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Digest (March 29): Blast hosting games vs. Heat, Utica this weekend

The Blast, riding a six-game winning streak entering their last three games of the Major Arena Soccer League regular season, host two division rivals this weekend, in an effort to clinch the Eastern Division title. The Blast (15-6) host the Harrisburg Heat (8-13) tonight at 7:05 at Towson University's SECU Arena and host Utica City FC (15-6). on Sunday at 2 p.m. at SECU Arena. Blast midfielder Jonatas Melo leads the team in assists (18) and points (36). Vini Dantas maintains the team lead for goals (23) and is second on the team in points. Forward Andrew Hoxie added a Team of the Week selection to his resume with the two-goal and two-assist performance last Sunday versus Mississauga. Midfielder Tony Donatelli added nine points against Harrisburg and Mississauga last week. Defender Jereme Raley was also nominated to the MASL Team of the Week following his three-goal performance last weekend. Raley also ranks second place on the Blast in blocked shots this season (17). Defender Mike Deasel made his 100th career regular season appearance for the Blast last weekend, while also posting a team-high eighteen blocks on the season. William Vanzela added only allowed three goals on 42 shots, which gave him the best save percentage in the MASL this season (75.7 percent). Despite being eliminated from playoff contention, the Heat have come into form down the stretch, winning five of their last nine games. Depending on the results before Sunday, both the Blast and Utica City could enter Sunday's game with the same record. The teams are scheduled to meet in the first round of the playoffs later April 20 and 22.

Et Cetera

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Apprentice jockey Correa ridesthree winners at Laurel Park

Kieron Magee owned-and-trained Crystal Pier came with a steady run up the rail to catch favored pacesetter Polarization in deep stretch and win Friday's eighth race at Laurel Park, giving apprentice Julio Correa his first career hat trick. Crystal Pier ($5) ran 6 furlongs in 1:12.33 over a fast main track to win the claiming event for fillies and mares 3 and up by a length. Polarization was a decisive second, five lengths ahead of Majestic Pic. Correa also won Race 3 with Smart Angle's River Sonata ($6.80) for trainer Mark Reid, and captured Friday's featured $40,000 maiden special weight in Race 6 with Tanterra Stables' Last Love ($23.80), holding off 9-5 favorite Song of Mine – a half-sister to two-time champion Songbird – by a neck. A 25-year-old native of Puerto Rico, Correa made his U.S. debut last July at Parx and rode primarily there and Penn National since launching his career full-time in November. He picked up his first win Feb. 2 aboard Rings of Jupiter at Parx, moving his tack to Maryland at the end of February.

Women's lacrosse: St. Mary's midfielder Kate Bartholomew (Kent County) recorded her 100th career point in a 19-4 victory over Southern Virginia. ... Katherine Gjertsen scored a game-high four goals and Jacie Lemos had three goals to lead No. 14 Stanford (5-2, 1-1 Pac-12) to a 15-8 victory over visiting Arizona State (2-5, 0-2). The host Cardinal led 8-4 in the first half.

College baseball: St. Mary's dropped game one of the series to the visiting Southern Virginia, 7-3, on Friday afternoon in Capital Athletic Conference action.

From Sun staff and news services

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