KISSIMMEE — It doesn’t get any sweeter than victory upon the biggest stage the state high school wrestling scene can offer. At the same time, it doesn’t get any more heartbreaking than defeat upon that stage.
Three area seniors had their final chance to reach for state gold Saturday night at the 1A state wrestling tournament at Silver Spurs Arena. Two of those three, Ridgeview’s Matthew Rodriquez and Clay’s Cale Hoskinson, were able to grab it firmly and secure it for their own.
Rodriquez had been questing for it in four previous state appearances, three of them medal-winning efforts, as he took third in Class 2A for the Clay County Panthers in 2018, second in 2A in 2019 and again a runnerup effort last year, but in 1A, for Ridgeview.
This year, not even the national record books could deny Rodriquez. He entered states with a 53-0. Unbeaten. Every contested match ending in a fall. Unscored upon.
And needing just two falls to secure the NFHS career record for pins, he ran the table with four on the weekend, with two Friday pins in 51 seconds. Saturday’s pair took a little longer, but the reslts were the same, as he falled a pair of Region 2 wrestlers, starting with Master’s Academy freshman Brandon Cody in the semis, securing the fall.
That set up a finals match against Palm Bay’s Ronald Theilacker, the Region 2 champion, in the finals match. Rodriquez (57-0) set the tone from jump, taking an early lead on a takedown and turn in the first period. In the second, he spent most of the 82 seconds in that period setting up his final pin of his high school career.
“I just didn’t hold back (this year),” Rodriquez said afterward. “I had to switch things up (after finishing second for a second time in 2020). I felt nerves last year. Just let it fly (this year). And I put it all together.”
Although Rodriquez put himself on Florida radar with a sterling performance at Virginia Beach in April 2016 in the middle school national folkstyle tournament — in which a veteran reporter’s first posted comment on him was “This kid looks tough, too” — he was finally able to stand atop the mountain.
“Now, I can finally say I’m #1 in the state of Florida,” Rodriquez said.
It’s been a journey, though, with travel everywhere, events in far-flung places. Constant training and technique refinement.
“It’s definitely been a journey. I thought God has it as a plan to finish a certain way his last year (of high school wrestling),” Ridgeview coach Bart Rodriquez, Matthew’s father, said. “I don’t think we could finish any better.
“(As for the career pins record), we thought (last year) he was definitely in a position to do it, so we went for it. We wrestled him up when we could during the season, just hoping we could finish. Covid made it a lot tougher, but it’s great that things played out the way they did.”
Now Rodriquez will that sterling career back to where it all began, Pennsylvania, where he first learned the sport, and where he’ll attend Division I Lehigh.
As for Hoskinson (42-2), the season wasn’t the perfect string of pins or even 100% victories, but he’d positioned himself to be just as strong a favorite at 160 as Rodriquez was at 132.
On Friday, Hoskinson racked up a quick pin in the first round and had a solid 9-2 quarterfinal win over the eventual fifth-place finisher, but it would be Saturday that would tell the tale in his final high school wrestling chapter.
And he proved himself more than capable to meet the task, opening in the semis with a 13-1 major over a very solid Palm Bay competitor in Region 2 champ Cameron Komat, the eventual 4th-place finisher. That put him into the finals, where he secured takedowns in each period against former unbeaten Coral Springs Charter senior Terrell Taylor for a 9-3 decision for the title after placing third a year ago and making prior state appearances in both 2018 and 2019.
“I finally believed I could win,” Hoskinson said while waiting for his 1A gold medal and state bracket. “When I got third last year, I knew I could do it. I just tried to get the right mindset, the right work ethic.
“I changed the way I worked with my coaches. I told myself I had the talent, and everything would come with it, if I just believed I could win.”
Saturday was the end result of a six-year quest between Cale, his father & Clay assistant coach Jim, and former Clay teammate Stevie Chopek, now in college at Division II Newberry. Cale will join his former teammate at that level, having signed with Ohio’s Notre Dame College, a long-time Division II wrestling power.
“The three of us started together to get them into college wrestling,” Jim Hoskinson said afterward. “He started the sport six years ago and he told he wanted to wrestle in college. So I put together a program to make it happen.
“He never stopped wrestling this year. He’d wrestle on a mat at Jim (Clay coach Reape)’s yard. We converted the upper part of our gym (Ironworks Gym) to wrestling. This was how he got this done, and I couldn’t be more proud of him.”
Florida High’s Tyler Reeve, for two periods, looked to be the first of the three area seniors to win his first title and cap a career that’s been marred by injuries almost as much as it’s been marked by his successes in overcoming them to earn state medals in prior seasons.
Like Rodriquez and Hoskinson, Reeve had set the pace on Friday, with a Friday pin and 6-3 decision that wasn’t as close as the final score indicated. On Saturday, Reeve pushed the pace against Palm Bay’s Rocco Senia, who’d beaten him for fifth place by injury default a year ago, finding an escape in double overtime after riding Senia out and taking a 2-1 victory.
That put Reeve into the final against Jensen Beach junior Jonny Dobbs, the Region 4 champ and part of the Barracudas’ wave of momentum on Saturday that catapulted that team into a top-5 overall finish.
But Reeve’s scrambling ability in the first two periods got him out to a lead, and when a flurry of moves and countermoves led to another scramble in the third period, all started off well enough. But Dobbs (37-6) was able to catch Reeve’s head in mid-scramble and quickly moved to secure a fall in 4:54. The runnerup effort was Reeve’s highest finish at state after a sixth in 2020 and third in 2019.
Team-wise, Clay recorded the area’s highest finish, as the Blue Devils were 10th with 45.5 points and two medalists, as sophomore Dominic Martin (152) placed sixth. Raines, with 44 points and three medalists in juniors De’Quon King (113) and Jamari Watson (195), both of whom took thirds, along with a sixth from Raynarde Thomas (170), was 11th.
Ridgeview was 13th with 41 points and two medalists, as Derrick Mosley (sixth at 285) joined Rodriquez as podium finishers. Wakulla, with a fifth-place medal from Raymond Hatchman (120) and sixth from Isaiah Wilson (126), was 14th with 37, while Florida High, with Emil Ganim (sixth at 138) joining Reeve as a state medalist for the Seminoles, was T-15th with 35.
Suwannee picked up two medals, as Timothy Jolicoeur (5th at 126) and Austin McKinney (6th at 120) fueled the Bulldogs’ 32-point weekend and 17th-place finish. Bolles, behind a third-place medal from Jack Pyburn (220), was 20th with 22 points, while Jayce Paridon’s third at 106 fueled University Christian to 19.5 points and 24th overall.
Fernandina Beach was 33rd with 13 points, while South Walton & Yulee — behind respective 6th-place finishes from Max Brewster (113) for the Seahawks and Aston Ricks (152) for the Hornets — were T-34th with 12 points. Thanks to Mikade Harvey’s sixth-place effort at 106, Palatka was T-38th, with eight points.
North Bay Haven and Rutherford each were T-42nd, with five pints, while Union Cty was T-47th with four, Baker Cty T-50th with three, Bishop Kenny T-56th with two and Episcopal 60th with one. Arnold, Bishop Snyder and West Nassau did not score.
Action photos from Friday’s quarterfinal round, Saturday’s semifinal round, third-place matches and finals with area wrestlers in them can be found on the Matmen Instagram account, nflamatmen. We have also posted all podium photos with at least one area medalist to that page and to our North Florida Matmen Facebook page.
Brackets from the weekend’s wrestling can be found HERE.
A summary of the tournament can be found HERE:
Championship: Somerset Academy 8th grader Christian Fretwell (46-4) had a pair of Friday techs, then opened Saturday with his toughest challenge of the weekend in Paridon (55-5), also an 8th-grader for the Christians, but advanced with a 10-6 decision. Fretwell then handed Admiral Farragut freshman Roman Lermer (25-1) his first loss of the season in the championship match, taking a 9-3 win. Lermer got to the final behind two first-period pins on Friday, coming back Saturday in the semis to push past Palatka’s Harvey, 3-1.
3rd: Paridon bounced back in the consis with two wins for third, but the semi round was close against Coral Springs Charter junior Peyton Vargas before Paridon took a 4-3 decision. His third-place match against Space Coast junior Raider Morelli (29-6) was a bit more straightforward, as Paridon took a third-period tech fall win (15-0 in 3:35). Morelli, who’d lost by tech fall to Fretwell in Friday’s quarters, came back to the bronze match behind three wins in the consis, two of them Saturday, starting with a 3-1 win in state’s version of the “blood round,” the consi quarters, where Morelli turned back Union Cty sophomore Christian Simmons (33-17), 3-1. Morelli then edged Harvey, 7-6, in the semi.
5th: Vargas, who was sixth at 106 last year, moved one step upward, with three consi-side wins after a quarterfinal loss by fall to Lermer. Two of those came Saturday over local wrestlers, as he falled Wakulla junior Julian Harvey (41-4) in 2:03 in 1:46 in the consi quarters and then decisioned Palatka’s Harvey (26-8), a sophomore for the Panthers, 9-4 for fifth.
Championship: After finishing fourth in 2020, Cardinal Gibbons sophomore Nicholas Yancey (24-0) didn’t lose a match in 2020-21, with identical pin/decision days over both days in the tournament. Yancey began with a fall (3:19) in the semis Saturday over Region 4 rival and Mater Lakes junior Dylan Garcia (36-9), then had to wrestle 7 1/2 minutes for his title, finding an escape from down position for a 3-2 win in the ultimate tiebreaker over Palm Bay senior Tyler Perrow (35-1). Perrow, who was the 106 runnerup last year as well, had a pin and two decisions to get to the final, with a 3-2 semifinal win over Raines’ King (27-2).
3rd: King took third at 113 for the second straight year, with two consi-side decisions. First up was a tight 9-8 win in the consi semis over region rival and South Walton junior Max Brewster (26-6), but King was able to open up a bit more in the third-place match against Jensen Beach sophomore Ryan Mooney (36-15), taking an 8-2 win there. Mooney won three times in the consis to get to King after a 5-0 quarterfinal loss to Perrow, with Saturday wins over region rivals Matthew Velasco of Somerset Academy (1-0) in the quarters and over Garcia (fall in 2:17, reprising his Region 4 third-place win from the previous weekend) in the semis.
5th: Garcia came back from the two semifinal losses by fall to claim fifth, taking a 5-4 decision over Brewster. Brewster had lost in the quarters, 11-5, to Yancey, and won twice in the consis to punch his podium ticket, including an 8-6 win in the quarters over Clay junior Maverick Rainwater (33-8), avenging a 7-4 loss in the Region 1 semis the previous weekend.
Championship: Merritt Island senior Elijah Lusk (37-2) repeated as champion, with two bonus-point wins on Friday. Saturday saw Lusk take a pair of decisions, the first of those coming in a war in the semis against Somerset Academy 8th-grader Elvis Solis, in which Lusk escaped with a 1-0 decision. He was able to open up some more in the championship match against Jensen Beach sophomore Jewell Williams (21-2), scoring a few times in a 9-2 decision. Williams, who was third in 2020 at 106, had two Friday decisions and then took a 9-0 major in the semis over region rival and Cardinal Gibbons junior Mathew Palermo (19-6) to get to the final.
3rd: Solis (34-3) dominated his two consi-side matches, pinning Wakulla senior Raymond Hatchman (38-6) in 2:34 in the semis, and then teching Palermo, 21-6 in 4:56, for third (a week after falling Palermo in 33 seconds in the Region 4 final). Palermo got into the third-place match with an 11-4 win over Suwannee freshman Austin McKinney (46-12) in the semis.
5th: Hatchman won three of four matches in the consis after a quarterfinal loss by pin to Palermo, including Saturday wins over Clearwater CC’s Aiden Prunoske (fall in :58) and a 4-2 win over his District 2 and Region 1 rival, McKinney, for fifth. McKinney, who’d won five consi-side matches last weekend to qualify out, had two consi-side wins at state after losing by tech fall to Lusk in the quarters, including a Saturday fall in the consi quarters over McKeel’s Guy Yodock (4:21).
Championship: See above about Reeve; Dobbs (37-6)’ path to the title began with two Friday pins, followed by a 3-0 decision in the semis over Suwannee senior Timothy Jolicoeur (38-12). Dobbs was fourth a year ago for the Barracudas.
3rd: Senia (32-3), a senior for the Pirates and fifth at 126 a year ago, came back for third after the semifinal loss to Reeve, shutting out Wakulla junior Isaiah Wilson (37-11), 3-0, in the consi semis, then edged Am Heritage-Delray junior Andrew DeSola (33-12), 5-4, in the bronze match, which was a rematch from Friday’s quarterfinal, which Senia also won by one point (7-6). DeSola won three consi-side matches to get that rematch, with Saturday decisions over Merritt Island’s Lucien Comelchook (12-6) in the quarters and over Jolicoeur, 8-5, in the semis.
5th: Jolicoeur bounced back from the losses to Dobbs and DeSola with a fall (2:41) in the medal match over Wilson, reprising majors he took at districts (10-2, semis) and regions (11-1, also in the semis) over Wilson. For his part, Wilson, who’d lost 5-1 to Senia in the first round, had to win three consi-side matches just to secure his podium space, including a 7-0 win in the consi quarters over Fernandina Beach senior Jeremy Mahoney (33-3), avenging an 11-1 major he lost to Mahoney in the Region 1 third-place match the previous weekend.
Championship: See above about Rodriquez; Theilacker (32-2) got to Rodriquez behind a pin and two decisions, the second of those coming in the semis over Somerset Academy senior Skyler Caban (22-3), 7-4.
3rd: Caban bounced back for third after the semifinal loss, falling region rival and Jensen Beach senior Tyler Savastano (32-16) in 2:58, reprising his Region 4 semifinal fall (1:57) over Savastano the previous weekend. Caban then edged TMA’s Cody (44-7), 2-1, for third. Cody pushed his way into the bronze match with a 6-2 win over Mater Lakes 8th grader Luis Bellon (24-9) in the consi semis; Cody had pinned Bellon (1:03) in the first round on Friday.
5th: In a matchup of region rivals, Savastano needed just 18 seconds to fall Bellon for fifth, avenging his third-place loss to Bellon (8-2) the previous weekend. Savastano had lost to Theilacker in round 1 and won four consi-side matches to place fifth, with an additional Saturday win in the consi quarters over region rival Jonathan Hudson of Am Heritage-Delray (5-4 decision), while Bellon had three wins of his own in the consis, including a pin in the quarters over Lemon Bay’s Justin Brady (3:23).
Championship: In a weight class utterly dominated by Region 4 (all 4 state qualifiers made semis, all 4 placed in the top 4 at states), it was the region 3rd that put it all together on the final weekend, as Somerset Academy senior Chase Gillis (41-6) bounced back from a 2020 that saw him off the podium to a 2021 on top of it, as he was unscored upon Friday, but had a war in the semis against Am Heritage-Delray senior Vincenzo Napolitana (27-8), securing a 5-4 win after falling, 5-3, in sudden victory to Napolitana in the Region 4 quarters the previous weekend. Gillis then faced the region champ, Cardinal Gibbons senior Tyler Cabral, in the state final. Gillis set the tone from the off, rolling out to hand Cabral a 10-2 defeat for the title. Cabral, the runnerup at 113 in 2020, pinned his way into the final, with a Saturday fall over region rival and Jensen Beach junior Ryan Duguay (1:56) in the semis.
3rd: After falling to Gillis in the semis, Napolitana came back to take third, majoring Florida High senior Ganim (36-13), 9-1, in the consi semis, and then pushed past Duguay (34-10), 3-1, in the bronze match. Duguay got there behind a takedown in sudden victory for a 4-2 win in the consi semis over Cocoa Beach senior Michael Watson (34-7).
5th: After falling to Gillis in the quarters, Watson won three of four matches in the consis, with a 10-8 consi-quarter win over Labelle’s Zachary Mann and a medal-match win over Ganim (36-13), 7-5, for fifth. Ganim had lost, 17-4, on Friday to Napolitana in the opening round, but then won three consi-side matches to punch his podium ticket, including a Saturday 5-4 win in the consi quarters over Suwannee junior Tyson Musgrove (47-7).
Championship: After taking the 2020 title at 132, Somerset Academy eighth-grader Bas Diaz (17-2) ran the table at states once again, with two Friday pins, and a pair of decisions on Saturday, starting with a 7-1 win in the semis over Palm Bay sophomore Nathan Furman (34-4). Diaz then avenged his Region 4 title-loss (2-1 in double overtime) in the championship match, pushing past Mater Lakes junior Benjamin Rogers, 3-2. Rogers (8-2 as reported) bonus-pointed his way to the final, with a Saturday 8-0 major over Hernando senior Billy Gould (32-9) in the semis.
3rd: Furman bounced back for third behind a pair of consi-side decisions, first downing Bonita Springs junior Mateo Villalobos (42-3), 8-2, in the semis, then coming back to shut out Am Heritage-Delray junior Rafael Romero (29-6), 4-0, for third. That third-place match was a rematch of Friday’s quarterfinal, which Furman won by a 3-2 count. Romero won three on the back to force the rematch, including Saturday bonus-point wins over Villages’ Cameron Rima (15-5) in the consi quarters and over Gould (pin in 4:05) in the semis.
5th: Villalobos won three of four on the consi side after losing by fall to Rogers in the quarters, with Saturday wins in the consi quarters over Suwannee senior Caleb Parsons (37-17) by pin in 2:32 and again by fall in the medal match, in 1:07 over Gould.
Championship: After a runnerup effort at this weight in 2020, Somerset Academy senior Darian Estevez (42-1) was able to complete the weekend unscathed, with three bonus-point wins and a Saturday 7-3 semifinal win over Palm Bay senior Jack Dinberg (34-2). Estevez then faced region rival and Am Heritage-Delray freshman Omer Barak (34-11) in the title match, a rematch of the Region 4 final where Estevez won by fall the previous weekend. This time, the match went six minutes with Estevez winning with an 11-2 major. Barak had two pins and a decision in getting to the rematch, falling McKeel junior Vish Williams (43-5) in 1:32 in the semis.
3rd: Dinberg rallied back for third behind two tight decisions, pushing past Jensen Beach senior Tehran Piza (27-8), 3-1, in the consi semis, followed by a 4-2 win over Williams for third. Williams got to the bronze match after pinning Clay sophomore Dominic Martin (2:05) in the semis.
5th: Piza, who’d lost 12-4 to Williams in the quarters Friday, won three times on the back, including Saturday wins in the consi quarters over Fernandina Beach freshman Enzo Gamba (28-2), 7-1, and then in the medal match over Martin (36-11), 6-2. Martin had lost by major to Estevez in the quarters, winning twice in the consis to secure his podium space, with a 5-3 consi-quarter win Saturday over Sarasota Military’s Erik Borresen.
Championship: See earlier on Hoskinson; Taylor (29-1) had a win and two pins prior to the final; in the semis, he pushed past region rival and Cardinal Gibbons junior Daniel Korchensky, 6-4.
3rd: Korchensky (17-4) won twice on the back to rally back for third after falling to Taylor, with a 5-1 win in the consi semis over Clewiston senior Izac Martinez (43-7). That round was a rematch of the Region 4 third-place match, which Johnson had won by a 3-1 count. Korchensky then was able to get past Palm Bay senior Komat (32-4), 8-4, in the third-place match. Komat got to the bronze match by majoring Yulee senior Aston Ricks (39-11), 16-2, in the consi semis.
5th: Martinez, who’d lost 9-2 to Hoskinson in the quarters on Friday, won three of four consi-side matches, including Saturday wins over Bishop Moore’s Gavin Wheeler (8-4) in the consi quarters and over Ricks, 12-10, for fifth. Ricks secured his space on the podium, after falling 12-8 to Korchensky in the quarters, with two consi-side pins, including a Saturday fall in the quarters over Hernando’s Billy Fetzner, in 2:58.
Championship: Carrollwood Day junior Jonathan Conrad (46-2) was a repeat champion after taking the 2020 title at 160, with three pins and a Saturday semifinal win over Master’s Academy senior Dylan Kohn (47-2), 3-2, after two earlier losses to Kohn during the regular season. Conrad had less trouble in the final with Merritt Island senior Khalil Mitchell (30-5), falling Mitchell in 1:13 for the gold medal and the bracket. Mitchell had a major and decision on Friday, coming back on Saturday with a win by fall in the semis against Raines senior Thomas (27-3), taking advantage of a desperation shot attempt late in the match.
3rd: Kohn dominated the back side of the bracket in taking third with a second-period tech fall (16-0 in 2:03) over Region 2 rival and Satellite sophomore Michael McCarthy (9-4 as reported) in the consi semis. That match was a rematch of the region final, where Kohn also won by tech fall (15-0 in 3:40). Kohn then pinned Somerset Academy sophomore Danny Diaz (9-4 as reported) in 51 seconds for the bronze medal. Diaz, who’d lost by fall to Conrad in Friday’s quarters, came back for three consi-side decisions, including Saturday wins over region rival and Mater Lakes 8th grader Achilles Rocha (8-6) in the consi quarters and an 11-7 win over Thomas in the semis.
5th: McCarthy, who’d lost by fall to Thomas in the quarters, would have a chance to get that loss back, and did so, with three consi-side victories. Included among them were Saturday wins over Lincoln Park Academy’s Kyle Grey (4-3, consi quarters) and Thomas, 7-4, for fifth.
Championship: After a runnerup effort in 2020, Lemon Bay junior Lance Schyck (39-0) has been unbeaten since last year’s state-finals loss, with a pin and decision both days at this year’s state tournament. On Saturday, Schyck pinned Palm Bay senior Zander Owens (26-4) in 2 minutes in the semis, then came back to hold off Am Heritage-Delray junior Joseph Nicolosi, 9-5, for the title. Nicolosi (33-3) got to the final behind two bonus-point Friday wins and a 12-5 semifinal win over Oasis senior Hunter Eichelberger (33-9) on Saturday.
3rd: Owens bounced back for third behind a pair of consi-side wins, first falling Admiral Farragut 8th grader Payton Cramer (18-4) in 3 minutes in the semis, then scoring one time and making it stand up for a 3-1 third-place win over Somerset Academy senior Sean Concepcion (40-7). Concepcion, who’d lost 4-3 to Schyck in the quarters Friday, came back with three wins in the consis, including Saturday wins over Clewiston’s Hisham Ramadan (4-2 in sudden victory) in the consi quarters and falling Eichelberger in 2:30 in the semis.
5th: Cramer won three of four consi-side matches after a 14-5 loss to Nicolosi in the quarters, falling Baker County senior Conner South (13-6) in 4:31 in the quarters and then decisioning Eichelberger, 10-5 in double overtime, for fifth in a battle of Region 3 rivals. The medal match was a rematch of the region quarters, which Cramer had won by second-period fall.
Championship: After a tough loss in the final last year, Am Heritage-Delray junior Mikey Tal Shahar (39-2) would not be denied a title this season, with a pair of Friday pins and two decisions Saturday. That began in the semis, but Tal Shahar would need the ultimate tiebreaker to decide things, getting out from bottom for a 3-2 win over Sarasota Military junior Tyre Smith (37-2). Tal Shahar had a bit of an easier time, but only just, in the final against Master’s Academy senior Ryan Cody (42-3), taking a 5-2 decision for the championship. Cody had two pins and a decision prior to final, falling Northside Christian sophomore Scott Lynch (19-6) in 1:57 in the semis.
3rd: After losing by fall to Tal Shahar in the quarters on Friday, Raines’ Watson (22-3) wouldn’t lose again, with four consi-side wins to rally back to third. That included Saturday wins over region rival and North Bay Haven freshman David Mercado (31-3) in the consi quarters (pin in 3:39), Lynch (fall in 2 minutes) in the semis and then a 7-5 win over Smith for third. Smith got to the bronze match with a second ultimate tiebreaker outcome, this time on the winning side of a 4-3 decision over Am Heritage-Plantation junior Jaeden Kinlock (25-5).
5th: Lynch avenged the two earlier Saturday losses by fall with a pin of his own, falling Kinlock in 2:53. Kinlock had lost, 11-4, to Cody in the quarters on Friday, and had to take two consi-side wins, including a 6-4 win in the consi quarters over Florida High senior Micah Perdue (35-8).
Championship: After finishing second in 2A at 285 last year, Carrollwood Day senior Mason Arnold (37-0) stayed unbeaten in 1A this year, though not without some trials. After being taken down by Rutherford senior Xavier Stillgess (25-6) in the quarters only to come back and win, Arnold gave up points in the semis to Bolles junior Jack Pyburn (25-3), but had enough offense to secure a 9-7 win and move to the final. There, he shut down Key West senior Max Ryan (36-8), 8-0, to win the bracket and gold medal. Ryan had two Friday decisions to get on the podium, then falled Jensen Beach senior Andrew Burnette (40-7) in 5:45 in the semis.
3rd: Pyburn (25-3) powered through to two pins on the back and place third, beginning in the consi semis, where he falled Hernando senior Chris Spellman (1:52), and again against Burnette in the third-place match, where Pyburn won by fall in 3:41 for the bronze. Burnette got to the third-place match with a 3-1 win in the consi semis over Am Heritage-Delray junior Chase Thompson (37-5).
5th: Spellman, who’d lost by fall in the quarters to Burnette on Friday, won three of four in the consis, with Saturday victories over Fernandina Beach senior Kolby Kidd (35-3) by pin (1:53) in the consi semis, and a win by injury-default over Thompson for fifth. Thompson, who’d lost in sudden victory to Pyburn (3-1) in the quarters, had two decision victories in the consis, the second of those on Saturday in a 2-1 win over Stillgess in the consi quarters.
Championship: After taking fifth in 2020, Mater Lakes junior Ethan Vergara (35-3) had three decisions to get to the final, including a 9-6 Saturday semi win over Rockledge senior Jordan Love (38-1). Vergara then secured a pin late in the title match against Region 4 rival and Somerset Academy junior Matthew Jimenez (41-5), reprising his region-final pin with a second on in 5:59 for the state title. Jimenez had three decisions as well in reaching the final, edging Palm Bay junior Carlos Gerardino (32-7), 3-2, in the semis.
3rd: Love took two victories in bouncing back for third, with a fall in the consi semis over Ridgeview Derrick Mosley (52-3) in 1:47, then a push past Region 2 rival Gerardino, 6-4, for third. That match reprised the region final, where Love had won by the same score, but in sudden victory at Palm Bay the previous weekend. Gerardino got to the rematch with a 6-2 win in the consi semis over region rival and Hernando senior Sam Fleming (34-7).
5th: Fleming won by medical forfeit in the medals round over Mosley. Fleming had lost in the first round to Jimenez, 3-1, and had to win three consi-side matches to get back on podium, including a Saturday fall (3:48) over Mulberry’s Joquorius Taylor. As for Mosley, he’d fallen to Jimenez, 6-2, in the quarters, and won by fall twice in the consis, including on Saturday (4:26) over Carrollwood Day’s Desmond Mamudi in the consi quarters.