For a few minutes, Broward County wrestlers dreamed big.
Competing in the 20th Annual BCAA Dade vs. Broward Wrestling Tournament on Thursday night at South Broward High, the Broward side, which had just one win in the previous 19 tries (2008), was locked in a 45-45 tie with Dade.
But depth proved way too much as the Dade All-Stars eventually pulled away with some late-match pins to win 99-71 and continue its two-decade dominance.
“I think it’s undoubtedly Dade’s depth,” said longtime South Broward wrestling coach Allen Held, who just finished his first year heading up the Cypress Bay program and was Broward’s coach for the night. “If we had gone only first team against first team, we might have won a few more over the years, but when it comes to the depth, Dade clearly has the edge, and a lot of that has to do with the fact that they have middle school wrestling in Dade where there is none in Broward, so their kids already have three years in before they even get to high school.”
The night featured six individual state champions, four from Broward and two from Dade, and the featured event came midway through the match when things were close and Broward was thinking upset.
With Dade ahead 45-42, the only match pitting two state champions, Matt Kirkland of Monsignor Pace, the 1A champion, and St. Thomas Aquinas’ John Weiss, the 2A title holder at 170 pounds, took center stage.
With the match tied 9-9 and less than 30 seconds left, Weiss recorded a two-point takedown to win it 11-9 and give Broward three points to tie things up at 45 apiece.
Anthony Vasquez and Jamel Morris from Cardinals Gibbons along with Stranahan’s Kenny Boyd and Daniel Leon of North Miami were the other state champions competing.
Leon easily turned in the most inspired effort of the night when, trailing Aquinas’ Coltyn Lynn 1-0 in the final period, he sustained a severe leg injury and looked like he would forfeit the match. True to a state champion, Leon got back on the mat, flipped Lynn with 30 seconds left and pulled out a 2-1 win.
“It’s just fun to watch all these kids a week or so after state because it’s the last time they’re going to wrestle for their school and their coach,” said South Dade coach Vic Balmaseda, who headed up the Dade squad, fresh off his team’s 3A state title. “This is a fun event and one last chance to get that hug and see your kid go out there and battle for you.”
“This has become a great thing that all the kids really look forward to,” said Held, who has hosted the event at South Broward for the past 10 years. “Right after Lakeland, everybody wants to get in; we let a few more seniors in than usual this year because it’s about the spirit of the competition and something they’ll always remember.”
Norland’s Cleveland Westbrook Jr. threw a perfect game against Hialeah-Miami Lakes, giving the Vikings a 1-0 win. Westbrook Jr. tossed seven innings and struck out nine batters.
Brandon Carter went 2 for 3 with a stolen base and a run scored. Darius Price-Lewis and Dillon Belle both went 1 for 3 for Norland (6-1).
Christian Suarez has been on a tear for Hialeah Gardens as of late. The senior pitched his second complete game of the season and the first no-hitter in school history in a 2-1 win over Miami Beach.
Suarez pitched seven innings and recorded 14 strikeouts. Lazaro Morales went 2 for 3 for the Gladiators while Chris Clara went 1 for 2 with an RBI.
Rickey Jimenez went 1 for 1 and scored a crucial run.Hialeah Gardens 2, Miami Beach 1: Homestead 7, Jackson 3: Miami Springs 4, Westland 0: Belen 4, TERRA 3: Miami High 11, Dr. Krop 1: Southridge 16, Palmetto 3:
SOFTBALLGoleman 11, Archbishop McCarthy 1: TERRA 19, Jackson 0: Southwest 10, Lourdes 0: Coral Gables 15, Coral Park 0: Krop 15, Miami High 0: Miami Country Day 12, Archbishop Carroll 5: Coral Reef 13, Varela 0: Mater Academy 12, Homestead 5: Miami Springs 15, Mourning 0: South Dade 16, Sunset 1: Miami Beach 16, Hialeah Gardens 15: Doral 16, Mater Academy 0:
GIRLS’ TENNISKrop 6, Hialeah Gardens 1: LaSalle 5, Key West 2: Hillel 3, Yeshiva 1: Ransom Everglades 6, Palmer Trinity 1: Pace 4, Chaminade-Madonna 3:
BOYS’ TENNISLaSalle 5, Key West 2: Jackson 5, Northwestern 1: Hillel 5, Yeshiva 1: Ransom Everglades 5, Palmer Trinity 2:
BOYS’ LACROSSEColumbus 14, Ransom Everglades 8:
GIRLS’ LACROSSEPalmetto 7, Coral Shores 6 OT:
BOYS’ VOLLEYBALLKillian d. Florida Christian 25-12; 25-18; 29-31; 19-25; 15-10: Columbus d. Krop 25-12, 25-11, 25-14. Braddock d. Coral Park 25-20, 27-25: