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Thursday, Sep 18, 2014
Preps

Capsules: Parade of Athletes top coaches, players

Published:   |   Updated: May 20, 2014 at 09:11 AM

Here is a look at those honored during Monday night’s annual Parade of Athletes banquet, which recognized the best of the 2013-14 prep season.

GOLF

Chris Kumka, Academy of the Holy Names

GIRLS COACH OF THE YEAR

Kumka helped AHN to a sixth-place finish at the Class 2A state tournament. With a senior-dominated lineup of Emmy Martin, Mariah Diaz and Casey Pluchino, the Jaguars made their fourth trip to the state tournament and Martin, the 2013 Girls Golfer of the Year, finished eighth individually.

Terese Romeo, Freedom

GIRLS ATHLETE OF THE YEAR

Romeo, a junior, finished second in the Class 3A individual state championship in one of the most spirited competitions ever seen in Florida high school golf. Romeo was in a three-way tie after 18 holes, then battled through an eight-hole playoff before falling against Sarasota Riverview’s Kadi Pallastrone. For the second straight year, Romeo won the individual region title by firing an even-par 72, and she also helped the Patriots to the region team title. As a sophomore, when Romeo overcame a broken wrist, she also was an individual district champion and finished 11th at the state tournament.

Jim Govreau, Newsome

BOYS COACH OF THE YEAR

For the fourth straight season, Govreau is the Tribune’s boys golf coach of the year. He has helped the Newsome Wolves become a consistent force on the Florida high school golf scene with four consecutive trips to the state tournament. This season, the Wolves were district champions and had a runner-up finish at the Class 3A state tournament.

Tyler Bakich, Newsome

BOYS ATHLETE OF THE YEAR

Bakich, a junior, finished in a tie for second at the Class 3A state tournament shooting 2 under over two days. He was the district medalist with a 69 and finished second in the regionals with a 68. And that was after his sophomore season, which included a fourth-place state tournament finish and a tournament-best round of 67. Bakich has committed to play at Florida State, where his mother, the late Colleen Walker, was a two-time MVP and a Seminoles Hall of Famer.

SWIMMING

Bill Shaffer, Academy of the Holy Names

GIRLS COACH OF THE YEAR

Shaffer not only led the Jaguars to a third-place finish at state, but also to victories at the district and region meets. His most satisfying accomplishment might be that Academy set seven school records this season and had 10 top-eight finishers at the state meet.

Ally Donahue, Plant and Maddie Hess, Newsome

GIRLS ATHLETES OF THE YEAR

Donahue won state titles in the 50 free and the 100 breaststroke and almost set a state record in the breaststroke with a time of 1 minute, 1.97 seconds, or .24 seconds off the record. Unfortunately for Plant, Donahue, a junior, will not return to defend her titles because she is graduating a year early to attend the University of Florida next fall. Ultimately, the goal for her is to reach the 2016 Olympics. ... Hess actually has a chance to win six state individual titles before she’s finished, because for the second straight year she won two state titles in the 100 freestyle and 100 backstroke, earning All American status in both events. Hess, however, said her most satisfying moment was helping the Wolves to a state title in the 200 free relay.

Kevin Rosepapa, Berkeley Prep

BOYS COACH OF THE YEAR

With one of the area’s largest squads, Rosepapa led the Bucs to district and region titles and in head-to-head competition went undefeated against Hillsborough County teams. Rosepapa’s Bucs have now won five consecutive regional championships and appear to be the favorites to win No. 6 next year.

Rasmus Skjaerpe, Tampa Prep

BOYS ATHLETE OF THE YEAR

This marks Skjaerpe’s third straight time to win The Tampa Tribune’s male swimmer of the year award, but this year he won it with his most resounding performance, taking Class 1A state titles in the 200 individual medley and 100 backstroke by several seconds. Skjaerpe also helped Tampa Prep earn top-five finishes in the 200 medley relay and the 400 free relay. Next year he will be swimming for the University of Arizona.

CROSS COUNTRY

Roy Harrison, Plant

GIRLS COACH OF THE YEAR

A recent inductee into the Florida High School Athletic Association Hall of Fame, Harrison led the Panthers to the state meet for the 27th consecutive year. He also led the Panthers to their 21st district title and 20th regional championship.

Bailey Sullivan, Plant

GIRLS ATHLETE OF THE YEAR

Sullivan has consistently been among Hillsborough County’s top cross country runners for years and this year ran the county’s fastest time in 18 minutes, 41.98 seconds. What many people may not know is that Sullivan is a Type-1 diabetic, which meant she had to carefully navigate her diet, rest and insulin between practice and racing.

Greg Maurin, Jesuit

BOYS COACH OF THE YEAR

Maurin led a young Tigers team to a district title, a runner-up finish at regions and a third-place finish at state. Maurin also helped his No. 1 runner, Tim O’Loughlin, fight back from a foot injury to finish ninth overall at state in 16 minutes, 16.61 seconds.

James Zentmeyer, Sickles

BOYS ATHLETE OF THE YEAR

At the state meet, Zentmeyer had the performance of a lifetime, placing second on the 5K course in 15 minutes, 23.16 seconds, or almost 40 seconds faster than his previous personal best. Before the race, Zentmeyer said he decided to “just kill myself” with the effort. He certainly did, and the results were spectacular.

VOLLEYBALL

Christen Garcia, Robinson

COACH OF THE YEAR

In her second year as coach, Garcia guided the Knights to the Class 5A state semifinals, marking the first time the Knights had reached the state final four since 1978. Garcia won this award last year after coaching the team to the region final.

Lexi Thompson, Durant

ATHLETE OF THE YEAR

Recipient of the Kirkwood Volleyball Award, which goes to the top senior in Hillsborough County, Thompson broke the school record for kills in a season with 364 and led her team to a 28-1 record, which included winning a district title. She will play for Ole Miss in the fall.

FOOTBALL

Sean Callahan, Armwood

COACH OF THE YEAR

Also named the National Football Foundation Tampa Chapter Coach of the Year, Callahan, despite having a young and inexperienced group, guided the Hawks to the Class 6A state championship game, the furthest of any team in the county last season.

Deiondre Porter, Jefferson

ATHLETE OF THE YEAR

The senior dual-threat quarterback led the county with 3,199 passing yards and 33 touchdowns and was also one of the top rushers, gaining 1,499 yards on the ground with 20 TDs in leading the Dragons to the region semifinals. He was given this year’s Guy Toph Award, which goes to the top senior football player in the county, and he has signed to play football at the University of Florida.

SOCCER

Kelly Townsend, Newsome

GIRLS COACH OF THE YEAR

The Wolves were a young team with just two seniors on the roster, but Townsend guided them to an unbeaten regular season before losing against Lakeland George Jenkins in penalty kicks during the Class 5A region semifinals. All told, Newsome finished 19-1 and won its fifth district title in Townsend’s seven seasons at the school.

Karli Gutsche, Newsome

GIRLS ATHLETE OF THE YEAR

Gutsche, a junior, was the key performer on Hillsborough County’s best team. She ranked among the county leaders with 20 goals and also had four assists as she helped the Wolves reach the Class 5A region semifinals. Her strongest quality, though, was contributing to a Newsome defense that allowed just eight goals all season. Gutsche already has committed to play at Auburn University. Her sister, Karina, the 2011 Tribune player of the year, just completed her junior season at Florida.

Allen Ware, Newsome

BOYS COACH OF THE YEAR

Since returning to coaching in 2012, Ware has built the Newsome Wolves into a consistent contender. The Wolves were 17-5-2 and fell one victory short of the state’s final four, losing against East Lake 1-0 in the region final. Ware was the long-time coach at Brandon and in 2003 guided one of the best teams in county history, a 23-1-2 squad that captured the state title.

Blake Wilson, Steinbrenner

BOYS ATHLETE OF THE YEAR

Wilson, the Steinbrenner captain, established himself as a clutch performer for the Warriors (17-2-1). He scored a golden goal to defeat East Lake in the district final. Then he scored another golden goal to topple St. Pete High 4-3 in the region quarterfinal. Wilson had 20 goals and six assists for the season. He has signed to play at Georgia Southern University.

WRESTLING

Russ Cozart, Brandon

COACH OF THE YEAR

After this season, Cozart’s dual-match record at Brandon stands at 560-6. And in case you haven’t heard, Cozart also was the caretaker of “The Streak,” a national record undefeated string that spanned 34 years and 459 straight victories. As for state titles, Cozart has won 24, including 14 in a row. This year, his Eagles also broke their own state record with 270.5 points at the state tournament.

James Flint, Brandon

ATHLETE OF THE YEAR

Picking a wrestler from this group is tough, but Flint has a story that puts him over the top. On the first day of practice this year, Flint tore the meniscus in his left knee. He then promptly started rehabbing for six weeks. A little sore and not quite as strong, Flint still found a way to go 33-0 and win his fourth state title at 126 pounds.

BASKETBALL

Greg Fawbush, Seffner Christian

GIRLS COACH OF THE YEAR

Fawbush assembled one of the more rigorous and difficult schedules in the state for his team to prepare them for the state tournament. In doing so, the Crusaders finished state runner-up in Class 3A, the first time any team in school history has reached a state title game.

Peyton Walker, Seffner Christian

GIRLS ATHLETE OF THE YEAR

The junior forward led the Crusaders in scoring at 20.1 points per game and rebounding at 9.6 en route to the team’s first state title game appearance. Walker scored a combined 50 points with 32 rebounds in the final four and was later named to the 3A all-state first team.

Danny Gaddis, Lennard

BOYS COACH OF THE YEAR

Gaddis guided an overlooked group to the Class 6A state final four, the first state appearance for any team in school history. The team won its first district title and regional playoff game and upset the third- and 10th-ranked teams in 6A to reach the state semifinals. Gaddis was also selected by his peers as the Tampa Bay Basketball Coaches Association Coach of the Year.

Juwan Durham, Tampa Prep

BOYS ATHLETE OF THE YEAR

Just a sophomore, this 6-foot-10 star recruit led the Terrapins to the 3A state title game while averaging 21.6 points, 11.5 rebounds and county-leading 5.7 blocks. Durham has already surpassed 1,000 career points and is a two-time MaxPreps All-American.

TENNIS

Sean Craft, Holy Names

GIRLS COACH OF THE YEAR

Under Craft, the Jaguars finished fifth in the 2A state tournament. Holy Names also won its district and region championships, the fifth consecutive year the program had won both titles, and second straight year under Craft as head coach.

Erica Oosterhout, Plant

GIRLS ATHLETE OF THE YEAR

Oosterhout, a junior, was a district, region and state champion this past season. She won the overall singles state championship in Class 4A and with teammate Gabrielle Rodriguez, won the 4A team doubles state championship.

Joe Curtis, Jesuit

BOYS COACH OF THE YEAR

Despite graduating its top three singles players from last year’s third-place team at the state tournament, Jesuit made its fourth consecutive state tournament appearance. The Tigers also won their 20th district title under Curtis’ direction.

Sam Chaffin, Wharton

BOYS ATHLETE OF THE YEAR

Chaffin won the Class 4A-District 7 championship to advance to the 4A individual state tournament, where he was listed as the overall No. 1 seed. He lost in a three-set battle in the singles semifinal round.

FLAG FOOTBALL

Josh Saunders, Robinson

COACH OF THE YEAR

Few teams have dominated any sport the way Saunders’ team dominated this year. Robinson not only went 19-0 and won the state title, but it outscored opponents by a combined 662-18 with 16 shutouts. The state title game against Seminole Ridge got a little tight, but Saunders’ defense stood up in the end and pulled out the historic 7-6 victory.

Kylee Gorngpratum, Robinson

ATHLETE OF THE YEAR

A versatile weapon who played different positions on both sides of the ball, Gorngpratum led the Knights with an unselfish style. She often was used at receiver and running back, but proved dangerous because she was a threat to run or throw. She finished with 1,090 total yards and 23 touchdowns. She also threw for 665 yards and 13 touchdowns. On defense, she had 12 interceptions, four of which she returned for scores.

TRACK

Anthony Triana, Wharton

GIRLS COACH OF THE YEAR

Triana led Wharton to championships in two of the toughest districts and regions in the state: Class 4A-District 6 and Class 4A-Region 2. In each of those meets, Wharton narrowly edged a tough squad from Steinbrenner. Ultimately, Triana got the most out of athletes when they stepped onto the biggest stages.

Janae Caldwell, Spoto

GIRLS ATHLETE OF THE YEAR

When Caldwell won the state championship in the 400 meters, she made history because her first state title was also the first state title of any kind, in any sport, for Spoto High School. Caldwell came back about an hour later from that victory to place fourth in the 200 meters. Moving forward, Caldwell has the opportunity to collect a few more state titles because she’s only a sophomore.

Andy Wood, Jesuit

BOYS COACH OF THE YEAR

A year after taking only four athletes to the state meet, Wood took 13 to this year’s Class 2A state championships. In the end, Wood’s Tigers won district and regional titles and placed a Hillsborough-County best 10th at the Class 2A state meet.

Jack Guyton, Plant

BOYS ATHLETE OF THE YEAR

What Guyton did this year was nothing short of amazing. Guyton won the Class 4A state title in the 1,600-meter race in 4 minutes, 11.86 seconds, which just happens to rank among the top five fastest times ever posted by a Hillsborough County prep athlete. About an hour after that victory, Guyton came back to win the state title in the 3,200 meters in 9:20.35. How low can he go as a high school competitor? We get one more year to see because Guyton is only a junior.

LACROSSE

Jayne Chapman, Plant

GIRLS COACH OF THE YEAR

Plant went undefeated against Hillsborough County teams, including winning the district championship, to go 15-0 entering the state play-in game. The Panthers lost to Olympia from Orlando to finish 15-1 overall. Chapman was also named Western Conference Coach of the Year by her peers.

Veronica Cartaya, Tampa Catholic

GIRLS ATHLETE OF THE YEAR

Cartaya led the Crusaders to the second round of the state championship with a team-best 77 goals, 20 assists, 78 draw controls and 14 ground balls. She has scored more than 200 goals in her career at Tampa Catholic and will attend the U.S. Naval Academy

John Shaw, Plant

BOYS COACH OF THE YEAR

Plant advanced to the second round of the state championships, further than any boys team in the county, and also captured a district title, avenging a regular season loss to Jesuit in the district title game.

Noah Menendez, Jesuit

BOYS ATHLETE OF THE YEAR

Menendez, a faceoff midfielder, led Jesuit to a district runner-up finish while scoring 30 goals with 20 assists. He owned an 80 faceoff percentage and has signed to play at the University of Tampa.

SOFTBALL

Mandy Schuerman, Bloomingdale

COACH OF THE YEAR

In just her first season as head coach, Schuerman guided the Bulls to the program’s first state title since 1993. The Bulls played all three regional games on the road and defeated the No. 1-ranked team in the 8A state championship, 3-2.

Lace Smith, Bloomingdale

ATHLETE OF THE YEAR

Smith led the Bulls to the 8A championship, the program’s first state title since 1993. Smith, who has verbally committed to the University at Buffalo, led the county in strikeouts with 291 and the lowest ERA and had only two losses on the mound. In her region debut, she pitched a perfect game and also hit the game-winning home run.

BASEBALL

Kris Wilken, Bloomingdale

COACH OF THE YEAR

Wilken guided the Bulls to an improbable appearance in the Class 8A state title game, where they were defeated 3-1 Saturday by Homestead South Dade. Bloomingdale defeated Lake Worth Park Vista 1-0 in eight innings in the semifinals on Friday. None of this was expected. At midseason, the Bulls were 8-7 and entered their district tournament as the No. 3 seed, but they rode some hot bats and the pitching of ace Logan Crouse to win 13 of their last 16 games.

Kyle Tucker, Plant

ATHLETE OF THE YEAR

Tucker, a junior, already has established himself as one of the most formidable hitters ever for the Plant Panthers. He batted .425 with nine home runs and 35 RBIs. And this was after batting .556 with nine homers in 2013, when he enjoyed the rarity of becoming a first-team All-County player as a sophomore. All told, he’s a .448 career hitter at Plant with 20 homers — and a full season to go. Tucker already has committed to the University of Florida, where his brother, Preston, was an All-American for the Gators.

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