GIBSONTON — Going into the consolation and championship finals, Bloomingdale had a six-point lead over Alonso and Durant in the Class 3A, District 5 tournament Saturday.
The Bulls and Cougars stayed close until the last few matches, when Bloomingdale surged ahead for a 181.5-174 victory. It was the Bulls' first district championship in Don Peek's seven years as coach.
"Our kids wanted this one bad," Peek said. "You would think with all the great wrestlers we have had those other years we would have already won. However, this is a very tough district.
Peek said he thought it was realistic to hope for eight guys to get through to regionals. The Bulls will send 11 forward.
They won two individual titles, had three runnerup spots and took three third and three fourth places.
Winning championship belts for Bloomingdale were Sammy Conner (103) and Chris Figari (160).
Durant won three individual titles, as did Riverview. But the Sharks finished a distant fourth with 122.5 points.
Riverview will take seven to regionals and Durant 10.
Winning individual championships for Durant were Alex Hamm (112), Reggie Beal (152) and Marshon Shoemake (215).
Sharks champs included Ryan Hight(130), Herman Hernandez and (135) Lamarkus Dennis.
"We left about 30 points out on the mats," Durant coach Dennis Kitko said. "Bloomingdale really wrestled a great tournament and we were flat. I am going to have to come up with a way to encourage them for next week. We can do better."
Other Hillsborough County champions included Alonso's Tony Milanes (119) and Mike Schepman (125), Sickles' Skyler Woods (145), East Bay's Tyler Hooks (171) and Plant City's Travis Vollick (189).
Bloomingdale team captain Figari was pleased with the Bulls' overall performance.
"We have a lot of experienced seniors on our team who led the team with wins and bonus points," Figari said. "But as close as it was we needed some of our younger guys to step.
"They did, most notably sophomore Skip Reagor and freshman Jared Lawson. We still have a lot of hard work ahead for regionals."