The Florida High School Athletics Association, which holds different classifications for different sports, will award four boys and four girls state champions in the 2013-2014 season. That’s a change from the three classes that they have historically awarded.
Florida will now have Class 1A (most of the private schools, generally smaller schools), 2A, 3A, and 4A championships, all of which will be held at the Sailfish Splashpark Aquatic Center in Stuart, Florida, which is near Port Saint Lucie in the southeastern part of the state (about 100 miles north of Miami).
- Class 1A – Nov. 8, 2013
- Class 2A – Nov. 9, 2013
- Class 3A – Nov. 15, 2013
- Class 4A – Nov. 16, 2013
The defending 1A State Champion boys and girls from Bolles both remain in 1A. The 2A State Champions Chiles from Tallahassee (girls) and Belen Jesuit Prep in Miami (boys) have both moved to Class 3A, including senior Cece Williams, who is lined-up to defend three state championships (the 200 free, 200 medley relay, 400 free relay) and perhaps add a 4th (500 free). Meanwhile defending girls’ 3A champions Riverview of Sarasota promoted to Class 4A along with the Boca Raton men.
The biggest changes will come in the 2A classification, where some top teams from both the old 1A and 2A classifications will run head-to-head. The Plantation-American Heritage high school boys’ and girls’ teams, which were 4th and 9th in 1A last season, will both join the new 2A.
The American Heritage boys’ squad graduated some very good seniors, but also got huge points from their freshmen and sophomores last year: their boys’ 200 medley relay, that placed 8th at state, had one freshman, two sophomores, and just a single senior on it. Julien Pinon was among the young stars of that team, placing 4th at the 1A State Championship meet in 1:41.31 as just a freshman.
From Class 2A will come the girls from Holy Names in Tampa, who placed 2nd at last year’s 2A State Championship meet. They too had a very young team, and will return three of four swimmers from the runner-up 200 yard free relay at last year’s 2A meet.
Florida has also moved all regional and district meets to timed finals formats, whereas they had been prelims-finals meets previously.