By MATMEN, Saturday, 4:50 p.m.
KISSIMMEE — As large as the jump in level that DeLand has made as a team in the past two seasons, it might have taken an even bigger one to get from where the Bulldogs are — 3A-Region 1 duals champions — to where they wanted to go Saturday.
And no better a team to remind them of that than five-time 3A state champion South Dade, which ended the Bulldogs’ dream tournament run in the state semifinals early Saturday afternoon at Osceola HS.
En route to a fifth state duals title by virtue of its 44-9 victory in the championship over Osceola, the Buccaneers put the hammer to the Bulldogs, 67-12, sending DeLand’s record to 14-7.
The Buccaneers ran out to an 18-0 lead on falls by Christian Sanchez (3rd-182) and Ansel Cervantes (1st-195), plus a forfeit at 220, before MJ Smokes (7th-285) put a stop to that run with a second-period pin to make it 18-6.
But where Smokes’ pin Friday caused a six-match DeLand deluge, it was Dade that responded with a six-match win streak in response to the pin, putting the dual away behind six bonus-point victories.
Bryan Morales (8th-106), Obby Encarnacion (113) and Tyree Graham (14th, dual-clinching victory at 132) all had falls for the Buccaneers, with Elvis Solis (1st-138) taking a 22-4 tech fall, and both Luis Acevedo (2nd-120, 9-1 score) and Nathaniel Williams (15th-126, 11-3 match score) adding majors.
The Bulldogs’ Joshua Folsom (17th-145) would add another pin to the Bulldog count, but that would be the last victory DeLand would enjoy, as South Dade pinned out in the final three weights, with Gavin Balmeceda (2nd-152), Cordell White (3rd-160) and Lawrence Rosario (2nd-170) all taking pins.
DeLand will return to the coverage area and get back to work in advance of Wednesday’s away dual at New Smyrna Beach.
Osceola 38, Ft Pierce Central 30: The host Kowboys reached the final behind an 18-0 run from their #1 hammers at 145, 152 and 160 to clinch the dual over the Cobras.
Ft Pierce Central won four of the first five weights, opening a 15-6 lead behind a pin from Alaq Dowd-Grant (12th-285) and decisions from Aidan Madden (15th-182, 5-4 match score), Hernan Ortiz (6th-220, 4-1 match score) and Myles Henkel (18th-106, 8-7 count) overcoming Jomar Sanchez (7th-195)’s fall for the Kowboys.
Osceola cut into the lead to 27-20 behind a forfeit at 126 and majors from Talyn Fisk (9-1 at 113) and Isfandier Sharipov (19th-126, 10-2 at 132), while the Cobras got pins from Daniel Echeverria (4th-120) and Jayden Romanello (138).
But the Kowboy elites — Anderson Heap (1st-145), Cooper Haase (1st-152) and Gunner Holland (1st-160) — all took pins in either the first or second periods, putting the dual away with their 18-0 run. FPC’s Colin Madden closed out the semi with a 5-4 win at 170.
Championship: Dade made sure there would be no late rush — or at least not enough of one — from the Kowboys, going on a 33-0 run to start the dual behind pins from Sawyer Bartelt (1st at 220, fall at 285) and Morales (106), a 17-1 tech from Solis (138), a 16-6 major from Guillermo Jaramillo (8th-113) and decisions from Acevedo (120) and Joshua Aviles (3rd-126).
Osceola would get on the board with decision victories in matches we could see again in six weeks’ time in the finals, with Heap winning in double-overtime, 10-7, at 145 and Haase taking a 6-3 win at 152.
Osceola bumped Holland to 170, and he held serve with a 3-1 win there for the Kowboys’ final victory. White (160) won by pin and Sanchez took a 15-0 tech at 182.
Results from all three 3A duals can be found HERE. All rankings from https://www.kabrawrestling.com/rankings/class-3a