KISSIMMEE – As we head into the final day of the 2023 Florida High School Wrestling Championships at the Silver Spurs Arena, South Dade has simply left no doubt who the best team in Florida is.
The Bucs have an overwhelming 95 point lead on second place Southwest Miami and will send six wrestlers into the 4 p.m. finals.
Head Coach Vic Balmeceda and his team continued an over two decade dominance in the sport and have accomplished everything possible.
With only Brandon and its total five decade dominance of the sport ahead of South Dade’s legacy, this team has combined veterans and youth to put another stamp on this amazing program.
1A IS STILL A RACE
While the Bucs have relaxed since the first round, Class 1A has been a dogfight with three schools still very much in the race for a state title.
Head Coach Joe Blasucci and Pembroke Pines Somerset, who won two years ago, lead with 148 points, but last year’s state champions Jensen Beach (136) and upstart Naples First Baptist (123.5) still pose a threat.
Somerset has four in the finals – while Jensen Beach will feature three in the finals and First Baptist has five.
All Somerset has to do is win and everything will take care of itself.
2A is also an exciting two team race with defending state champion Lake Gibson and Punta Gorda Charlotte within striking distance with wrestlers still remaining.
GIRLS FEATURE A NUMBER OF LOCALS
As much of the attention was on what is going on with the boys, the girls also had a solid tournament as North Miami and South Dade had an outstanding showing.
The Pioneers have two in the finals – including unbeaten defending state champion Mya Bethel – while I-Cart Galumette (110 pounds - North Miami), Analy Banuelos 115 pounds – Miami Braddock), unbeaten Gabriela Caro (125 pounds – Parkland Douglas), Sofia Delgado (140 pounds – Miami Coral Park) and Yoseline Perez (235 pounds - South Dade) all making the finals as well.
1 South Dade, 207.5
2 Southwest Miami, 112
3 Kissimmee Osceola, 79
4 Naples Palmetto Ridge 70
5 Valrico Bloomingdale 51.5
6 Weston Cypress Bay 51
7 Ganesville Buchholz 50
8 Lutz Steinbrenner 44.5
9 Harmony 42
10 Doral Academy 41
Andrew Punzalan (Cypress Bay) vs. Nathaniel Overman (Bloomigdale)
Christian Vazquez (Doral Academy) vs. Tyler Washburn (Palmetto Ridge)
Luis Acevedo (South Dade) vs. Blaine Taranto (Venice)
Ethan Vugman (BHartram Trail) vs. Colin Bradshaw (Steinbrenner)
Cavarius Liddie (Gainesville Buchholz) vs. Danny Martinez (Southwest Miami)
Elvis Solis (South Dade) vs. Aaron Lanster (Miami Beach)
Misha Arbos (South Dade) vs. Anderson Heap (Kissimmee Osceola)
Alexander Solo (Fort Myers Riverdale) vs. Cooper Haase (Kissimmee Osceola0
Cordell White (South Dade) vs. Adrian Ochoa (Southwest Miami)
Lawrence Rosario (South Dade) vs, Roman Garcia (Palmetto Ridge)
Franklyn Ordonez (Southwest Miami) vs. Dominic Joyce (North Port)
Kason Nichols (Gainesville Buchholz) vs. John Roberts (Vero Beach)
Sawyer Bartelt (South Dade) vs. Jonathan Fraga (Southwest Miami)
Austin Foye (Palmetto Ridge) vs. Nelson Toro (Harmony)
1 Lakeland Lake Gibson 129.5
2. Punta Gorda Charlotte 121
3 Fleming Island 109
4 Tampa Jesuit 84
5 Cape Coral Mariner 52
6 Brandon 51.5
7 Palm Bay Heritage 48
8 Winter Springs 46.5
10 Bradenton Braden River 45.5
Lando Quiroga (Merritt Island) vs. Roberto Rodrigues (Brandon)
Camren French (Charlotte) vs. Roman Lermer (Tampa Jesuit)
Alexander McMiller (Satellite) vs. Christian Fretwell (Lake Gibson)
Maximus Brady (Cape Coral Mariner) vs, Dominick Smith (River Ridge)
Jayce Paridon (Fleming Island) vs. Kevin Kerns (Deltona)
Draven McCall (Tampa Jesuit) vs. Lucas Giles (Naples Barron Collier)
Keith Cole (Palm Bay Heritage) vs. Hayden Whidden (Lake Gibson)
Brandon Cody (Tampa Jesuit) vs. Gianni Maldonado (Lake Gibson)
Christopher Minto (Cape Coral Mariner) vs. Gage Wiggins (Bradenton Braden River)
August Batson (Port Orange Atlantic) vs. Elijah Penton (Winter Springs)
Michael McCarthy (Satellite) vs. Jessey Coral (Bradenton Braden River)
Nathaniel Box (Charlotte) vs. Brian Burburija (Clearwater Countryside)
Cael Newton (Charlotte) vs. Dylon York (New Smyrna Beach)
Nate Gabriel (Auburndale) vs. Ryder Luck (Tallahassee Lincoln)
Mason O’Dell (Miami Mater Lakes) vs. Jake Austin (Somerset)
Derrick Williams (Panama City Bay) vs. Jovani Solis (Somerset)
Jonathan Moder (Naples First Baptist) vs. Sebastian Degennaro (Jensen Beach)
Ryan Mooney (Jensen Beach) vs. Matthew Velasco (Somerset)
Tristan Saenz (Somerset) vs. Gavin Nolan (Clearwater Central Catholic)
Mikade Harvey (Palatka) vs. Nicholas Yancey (Cardinal Gibbons)
Jewell Williams (Jensen Beach) vs. Michael Kensey (Naples First Baptist)
Dylan Fox (Jensen Beach) vs. Kalias Nazario (Miami Mater Lakes)
Gavin Patton (Naples First Baptist) vs. Kendrick Hodge (Somerset Academy)
Koen Hoffman (Englewood Lemon Bay) vs. Kyle Grey (Lincoln Park Academy)
Christian Aiden Moder (Naples First Baptist) vs, Chase Alden (Lemon Bay)
Alex Smith (Yulee) vs. Michael Mocco (Cardinal Gibbons)
David Mercado (Panama City North Bay Haven) vs. Damian Soto (Miami Mater Lakes)
Devin Williams (Hernando) vs. Caleb Rodriguez (Naples First Baptist)
1 Palm Coast Matanzas 104.0
2 Orlando Freedom 90.0
3 Apopka 48.0
4 Kissimme Osceola 48.
5 North Miami 47
6 Middleburg 44
7 Key West 41.5
8 South Dade 40
9 Jacksonville Bartram Trail 37
10 Brooksville Hernando 34
Adrianna Barrientos (Oakleaf) vs. Gabby Tedesco (Lake Gibson)
Jazlyn Diaz (Fort Myers Riverdale) vs. I-Cart Galumette (North Miami)
Analy Bauelos (Miami Braddock) vs. Cameron Galvin (Orlando Freedom)
Christina Birgmann (Palm Coast Matanzas) vs. Milani Borrelli (Orlando Lake Nona)
Gabriela Caro (Parkland Douglas) vs.Christina Turner (Sarasota Military Academy)
Aireena Gavere (Milton) vs. Brielle Bibla (Matanzas)
Gaby Perez (Fort Pierce Central) vs. Lucy Maris (Satellite)
Sofia Delgado (Miami Coral Park) vs. Ailee Briggs (Key West)
Katherine Stewart (Bartram Trail) vs. Kendall Bibla (Matanzas)
Mya Bethel (North Miami) vs. Emiliana Martinez (Kissimmee Gateway)
Salexa Lontoc-Ortiz (Orlando Freedom) vs.Grace Leota (Brooksville Hernando)
Cheyenne Cruce (Middleburg) vs. Shannon Briggs (Key West)
Kinea Moore (Gulfport Boca Ciega) vs. Yoseline Perez (South Dade)