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Today's News

  • McCallum, Edison talk school security

    By Lori Prevatt, Citizen Correspondent

    A public school security meeting at Chiefland Elementary educated about 30 parents on some changes coming to the security measures at the school and possible changes coming in the near future.

    The changes were prompted March 9 when Gov. Rick Scott signed Senate Bill 7026, a 105-page bill addressing school security and safety. The bill was proposed after the Valentine’s Day school shooting at Marjory Douglas Stone high school.

    Sheriff Bobby McCallum addressed the crowd of parents and citizens on the evening of March 16.

    “I don’t think I have been anymore stressed as I am right now for the task set before us. This bill has left the superintendent and I in a very tight spot,” McCallum said. “The bill requires a school resource officer in every school. The sheriffs department works hand in with the police department. They will back up school resource officers. We’ve increased the numbers of patrol officers, so we can pay close attention to our schools,” McCallum said.

  • Residents: Keep Withlacoochee as it is

    By Fred Hiers, Reporter, Citrus County Chronicle

    When weather permits, 78-year-old Jodie Roberts sits on her deck on the Withlacoochee River a mile downstream from the Lake Rousseau dam and watches the water’s flow and enjoys the wildlife. She wants to keep it that way.

    To try and do that she was one of about 20 people who attended the Southwest Florida Water Management District’s kickoff meeting this week that began the process of establishing minimum flows and levels (MFL) for the middle and upper portion of the river.

    “I think it’s important we keep the river like it is,” she said after the water agency’s presentation about the fundamentals of setting MFLs. The meeting was at Cornerstone Baptist Church in Inverness.

    “That’s my concern. If they don’t get the numbers right, the water and the quality will go down,” she said.

    MFLs are important because, once established, the water district uses them to determine whether to grant groundwater or surface water withdrawal permits.

  • Indians offer sneak peek of more mature, confident squa

    The Chiefland football team was short on experience and long on promising young talent last season.

    The roster was bursting with first-year varsity players – even first-year football players – and was acclimating to a new system under first-year head man Adam Gore and his staff.

    The Indian team that took C. Doyle McCall Field May 18 for its spring game against Wildwood looked a year more mature – and confident.

    Behind three touchdowns and a pair of picks by junior-to-be Jalen Rutledge, Chiefland owned the first and fourth quarters to snatch a 31-16 win.

    The game felt more intense than your typical exhibition matchup. Wildwood was coming off a 9-0 regular season, looking to avenge a lopsided 2017 spring loss to Chiefland. The Indians, meanwhile, might enter the late summer and fall with their best playoff odds since last advancing in 2004.

  • Extra effort

    Two evenly-matched teams battled for nine innings in Fort Meade in the baseball regional semifinals March 9.

    Chiefland lost a lead it maintained throughout the game in the bottom of the seventh on a squeeze bunt, but survived by the skin of its teeth to take things to extra innings.

    In the end, it was the Miners who flinched first, as the Indians took advantage of a couple of costly errors in the ninth to prevail 5-3.

    CMHS (12-11), which traveled three hours to play Fort Meade (15-14), advanced to the regional final to face Trenton on May 15.

    Juniors Kelby Osteen and Wyatt Hammond boarded on walks to put two on with one out for Chiefland in the top of the ninth with the scored knotted at 2-2. After senior Josh Webber moved the pair over to second and third on a ground ball, sophomore newcomer Luke Reidy bounced a grounder up the middle, which was mishandled in front of second base, allowing Osteen’s run to score for a 3-2 lead.

  • Raising the bar

    Courtney Hayes proved the stage wasn’t too big in her first trip to the track and field state championships.

    The Chiefland junior overcame some nervousness and set a new personal record – 1.62 meters – in the girls’ high jump at the state meet in Jacksonville May 4 to collect a third-place medal in Class 1A.

    Hayes placed higher at state than any Chiefland Indian since 2005, when Lequenda Ward won the state title in the girls’ 400 meter and took third in the 100 and 200. The Chiefland boys’ 4x100 relay team of Jamaal Riley, Cornelius Dexter, Jonas Randolph and Alonzo Guyton also collected a state championship in 2005.

    Cody Coley, who finished eighth in the shot put finals in 2016, was the most recent state medalist from Chiefland, and, along with Hayes, was the only one since Ward double-medaled in 2006.

    Hayes was the lone district champion from CMHS this season.

  • CMHS softball survives pitcher’s duel on senior night

    The Chiefland varsity softball team capped its regular season with a pair of contrasting wins, helping to garner back the momentum it lost in back-to-back shutout losses to Crystal River.

    On senior night, April 20, in a 2-0 win over Newberry, it was a pair of juniors that made the biggest impression, as first baseman Macie Thomas tied the single-season doubles record, held by Megan Snyder (Weatherford), with her 16th of the season. Ace pitcher Kensley Durrance, who broke Snyder’s single-season strikeout record (184) during the doubleheader with Crystal River, added to her tally with 13 punch-outs. Durrance allowed just one hit in the seven innings.

  • Young JV Lady Indians finish season 17-3

    Chiefland junior varsity softball coach Chris Wilson is emulating the blueprint that garnered the Lady Indians three straight state championships and four finals appearances.

    A talented collection of young players – mostly middle schoolers – have the future of the program looking bright, as their JV team finished 17-3 on the season.

    “The group that won three titles, we’ve tried to copy them,” Wilson said. “They’ve been playing travel ball together since they were 9- and 10-years-old. That’s what (CMHS coach) Jimmy (Anderson) did with those other girls, he took them and played and played and played. And that’s what we’re trying to do.”

    The young Lady Indians were led by a ferocious lineup of hitters who complemented solid pitching and defense. They even had to share a couple of their top pitchers – Kalie Osteen and Emma Wilson – with the middle school team.

  • CMHS outlasts Dixie in back-and-forth tilt

    Chiefland needed a win against rival Dixie County in its district finale to ensure itself the valuable No. 3 seed in the upcoming tournament.

    The Indians were resilient in their effort, trading leads with the Bears before securing the final advantage for a 7-6 win at home, culminating CMHS’ Diamond Days Week in style.

    Big hits by Wyatt Hammond and Elijah Smith (double) punctuated a three-run rally in the second inning to put the Indians ahead 3-0. After CMHS surrendered its lead in the top-half of the third, senior third baseman Seth Thomas drove in Hammond to tie it up in the bottom-half of the same frame. In the fourth, Will Sumner bunted in Keegan McLelland to give Chiefland back the lead. Sophomore call-up Luke Reidy, who was in for an injured Josh Webber, ripped a double to pick up Hammond and extend the lead to 6-4. Dixie County answered with a pair of runs off a CMHS error, before Smith knocked in Hammond for the final go-ahead run in the sixth.

  • Deputies killed

    Two Gilchrist County deputies were killed Thursday afternoon, April 17, when they were shot by a man whose motives are still unknown.

    Gilchrist County Sheriff Bobby Schultz said Sgt. Noel Ramirez and Deputy Taylor Lindsey were having lunch at about 3 p.m. when they were shot.

    The sheriff refused to discuss the identity or any other details about the shooter during a press conference later in the day.

    The shooter was later identified as John Hubert Highnote, 59, of Bell. He was found dead in a pickup truck outside the restaurant from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound.

    No further information is available regarding Highnote. The Florida Department of Law Enforcement is conducting an ongoing criminal investigation.

    “It’s not about him,” Schultz said at a press conference. “It’s about my deputies. There is no indication of any ongoing threat to our community, and we remain committed to your safety with the help of our other assisting agencies. This tragedy touches us all.”

  • Lady Tigers pounce early in Trenton

    The Trenton softball team lived up to its No. 1 ranking April 6 against rival Chiefland.

    The Lady Tigers, fueled by their team speed, tacked on three runs apiece in each of the first three innings to build their advantage, before junior Bryn Thomas capped it with an RBI hit to secure a 10-0 win in the sixth against the Lady Indians.

    The Lady Tigers have clinched the No. 1 seed in District 1A-7. CMHS, Bell and Branford, which hosts the 1A-7 tournament, are chasing the second seed.

    The Lady Indians dropped to 14-4 overall and 6-3 in district play. Trenton fell to 17-3 April 9 with a 3-1 loss at 7A Columbia (17-3). It entered the week 8-0 in district action.

    Chiefland head coach Jimmy Anderson lamented his team’s mental mistakes while tipping his hat to Trenton’s performance. Those mental mistakes included communication failures that led to the defense failing to cover first base on several bunts. The Lady Tigers’ small-ball skills frequently put excessive pressure on the corner defenders and the pitcher in fielding the territory in front of the plate.