The Laker/Lutz News will unveil its 2012 soccer and basketball all-star teams next week, but here’s a look at who made the cut for wrestling and girls weightlifting.
–Adrienne Evers, Sr., Sunlake. Lifted 325 total pounds in the state unlimited weight class, good enough for 18th place.
–Sarah McDaniel, N/A, Sunlake. Threw up 125 pounds in the bench press and 165 in the clean and jerk to finish 11th in the 139-pound state meet.
–Alex Ruiz, So., Sunlake. Won the District 5 119-pound championship by posting 315 total pounds lifted.
–Sherling Tejada, Sr., Sunlake. Her 8th-place performance in the state 183-pound class was better than any other area athlete.
Lifter of the Year: Alex Ruiz, Sunlake. The junior may have disqualified from the state meet, but Ruiz was the most consistent lifter throughout the season despite moving up in weight class to 119 pounds. Ruiz also managed to claim the District 5 championship by posting 315 pounds, almost three times her weight.
Coach of the Year: Denise Garcia, Sunlake. Garcia’s coaching helped four of her athletes make the state meet. No other area program sent even one.
–Nick Popolillo, Sr., Wesley Chapel. Made the most of his final trip to the Class 1A meet, placing fourth overall for the 152-pounders.
–Jeremy Qualls, Sr., Wesley Chapel. Claimed fifth in the 145-pound Class 1A state meet.
–Tony Ruggiero, Jr., Wesley Chapel. Took sixth overall in the Class 1A 120-pound tournament, finishing with a 42-14 record.
–Chris Saintilen, Sr., Freedom. Won his first two matchups in the 160-pound Class 3A meet and finished fifth overall.
Wrestler of the Year: Nick Popolillo, Wesley Chapel. Went out and had the meet of his life during the Class 1A 152-pound state meet. Popolillo finished fourth overall, better than any other area athlete in any weight class. The senior finished with a 49-5 record this year.
Coach of the Year: Brian Simmons, Wesley Chapel. Brought a program record five athletes to the state meet this year, including three who placed. The Wildcats also claimed a district championship and finished as a regional runner-up under Simmons this year.
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