SUCCESSFUL YEAR — DeLand High School Bulldog wrestling had a very successful year. They won the district and regional Dual Championships, finishing in the top four in the state Dual Championships. They also captured the district and regional IBT Championships, sending six athletes to the state championships, where MJ Smokes placed fifth. The regional IBT titles and both the dual championships were a first for the school. Team members and coaches are assistant coach Christian Lohsen, assistant coach Jacob Toledo, statistician Roger Reid, Garrett Perkins, Kellen Chapman, Zane Canada, Peyton Senez, Gavin Rodriguez-Cayro, Edwin Alsina, Grady Bryant, Phoenix Krauth, Tyler Bracero, Joshua Folsom, head coach Chris Folsom, Mathias Franz, MJ Smokes and assistant coach Ray Knowles. PHOTO COURTESY CHRIS FOLSOM

Volusia County Schools has selected Hayley Dougal as the Career and Technical Education (CTE) Teacher of the Year for Volusia County. Dougal is the director of Spruce Creek High School’s Academy of Finance.

There were eight other finalists. Those from West Volusia were Emmet Foxworth of DeLand Middle, James Kohler of Taylor Middle-High in Pierson, Christina Marrero of Pine Ridge High in Deltona, Joseph Monaco of DeLand High, and Shelli Walters of University High in Orange City.

Volusia County Schools has more than 47 CTE programs in 10 high schools, and 21 career academies in nine high schools. Examples of CTE programs and academies include criminal justice, culinary arts, game simulation, agriculture, finance, construction and early childhood education.

There are also many CTE pathways across 14 middle schools.

More than 30,000 students are enrolled in CTE programs in grades six through 12 in Volusia County public schools.

The Volusia County Farm Bureau invites students to show their talents and earn some cash in the annual Farm Bureau Youth Speech Contest.

To qualify, students must reside in Volusia County and be at least 14 years old, but may not be older than 18 by Sept. 9, 2023. Public school and home-schooled students are invited. Farm Bureau membership is not required, and there is no cost to enter.

Students must prepare a five-minute speech on the 2023 topic “How have supply-chain issues impacted Florida agriculture?”

The speech will be delivered in front of members of the Volusia County Farm Bureau board of directors and other guests at 6 p.m. Monday, April 10, in the Farm Bureau Office boardroom at 3090 E. New York Ave. in DeLand.

Contact Caroline Newby by calling 386-734-1612 to register, and go to for more information.

Winners will be selected based on content, how well the student demonstrates knowledge of the topic, accuracy of information, effective delivery, clarity and expression. The county winners will receive $300, $250 and $200 for first, second and third place, respectively. The first-place winner will move on to district competition. The winner of the district competition will go to the state championship.

Volusia County Schools has kicked off a new initiative called “Great People, Great Deeds,” which recognizes VCS educators and support staff who go above and beyond their work duties to impact the greater community. Those selected were Deborah Treur, an intermediate teacher at Beachside Elementary in Daytona Beach, and Gregg Bastian, a guardian at Spruce Creek Elementary in Port Orange.

The awards will be bestowed monthly, and come with a “Great People Great Deeds” T-shirt, as well as the parking spot of their choice at their school, designated by a sign recognizing their impact to VCS and the community. February’s “Great People, Great Deeds” recognitions were sponsored by Leonard’s.

The DeLand Dawgs are having an early-bird sign-up for their football and cheer programs. This started March 4 and ends April 1. The fee for football is $150 and is $200 for cheer. Later the cost will go up $50.

Sign-up can be done online at or on-site at Southwestern Middle School’s back field during practice time. Call Derion Johnson for additional information at 407-801-9072.

Football registration, which usually costs $200, includes a uniform, duffel bag, compression set and sleeve. Cheer registration usually costs $250, which includes a uniform, shirt/shorts, a breast-cancer awareness pink outfit, a sweatshirt and a backpack/duffel.

The deadline for submitting a scholarship application to DeLeon Springs Community Association Inc. is March 31. This is a scholarship in the amount of $1,000, and applicants must be residents of DeLeon Springs and be high-school seniors enrolled in a DeLeon Springs-area home, private or public high school. They also must have been accepted into an accredited two-year or four-year college, university or vocational school.

Go to for additional information.

Spring Holiday comes to an end Monday, March 20, when classes resume. This date also marks the beginning of the fourth and final grading period for Volusia County public schools.

Heritage Middle School

Heritage Middle School in Deltona will have its band performing during the pre-game portion of the Orlando Magic vs. Cleveland Cavaliers basketball game at 7 p.m. Tuesday, April 4.

The Heritage Middle School chorus will be performing at the Orlando Solar Bears game on Friday, March 31, during Heritage Middle School Spirit Night. Tickets will cost just $22, with $2 of that being donated back to the school. To purchase tickets, go to Contact Jared Lenner for more information at or by calling 407-775-7261.

DeLand High School

The DeLand and Greater West Volusia Chamber of Commerce has named DeLand High School as the Danny Gainin School of Excellence for the third quarter of this school year.

The DeLand High academic team was made up this year primarily of freshmen and sophomores, and therefore team members were new to the competition format. The team was composed of Clayton Campbell, Zachery Erb, Weston Millet, Clayvia Gonsalves and Noah Isaacson. The team is coached by Cindy Rosso.

Deltona High School

The Deltona High School Athletic Department has named Matt Martin as the new head football coach. Martin played tight end and defensive end for the Wolves from 2006 to 2009. His last coaching assignment was as defensive line coach at DeLand High.

The School Advisory Council at Deltona High will have its next meeting at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 21, in the Learning Commons. April’s meeting will be Tuesday, the 18th.

The Symphonic Band at Deltona High earned straight superiors at the Concert Music Performance Assessment. It was eight years ago that the Deltona group fared the same. The band will now be participating in the state Concert MPA competition Thursday, April 27, in the University of Florida Performing Arts Center.

The Deltona High ROTC competed at Lake Buena Vista High School and came home with honors in three of five areas. The Female Unarmed Platoon took first, the female Mixed Unarmed Platoon took second, while the male Mixed Unarmed Squad took third. First- and second-place finishes qualified them for the state competition in April.

Deltona High wrestler Kevin Kerns has advanced to the state championships.

Pine Ridge High School

Pine Ridge High School in Deltona has named Shaddai Diaz as the Deltona Superstar Student for March.

The staff of Pine Ridge High would like to congratulate Amanda Belich as the Teacher of the Month.

Taylor Middle- High School

Robert Dubberly, a teacher and coach at Taylor Middle-High School in Pierson, was presented with his 35-year pin by Volusia County Schools.

DeLand High School Athletics

The DeLand High School Bulldog wrestling team won the Region 1-3A championship, and will be sending Tyler Bracero, Phoenix Krauth, Kellen Chapman, Mathias Franz, Gavin Rodriguez-Cayro and MJ Smokes to the state championships. Krauth was the 120-pound-division regional champion.

The Bulldog weightlifting team placed second at a meet at University High School. Those Bulldogs earning first were Gabe Cyr, Jayden Lewis (2), Jaycee Kane (2) and Chandler Shacklette. Those lifting enough weight to claim a second-place finish were Ayden Burns (2), Abdullah Knaio, Reed Wilgers (2), Dante Mascio, Sean Hulsman, Wyatt Dunne, Shacklette, Vincent Chen and MJ Smokes.

DeLand High female weightlifter Addison Ruocco has been selected to compete in the Flagler-Volusia All- Stars at an AAU Weightlifting Tournament.

The DHS boys’ tennis team was stopped by University, 6-1, and Seabreeze, 9-0. The girls’ tennis team defeated University, 7-0, and lost to Seabreeze, 9-0.

The Lady Bu l ldog flag-football team was stopped by Mainland, 16-7, Taylor, 12-6, and Pine Ridge, 7-0.

The Bulldog baseball team topped Atlantic, 17-4, with Chris Caruso homering with four RBIs. The team defeated Flagler Palm Coast, 10-2, with Lamar Edwards and Luke Hoffmann homering. The team then lost to Orangewood Christian, 7-4.

The Lady Bulldog softball team topped Ocala Forest, 1-0, and Mainland, 1-0, but lost to East Bay, 6-3, The Villages, 10-0, Matanzas, 6-5, and University, 15-0.

On Monday, March 20, the junior-varsity baseball A Team greets Seabreeze at 4 p.m.

On Tuesday, March 21, the junior-varsity flag-football team plays at Deltona at 5 p.m. That same day, the softball team is at Orangewood Christian at 5:15 p.m., and the junior-varsity baseball A Team is at New Smyrna Beach at 4 p.m.

On Wednesday, March 22, the DeLand tennis teams greet Father Lopez at 3:30 p.m., the junior-varsity baseball B Team is at Mainland at 4 p.m., and the boys’ weightlifting team hosts Deltona at 4:30 p.m.

On Thursday, March 23, the softball team travels to Spruce Creek to play at 4 p.m. and 6 p.m. That same day, the baseball team plays host to Lake Brantley at 7 p.m. on Melching Field at Conrad Park in DeLand.

On Friday, March 24, the track team plays in the Astronaut Invitational at 3 p.m., the softball team meets Father Lopez at 4:15 p.m., and the flag-football team plays at Flagler Palm Coast at 6 p.m. and 7 p.m.

West Volusia High-School Track and Field

The DeLand High School Bulldog track teams hosted the Big D Relays during the first weekend in March. There were no team scores kept, but the first- through third-place relay teams earned medals.

The DeLand squads won eight of the 25-plus relays offered. The DeLand team won the boys’ 1,600 relay at 14:41.24; the boys’ 1,600 sprint medley at 3:54.13; the boys’ 4X100 weight-thrower relay at 50:59; and the boys’ shot-put relay at 119 feet, 1 inch.

The girls’ discus relay was won at 250 feet, 3 inches. The boys’ discus relay was won at 379 feet, 9 inches. The girls’ javelin relay was won at 258 feet, 2 inches, and the girls’ pole-vault relay was won at 25 feet, 9 inches.

The team also placed third in four relays, and had five individual event winners. Shamia Allen outdistanced the competition with a 16- foot jump. Owen York won two events: the discus throw at 137 feet, 5 inches, and the shot put at 42 feet, 5 inches.

Emily Lame won by throwing the javelin to 112 feet, 5 inches, and Kylie Neira at 11 feet, 4 inches.

At the Big D, Morgan Northey of University High placed second in the discus, with a 93-foot-5-inch throw, while Pine Ridge took third in the 440 shuttle-hurdle relay for boys, and the 800 sprint-medley relay for boys.

Earlier in the week, DeLand hosted a three-way meet with Mainland and Spruce Creek. Bulldog firsts were recorded by the following individuals: Sydney Neira in the 800 at 2:32; Kylie Neira in the pole vault at 12 feet, breaking her old record; Shamia Allen in the long jump at 15 feet, 1.5 inches; Lilly Clements in the discus at 81 feet; Riley Garrison in the 1,600 at 4:47.8; Antonio Williams in the triple jump at 38 feet, 6.5 inches; and Owen York in the shot put at 43 feet, 5 inches. They also won the girls’ 4X800 relay and the boys’ 4X800 relay.

Stetson University Athletics

Stetson University Hatter basketball player Jalen Blackmon has been named by the ASUN Conference as the Newcomer of the Year and to the ASUN All-Conference First Team, while Stephan Swenson was named to the Third Team.

The Stetson team played host to Lipscomb in the first round of the ASUN Tournament and lost, 83- 70, to close out their season with a 17-13 mark. Blackmon scored 33 points with eight rebounds, Luke Brown added 15 points, and Josh Smith recorded 10 rebounds and one blocked shot.

The Lady Hatter basketball team defeated Jacksonville University in the first round of tournament play, 60-55, with Jaelyn Talley scoring 15 points with seven rebounds. Khamya McNeal made 12 points, Jamiya Turner scored 10 points with eight rebounds and two blocked shots, and Maddie Novak scored 10 points.

Earlier in the week, the Lady Hats lost their last regular-season game to Jacksonville State, 57-50, with Talley scoring 14 points with five rebounds. Turner and McNeal each contributed 11 points.

The Stetson baseball team lost to Delaware, 8-6, with Jayden Hylton homering. The team topped Siena, 8-11, with Landon Moran and Andrew Estrella homering; stopped Siena, 10-3, with Brandon Hylton homering; and shut out Mount St. Mary’s, 18-0, with David Bermudez and Christian Pregent homering. Pregent collected four RBIs.

The Stetson softball team stopped Presbyterian, 1-0, in the bottom of the seventh, bringing in the winning run an error, a sacrifice, a stolen base and a bunt. Hannah Marien was the winning pitcher with a one-hit shutout, six strikeouts and two walks.

The Lady Hatters then stopped South Carolina, 4-3, with Brianna Clary going 3-for-4 with a double and a triple and an RBI. They followed this with a win over No. 16 Georgia, 2-1, and Samford, 1-0, before losing to Ball State, 6-5, and Samford, 10-2.

The Stetson lacrosse team defeated Duquesne, 16-14, with Katie Kornacki getting four goals, while Sam King, Jordyn Humphrey and Kaitlin Pani each scored two.

The home calendar for Hatter athletics places the baseball team against Kennesaw State at 6:30 p.m. Friday, March 17, and Saturday, March 18, and at 1 p.m. Sunday, March 19, in Conrad Park.

Also on March 17, the women’s tennis team hosts North Florida at noon. On March 18, the softball team plays Queens at 1 p.m. and 3:30 p.m., and also plays Queens at 1 p.m. March 19.

The rowing team greets Drake, Embry-Riddle and JU on Saturday, March 18. The men’s tennis team faces North Florida at 2 p.m. that same day.

On Sunday, March 19, the women’s tennis team hosts Central Arkansas at 10 a.m.

On Tuesday, March 21, the Hatter baseball team greets cross-county Bethune- Cookman at 6 p.m.

On Wednesday, March 22, the lacrosse team faces Wagner at noon, and the softball team meets Florida on the Stetson campus at 6 p.m.

On Thursday, March 23, the Stetson rowers greet Wesleyan. The men’s tennis team plays Florida Gulf Coast at 3 p.m. that same day.

On Friday, March 24, the beach-volleyball team plays host to North Alabama and Coastal Carolina, with the times to be announced.

College honors

Kacey Keeling, of DeLand, has been named to the Dean’s Honor Roll for the fall of 2022 at The University of Mississippi.

Andrew Korkus, of DeBary, has been named to the dean’s list for the 2022 fall semester at Tufts University in Massachusetts.

— Send school news to Tony Tussing via email:


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