High Five: Top moments from the week in high school sports

This week's five includes college commitments, fascinating matchups between top soccer and hoops teams and wrestling season kicking into high gear

Foundation Academy running back J.T. Bronaugh finished his season with 1,950 all-purpose yards.
Foundation Academy running back J.T. Bronaugh finished his season with 1,950 all-purpose yards.
Thomas Lightbody | TK Photography
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Here are the top news items, moments and results from the past week in West Orange and Southwest Orange County high school sports: 

1. College football recruiting season is on fire in West Orange and Southwest Orange County. In addition to West Orange High’s Ivan Taylor committing, fellow defensive back Devin Jackson, linebacker Tavarrius Powell and cornerback Donovan Lanier picked up big-time offers, as well. Jackson received an offer from UCF, Powell from University of Texas at San Antonio and Lanier from FAU. 

Foundation Academy’s J.T. Bronaugh — a first-team All-Orange Observer selection and Class 1M, District 2 Player of the Year — announced his commitment to Eastern Michigan. Bronaugh chose the Eagles over the likes of Kansas, Minnesota, East Carolina University and others.

And we have to show the kickers some love, too. Windermere High’s Lucas Glassburn picked an offer from Temple. Expect the offers and commitments to keep on rolling in, as college football recruiting kicks into high gear. 

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2. Matchups between the area’s top boys soccer teams have begun to paint a picture of who is the cream of the crop in the 2023-24 season. With Windermere off to a flying 5-0 start, an impressive 6-1 win over West Orange (4-1), cements the Wolverines as the class of 7A. 

However, the Warriors showed they’re not just going to roll over. West Orange bounced back from its lone loss with a 1-0 win over another top area team, Horizon High (3-1-1). But the Hawks will have a few more opportunities in the early season to show they mean business in Class 5A, as they host Olympia High (3-1), then travel to Ocoee High (4-1), whose lone loss is to West Orange. 

This is going to be a fun season.

3. Three West Orange and Southwest Orange County esports teams — Windermere, Ocoee and West Orange — have advanced to the second round of the Florida FASA Super Smash Bros. playoffs.

4. The battle for the Class 7A, District 5 boys basketball title is looking like a three-horse race between Dr. Phillips High (3-1), Olympia (3-1) and Windermere (3-1). The three squads look to be firing on all cylinders in this early season, with each picking up quality wins and each of their lone losses coming at the hands of solid to great teams. This district will be one to keep an eye on this season, and so will the games between the three. 

5. Windermere wrestling placed several wrestlers on the podium in an early-season meet. Second-year wrestler Alicia Williams finished first in the 120-pound weight class, while senior Lucas Drone repeated as champion at 138. Freshman Raphael Taquechel finished as runner-up at 144, while fellow first-year wrestler Nicolas Consuegra placed third at 138. Sophomore Emily McCormack placed fifth at 150, picking up her first two wins competing against boys.

Sam Albuquerque is the Sports Editor for the Orange Observer. Please contact him with story ideas, results and statistics at this email, [email protected] or via Twitter @SamBAlbuquerque



Sam Albuquerque

A native of João Pessoa, Brazil, Sam Albuquerque moved in 1997 to Central Florida as a kid. After earning a communications degree in 2016 from the University of Central Florida, he started his career covering sports as a producer for a local radio station, ESPN 580 Orlando. He went on to earn a master’s degree in editorial journalism from Northwestern University, before moving to South Carolina to cover local sports for the USA Today Network’s Spartanburg Herald-Journal. When he’s not working, you can find him spending time with his lovely wife, Sarah, newborn son, Noah, and dog named Skulí.

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