Co­ral Springs Char­ter, Ro­mano strike at state

Se­nior helps Pan­thers bring home girls ti­tle

Sun Sentinel Palm Beach Edition - - SPORTS - By Gary Cur­reri Cor­re­spon­dent

Co­ral Springs Char­ter School se­nior Har­mony Ro­mano closed out her sev­enyear ca­reer at the school by help­ing the Pan­thers cap­ture the FHSAA state bowl­ing team cham­pi­onship at Board­walk Bowl in Or­lando.

Ro­mano, who be­gan bowl­ing at the school as a sixth-grader, fin­ished fifth over­all af­ter qual­i­fy­ing for the in­di­vid­ual com­pe­ti­tion for the first time but turned in key per­for­mances in the baker games to help Co­ral Springs Char­ter bat­tle back through the con­so­la­tion round to de­feat Cir­cle Chris­tian for the cham­pi­onship. They are the first Broward County school to win a team ti­tle since the sport was sanc­tioned in 2003.

“When we got to the fi­nal four, I wrote on a piece of pa­per and counted 12 to 1, and ev­ery time we won a game, I scratched off a num­ber,” said Pan­thers coach Nel­son Mar­tin. “I told them we needed 12 wins for a cham­pi­onship. This is un­be­liev­able. I am over the moon right now.”

Co­ral Springs Char­ter needed to beat the Cen­tu­ri­ons twice to win the ti­tle. The Pan­thers won the first match in five games, and af­ter drop­ping the first game of the sec­ond match, 154-125, they swept the next three 173-169, 165-153 and 181-126 to win sec­ond the school’s sev­enth over­all state cham­pi­onship – four soft­ball and two cheer­lead­ing.

En­ter­ing the tour­na­ment, Mar­tin ad­mit­ted his team was an un­der­dog since it grad­u­ated last year’s state in­di­vid­ual cham­pion and high school All-Amer­i­can Chrys­tal Singh, who is at Tu­lane Univer­sity.

“Even though Chrys­tal was a big part of the team, we all made up the team,” Ro­mano said. “This was my way of thank­ing her and thank­ing Jes­sica Mel­lott [state run­ner-up in 2013] for what they did to get us here. The seven years was one hel­luva ride. I will def­i­nitely miss all of th­ese girls and can’t wait for col­lege to hap­pen.”

In ad­di­tion to Ro­mano, two other girls from South Florida reached the round of 16 in­clud­ing Co­ral Springs Char­ter School sev­enth-grader Kata­rina Ha­gler and Berean Chris­tian se­nior Ni­c­hole Lewis. None were able to win state ti­tles.

On the boys' side, Jupiter High se­nior Isaac Gorzyn­ski reached the boys’ round of 16, but came up empty in his bid for a state ti­tle.

He also helped the Jupiter boys team to a sec­ond-place fin­ish af­ter fall­ing to Oviedo in three games, 185-178, 187-180 and 208-179.

The War­riors had lost to Oviedo ear­lier in the com­pe­ti­tion and bat­tled back in the con­so­la­tion round and de­feated Seabreeze in five games to reach the fi­nal round. Jupiter de­feated Oviedo in three games to force a de­ci­sive match be­cause the Li­ons were un­de­feated at that point.

“The boys worked hard all sea­son and re­ally came to­gether as a team at the state com­pe­ti­tion,” said Jupiter boys coach Rick Emery. “I couldn't be more proud of the team and our cap­tain Isaac Gorzyn­ski who kept the team mo­ti­vated and fo­cused.”

Co­ral Springs Char­ter’s boys fin­ished sev­enth, while the Stone­man Dou­glas girls fell to Co­ral Springs Char­ter in the con­so­la­tion bracket in four games.

COUR­TESY/NEL­SON MAR­TIN

Top row, from left: Kata­rina Ha­gler, Har­mony Ro­mano, Ju­lia Galang, coach Nel­son Mar­tin and Melody Ro­mano; bot­tom row, from left: Lind­sey Gar­cia, Emily Ram­bus, Madi­son Foster and Larkin Kramer.

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