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Soccer

Florida Fhsaa Soccer State Championship, Fhsaa (@Fhsaa) · Twitter

The FHSAA state final games in boys” and girls” soccer are in DeLand on Wednesday through Saturday.

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Here are five things to know before the champions are crowned:

1. School vs. school

All of the games form interesting matchups, but what caught our eye was the Class 2A championships.

The same schools are meeting for the boys” and girls” titles.

Orange Park St. Johns Country Day and Fort Myers Canterbury will play each other Wednesday at 4 p.m. in the girls” final and Thursday at 4 p.m. in the boys” final. Canterbury is looking for its first title and is 0-4 in finals.

The St. Johns Country Day girls are the defending state champs. The Spartans have won 12 titles overall and hold the state record with nine consecutive championships.

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2. Hey, Arnold!

Panama City Beach is typically known to visitors as a Spring Break party haven and all the fun and games that implies. The locals, though, know some pretty good high school soccer is the No. 1 game.

Both the J.R. Arnold girls and boys are vying for Class 4A championships. The girls (13-4-2) play Wednesday at 1 p.m. against Fort Lauderdale Cardinal Gibbons. The boys (24-0-2) play Thursday at 1 p.m. against Pinecrest Gulliver Prep.

A title for either Arnold team would the first in program history for the school, which opened in 2000.

3. St. Johns County makes a play

Two girls” teams from St. Johns County will make title bids Friday. Defending Class 7A state champ Bartram Trail plays at 1 p.m. against Weston Cypress Bay in a meeting of powerhouses.

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Ponte Vedra, which is trying to take the next step, goes for the Class 5A title at 4 p.m. against Archbishop McCarthy, which is in Southwest Ranches, a community on the edge of the Everglades in Broward County.

It”s a rematch of last year. McCarthy topped the Sharks, 2-0.

4. On a roll

It”s to be expected that many of the teams battling for championships enter on lengthy winning streaks.

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Delray Beach American Heritage”s girls are unbeaten in 15 straight. Arnold”s boys have reeled off 23 straight wins.

And yet those impressive feats pale in comparison to St. Johns Country Day”s girls. The Orange Park outfit has won 38 consecutive contests dating back to Nov. 22, 2019 — a 1-0 loss to Orlando”s Lake Highland Prep.

Prior to that, the Spartans went unbeaten in 89 straight matches, a streak that ran from Jan. 6, 2015 to Dec. 8, 2018.

The Spartans aim for a 10th consecutive FHSAA championship, and 13th overall, under longtime head coach Mike Pickett.

5. Stars will shine at night, during the day

You want to see the best? This series of title games will feature some of the top high school soccer players in the nation.

On the girls” side, Fort Myers Canterbury”s Jasmine Perez-Acosta has 42 goals and 20 assists. Bartram Trail is led by star sophomore midfielder Grace Ivey, who has 17 goals and two hat tricks.

Kiki Slattery has 26 goals and 18 assists, while Rachel Dalton has added 19 goals with eight assists for Venice. Olivia Lebdaoui has 25 goals for Panama City Arnold. Katie Carnes has 27 goals and 15 assists for Lakeland Christian.

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Miami Lourdes” senior goalkeeper Mia Alexander doesn”t let much get past her. She has 11 shutouts

For the boys, defending 7A champ Niceville”s star is Logan Harrelson, a senior with 14 goals and five assists in his last nine playoff games.

Marcello Valbuena has scored 34 times for Tampa Catholic. McLaren Baggett leads Fort Myers Canterbury with 30 goals.

Johnny Gleason, a 6-foot-4 former rower, has seven shutouts for Miami Westminster Christian.

Doral is led by a pair of goalkeepers, Giorgio Rubiano and Andrew Ginestra. Ginestra is also the team’s penalty kick specialist.

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State championship game schedule

Wednesday

1 p.m., Girls, Class 4A: Defending champion, Jacksonville Bishop Kenny

4 p.m., Girls, Class 2A: Defending champion, Orange Park St. Johns Country Day*

7 p.m., Girls, Class 3A: Defending champion, Jacksonville Bolles

Thursday

1 p.m., Boys, Class 4A: Defending champion, Pinecrest Gulliver Prep*

4 p.m., Boys, Class 2A: Defending champion, St. Petersburg Shorecrest Prep

7 p.m., Boys, Class 3A: Defending champion, Fort Lauderdale University School

Friday

1 p.m., Girls, Class 7A: Defending champion, St. Johns Bartram Trail*

4 p.m., Girls, Class 5A: Defending champion, Southwest Ranches Archbishop McCarthy*

7 p.m., Girls, Class 6A: Defending champion, Miami Our Lady of Lourdes*

Saturday

1 p.m., Boys, Class 7A: Defending champion, Boca Raton

4 p.m., Boys, Class 5A: Defending champion, Tampa Jesuit*

7 p.m., Boys, Class 6A: Defending champion, Niceville*

*In DeLand to defend title.

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