The News-Press 2013 All-Area Wrestler of the Year: Brandon Gacad

The News-Press 2013 All-Area Wrestler of the Year: Brandon Gacad


The News-Press 2013 All-Area Wrestler of the Year: Brandon Gacad


When Ida Baker senior Brandon Gacad arrived at the Lakeland Center for his fourth consecutive FHSAA Wrestling finals, he was ready to finish what he started.

The Class 2A state champion at 120 pounds had been runner-up the past two seasons and this would be his last shot to walk away with the title.

“Since I started wrestling in seventh grade, the picture-perfect moment for me is the time you win the state title,” Gacad said. “Being in that position twice and to come up short makes you that much more hungry. It makes you want it that much more. It’s almost a tease.”

Gacad won his district, region and the state title to end his career with 200 wins, a school record, and 27 losses. He gave up no points at the state finals, outscoring his opponents 10-0.

Gacad finished his senior season with a 53-1 record, his only loss coming at the Buzz Hill Invitational to Tampa Bay Christian eighth-grader Ty Lucas, which he said served as a turning point.

“It was an eye-opening experience for me,” Gacad said. “That next Monday at practice I pushed everyone to the limit. I had a totally different mindset from that point on.”

Gacad wrestled his final two seasons for LCAC Coach of the Year Fernando Vazquez who constantly challenged him in workouts and meets to bring out his best.

Vazquez stripped Gacad of his captain duties causing the two to bump heads a majority of his junior year. But late in the year Gacad began to buy into the system and perform as more of a team player.

“I’ll be honest with you. He is the reason I won a state title,” Gacad said. “I’ve had a lot of coaches who know more about wrestling than coach Vazquez. The mental toughness that he brought to me is indescribable.

“He put me in situations where most people would crawl in a ball and start crying. Sometimes I wanted to and he would pick me up and put me back on my feet. He not only made me a better wrestler, he made me a better man.”

First team

Colten Thomas

» School: Cypress Lake freshman

» Weight: 106

» Highlights: Won county title and was district runner-up. Placed fourth in the region to qualify for Class 2A state finals. (Finished 19-5 this season)

Rich Riechelt

» School: Riverdale sophomore

» Weight: 113

» Highlights: Moved up a weight class and qualified for state finals. Won the Lyman Invitational, LCAC and district. Placed third at the regional meet and fourth at Class 2A finals. (37-7)

Trenton Swanson

» School:Riverdale junior

» Weight: 126

» Highlights: Was a state qualifier with a fourth-place finish in his region. Won Captain Archer, LCAC and placed second at the Fivay Invitational. Placed third in his district. (34-11)

Nick Anthony

» School: Cape Coral junior

» Weight: 132

» Highlights: The Pennsylvania transplant placed third at state finals and was second at the Buzz Hill Invitational. Won his district and his region.(26-3)

Bruno Bredicean

» School: Cape Coral senior

» Weight: 138

» Highlights: Won county and district titles. Placed third in his region and sixth in the Class 2A state finals. Finished career with record of 126-38. (44-6)

Christian Jurney

» School:Riverdale senior

» Weight: 145

» Highlights: For most of the year was the No. 1 ranked wrestler at 145. Qualified for second state championship where he placed third in Class 2A. Won county, district and region titles. Holds record of 108-10. (34-2)

Quinton Fleming

» School: South Fort Myers junior

» Weight: 152

» Highlights: Was one match away from qualifying for the Class 2A state finals. Was county champ and runner-up in district. (32-10)

Jabari Irons

» School: Lehigh senior

» Weight: 160

» Highlights: Won county, district and regional titles. Was second at the Class 2A finals. Career record of 127-26. (50-2)

Levi McQuinn

» School: Fort Myers sophomore

» Weight: 170

» Highlights: Won county title and was runner-up in district. Qualified for the Class 2A state finals with a fourth-place finish in region. (38-15)

Hunter Schawalder

» School: Mariner senior

» Weight: 182

» Highlights: Placed fifth at the Class 2A state finals . Was third in district and fourth in region. Career record of 102-54. (30-12)

Treston Dunn

» School:Riverdale senior

» Weight: 195

» Highlights: Was county, district, region champ. The state qualifier won Fivay Invitational. Career record: 87-16. (41-7)

Edwin Etienne

» School:Riverdale senior

» Weight: 220

» Highlights: Class 2A state champion. Earned county, district and regional titles. First at Captain Archer and Fivay Invitational. Career record: 122-24. (50-1)

Fequierson Charles

» School: Fort Myers senior

» Weight: 285

» Highlights: Went head-to-head with Class 2A state champ Brady Pallante (Barron Collier) four times, the two split the series. LCAC and district champion. Runner-up at region and state. (43-2)

Second team

Second team

» Noah Huxley, SFCA

» Ben Willard, ECS

» Corey Kerkesner, Cypress

» Abdias Corgelas, Fort Myers

» Tyler Floyd, Riverdale

» Bud Kelly, Island Coast

» Derrick Downing, Riverdale

» Arnoldo Ayala, LaBelle

» Angel Rivas, Riverdale

» Christopher Whipple, Fort Myers

» Brandon Cashatt, Cypress Lake

» Alejandro Lopez, Mariner

» Nick Quiones, Island Coast

Honorable mention

Honorable mention

» Baker: Brian Johnson, Tyler Iverson, Daniel Murillo

» Cape Coral: Chris Kiser, Jordan Jones, Mike Shayer

» Cypress Lake: Junior Mesidur, Joery Jeanty, Nabbacus Watkins

» Dunbar: Javier Domingo, Lavaris Preston

» Estero: Ian Kidder, Riley Thompson, Jake Heape

» Evangelical Christian: Matthew Malavsky

» Fort Myers:
Juan Vila

» Island Coast: Andre Ottinger, Drew Fay

» LaBelle: Nyko Harynarine, Joseph DiPofi

» Lehigh: Max Schmalzrie, Francisco Figueroa, Freddy Johnson

» Mariner: Keaton Koselke, Ashton Plourde, Zach Fouch

» North Fort Myers:
Deyrel Diaz, Joey Ciganiek, Richie Klocksieben

» Oasis: Joe Pascale, Matt Dressel, Jacob Edwards

» Riverdale: Austin Cassel, Donnie Poidevin, Maxworth Walker

» South Fort Myers: Javier Lopez, Stanley LaJeune, Luke Bierce

» SFCA: David Bush, David Delly, Jesse Barringer

Coach of the Year

Coach of the Year

Kris Hayward, Riverdale: In his 10th year leading the Raiders, the team posted a dual record of 14-2. Riverdale won Lee County, district and region titles as well. Hayward took seven wrestlers to the FHSAA Class 2A State Finals where Riverdale placed fourth overall.


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