These are the top five sports moments from 2019.
The 2019 district tournament was all about “redemption” for Seabreeze’s flag football team. The Sandcrabs defeated Pine Ridge 19-13 to advance to the district championship for the second year in a row, where they faced No. 1-seed Mainland — for the second year in a row. Down 7-6 with 1:24 remaining in the game, Sandcrabs quarterback Bailey McQuarrie, who dropped back and with defenders in her face, launched the ball downfield. Teammate Alex Nelson caught it for a touchdown. The Sandcrabs' defense forced a turnover on downs to win the game 12-7.
Sandcrabs football sees growth in Year 1 under Brown
Seabreeze's football team went 1-9 in the third and final season under ex-head coach Troy Coke in 2018. Coke stepped down in December 2018, and former-Father Lopez defensive coordinator Pat Brown was hired to the position. The Sandcrabs went 5-5 in Brown's first season at the helm, with victories over Matanzas, Deltona, Winter Springs, Halifax Academy and Pine Ridge. It was the Sandcrabs' winningest season since 2013.
Sandcrabs boys soccer falls short in state title game
The journey to their third straight state championship appearance was nothing short of breathtaking. The Sandcrabs' boys soccer team came back from being down 3-0 and outlasted Ponte Vedra in a penalty shootout in the Class 3A boys soccer state semifinal on Feb. 16. Seabreeze lost to American Heritage again in the title game but still finished the season with a 22-3-1 record and graduated one of the winningest classes in school history.
Mainland boys basketball battles in playoffs
The Buccaneers' boys basketball team fell 49-47 to Auburndale in the 2019 FHSAA State Playoffs on Feb. 26, but that doesn't mean the Buccaneers didn't have an otherwise incredible season. Mainland was led by seniors Rodney Rhoden and Johnny Brown, both of whom are playing college ball now, and then-junior Jordan Sears, the team's leading scorer. The Buccaneers concluded the season 27-2 record and won 26 games in a row. In addition, the Buccaneers defeated rival Atlantic three-straight times.
Bucs girls track places sixth at states
Mainland's girls track and field team qualified 20 athletes for the 3A FHSAA Track and Field State Championships May 3 and May 4 at the University of North Florida. The Buccaneers brought home 14 medals across 17 events and finished in sixth place as a team — their best finish ever. Then-sophomore sprinter Cydney Wright — who competed in the 100-meter dash, 200-meter dash and the 4x400-meter relay — was arguably the Buccaneers’ top performer. After being seeded second in the 100-meter dash, she placed fourth with a time of 11.80. Wright also earned a bronze medal in the 200-meter dash, which she competed in as a freshman last season, with a time of 24.09.