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Plant’s Carrie Mahon named state coach of the year

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Plant's Carrie Mahon

Last week, Carrie Mahon was named the Class 7A coach of the year for the second straight season after leading Plant to its first state title in girls basketball. 

On Monday, Mahon added another award to the list when she was named the state’s overall girls basketball coach of the year by the Florida Dairy Farmers. 

Mahon received 15 first-place votes and 190 points from a statewide panel of coaches and media representatives to beat Lake Highland Prep’s Al Honor, who had seven first-place votes and 142 points. This is the only the second time an area coach has won the award, the first one came in 1996 when former Boca Ciega coach Harry Elifson took top honors. 

After falling in the state championship game last season, Mahon used the memory of that setback as a powerful motivator. The Panthers were focused not just on getting back to the state tournament but also winning it all. They accomplished their task and even exacted some revenge by beating defending champion Miami in the title game. 

Plant forward Kendal Cheesman also has compiled plenty of awards after helping Plant win its first title.Last week, she was named the Class 7A player of the year by the Florida Dairy Farmers and the state’s overall top player by MaxPreps.

On Monday, Cheesman finished third in the voting for Florida’s Miss Basketball, the award given to the top overall player in the state by the Florida Dairy Farmers. 

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The PTP girls lacrosse players of the week

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The fans’ pick

Avery Smith, So., Cypress Creek

As a freshman last year, Avery Smith had quite a debut, scoring 50 goals in an abbreviated 10-game season. 

The scoring continued this year, so much that Smith compiled 150 points in her high school career before her sophomore season ended. 

Entering last week, Smith ranked second in the area in goals (71) and points (90) to help the Coyotes earn the No. 1 seed in the Class 1A, District 5 tournament. She added to her total by scoring 11 more goals in three games to lead Cypress Creek to a district title. 

Fans took notice. Smith received more than 60 percent of the votes (3,141) to beat out Steinbrenner’s Taylor Lapointe (1,311 votes). 

The PTP pick

Chloe Norman, Jr., Land O’ Lakes: Led the area in goals with 88 entering the week and finished the season with 100. 

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General

The PTP boys lacrosse players of the week

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The fans’ pick

Nicholas Vreeland, Jr., Cypress Creek

Whenever Cypress Creek needs offensive production, it can turn to Nicholas Vreeland. 

The Coyotes’ go-to player has been consistent at putting the ball through the net. He has scored at least two goals in every game and has racked up five or more eight times this season. 

That helped Vreeland put up some impressive numbers. He finished the season with 67 goals, which currently leads the area and ranks third in the state and fourth in the nation.

Fans were impressed. Vreeland received more than 52 percent of the votes (6,531) to beat out Newsome’s Luke Haley, who had 37 percent (4,660 votes).

The PTP pick

Luke Haley, Jr., Newsome: Led the area in points with 106 and assists with 50 entering last week. 

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Baseball

Saturday sports schedule

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What to watch

Berkeley Prep (18-3) at Jesuit (20-1), 1

Both teams are ranked among the top seven in the state in their respective classifications by MaxPreps (the Buccaneers are No. 7 in 3A and the Tigers are No. 1 in 5A). 

The schedules

Baseball

Shorecrest at Canterbury, 10

Jefferson at Newsome, 10

Steinbrenner at Durant, 10

Strawberry Crest at Hillsborough, 11

Clearwater at IMG Royal, 12

Freedom at King, 1

Lennard at Leto, 1

Mitchell at IMG Gray, 1

Berkeley Prep at Jesuit, 1

Softball

Naples Longshore Tournament

Calvary Christian vs. Immokalee, 10:30

Calvary Christian vs. Naples Barron Collier, 12:30

Doral Academy vs. Sickles, 12:30

Other games

Middleton at Durant, 10

Spoto at Tampa Bay Tech, 10

Wesley Chapel at Academy of the Holy Names, 12

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