Identical twins Jamel and Jamal Morris share looks, now the Cardinal Gibbons’ seniors will share state mats for the second consecutive season. The twins will lead a cast of 13 Chiefs to Lakeland after the Region 4-1A championships Saturday at their high school.
“The twins are some of the best kids I’ve ever had,” Chiefs coach Frank Pettineo said. “It’s nice to see them finish their careers together at the championships, and it feels good.”
Monsignor Pace placed second in team standings with 185.5 points. Key West (152.5), Somerset Academy (130.5), and American Heritage Delray (101) rounded out the top five.
“It means a lot,” said Somerset Academy’s Raekwon Reggler, who won the 182-pound championship bout over Aaron Fluitt (MP). “This is my first time making it to the state tournament. 11th grade. The last guy I had was staling so I couldn’t do anything. The other matches were easier and I could set up my moves. It feels great to represent my school.”
Jamel Morris defeated Alex Perez (MP) by decision (17-7) while brother Jamal pinned David Morse (AHD) in 5:25.
“I just kept putting the pressure on him,” said Jamel Morris, who placed third at states and regionals last year. “I tried to keep pressure on top, and I knew he was going to take me down. I kept giving him shots and then I dominated on the mats.”
“I am proud of my team. They worked hard. We push each other hard and strive to be the best.”
Kennedy Monday (113), Anthony Vazquez (126), Alex Iopouchanski (145), Nick Delvecchio (152), Ryan Thomas (195), and Matt Knick (285) were each crowned regional champions for the Chiefs Saturday.
“We work too hard and sweat our butts off,” Jamal Morris said. “We want it (state) and we need it.”