Though Florida doesn't really have a "winter" weather season — as you can tell by the temps in the high-70s and 80s for much of the past two months — we do have a winter sports season.

Basketball, soccer, wrestling and girls weightlifting all kept you guys entertained and me busy throughout the warm holiday months.

It was a stretch that saw a perfect regular season from Port Charlotte boys basketball, a couple girls added to the 1,000-point scorers list from North Port and Imagine and two state champion wrestlers.

It was one of the more exciting few months of prep sports so far.

But this column isn't about those extraordinary feats, they have been well-documented.

Lost in the mix of high-profile accomplishments were a couple moments that may not have made the front page of the sports section or made it's rounds in the area sports talk.

Here's what you missed:

Hoffman reaches podium for Imagine

The Imagine School at North Port doesn't always jump to the forefront of the athletics discussion in our area, but they have had plenty of accomplishments this year.

Most recently, wrestler Koen Hoffman went from a small school to the state podium last week, finishing fourth in the 126-pound weight class.

Hoffman kicked off his state run with a 6-3 decision over Mike Sarron from Coral Springs Charter and made it to the semifinals with a takedown in overtime to beat Tyler Reeve from Florida High 8-6.

He battled back to reach the third place match with a 4-3 win, but fell in the final round.

Hoffman capped a strong season with an impressive finish at the highest level.

Port Charlotte girls turn things around

Sometimes it takes a new voice wake up a program that had been asleep for some time. Enter head coach Mike Progl.

A no-nonsense guy that says what he's thinking, Progl took over the Port Charlotte girls basketball program this season and the effects were nearly instant.

The Lady Pirates hadn't won more than nine games in any of the past four years, hitting a low of just two wins in the 2017-18 season. This year, the team won its first seven games and finished with 15 wins for the first time since the 2013-14 season.

Comparing the past two seasons, the Lady Pirates improved their points per game by 15 and held teams to 14 fewer this year.

With a young core returning, the sky is the limit for this program.

Lemon Bay boys have best season in a long time

Another team reaching new heights was the Lemon Bay boys soccer team, who reached the second round of the playoffs for the first time in nearly two decades.

The Mantas finished the season 12-7 and reached the district semifinals, where they fell to Mariner.

Behind a 20-goal season from senior Ben Crumpton, Lemon Bay earned the most win of any team in the last 15 years.

Other notable notes from winter:

• Charlotte boys basketball upsets Port Charlotte for district title.

• Venice girls soccer finishes regular season with a 15-0-1 record and reaches Elite 8.

• Charlotte girls basketball team wins district and reaches Elite 8.

• Port Charlotte boys basketball comes within one shot of Final Four.

• Lemon Bay's Lauren Raggazone breaks school's single-season goal record with 30 scores.

• North Port's Emani Jefferson breaks school's single-game scoring record, then breaks her own record two weeks later.

• Lemon Bay's Tyson Davids, Charlotte's Donovan Cataldi finish runners-up at state wrestling meet.

• Charlotte lifter Lexus Sweet finishes runner-up in state weightlifting meet.

• Community Christian boys basketball reaches district final, caps most successful season in program history.

Email Jacob Hoag at jacob.hoag@yoursun.com and follow him on Twitter @ByJacobHoag.

0
0
0
0
0

Load comments