DUNEDIN — To appreciate what Luis Agramonte did during the regular season, when the 285-pound Dunedin senior went undefeated, you have to understand how hard it is for a wrestler to be perfect.
One false move, one slip, can be the difference.
Agramonte found out last week at the region tournament.
He fell behind to Oviedo's Doug Vollaro and spent the third period desperately trying to get a takedown. It didn't happen. Agramonte lost the championship match 4-3.
"It's so tough to stay undefeated," Agramonte said. "If you let your guard down even once, you can lose."
Though Agramonte experienced defeat for the first time this season, all is not lost. He still qualified for the Class 2A state meet, which starts Friday in Lakeland.
"My goals were to go undefeated and win a state title," he said. "I missed out on one, but I still have a chance for the other."
To win his first state title, Agramonte would most likely have to face Vollaro in the finals.
"I'm more motivated this week," Agramonte said. "I want to face (Vollaro) again, kick his butt and put that to rest."
Agramonte is one of seven Falcon wrestlers to qualify for state and represents the county's best hope for a state title among the public schools.
As for private schools, Northside Christian has a few contenders. Brian Travis, a former St. Petersburg Catholic wrestler who finished fourth at state at 103 pounds last season, won the 112-pound region title last week for the Mustangs. Teammates Dalton Dennis (125) and Anthony Melillo (130) also won region titles. Dennis' only two losses of the season have come against out-of-state competition. Admiral Farragut's Thomas Gorman won a region title at 160 and has just one loss.