With six Division-I college signees on its roster, Killian’s baseball team entered the season as one of the favorites in Class 8A.
Those hopes were dashed Monday by the defending Class 8A state champions.
South Dade, the No. 4 seed in the District 16-8A playoffs, jumped out to an early five-run lead and hung on to beat Killian 7-5 in a semifinal held at Coral Reef, eliminating the Cougars from the postseason.
South Dade (17-6) advances to play either Varela or Palmetto in the district championship Thursday at 3:30 p.m. at Coral Reef. The Bucs advanced to the regional playoffs for the third consecutive season and sixth time in the past seven seasons.
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“This is a huge confidence booster for us because Killian has a great team,” South Dade coach Fred Burnside said. “At this time of year, it’s the team that plays the best that wins and we outplayed them [Monday].”
The loss capped a tumultuous weekend off the field for the Cougars (19-9), who played without their coach Angel Herrera on Monday.
Herrera sat out because of a self-imposed suspension following a recent incident in which he was filmed leading a derogatory chant about a rival coach during a recent bus ride to Orlando.
The nine-second video clip sent to the Miami Herald showed Herrera on the bus joining with others and mentioning the opposing coach.
Killian athletic director Kenny Floyd and principal Thomas Ennis attended Monday’s game but declined to comment on the matter.
When reached by phone this past Saturday, Floyd told the Herald that the school would review the incident.
The incident was likely triggered by several letters that had been sent anonymously to the Florida High School Athletic Association, the Greater Miami Athletic Conference, the Miami-Dade County School Board and baseball coaches from District 16-8A over the course of the season alleging that Killian was using ineligible players.
However, all of Killian’s players met the eligibility requirements of the FHSAA and the GMAC.
Former longtime Killian coach Pete Hertler and Floyd helped coach the team Monday in Herrera’s absence.
They watched as South Dade took control of the game early by scoring two runs in the first and four in the third to take a 6-1 lead. Killian committed four errors including a costly throwing error on a failed pickoff attempt to second. Leading 4-1, the throw from catcher Herbert Iser went into center field allowing two runners to score. That followed back-to-back run-scoring singles by Alek Manoah and Christian Ibanez.
Senior pitcher Jose Gorordo started the game for the Bucs and went four innings, allowing two runs. Junior pitcher Kendrick Pico pitched three innings of relief.
▪ District 16-6A semifinal — Mater Academy 8, TERRA 3: Mater Academy, the reigning state 6A champion and fourth district seed, upset top seed TERRA. The Lions (15-8) will play in the district final at Belen at 3:30 p.m. Thursday. They will face the winner of the Doral Academy and Belen, which play Tuesday.
MA 0 0 5 2 0 0 1 — 8 9 1
TER 0 0 2 0 1 0 0 — 3 1 2
WP: Kevin Fuentes. MA 15-8. TER 19-6.
▪ District 16-8A semifinal — South Dade 7, Killian 5:WP: Jose Gorordo. LP: Joey Gonzalez. SD 17-6. KIL 19-9.
▪ District 14-8A semifinal — Hialeah 6, Hialeah Gardens 4:WP:Anselmo Suarez (4-2), 5 1/3 IP, 2 ER, 2 K’s. LP: Alex Garcia. SV: Andres Rodriguez. Top Performers: Stephen Garcia 2-3, 2B, 3 RBI. Carlos Reyes 1-2, SAC, RBI. HIA 11-12-1. HG 11-12.
▪ District 14-8A semifinal—Miami High 11 Miami Beach 1:WP: Edgard Aparicio (4-3). LP: Blake Brattain. Top Performers: Argenis Hernandez 2-2, 3 R, 2 RBI, 2 2B. Christopher Rodriguez 2-3, 3 RBI, 2B. Oney Pino 1-2, HR. MIA 16-8.
▪ District 16-4A quarterfinal— Coral Shores 11, Ransom Everglades 4: CS 12-13. RE 5-15.
▪ Late Saturday — Florida Christian 10, Belen 0:WP: Alex Nodarse 3 IP, 2 K's. Ruben Someillan 2-3. Seve Rodriguez 3-3. Kendrick Garcia 3-4. Christian Coipel 2-3.
Miami Christian senior guard Marquill Smith and Deerfield Beach Zion Lutheran guard Keith Stone each earned Class 2A All-State first-team honors when the teams were announced by the Florida Association of Basketball Coaches and Source Hoops. Miami Christian guard Isaiah Reece earned second-team honors. Hialeah Champagnat Catholic’s Jaron Cornish made the second team, and forward Nashad Mackey made the third team.
▪ St. Thomas Aquinas d. Pompano Beach (22-25, 21-25, 25-17, 25-17, 15-5):Rojas 25 assists, 5 kills, 3 digs, 3 blocks, 6 points, 3 aces. Alex 13 kills, 12 blocks, dig.Tariche 6 kills, 5 digs, 2 blocks, 5 points.Palazzolo 2 digs, 6 points, ace. STA 11-10 (5-5).
▪ Cardinal Gibbons d. West Boca (25-12, 25-12, 4-25, 25-17):Reed 5 kills, 3 digs, 3 blocks. Dannenhauer 31 assists, 7 kills, 6 digs, block, 2 points. CG 19-4.
▪ La Salle d. Greater Miami Academy (25-20, 25-15, 25-20):Saladrigas 26 kills, 3 blocks, 12 digs.Bernabeu 9 kills, 4 blocks, 2 digs.Doismeadios 31 assist, 6 digs, 3 aces.Fernandez 5 digs.
▪ St. Brendan d. Westminster (25-22, 25-17, 25-15):Lozada 12 kills, 12 digs. de la Torriente 9 kills, 10 digs. Carrasco 7 kills, 3 digs. SB 12-6.
▪ Pine Crest d. Chaminade-Madonna (25-19, 25-14, 26-24): Wilkerson 5 kills, 4 blocks, 4 points. CM 12-5.
▪ Archbishop McCarthy d. Wellington (26-28,25-15,25-18,25-20): Moreiras 14 points, 18 kills, 4 blocks, 20 digs. Maniglia, 12 kills, 7 blocks. Covone 7 kills, 10 blocks.Amortegui 6 kills, 6 blocks. AM 15-7.
District 11-8A quarterfinal at Taravella: Deerfield Beach vs. Coral Springs, 6:30
District 12-8A semifinals at Cypress Bay: Piper vs. Cypress Bay, 4; Western vs. Cooper City, 6
District 13-8A semifinals at Flanagan: West Broward vs. Miramar, 4; Everglades vs. Flanagan, 6:30
District 15-8A semifinals at Braddock: Coral Gables vs. Braddock, 1; Columbus vs. Ferguson, 4
District 16-8A semifinal at Coral Reef: Palmetto vs. Varela, 3:30
District 15-7A semifinals at South Broward: Nova vs. Plantation, 4; St. Thomas Aquinas vs. Hollywood Hills-South Broward winner, 7
District 16-7A semifinals at American: Reagan vs. Westland Hialeah, 2; American vs. North Miami Beach, 4
District 15-6A semifinals at Florida Memorial University: Mourning vs. Miami Springs, 2; Goleman vs. Norland, 4
District 16-6A semifinal: Doral Academy at Belen Jesuit, 3:30
District 16-5A semifinals at Archbishop McCarthy: American Heritage vs. Cardinal Gibbons, 4; Pompano Beach vs. Archbishop McCarthy, 7
District 15-4A quarterfinals at Monsignor Pace: Florida Christian vs. Booker T. Washington, 4; Mater Lakes vs. La Salle, 7
District 14-3A quarterfinals at Westminster Academy: Coral Springs Christian vs. Westminster Academy, 2; Jupiter Christian vs. Oxbridge, 4; Highlands Christian vs. Lake Worth Christian, 4
District 15-3A semifinals at Slade Park: Hialeah Educational vs. Sagemont, 4; Westwood Christian vs. SLAM Academy, 7
District 16-3A semifinal: Marathon at Westminster Christian, 4
District 15-2A semifinal: Champagnat Catholic at Miami Christian, 4
TRACK AND FIELD
Region 4-4A at Southridge – Field events: 11 a.m.; Running prelims: 3; Running finals: 5:30
GMAC championship at Palmetto – Quarterfinals: Sunset vs. Mourning, 2; Miami High vs. Hialeah Gardens, 2; Palmetto vs. Columbus, 3:15; Southwest vs. Miami Springs, 3:15; Semifinals: 4:45; Final: 6:30
State play-in second round: St. Thomas Aquinas at Gulliver, 4
State play-in second round: Pine Crest at West Broward, 7
Last week’s best Miami-Dade performances
TEAMS OF THE WEEK
The Belen boys and Ransom girls water polo teams each won state championships this past weekend. Ryan Guso scored six goals in the finals to lead the Wolverines to their second state title and first since 2009. Sofia Rivas scored five goals to lead a balanced Ransom attack in the finals that secured a sixth state title in seven seasons.
The Columbus baseball team won its second GMAC championship in the past three seasons. The Explorers beat Goleman, TERRA and Killian over the course of the tournament.
ATHLETES OF THE WEEK
Brandon Rios, Mourning, baseball: Rios went 3 for 4 and had three strikeouts while picking up the win on the mound during a 4-2 victory over Krop.
Chanel Wilson, Coral Gables, softball: Wilson had nine strikeouts and went 4 for 4 with a home run and five RBI to lead the Cavaliers to a 12-2 win over Braddock and the District 15-8A championship.
Ryan Jackson, Dr. Krop, boys’ track and field: Jackson won the pole vault and finished second in the 110 and 300 hurdles to help the Lighting with the District 15-4A championship.
Sabrina Quijano, Lourdes, girls’ track and field: Quijano won the 800, 1,600 and 3,200 meters to lead the Bobcats to the District 15-4A title.
Jose Ortega, Ferguson, boys’ tennis: Ortega won the Class 4A overall singles state championship this week.
Sophia Adams and Michelle Adan-Pol, TERRA, girls’ tennis: Adams and Adan-Pol won the Class 3A overall state doubles title and led the Wolves to a state runner-up team finish.
Walker Gautier and Trevor Pelletier, Gulliver, boys’ lacrosse: Gautier and Pelletier each had three goals to lead the Raiders to a 15-6 state play-in win over Palmetto.
Peter Cancio, Columbus, boys’ volleyball: Cancio had a combined 19 kills to lead the Explorers to wins over Florida Christian and Belen Jesuit.
Jason Harris, Killian, badminton: Harris, a junior, won the GMAC boys’ singles championship.
Katherine Espinosa, Sunset, badminton: Espinosa won the GMAC girls’ singles championship for the second consecutive season.
Andre C. Fernandez
Last week’s best Broward performances
TEAM OF THE WEEK
Jordan Skalet and Zach Ebenfeld won at No. 1 and No. 2 singles, respectively, and teamed up for a victory at No. 1 doubles to help the American Heritage boys’ tennis team tie a state record by winning 21 matches and the Class 2A state title.
ATHLETES OF THE WEEK
Eric Goldenberg, St. Thomas Aquinas, boys’ water polo: Goldenberg had four goals as the Raiders (25-2) fell 14-9 to Ransom Everglades (26-1) in the state championship game.
Tiarra Thompson, Coconut Creek, flag football: Thompson had a touchdown reception to lead the Cougars (9-0) over Boyd Anderson 6-0.
Jordan Quijano, Pines Charter, baseball: Quijano went 2 for 4 with a home run and three RBI to lead the Jaguars over Pine Crest 6-5.
Michelle Eisenberg and Samara Eisenberg, Cypress Bay, girls’ tennis: Michelle Eisenberg and Samara Einsenberg won individual matches to help the Lightning win the Class 4A state title.
Lauren Mcinnis, Western, softball: McInnis hit a home run and drove in two runs to lead the Wildcats (18-8) over South Plantation 3-2 for the District 12-8A title.
Michael Plutt, Carlos Moreno, Scott Plutt and Robert Slutsky, Cypress Bay, boys’ tennis: Michael Plutt, Scott Plutt, Moreno and Slutsky won individual matches to help the Lightning win the Class 4A state title.
Khai McLin, Plantation, boys’ track: McLin won the 100 and 200 meters at the District 13-4A championships.
Danielle Obolevitch, Kaely Malik, Carly Seldman and Demi Snyder, Pine Crest, girls’ tennis: Obolevitch, Malik, Seldman and Snyder won individual matches to help the Panthers win the Class 2A state title.
Andres Hernandez and Luis Marcano, Sagemont, boys’ tennis: Hernandez and Mercano won individual matches to help the Lions tie St. Stephen’s for the Class 1A state title.
Lauren O’Connell, West Broward, girls’ lacrosse: O’Connell had six goals to lead the Bobcats (13-4) over Ransom Everglades 16-8 in a state first-round play-in game.
Aaliyah Price, Everglades, girls’ track: Price won the 200 and 400 and finished second in the 100 at the District 14-4A championships.