a collage of photos of a wrestling match

Monroe County wrestlers made a strong showing again in the 2023-24 season, claiming a treasure trove of hardware and earning numerous titles across the state. 

Coral Shores finished the season in fifth place at the FHSAA 1A District 16 Championships held in their own gym thi s year. The ’Canes had a pair of wrestlers earn silver medals at the event and continue to have strong performances, especially in the lighter weights. Key West brought home its 15th consecutive district championship in 2024 with eight individual wrestlers striking gold and all 13 athletes qualifying for regionals. Four wrestlers made an appearance at state and one athlete medaled at the event, further solidifying the dynasty Key West wrestling has become.

a man standing in front of a red and white wall

Wrestler of the Year

Ralph Riche, senior

Key West, 285 pounds

Key West’s Ralph Riche dominated South Florida in two weight classes in as many years. Winning nearly every invitational he entered, Riche secured hardware and bracket cards all season long. When the postseason rolled around, Riche won the FHSAA District 16 1A championship and went on to claim a runner-up medal at regionals. His second-place finish qualified him for his second state championship appearance. Last season, he captured a fifth-place medal at 220 pounds; this year he did the same at 285. Riche amassed an impressive 45-8 record and led his team by example, putting in the work to be one of the best wrestlers in Conch history.

a man standing in front of some stairs with his arms crossed
Coral Shores High School Varsity Boys Wrestling Media Day Thursday, February 15, 2024. Photo by Doug Finger

Sebastian McCoy, sophomore

Coral Shores, 113 pounds

Coral Shores’ Sebastian McCoy wrestled his way to a winning 25-20 record during his sophomore campaign, earning a silver medal at districts and a bid to regionals. With two years of eligibility remaining, McCoy has everything it takes not only to make it to the big show, but also to win a medal in the coming seasons.

a man in a wrestling uniform squatting in front of a set of stairs
Coral Shores High School Varsity Boys Wrestling Media Day Thursday, February 15, 2024. Photo by Doug Finger

Steven DeRobertis, sophomore

Coral Shores, 106 pounds

Hurricane sophomore Steven DeRobertis earned a solid 23-18 record this season, striking silver at the Key West Invitational and fourth at the SFCA King’s Classic. In the postseason, DeRobertis captured the district runner-up medal, paving the way for an exciting future for the ’Canes.

a wrestling match with a wrestler on the ground
Key West High School varsity wrestler Jason Flynn competes against Keys Gate’s Andy Leiva during a meet at the Coral Shores High School gym Thursday, February 15, 2024. Photo by Doug Finger

Jason Flynn, senior

Key West, 150 pounds

Flynn completed his final season for the Conchs with a record of 18-8. Those wins included a first-place tournament berth at the Key West Invitational as well as a district gold medal to end his senior campaign in style.

a wrestling match with a wrestler wrestling the opponent

Alfredo Corrales, junior

Key West, 157 pounds

Completing his junior season with a 56-10 record, Key West’s Alfredo Corrales racked up the wins. He destroyed the brackets and claimed first-place finishes at the Key West Invitational, Somerset Scuffle, Beardown Duals and the Falcon Invitational. He won district gold in the postseason to set the tone for his upcoming senior campaign.

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Dostmukhammad Bakhtiyorov, senior

Key West, 144 pounds

Key West’s Dost Bakhtiyorov secured a district championship this season, then placed fourth at regionals. The senior’s performance there qualified him for the state championship meet. This season, he amassed a 44-15 record, which included wins in the Key West Invitational, where he was third and the Beardown Duals, which he won in undefeated fashion.

a wrestling match with two wrestlers on the ground

James Searcy, sophomore

Key West, 138 pounds

Wrestling to an impressive 36-14 this year, James Searcy won multiple events, including the Key West Invitational, Falcon Invite and the FHSAA District 16 Championship. With two more seasons of eligibility to develop, Searcy is already a force to be reckoned with.

a wrestling match with a referee looking on
Key West High School varsity wrestler Abram Canet competes against Miami Sunset’s Oscar Aguilera during a meet at the Coral Shores High School gym Thursday, February 15, 2024. Photo by Doug Finger

Abram Canet, junior

Key West, 134 pounds

With a 45-24 record this season, Key West’s Abram Canet made a name for himself on mats across the entire state. In the postseason, Canet was district champion, fourth at regionals and qualified for the state meet to cap off a stellar junior season.

a wrestling match with a crowd watching
Key West High School varsity wrestler Prometheus Delacerda competes against Keys Gate’s Sandro Pena during a meet at the Coral Shores High School gym Thursday, February 15, 2024. Photo by Doug Finger

Prometheus Delacerda, sophomore

Key West, 126 pounds

Prometheus Delacerda completed his second season with the Conchs collecting hardware and amassing 16 wins. The hardworking sophomore placed second at the Key West Invitational and third at the Falcon Invite. He culminated his season with a bronze medal at districts.

a group of people standing next to each other

Sheyla Figueira, junior

Key West, 100 pounds

Key West’s Sheyla Figueira is the only Lady Conch thus far to qualify for the state meet two times. The talented junior won silver at districts, bronze at regionals, and went 19-12 this season. Figueira collected several of those wins at the Beardown Duals, where she claimed first place, and the Lady Indian Invitational, in which she was second. With another season of eligibility left, Figueira is poised to continue breaking records and blazing trails for future Lady Conch wrestlers. 

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Screenshot

Natalie Arguello, senior

Key West, 135 pounds

Key West’s Natalie Arguello grappled her way to an 18-11 record this season. Arguello won a bronze medal at districts, qualifying her for the regional event for the second time in as many years. Arguello was the Lady Indian Invitational champion and won first place at the Beardown Duals, going undefeated in her matches.

a man in a football uniform holding a ball

Tristan Yokoyama, senior

Key West, 215 pounds

Senior strongman Tristan Yokoyama was a steady force on the mats this season. After placing second at the Key West and Falcon Invitationals, Yokoyama went on to secure a district championship at 215 pounds for the Conchs, helping to earn them another district team championship in the process.

Photos by DOUG FINGER, GRACE ANDREW and MARK HEDDEN

Tracy McDonald
Tracy McDonald fled to the Keys from the frozen mountains of Pennsylvania hours after graduating from college and never looked back. She is a second generation coach and educator, and has taught in the public school system for over 25 years. She and her husband met at a beginning teacher meeting in 1997 and have three children born and raised in Monroe County. In her free time, McDonald loves flea markets, historical fiction and long runs in the heat.