We are excited to once again bring you "A Fan's Guide" to the FHSAA Regional Tournaments that are taking place this coming weekend across Florida.  We are pleased to provide the casual fan an insider's look into each bracket and what may (or may not) happen over the course of the weekend.  We make no predictions about who will win or qualify for next week's state tournament.  For each weight class we provide a few bulletpoints to watch and then a copy of the bracket (which you can see for yourself on trackwrestling.com).  Each weight class features:

  • Favorite: Our favorite to win the weight class based on this past season and past performance.
  • Contenders: A list of wrestlers that should challenge the favorite for the top step on the podium.
  • Best 1st round match: The match we believe will be the closest during the 1st round of action.
  • Darkhorse: A wrestler that did not finish 1st or 2nd in his/her area, but has all the tools to knock off everyone and take the top step.
  • Predicted Finals Match: Obviously who we believe will be in the finals.

Team Notes: School (# = # of qualifiers, # = # of District Champs)

Individual Notes:  SQ = 2015 State Qualifier; 1st = 2015 State Champ; 2nd = 2015 State Runner-up, etc.

District 5

  • Belleview (11, 7)
  • Citrus (10, 3)
  • Forest (6, 1)
  • Lake Weir (6, 0)
  • Lecanto (4, 0)
  • South Lake (9, 1)
  • Springstead (10, 2)

District 6

  • Deltona (5, 0)
  • East River (7, 3)
  • Harmony (10, 2)
  • Liberty (9, 4)
  • New Smyrna Beach (7, 1)
  • Pine Ridge (4, 1)
  • Poinciana (6, 1)
  • Seabreeze (6, 2)

District 7

  • Armwood (1, 0)
  • Auburndale (4, 0)
  • Brandon (13, 6)
  • King (6, 0)
  • Lake Gibson (14, 4)
  • Lake Region (0, 0)
  • Pasco (9, 4)
  • Tampa Bay Tech (0, 0)
  • Wesley Chapel (5, 0)
  • Winter Haven (4, 0)
  • Zephyrhills (0, 0)

District 8

  • Blake (2, 0)
  • Chamberlain (3, 1)
  • Gaither (3, 2)
  • Hillsborough (5, 0)
  • Jefferson (5, 0)
  • Jesuit (9, 5)
  • Land O'Lakes (5, 1)
  • Lennard (8, 3)
  • Leto (3, 0)
  • Robinson (9, 1)
  • Sunlake (4, 1)

Team

  • Favorite: Brandon
  • Contenders:
    • Lake Gibson
    • Jesuit
    • Belleview
    • Pasco
    • Liberty
    • Springstead
  • Darkhorse: Lennard
  • Summary: It isn't called the "Region of Doom" for nothing.  Lake Gibson knocked off Brandon for the first time in 41 years (for the District 7 title) and could be the team to beat this weekend.  It will likely come down to a battle between Brandon, Lake Gibson, Jesuit, Belleview, and Pasco.  Liberty, Springstead, Citrus, and Lennard will be in the mix, but don't look like they have the horses to keep up with the top teams.  We have selected Brandon as the "favorite" because of what many people might be considered their "certainties" ... Norstrem, Bruno, Lane, and Marcano.  Jesuit probably has 3 "certainties" as well in Ramirez, Lewis, and Buser.  Lake Gibson, Belleview, and Pasco will each have region champions ... the question is ... how many?  The other looming question is ... how will the 2's, 3's and 4's from each district fair for each of the top teams (Popke, Mandell, and Scrivens for Brandon; Hosegood, Fanfan, and Williams for Lake Gibson; Ayers, Haire and DeAugustino for Pasco; Surak and Fisher for Jesuit; Yerk and Crew for Belleview?  Their placement and advancement could shift the balance to any of the teams mentioned.

106 lbs.

  • Favorite: Trey Lane (Brandon)
  • Contenders:
    • Brenda Santos (Gaither)
    • Anthony Lopez (Liberty)
    • Nathan Lawell (Lake Gibson)
    • Christopher Keene (Citrus)
    • Luke Surak (Jesuit)
  • Best 1st Round Match: Ayers vs. Cieckiewicz
  • Darkhorse: Chase Ayers (Pasco)
  • Finals: Santos vs. Lane
  • Summary: The top side of the bracket should be very competitive ... the 2nd quarter with Wetzel, Lawell, and Santos should be the best one to watch.  Keep an eye on Chase Ayers of Pasco in the top quarter.  Lane should take care of the bottom side, but expect Lopez to be in the mix as well.

113 lbs.

  • Favorite: Diamonte Perry (Lake Gibson) - 3rd @ 106
  • Contenders:
    • Bryant Haire (Pasco) - SQ @ 106 1A
    • Travis Pawlowski (South Lake)
    • Lucas Haase (Liberty)
    • Hunter Lefevre (Lennard)
    • Xzavier Ramos (Springstead)
  • Best 1st Round Match: Ramos vs. Bond
  • Darkhorse: Andreus Bond (Brandon)
  • Finals: Perry vs. Haire
  • Summary: The bottom side of the bracket should be fun to watch.  Haase, Ness, Haire, Ramos, Bond, and Lefevre all have a shot to be in the finals.  Returning 106 lb. State Placer Diamonte Perry should take care of the top side of the bracket with relative ease.

120 lbs.

  • Favorite: Kyle Irwin (Belleview) - SQ @ 120
  • Contenders:
    • Austin Hosegood (Lake Gibson)
    • Matthew Daner (Jesuit)
    • Vinny D'Alessandro (Springstead)
    • Aaron Barrios (East River)
    • Justin Valdez (Robinson)
  • Best 1st Round Match: Rosario vs. Valdez
  • Darkhorse: Peter Cruz (Lennard)
  • Finals: Irwin vs. Hosegood
  • Summary: Wide open weight class ... many have a legitimate possibility of reaching the finals.  Keep an eye on the Irwin vs. Cruz and Hosegood vs. D'Alessandro quarterfinals.  Do you enjoy wide open wrestling?  This could be the weight to watch.

126 lbs.

  • Favorite: Kyle Norstrem (Brandon) - 1st @ 120
  • Contenders:
    • John DeAugustino (Pasco) - SQ @ 113 1A
    • Joe Wilcox (Forest)
    • Kevin Rivera (Springstead)
    • Michael Brock (Robinson)
    • Joseph Figueroa (Liberty)
  • Best 1st Round Match: Rivera vs. Fanfan
  • Darkhorse: Jonathan Fanfan (Lake Gibson)
  • Finals: Norstrem vs. DeAugustino
  • Summary: Rivera vs. Fanfan will probably be the best opening round match of the tournament.  Norstrem should handle the top side, but for Wilcox, Hernandez, and Mott reaching the semifinals will be very important to their qualifying for the state tournament.  DeAugustino wrestled Norstrem tough last weekend and the two should meet again this weekend.  The bottom quarter of the bracket should be the toughest.

132 lbs.

  • Favorite: Lukas Twardosky (Pasco) - 3rd @ 120 1A 
  • Contenders:
    • David Kirk (Lennard) - SQ @ 132
    • Clayton Leach (Lake Gibson)
    • Austin Smith (East River)
    • Charlie Roche (Springstead)
    • Grayson Fisher (Jesuit)
  • Best 1st Round Match: Fisher vs. Scrivens
  • Darkhorse: Lawrence Scrivens (Brandon)
  • Finals: Leach vs. Twardosky
  • Summary: Jesuit will get an opportunity to derail Brandon in the opening round with the Fisher vs. Scrivens match ... the winner could be in the semi's (assuming they can get by Smith of East River).  Keep an eye on the top quarter of the bracket.  Twardosky and Kirk, the two best 132's in the bracket should meet in the bottom semifinal.

138 lbs.

  • Favorite: Frank Bruno (Brandon) - 2nd @ 126
  • Contenders:
    • Jessen Hendrix (Belleview) - SQ @ 126
    • Angel Dominguez (Jesuit)
    • Emmanuel Torres (Wesley Chapel) - SQ @ 138 1A
    • Josh Spears (Land O'Lakes)
    • Jordan Engberg (New Smyrna Beach)
  • Best 1st Round Match: Williams vs. Bourne
  • Darkhorse: Gabriel Bourne (Lake Gibson)
  • Finals: Hendrix vs. Bruno
  • Summary: The top quarter of the bracket is the toughest.  Keep an eye on the Hendrix vs. Dominguez semifinal and the 3rd quarter of the bracket where any of the four could emerge into the semifinal spot opposite Bruno.

145 lbs.

  • Favorite: Adam Lewis (Jesuit) - 1st @ 145
  • Contenders:
    • Noah Ridley (Brandon) - 6th @ 132
    • Austin Gilhart (Harmony)
    • David Miller (Citrus)
    • Trevor White (Lennard)
    • Jakob Crew (Belleview)
  • Best 1st Round Match: Prado vs. Crew
  • Darkhorse: Erick Prado (Leto)
  • Finals: Lewis vs. Ridley
  • Summary: Lewis should take care of the top side of the bracket ... who he gets in the semi's will be interesting (probably Miller, but don't sleep on Gosnell).  The 3rd quarter of the bracket is the toughest ... with Prado vs. Crew in Round 1 and the winner will likely get Gilhart in the quarters.

152 lbs.

  • Favorite: Julian Ramirez (Jesuit) - 1st @ 138
  • Contenders:
    • Christian Febus (Lake Gibson) - 5th @ 152
    • Chad Heidt (Robinson) - SQ @ 138
    • Travis Williams (Springstead)
    • Nick Waugh (Pine Ridge)
    • Brock Spurling (Brandon)
  • Best 1st Round Match: Perez vs. Lyon
  • Darkhorse: Zach Wendle (Auburndale)
  • Finals: Heidt vs. Ramirez
  • Summary: The two best are on the same side of the bracket in Febus and Ramirez.  That means the top side should be open for Heidt, Waugh, Spurling, Bundick, and Williams.  

160 lbs.

  • Favorite: Adam Pyle (Auburndale) - 4th @ 160
  • Contenders:
    • Jared Burgess (Belleview) - 6th @ 152
    • Miguel Hernandez (Pasco)
    • Miguel Ruberia (East River)
    • Demond Curry (Chamberlain)
    • Justin Allan (Citrus)
  • Best 1st Round Match: Allan vs. Kern
  • Darkhorse: Hunter Kern (Lake Gibson)
  • Finals: Burgess vs. Pyle
  • Summary: Burgess vs. Hernandez could be a great semifinal.  Pyle's injury default in last weekend's District tournament makes the 3rd quarter of the bracket a beast (unless he is still hurt and cannot compete).  Allan vs. Kern should be the best 1st round match with the winner getting Curry.  The bottom side of the bracket will be fun to watch.

170 lbs.

  • Favorite: Brad Bolesta (Gaither)
  • Contenders:
    • Jesse Seidl (Land O'Lakes) - SQ @ 170
    • Blake Castillo (Pasco)
    • Christian Collins (Citrus)
    • Darius Nathan (Lake Gibson)
    • Brian Almeida-Torres (Liberty)
    • Gabriel Gonzalez (Deltona)
  • Best 1st Round Match: Jagernauth vs. Scaglione
  • Darkhorse: Tyler Jagernauth (Lennard)
  • Finals: Bolesta vs. Seidl
  • Summary: The Seidl vs. Castillo quarterfinal might be the best one of the tournament ... certainly the bottom quarter is the most difficult.  Almeida-Torres vs. Jagernauth or Scaglione should also be fun to watch.  Bolesta and Collins can't be looking ahead ... both of their quarters will also be entertaining.

182 lbs.

  • Favorite: Brian Buser (Jesuit) - 2nd @ 170
  • Contenders:
    • Conner Knauer (Hillsborough) - 6th @ 182
    • Malachi Ortiz (Belleview) - SQ @ 182
    • Alex Popke (Brandon)
    • Brandon Burgess (Springstead) - SQ @ 182
    • Matthew Kohler (Seabreeze)
  • Best 1st Round Match: Gorman vs. Burgess
  • Darkhorse: Miles Gorman (Land O'Lakes)
  • Finals: Buser vs. Knauer
  • Summary: Buser vs. Ortiz should be a great semifinal ... But the action will likely be on the bottom side of the bracket.  Both quarters #3 and #4 should be very entertaining.  Popke vs. Knauer could be one of the best quarterfinals of the tournament.

195 lbs.

  • Favorite: Joe Marcano (Brandon) - 3rd @ 195
  • Contenders:
    • Ronnie Estep (Sunlake) - SQ @ 195
    • Caleb Williams (Lake Gibson)
    • Justin Ortiz (Belleview)
    • Barden Buswell (Seabreeze)
    • Cody Bush (Auburndale)
  • Best 1st Round Match: Penman vs. Alicea
  • Darkhorse: Logan Penman (Jesuit)
  • Finals: Marcano vs. Estep
  • Summary: Marcano should handle the top side and Estep looks like the man to beat on the bottom side.  Keep an eye on Caleb Williams in the 3rd quarter of the bracket.

220 lbs.

  • Favorite: Silas Root (Harmony) - 5th @ 285
  • Contenders:
    • Devan Lopez-Rojas (Lake Gibson)
    • Leonard Jacobs (Belleview)
    • Josh Santana (Brandon)
    • Eli Capshaw (Land O'Lakes)
    • Kelton Wilemon (Lake Weir)
  • Best 1st Round Match: Wilemon vs. Irizarry
  • Darkhorse: Anthony Irizarry (Pasco)
  • Finals: Jacobs vs. Root
  • Summary: Brandon's Santana pulls the toughest quarter with 285 State Placer Silas Root.  Root is easily the best on the bottom side of the bracket and the potential matches with Wilemon, Irizarry, and/or Capshaw in the championship bracket or on the backside will be entertaining.  The top side is wide open ... Jacobs and Lopez-Rojas appear to be destined to meet, but be sure to keep an eye on Morris of Hillsborough.

285 lbs.

  • Favorite: Rowdy Driggers (Lennard) - 3rd @ 285
  • Contenders:
    • Nickolas Burt (Pasco) - 4th @ 220 1A
    • Ryan Mandell (Brandon)
    • Jordan Ortega (Belleview)
    • Donnie Brown (Poinciana)
    • Jesus Gonzalez (Jesuit)
  • Best 1st Round Match: Gonzalez vs. Davis
  • Darkhorse: Christian Davis (Lake Gibson)
  • Finals: Mandell vs. Driggers
  • Summary: The two best 285's are on the same side of the bracket with Driggers and Burt.  Expect that semifinal to be exciting.  That leaves the door open for nearly everyone on the top side of the bracket.  Keep an eye on Mandell vs. Afanasenko and Davis Gonzalez ... those 2 1st round matches should be worth the price of admission.