Cardinal Gibbons’ 6-3 high flier Stefan Duvier is jumping straight from the kettle-boiler atmosphere of the boys’ basketball playoffs into a heated race for state high-jump gold.
After his dream for a basketball state championship ended with Gibbons losing in the 5A regional semifinals Tuesday, Duvier hopes a victory at the Louie Bing Classic at Traz Powell Stadium in Miami on Saturday will launch his bid for a state high-jump title.
Best known for his pogo stick-like jumping ability and highlight-reel dunks on the basketball court, Duvier said the extra offseason work on his technique and mental focus has put his confidence at an all-time high.
“I feel I’m as good as anybody jumping,” Duvier said. “I don’t label myself as a basketball player jumping. When track season starts, I’m a high jumper. I’m looking to dominate the entire year and finish first at states.”
Duvier said he has moved on from the disappointment of the Class 3A state finals last season when he came in as a co-favorite with a personal-best 6-4, only to no-height. That the winning height was 6-2 made the setback sting that much more.
“It was real disappointing, but you have to come back stronger,” Duvier said. “No-heighting just motivated me this year to work harder and get back at it. To not only place, but get first.”
Gibbons track coach Jeremiah Whitfield, who convinced Duvier to try out for the high jump after witnessing his high-flying exploits on the basketball court, believes high jump is Duvier’s ticket to stardom.
“From Stefan’s first year he couldn’t clear 5-4 to clearing 6-4 last year,” Whitfield said. “... This season he can go 6-6, 6-8, if not higher. I think he finally realizes that track is his sport. Whoever signs Stefan for the high jump will get a steal.”
Fort Lauderdale’s Reggie Nixon, one of the most popular and engaging figures in the Broward boys’ basketball coaching fraternity, has stepped down after six years at the helm.
Nixon, who played under legendary Dillard coach Butch Ingram, announced his decision to the Flying’s L’s administration Thursday, citing a desire to further his education.
Nixon left open the possibility of a return to the sidelines once he has achieved his educational goals.
“This is a tough decision, but I have to do what’s best for me,” Nixon said. “I think it’s time. It was a great experience at Fort Lauderdale, especially networking with the other coaches.”
The Flying L’s finished 12-10 after losing to Blanche Ely in the District 14-7A semifinals.
GIRLS’ LACROSSE• South Plantation 16, Flanagan 6: Emma Rose 5 goals, 2 assists. Izabella Cianci 5 goals, assist. Valentina Rivera 5 saves. FLA: Cassandra Bollenger 5 goals. Britney Hagans 6 saves. FLA 0-2. SP 1-0.
• Pine Crest 13, Cardinal Gibbons 3.
BOYS’ LACROSS• North Broward Prep 6, Coral Springs Charter 2: Phil Gursahaney 2 goals, assist. Tyler Marshall 2 goals, 2 assists. Kenny Lorden 2 goals. Kayden Gassney 6 saves. Kareem Ingleton dominated face-offs. NBP 1-1.
• Cardinal Gibbons 9, LaSalle 3: CG: Kuebler 4 goals. Seiler goal. O’ Halleran goal. Breton goal. Neceoules goal. Woodward goal.
• Archbishop McCarthy 14, Dillard 1: WP: Austin Haworth. AMC 4-1.
• Flanagan 3, Columbus 1: WP: Gentry Fortuno. LP: Ramon Quintero. Top performers: Pablo De Armas 1-3, RBI. COL 3-2. Play today against Coral Park.
• Calvary Christian 7, North Broward Prep 3: WP: C. Chang 1-2. LP: Vanhemel. Top Performers: CC: G. Carciopollo 2-3, HR, 2RBI. NBP: M. Lantz, 2-4, 2B. CC 2-2.
GIRLS’ TENNIS• Cardinal Gibbons 4, American Heritage 3: Singles - Groeneveld (CG) d.Gottlieb 8-5; Dolabany (AH) d. Landi 8-3 ; Norton (CG) d. Boven 8-3; Cinchilla (AH) d. Harmon 8-6; Polito (AH) d. VanSciver 8-6 Doubles - Landi/Groeneveld (CG) d. Gottlieb/Dolabany 8-5; Norton/GCumming (CG) d. Boven/Zebersky 9-8.
• Archbishop McCarthy 6, Coral Springs Charter 1: Erika Silva (CSC) d. Raquel Gil 8-3. Kelsey Berman AMHS d. Manuela Rojas 8-1. Gloria Cabrero AMHS d. Bhavana Sajeer 8-3. Antonella Castilla AMHS d. J. Bloshinsky 8-1. Jessica Menendez AMHS d. Michelle Arcic 8-0. Doubles: 1d. Gil / Cabrero AMHS d. Silva /Rojas 8-4. 2d. Berman/Menendez AMHS d. Sajeer/ Bloshinsky 8-0.
BOYS’ TENNIS• Cardinal Gibbons 2, American Heritage 5: Singles - Ebenfeld (AH) d. Ernewein 8-2; Northecide (CG) d. Ayubi 9-7; Skalet (AH) d. Soong 8-3; Ozery (AH) d. Cole 8-1; Gagne (CG) d. Oslo (8-4) Doubles - Ebenfeld/Ayubi (AH) d. Ernewein/Soong 8-2; Skalet/Ozery (AH) d. Meehan/Mendoza 8-1.
• Archbishop McCarthy 5, Coral Springs Charter 2: Dimitri Saltzmann AMHS d. Nicholas Caicedo 8-1. Andrew Piuglisi AMHS D. Jordan Crance 8-2. Fabian LaFontant AMHS d. Andy Castellanos 8-6. Sander Bloshinsky CSC d Luis Gallego 8-4. Griffin. Bloshinsky CSC D. Nicholas Goncalves 8-5. Doubles: 1d. Saltzmann / Puglisi AMHS d. Caicedo / Crance 8-0. 2d. Chris wheeler-Sabatino/ Walter Paniagua AMHS D. Bloshinsky/Bloshinsky 8-3.
GIRLS’ WATER POLO• Westminster Academy 17, Cardinal Gibbons 1: WA: Koral LaStella 5 goals. Naomi Sanders 4 goals. CG: Liz Ryder goal. WA 2-0.
BOYS’ WATER POLO• Cardinal Gibbons 19, Westminster Academy 12: CG: Charles Mahalec 9 goals. Fisher Crist 7 goals. WA: Jason Woodburn 6 goals. WA 1-1.