Three area lifters win district titles

Published: Friday, April 1, 2011 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Saturday, April 2, 2011 at 12:44 a.m.

Fort White's J.R. Dixon and Kurtis Norris along with Suwannee's Abram Anderson each captured district championships at Friday's District 5-1A state qualifying meet at Palatka.

With their titles, each lifter clinched an automatic berth to the FHSAA Class 1A state meet at the Kissimmee Civic Center on April 16.

Dixon, The Sun's 2010 small school offensive player of the year for football, posted a 570 total to place first at the 183-pound class. Norris lifted a 635 total to claim the district title at the heavyweight class.

Anderson, who finished as last year's state runner-up at the 139-pound after losing the weigh-in tiebreaker by 0.4 pounds, took home his second straight district title with a 540 total.

“I thought we did a pretty good job of handling distractions since this meet was at the end of our spring break,” Fort White coach Dan Marsee said. “These are two kids (Dixon and Norris) that work so hard and to see them get rewarded for their hard work was very exciting for me.”

Placing second and also having a good chance of qualifying for the state meet were Suwannee's Santiago Martinez (139-pound class, 495 total), Interlachen's Chris Hearld (169-pound class, 550 total), Jared Makatura (199-pound class, 620 total) and John Makatura (219-pound class, 605) and Fort White's Dylan Newman (238-pound class, 460 total).

The third-place finishers for the meet included Fort Whites' Anthony Pearce (heavyweight class, 605 total) and Devin Rorabaugh (129-pound class, 360 total), William Futral of Interlachen (199-pound class, 490 total) and Williston's Christian Knappins (238-pound class, 335 total). Suwannee's Emmanuel Walker was fourth at the 119-pound class with a 320 total, while Eric Walker posted a 350 total to place fourth at the 129-pound class.

While Marsee was pleased with what he saw from his lifters, the former Suwannee coach, is hoping for the best for Anderson, who is the Bulldogs' top lifter.

“I know Abram real well and I am rooting for him to win a state title, he is very deserving,” said Marsee, who still lives in Live Oak. “That kid, after the heartbreaker he had last year, there is nothing more I'd like to see from an opposing school's lifter, than for that kid standing at the top of the podium.”

Only the district champion in each weight class earns an automatic berth to the FHSAA Class 1A state finals.

So now it is a waiting game for the lifters, as they wait for the results of the other eight sectional meets that were held this week. Each weight class has nine at-large berths to be filled according to the highest totals. The rest of the state qualifiers are expected to be announced on April 6.

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