In recent games, Seabreeze boys basketball coach Pepper Johnson noticed something. His young team was starting to figure things out.
After finishing the regular season with a 0-18 record, including four losses by five points or less, the Sandcrabs finally put it all together with a 46-45 victory over Matanzas in a District 4-5A tournament game on Feb. 8 at the Seabreeze gym.
“We finally won one,” Johnson exclaimed. “It was a wonderful, wonderful game.”
After Matanzas went up 45-44 with 17 seconds left, Lorenzo Coltelli found Cole Long in the lane. Long hit a layup with 7.5 seconds left and was fouled. He missed the free throw, and the Pirates brought the ball up past halfcourt with 3.5 seconds left and called timeout.
Pirates point guard Tariq Shakir drove the lane but missed the shot as time ran out.
“We've been fighting all year, trying to put a full game together,” Johnson said. “I'm so proud of them. They stuck together all year long, never doubted each other. We finally put one together at the right time.
“Aidan Bailey did good job rebounding. I think we controlled the boards tonight. ”
The Sandcrabs, who are hosting the tournament, earned the opportunity to play another game in their home gym on Feb. 9 against cross-town rival Mainland.
The Sandcrabs and Bucs had not met in a boys basketball game since the 2019-2020 season.
Seabreeze's girls and boys soccer teams both hit the road for the regional quarterfinals after both fell to Orlando Bishop Moore in the district finals.
The Bishop Moore girls team, which is ranked fourth in the state among all classifications and first in Class 4A, defeated the Sandcrabs 3-0 on Feb. 2. Seabreeze had won six straight entering the contest, outscoring its opponents 35-2.
The Sandcrabs (13-5) were scheduled to play at Satellite in the Region 2-4A quarterfinals on Feb. 8. Seabreeze scored 63 goals in the regular season with Brianna Chesley leading with 20 goals and Emily Myers scoring 15.
The Seabreeze boys team fell to 9-6-1 with its 4-0 loss to Bishop Moore. The Hornets scored three goals in the second half to run away with the district title. Seabreeze was also scheduled to travel to Satellite for a regional quarterfinal on Feb. 9.
Unlike the high-scoring Seabreeze girls team, the boys scored 27 goals in 16 games, but they allowed only 21 goals with goalkeepers Andrew Cole and Aidan Denison combining for seven clean sheets.
Five Star wrestling
Seabreeze hosted the Five Star Conference wrestling tournament Feb. 5 and finished in sixth place, while Mainland was seventh. Flagler Palm Coast dominated the tournament with eight championships among the 14 weight classes.
Seabreeze had two runners-up: Joseph Kent at 132 pounds and Pedro Sierra Bonilla at 220.
Seabreeze's William Sites (106 pounds) and Mainland's Kaden Golder (126) placed third. Seabreeze's River Gray (113) and Mainland's Brian Harris (132), Desaniel Rodriguez Andin (138), Sam Ayodele (145) and Kalyb Evans (170) placed fourth.
Mainland girls 2nd at Clay Rotary
Mainland's girls team finished second at the inaugural Clay Rotary girls wrestling tournament. Abby Couillard (100) and Jah'Mya Hill (155) were runners-up. Cheyenne Wigley (235) placed third, and Trinya Tillman (170) and Eva Rojas (190) placed fourth.