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Eight from Osceola advance to regional

Osceola advanced eight wrestlers, including four champions at the Class 3A, District 11 wrestling tournament Saturday.

The top four finishers in each weight class qualified for the 3A-Region III meet at Auburndale.

Osceola, which had won two straight team district championships, finished third with 140 points. Charlotte High won the team championship with 154 points.

District champions for Osceola were Billy Carter (160), Andy Mussen (125), Knang Ngo (103) and Aaron Motta (275). Carter won his second straight district title, 15-0 over Stuart Clarke of Bradenton Southeast. Ngo rallied from a 9-4 deficit to win 13-9 in the 103-pound weight class.

Osceola also advanced Kiet Ngo (112), Nick Stataro (152), Dave Peleshuck (171) and Kevin Castro (187).

Gibbs' Damon Baldwin won a district title in the 119-pound weight class. Also, Lakewood's Justin Ruggeri (125) finished fourth to qualify for regionals.

Countryside cruises

to 4A-7 championship

DUNEDIN _ The rest of the field in Class 4A, District 7 is sneaking up on Countryside, said Cougars coach Dave Frayer.

Maybe. But it didn't show in the final standings. The Cougars ran up 225 points to capture their 11th straight 4A-7 title.

Pinellas Park was second with 174.5, Clearwater third with 118, Largo fourth with 103, Seminole fifth with 90 and Dunedin sixth with 36.

"We set a couple of unrealistic goals, again," said Frayer. "We wanted to get all 13 kids in the finals (they missed by three) and break 200 points again (which they did easily). But this district is more competitive than it was last year."

The Cougars advanced 12 wrestlers into next week's regionals and produced eight district titlists: Randy Marcum at 103, Billy Huzar at 112, Kirk Bradley at 119, Kyle Bradley at 125, Travis Williams at 135, Troy Fish at 171, Dan Hughes at 189 and John Navakas at 220.

Largo had three champs _ at 140, Rich Stegura defeated Larry Bettura of Pinellas Park 7-6; David Avila defeated Marshal Green of Pinellas Park 9-3 at 145; and at 275, George Maafu downed Gregg Marrocco of Seminole 4-3.

Northeast ties for

second at 4A-8 meet

BRADENTON _ Defending champion Sarasota scored 159 points to win the Class 4A, District 8 wrestling tournament.

Aaron Leitner at 135, Mark McKinnon at 160 and Toraino Peterson at 275 all won their classes for Northeast, which tied Riverview for second place with 129 points. Dixie Hollins took fourth with 99 points, led by Tim Hearns' 2-1 win over Cape Coral's Jason Lane in the 112 final.

The top four wrestlers in each class advance to the Region II meet Saturday at Brandon. Eight Northeast wrestlers will make the trip along with seven from Dixie Hollins.

Other Pinellas winners were St. Petersburg's Tim Byrd and Boca Ciega's Jason Pettit.

_ Correspondents Steve Persall, Rick Gershman and Robert McGinty, and staff writer Tony Green contributed to this report.

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