By MATMEN, Friday, 8:40 p.m.
2A State Finals
When & where: Semifinals start at 10 a.m. Saturday (weighin 9 a.m.), with finals scheduled for 2 p.m.
Teams: #2 Fleming Island (17-0) v #6 Merritt Island; #1 Lake Gibson v #4 Charlotte, semifinals. Semifinal winners will meet for the title; there is no dual for third place.
Friday’s wrestling: An early upper-weight run gave the Golden Eagles sufficient cushion for a 47-12 win over #9 Lincoln for their sixth-straight Region 1 title, while Merritt Island won its second Region 4 title with a 47-27 win over #19 Miramar. The Braves hammered unranked Springstead, 63-12, to win the Region 2 championship, while Charlotte’s run at the bookends of the lineup was enough for the Tarpons to turn back #5 Tampa Jesuit, 42-25, to win the Region 3 final.
Projection: While Merritt Island will give just as good a fight on Saturday as Lincoln did earlier today, Fleming’s strength in both the uppers and lowers will be too much for the Mustangs. Likewise, Charlotte will provide a stern test for Lake Gibson in the other semi, and that one will be closer, but the result should be a Braves victory. That will set up the Fleming v The Gib, 1 v 2 dual everyone wants to see in the final. While there is an immense amount of talent returning in the Fleming lineup, there are four seniors in the Golden Eagle upper weights, and for them, the past three seasons have been three years of come-close-and-fall-short at state duals. Lake Gibson showed, at least on Friday, they have a hole or two. For the Golden Eagles to finally reach that ring they’ve been striving for these six past years, they’ve got to exploit those small openings; I see the Braves winning, but the dual might be the best of the three finals matches.
State-ranked wrestlers remaining (listed by weight class in ranked order) —
106: Matthew Newman (Fleming Island, 2nd); Landon Quiroga (Merritt Island, 6th); Matthew Schuler (Charlotte, 12th); Jordan Mukaddam (Fleming Island, 13th).
113: Camren French (Charlotte, 1st); Elijah Lowe (Lake Gibson, 5th); Shane Duhaylungsod (Fleming Island, 8th).
120: Christian Fretwell (Lake Gibson, 1st); Laird Duhaylungsod (Fleming Island, 2nd); Kaiden Ballinger (Charlotte, 4th); Titus Deyoung (Merritt Island, 17th).
126: Jayce Paridon (Fleming Island, 2nd); Colt Brown (Lake Gibson, 3rd); Eric Clary (Charlotte, 5th).
132: Gaetano Tedesco (Lake Gibson, 2nd).
138: Ny’Travious Walker (Lake Gibson, 6th); Luke Davis (Charlotte, 7th).
145: Hayden Whidden (Lake Gibson, 1st); Kaden Schaefer (Fleming Island, 2nd); Judge Deyoung (Merritt Island, 8th).
152: Gianni Maldonado (Lake Gibson, 1st); Matthew Kotler (Fleming Island, 5th); Nicholas Gjerde (Charlotte, 14th).
160: Connor Hackett (Lake Gibson, 3rd); James Baltutis (Charlotte, 7th); Dylan Quiroga (Merritt Island, 8th); Christopher Chop (Fleming Island, 10th).
170: Ronan Bozeman (Fleming Island, 4th); Jace Brownlow (Lake Gibson, 6th); Jacob Pitcher (Merritt Island, 11th); Isaac Schaeffer (Charlotte, 12th).
182: Tito Solorzano (Lake Gibson, 1st); Joshua Sandoval (Fleming Island, 4th); Jett McCauley (Charlotte, 5th); Dominick Smith (Merritt Island, 8th).
195: Tristan Vann (Lake Gibson, 2nd); Nathaniel Box (Charlotte, 3rd); Seven Tornga (Merritt Island, 10th); Walter Poe (Fleming Island, 11th).
220: Jhoel Robinson (Fleming Island, 1st); Cael Newton (Charlotte, 2nd); Kaleb Ivie (Merritt Island, 11th).
285: Ethan Hoffstetter (Fleming Island, 2nd); Nikko Frattarelli (Charlotte, 11th).
All rankings from https://www.kabrawrestling.com/rankings/class-2a