery, Recurve, John Zawicki, Ocala, 4th place

+ Basketball 3 on 3, Men 65+, Nicholas Figliuolo and Evander Johnson, both of Ocala, Bronze

+ Basketball Shooting, Gail Crane, Ocala: Womens Free Throw, Silver; Womens Spot Field Goal, Gold; and Womens Timed Field Goal Shooting, Gold

+ Billiards, Eight Ball Doubles: Gold, Ronnie Cruce, Lynne Dickson, Gary Engelbert, Lonnie McNew, Phil Panzera and Penny Wilson; all of Ocala; Eight Ball Singles. Gold: Englebert, McNew and Panzera

+ Bowling, Doubles, Gold: Danny Bird, Summerfield, and Ed Fenstermacher, Summerfield; Pam Malashevitz, Summerfield, 4th place with Joanne Weldon

+ Bowling,

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