Winners for the statewide awards will be announced March 25
By Official Florida FC
This week, the Florida Dairy Farmers announced its boys soccer Player of the Year and Coach of the Year for each of the six classifications in the state.
The six Coaches of the Year were the state champions from each class. Thiago Oliveira (Fort Lauderdale University School, Class 2A), Wes Nelson (Niceville, Class 6A) and Marcello Castillo (Boca Raton, Class 7A) led their teams to unbeaten seasons. Jason Montoya (St. Petersburg Shorecrest Prep, 2A) defeated undefeated Tallahassee Maclay 4-0 in the state final.
The other two coaches have paid their dues on the touchline. Chris Bart-Williams helped Miami Gulliver Prep reach the pinnacle once again, leading the Raidrs to a 15-7-4 record and the Class 4A state championship. Gulliver Prep was 5-10-3 in 2019, but found a way to end the 2020 season on an eight-game winning streak.
Tampa Jesuit’s Eric Sims won his first state championship in his sixth appearance in the state semifinals. The Tigers finished 24-3-2 to clinch the Class 5A state championship.
Four of the six Mr. Soccer finalists helped their teams reach the state finals in DeLand.
The two who did not played outsized roles in the success of their teams. Class 2A Player of the year, Fort Myers Canterbury forward Patrick Horan, scored a state-leading 72 goals in 20 games this season. The Cougars were 17-0 in games he scored and 0-3 when he did not.
In Class 6A, Neptune Beach Fletcher’s Brian Schaefer scored 19 goals and provided 26 assists for a Senators team that sputtered down the stretch, but nevertheless finished 14-4.
In Class 4A, Cape Coral Mariner forward Leonardo Perez scored 69 goals and helped the Tritons finish 25-5-1 and advance to the state final for the first time. Perez’ 30 assists meant he scored or assisted on 99 of the team’s 162 goals this season.
Joel Castellanos helped Fort Lauderdale University finish 21-0-2 and win the Class 3A state championship. The senior forward finished with 29 goals and 12 assists.
In Class 5A, Carson Bien helped Tampa Jesuit win its first state title since 2001. The senior, who scored 28 goals and assisted 10 others, provided the second-half assist in what proved to be the game-winning goal against Pembroke Pines Charter.
Finally, there is Joao Negrao, a senior midfielder for Boca Raton who helped the Bobcats become the fifth boys soccer team in state history to finish unbeaten an untied.
Negrao scored 19 goals and provided 25 assists this season for the undefeated and untied Bobcats. No goal was bigger than his 15th minute golazo to open the scoring in the state final against Orlando Boone.