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Unbeaten Gibbons Leads Florida Final Four

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Unbeaten Gibbons Leads Florida Final Four

Florida’s high School champion is going to be a little bit closer to being picked with the state semis this coming weekend.

After the regional playoffs produced two winners, the top two from each region play off in a crossover semifinal Saturday. Jupiter is at Orland and Jacksonville is at Cardinal Gibbons.

Perhaps the big surprise is that the Tampa Krewe is not in this group. Tampa went 5-1 in Region 1, finishing 1st, but lost 28-19 to 4-2 Jacksonville in the playoffs. Tampa ended up winning a consolation game two weeks ago 5-3 over the Cape Pirates. Orlando had beaten the Pirates to make the final four with Jacksonville, and in fact beat Jacksonville 19-7 in the Region 1 final.

No such surprises in Region 2, as Cardinal Gibbons (Region 2 District 4 winners), and Jupiter (Region 2 District 3 winners) won their semis going away.

In the Region 2 Final, Gibbons beat Jupiter 31-12, and for Gibbons, now, league and playoff results have the team at 8-0 with a points for and against of 288-85 (36-11 on average). 

“I know we’ve got a really strong side, but we are looking for some new matchups and see where we are with the other teams in Florida,” said one of the Gibbons coaches, Eric Aumann. “I don’t know what the North will bring us. Against Jupiter - they’ve got a pretty good side, and we never felt they were out of it.”

The Gibbons team, added Aumann, is big. The players are just physically huge. 

“We are bigger than some men’s teams in the area,” said Aumann. “Jupiter was able to match us a little bit there. We made some breakthroughs but we just didn’t get the support there to get those offloads.”

Juniors Chad Tiernan, Yahweh Juedy, and Nico Sheesley have been very good for Gibbons, while senior Adam Budd is a burgeoning talent, as well. Aumann said the team is looking forward to the challenge, and it’s true that this will be the first chance for the North and the South teams to meet each other.