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    If Florida coach Mike White had a timeout left at the end of the Gators' thrilling victory against Wisconsin, the most memorable shot of this NCAA Tournament so far might not have happened. Down 2 points with no way to stop the clock and plot out a strategy to go the length of the floor with 4 seconds left, the Gators put the ball in the hands of one their speedy guards and let him go to work. Chris Chiozza produced the first game-winning buzzer-beater of the tournament after sprinting to the 3-point line and letting fly a one-hander that hit nothing but net. The fourth-seeded Gators advanced to play No. 7 seed South Carolina on Sunday at Madison Square Garden in an East Regional final that is all-Southeastern Conference. 'I was glad we didn't have (a timeout), of course,' White said Saturday. 'Especially a half hour after Chris makes the shot he made. It was easier to say that last night than right now, but I don't want to back off of that sentiment. If we had called a timeout, who knows what (Wisconsin coach) Greg (Gard) does and how they line up and match up and what type of defense that we see.' It is a choice coaches face often at the end of close games: Call a timeout and a play or trust preparation will lead the players to make the right decisions without further instruction against a scrambling defense. With only 4 seconds left, just getting into position to take a decent shot is difficult, but Florida has the type of players needed to pull it off. 'They've got the three fastest guards in the country,' South Carolina associated head coach Matt Figger said, referring to Chiozza, Kasey Hill and KeVaughn Allen. White said he likes to think he would not have called a timeout even if he had one to call — probably. 'And that's probably been the case five or six times this year, where we had one late half or late clock, late game, where, especially with both these guys in the game, if they can get ahead of steam in 4 seconds, they can cover a lot of ground, and Chris obviously showed that,' White said. Most end of game offense during this tournament has been — at best — unproductive. Lots of hero-ball, long jumpers coming up empty. Some notable examples: — Princeton had a chance to knock off Notre Dame in the first round, but down one in the waning moments took a long 3-pointer that missed. — Wichita State needed a 3 to tie Kentucky on its last possession and ended up getting it blocked. — West Virginia was down three and had the ball for the last 38 seconds against Gonzaga — never called a timeout — and barely hit the rim once in three long attempts. Figger said, generally speaking, 12 seconds and under is usually a let-the-kids play scenario for South Carolina. Kentucky coach John Calipari said often his first instinct is to refrain from calling timeout and see what develops. 'I'd let it go and watch and then be ready to scream timeout if it looks ugly but I want them to just play on and that's what we practice,' Calipari said. 'I like to go home with timeouts. I like the players to work through their issues.' South Carolina coach Frank Martin said he does have a few basic end-game guidelines. 'Any time we're tied, I'm not calling a timeout. If we're down one, probably not calling a timeout,' Martin said. 'That's kind of the way we rehearse. If we're down three, we're going to foul, inside of 7, 8 seconds to go.' Which brings up another point: It's not just the team with the ball that has a decision to make. Wisconsin had a timeout Saturday night and maybe the Badgers would have been better off using it after Nigel Hayes' go-ahead free throws and setting up their defense. Florida assistant Darris Nichols said the Gators scout opponents' offense tendencies well enough to know the ones that thrive on inbounds plays. 'A team that's really good in that situation, why would you call a timeout and let them do what they're really good at?' Nichols said. In the end, though, all the strategy and planning often goes out the window. 'Sometimes you get a broken play and a guy jumps sideways off one foot and throws it over his shoulder and it goes in the net,' Martin said. 'You can rehearse a lot, but at the end of the day things have to go your way and breaks have to go your way. All of sudden we look a lot smarter when that happens than we really are.' ___ Follow Ralph D. Russo at www.Twitter.com/ralphDrussoAP ___ For more AP college basketball coverage: http://collegebasketball.ap.org/ and http://twitter.com/AP_Top25
  • South Daytona police said armed carjackers twice used a dating app to try to steal a car.It's been two sleepless nights and counting for Vickie Arends after police said her 17-year-old son, Manny, was shot in the stomach during the carjacking attempt.'It's a mom's worst nightmare,' she said. 'To get a phone call in the middle of the night; your son has been shot.'Arends said her son faces a long road to recovery.'It missed a main artery by half an inch,' Arends said. 'He's very lucky.'Police said the boy was and his friend had driven from Palm Coast to South Daytona to meet a girl when an armed man hopped into their car while they were stopped at a red light at South Ridgewood Avenue and Big Tree Road.Investigators said the man then shot the boy.The next day, a 21-year-old man met up with a woman at a gas station at the same intersection whom he met through the dating app, police said.When the pair traveled to a nearby park, police said four men approached them, flashed a gun and stole his car.The man told detectives that the woman he had just met willingly left with the carjackers.In both cases, witnesses describe the use of a small barrel gun with a laser pointer, police said.'I don't wish any harm on anyone,' Arends said. 'But I do hope they find them.'If caught, police said the group will likely face carjacking and attempted murder charges.
  • Houston Astros manager A.J. Hinch will have to wait at least one more day to get his complete lineup into a Grapefruit League game. Shortstop Carlos Correa, back with the club after a stirring World Baseball Classic, complained of midsection soreness brought on by extensive coughing and requested one more day off. 'I'd like to play some games and have a true lineup, but even today where it feels like everybody's back, then all the sudden we don't have Correa in the lineup,' Hinch said Saturday. 'Originally I planned on playing him but once he showed up in the training room coughing and sniffing and all that stuff it was easy to pull him out.' Correa started feeling cold-like symptoms while still in Los Angeles for the WBC finals. He didn't arrive back in South Florida until the pre-dawn hours of Friday morning. Saturday morning marked his first time back in the clubhouse. Playing for Puerto Rico, Correa hit .333 with three homers to lead a run to the silver medal. 'It was an unbelievable experience — something I would never forget,' Correa said. 'I had a great time playing baseball — the most fun I've had playing baseball.' Few teams saw their lineup disrupted by the WBC as much as the Astros, who had five every day players miss nearly all of Grapefruit League play. Carlos Beltran, who hit .435 as Correa's teammate on Team Puerto Rico, rejoioned the Astros' lineup on Saturday and had an infield single in three at-bats in Houston's 4-1 loss to Washington. 'This is what is important, getting ready for the season,' the 19-year year veteran said. 'I think the Classic put us in a good position. You play very intense games. You face a lot of good pitchers. You get four at-bats every day, so at-bat wise I feel like I'm right where I need to be.' Third baseman Alex Bregman's relatively few plate appearances — no one on Team USA saw fewer than his five — concerned Hinch as the WBC progressed. If not for the WBC, this would have been Bregman's first full spring training as a member of the major league club. The 22-year-old Bregman did get 23 at-bats in seven Grapefruit League games before leaving for the WBC. In two games since rejoining the Astros he has one hit in six plate appearances, with the knock coming in Saturday's final at-bat. 'We'll be petty cognizant of what he's doing physically,' Hinch said. 'He's going to play today. He'll be off tomorrow. He may or may not get a few of the minor league at-bats.' Bregman hit from the No. 2 spot in the order, a place where he feels comfortable. Hinch said he would also like to toy with the left-handed hitting Josh Reddick or another lefty bat in that second spot before the Astros break camp, simply to see if he likes the look. 'I honestly feel like I'll be fine,' Bregman said. 'I feel great in the box. The game I got to play (in the WBC) was after a week-and-a-half off and I got two hits and felt good. I'm just going to try and work really hard these next few days. I feel ready.' Left fielder Nori Aoki returned the Houston lineup following his stint with Team Japan. With Venezula eliminated prior to the semifinal round, second baseman Jose Altuve was back in Grapefruit League action on Monday. Reliever Luke Gregerson, who made four scoreless appearances for Team USA, is back with the Astros but has yet to take the mound since returning. NOTES: Hinch announced that Lance McCullers will start Friday and Joe Musgrove next Saturday in exhibitions against the Chicago Cubs at Minute Maid Park. Dallas Keuchel will be Houston's April 3 opening day starter against Seattle.
  • There's no need for introductions in the East Regional final. Scouting reports aren't really necessary. Fourth-seeded Florida and seventh-seeded South Carolina, two Southeastern Conference foes, will meet Sunday at Madison Square Garden with the winner advancing to the Final Four. This will be the third meeting between the teams this season with the home team winning both. They are two tough, defensive teams that can get out and run in transition. 'They're super physical. They pressure a lot, deny a lot of passes. They're all pretty fundamentally sound. They take a lot of charges and kind of swarm the ball when you drive,' Florida's Canyon Barry said of the Gamecocks on Saturday. 'We have to guard them too. I think it could be a defensive battle and whoever can execute better has a good shot of winning.' The first game between the teams was a slugfest with South Carolina prevailing 57-53. The Gators missed all 17 of their 3-point attempts and KeVaughn Allen, Florida's first-team All-SEC guard, scored 1 point. 'I learned that they're a very aggressive team,' Allen said. 'We can't let them turn us over. We just got to be patient. They're a team that likes to force you into turnovers. We just got to stay poised, stay together.' The Gators won the rematch 81-66 with Allen scoring 26 points and they held South Carolina to 39 percent shooting. Allen struggled in the first two NCAA Tournament games, scoring a total of 11 points on 3-for-21 shooting. He broke out with a career-high 35 points in the regional semifinal. 'I'm very confident. Whether I miss shots, I still just got to keep shooting it because if I don't, I kind of feel like I'm hurting my team by not shooting it,' Allen said. 'The first two games, it didn't go well for me how I wanted it to go as far as shooting it. I think I found ways on defense to help my team and just try not to hurt them.' This is South Carolina's deepest run in the NCAA Tournament while Florida has been in the Elite Eight six times since 2006, including back-to-back national championships in 2006-07. Their paths to this regional final couldn't have been any more different. South Carolina beat third-seeded Baylor 70-50, while the Gators dispatched eighth-seeded Wisconsin 84-83 in overtime on a buzzer-beating 3-pointer by Chris Chiozza. 'I think I heard from everyone I ever met,' Chiozza said of the text messages he received Friday night. Chiozza described South Carolina's defense as 'hectic. They have guys flying all over the place.' South Carolina's star is Sindarius Thornwell, the SEC player of the year and a consistent scorer who has averaged 26 points in the NCAA Tournament. 'Their defense is similar to ours,' he said. 'They're long, they're athletic. They deny. They play hard. One through four can guard the ball. They protect the rim. 'They're so long and they're fast and. It's just tough. They make it hard for everything. They don't back down.' South Carolina coach Frank Martin said he finds the physical reputation for both teams funny. 'We're not physical because we foul and push, we're physical because we don't get out of the way,' Martin said. 'Some teams get out of the way. We don't get out of the way.' Some things to know about the matchup: QUICK TURNAROUND: The Wisconsin-Florida game ended at 12:50 a.m. Eastern. The Florida players were back at the Garden for media availability at 2:50 p.m. and the game is set for 2:20 p.m. Sunday. 'Already worried, not going to lie to you, about where our emotions are and our level of mental and physical fatigue,' Florida coach Mike White said. 'And I'm sure South Carolina feels that way as well.' White said the familiarity of the opponent will help both teams with the short turnaround. CONSTANT REPLAYS: Chiozza can't help but smile even 12 hours after hitting his game-winning 3. 'Every time I look somewhere somebody's sending it to me or I see it on Instagram or something, so I've seen it quite a bit,' he said. 'I enjoy it every time I watch it.' SEC EXCHANGE: When you talk about success in the SEC the first thought is football. Not this year. With Kentucky still alive, the SEC has three of the final eight teams and is guaranteed one berth in the Final Four. 'They don't really give the SEC any credit for being the best conference, but we have three teams in the Elite 8, so that speaks for itself right there,' Chiozza said. NO SCORE: At the first media timeout of the first meeting between Florida and South Carolina the score was 0-0. 'I turned around to one of my assistants and said, 'Is the score right? Has no one scored yet? Incredible.'' BETTER D: Florida came up with the best defensive effort of the entire NCAA Tournament, holding Virginia to 39 points in a 26-point second-round win. ___ More AP college basketball: www.collegebasketball.ap.org and https://twitter.com/AP_Top25
  • Roger Federer kept waving in apology, twice after he dribbled winners off the net cord and once when he slammed a volley that nearly knocked his opponent down. Afterward Federer praised 19-year-old American qualifier Frances Tiafoe, who acquitted himself well before a near-capacity stadium crowd at the Miami Open. But there are limits to Federer's politeness, and he beat Tiafoe 7-6 (2), 6-3 Saturday. Returning to the tournament after a two-year absence, Federer took the lead with a flawless tiebreaker and gradually pulled away from Tiafoe. 'I think he's going to be really good,' Federer said. 'He's got big shots, and I like his mindset. That goes a long way.' The 35-year-old Federer wins raves these days for his recent resurgence, and he is hoping it extends to his first title at Key Biscayne in 11 years. Tiafoe, 19, is touted for his potential to improve the bleak American tennis landscape. Facing a top-10 player for the first time, Tiafoe forced Federer to play well to win. 'He stayed with me for a very long time,' Federer said. 'That can make you nervous if I wouldn't have been so confident. So I thought it was an enjoyable match. I thought we both played very well, and both can maybe walk away from this match quite happy, which is not often the case in tennis.' Tiafoe smiled when he told of Federer's assessment. 'One is more happy than the other,' he said with a smile. 'Nah, I'm definitely happy. We both played pretty well. It was good tennis.' Tiafoe, a Maryland native ranked 101st, did almost nothing wrong in the first set. He committed just one unforced error in the tiebreaker, netting a backhand to end the longest rally of the match, but Federer took advantage of the small opening. 'He was rock solid,' Tiafoe said. 'He didn't give me anything.' Federer is 14-1 in 2017, including his 18th Grand Slam championship at the Australian Open and a title at Indian Wells last week. His potential path at Key Biscayne is made easier by the absences of six-time champion Novak Djokovic and two-time champion Andy Murray, both sidelined by elbow injuries. Perhaps the biggest obstacle will be fellow Swiss Stan Wawrinka, seeded No. 1 in an ATP Masters 1000 tournament for the first time. Wawrinka dominated with his serve to win his opening match against Horacio Zeballos, 6-3, 6-4. Americans John Isner and Sam Querrey won in straight sets, as did 19-year-old German Alexander Zverev. In women's play, No. 6-seeded Garbine Muguruza rallied past No. 30 Zhang Shuai 4-6, 6-2, 6-2. American Bethanie Mattek-Sands eliminated No. 17 Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova 4-6, 6-0, 6-3. Federer's only wobble came when he was broken in the opening game of the second set. He lost just seven points in his 10 other service games and whacked a service winner on match point, then met Tiafoe at the net for a warm exchange. 'It was an honor playing you,' Tiafoe said. 'I hope we can play again, hopefully not so early in the tournament.' Federer smiled politely.
  • Adam Jones provided perhaps the best highlight of the World Baseball Classic, when he took a home run away from Manny Machado with a spectacular catch in center field. Now Jones and Machado are just teammates again. 'Pretty cool catch, pretty great moment,' Jones said. 'Sorry it had to be my boy Manny, but it's part of the game, part of that process.' Jones is back with the Baltimore Orioles after winning the WBC with Team USA. The international tournament was an opportunity that clearly meant a lot to him, and now he's hoping he can accomplish something similar with Baltimore. 'To do it with those guys, it was probably the best experience of my life so far, especially with sports,' Jones said. 'Hopefully, we can do something special with these guys in the clubhouse with the Orioles, because it was pretty, pretty humbling, pretty special to go out and represent your country, for all the countries to go out and represent their countries.' After Jones robbed Machado of a homer, Machado — who was playing for the Dominican Republic — doffed his cap and waved it in salute. 'Great picture with USA across my chest right in front of the logo, in front of some American flags,' Jones said. 'There's one guy who doesn't look impressed at all by it, sitting off to the left like, 'What?' I've seen the picture. But a pretty great moment, pretty special moment for that team.' Jones has been with three Baltimore teams that have appeared in the postseason, but hasn't played in a World Series. 'My main objective obviously is here playing for the Orioles, but that's Major League Baseball. That's just the United States,' he said. 'This was on a global scale.' St. Louis Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina, who played for Puerto Rico, said Jones owed Puerto Ricans an apology. The U.S. beat Puerto Rico in the final, and Jones said reports that Puerto Rico was planning a celebration had motivated the Americans. 'I don't think I said anything wrong. I just said what we've seen motivated us,' Jones said. 'It wasn't a slight at Puerto Rico by any stretch. I don't think I said anything wrong, and I would never disrespect a country, because that would make totally no sense.' Jones got more exposure thanks to the WBC, but he maintains that his real focus was always on his major league team. 'I probably was a little more vocal in the WBC just because I'm ramped up. It's a different pride factor at this point,' he said. 'I just do the same thing I do in this clubhouse, but now I think the world has gotten to see how the Orioles have been successful the last five years. It's not just me, obviously, but the leadership, the way you play the game, you can't quantify that in any equations. NOTES: The Orioles faced Minnesota on Saturday night, and OF Seth Smith (hamstring) was back in the lineup for the first time since March 8. . Baltimore optioned LHP Chris Lee to Triple-A Norfolk. ___ More AP baseball: https://apnews.com/tag/MLBbaseball
  • A gunman barricaded himself inside a bus Saturday along the Las Vegas Strip, prompting a partial closure of the busy boulevard, police said.The standoff began after a shooting was reported on Las Vegas Boulevard in the heart of the Strip near the Cosmopolitan hotel-casino. Read: 1 dead, 1 injured in shooting near Vegas' Cosmopolitan hotel At least one person has been taken to a hospital.Police say they do not believe there are any other suspects. No further information was available on the shooting. Read: Burglary at Bellagio Hotel and Casino prompts lockdown on Vegas strip Las Vegas Boulevard is closed between Flamingo Road and Harmon Avenue.No other details were given.
  • Deputies in central Florida removed a nearly 6-foot long snake from the home of an elderly woman. The Polk County Sheriff's Office says the banded water-snake was removed Friday from a home in Lake Wales, Florida. The Orlando Sentinel (http://bit.ly/2n5hs6s ) reports that after a photo of the snake with deputies was posted on Facebook and went viral, the Marion County Sheriff's Office took to social media to ask if the Polk County Sheriff's Office could help them find a missing cobra. The cobra escaped its pen in an Ocala, Florida home two weeks ago and hasn't been seen since. ___ Information from: Orlando Sentinel, http://www.orlandosentinel.com/
  • E_De La Guerra (1), Beckham 2 (5), Maile (2). DP_Boston 1, Tampa Bay 0. LOB_Boston 8, Tampa Bay 4. 2B_Brentz (3), Beckham (6), Maile (2). HR_Sandoval (4), Dickerson (4). WP_Snell, Hunter. Umpires_Home, Fieldin Culbreth; First, Jeff Kellogg; Second, Tim Timmons; Third, Junior Valentine. T_3:05. A_5,809
  • Burglars stole a M16-A2 rifle, loaded magazines and bullet-proof vests overnight from an unmarked Howey-in-the-Hills police SUV, the Lake County Sheriff's Office said.The thieves broke a window of the vehicle, which was parked at Howey-in-the-Hills police Lt. Richard Roman's home in a neighborhood along David Walker Drive, Lake County Sgt. Jim Vachon said.Investigators said they believe the burglary happened sometime between 9 p.m. Friday and 8 a.m. Saturday. Read: Police: AR-15 stolen from OPD officer's unmarked vehicle Howey-in-the-Hills PD says Lt. Richard Roman stored gun according to agency policy. Rifle was in a soft case @WFTV pic.twitter.com/pRp9G7Mn9t-- Cierra Putman WFTV (@CPutman_WFTV) March 25, 2017 'We don't like any stolen fire arms being on the streets,' Vachon said. 'We want to get this rifle back for the Howey-in-the-Hills Police Department as quickly as possible.'Though the vehicle was locked, it's unknown if the case containing the gun was locked, Vachon said. But he said that the weapon was stored in accordance with department policy. Read: Police: 2 arrested in theft of AR-15 from unmarked Orlando car 'Our intelligence unit is also working with us to get the word out,' Vachon said. 'It's very fresh, so I don't know if we have any hot leads yet.'No other vehicles in the neighborhood were burglarized, deputies said.Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call the Sheriff's Office or Crimeline at 800-423-8477.