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Miami Norland celebrates its victorious year

admin | 5/2/2012, 12:50 p.m.

Miami Norland knows how to win. And in honor of a stellar season in which both boys basketball and football captured the 2012 FHSAA State Championship trophies, faculty, staff, students and the community gathered last Saturday for a parade. The girls basketball team, former back-to-back state champs, were the runner-up this year in the state championship game. This is great for the community and the school, said Athletic Director Ira Fluitt. This will attract many more students to want to come here because everyone wants to be part of a winning team. Norland has the distinction of being the first school in Miami-Dade County to win state titles in boys basketball and football in the same school year. The girls basketball team lost a heartbreaker in the title game to Edgewater [46-36], ending their season with a 26-8 record. Not only is Norland besting its opponents in sports, but it is also currently ranked as a C school which is 82 percent higher than the national average and they anticipate a higher grade once the recent FCAT results are released. It starts in the classroom we want to show that not only are we gifted on the court but we are also gifted in the classroom, said Head Basketball Coach Lawton Williams III. To be able to send my guys to college is great; this parade in itself is historic.

Practice makes perfect

Norlands football team capped off their season with a perfect 15-0 record including the state championship. Two of their standout players graduated early and are taking their skills to the next lever: offensive lineman Ereck Flowers, who is currently practicing at UM and Keith Brown. Its great to see those guys start early; we want to continue to work hard for next season, said Head Football Coach Daryle Heidelburg said. I have guys that have been with us for years and they see how hard we work and they want to duplicate that next year. The Vikings football team is ranked 7th in the country and 15 players were offered college scholarships. Randy Duke Johnson, the teams most celebrated player, joined the festivities. He will continue his career at the University of Miami. I remember having a 2.0 as a freshmen and worked hard to improve my grades to a 3.0, he said. Its great to see our school honored our girls team almost pulled it off too but they still had a great year. Johnsons former teammate, Keith Brown, who is headed for the University of Louisville, said success came with plenty of hard work. Grades are first, then comes hard work and dedication, he said. Its very exciting to see this happening for our school. I transferred from Southridge and with the hard work I put in, we ended up with a championship. Many people didnt have much faith in us but we proved them wrong, said Girls Head Basketball Coach Carla Harris-Curry said. We just have to continue to work hard; it starts in the gym. Two of her players will be moving on to the collegiate level: Kyla Durant, who will attend Miami Dade College and Denisha Bennett who join the Air Force team. The boys basketball team won state titles in 2006 and 2008 and duplicated those results this year, defeating Leesburg 64-36 and ending their season 29-3. Talent wise, we will be even better next year, Williams said. Making history is a great achievement but we want to continue making strides next year. That means more hard work. Cleon Roberts has signed with GSU (Georgia Southern University); Gino Fils-Aime will attend NGU (North Greenfield University). Both say theyre excited. Its great to see your hard work pay off, and my experience here helped me Fils-Aime said. Its not easy and I would tell the guys under me to keep at it and work hard. Roberts added, You have to be really focused and never give up. The bar has been raised even higher for Norland but Fluitt says his kids are up for the task. Now that the community has seen what we have done, everybody wants to be a part of it, he said. My philosophy is the ring is the thing and everybody wants one. Miami Norland knows how to win. And in honor of a stellar season in which both boys basketball and football captured the 2012 FHSAA State Championship trophies, faculty, staff, students and the community gathered last Saturday for a parade. The girls basketball team, former back-to-back state champs, were the runner-up this year in the state championship game. This is great for the community and the school, said Athletic Director Ira Fluitt. This will attract many more students to want to come here because everyone wants to be part of a winning team. Norland has the distinction of being the first school in Miami-Dade County to win state titles in boys basketball and football in the same school year. The girls basketball team lost a heartbreaker in the title game to Edgewater [46-36], ending their season with a 26-8 record. Not only is Norland besting its opponents in sports, but it is also currently ranked as a C school which is 82 percent higher than the national average and they anticipate a higher grade once the recent FCAT results are released. It starts in the classroom we want to show that not only are we gifted on the court but we are also gifted in the classroom, said Head Basketball Coach Lawton Williams III. To be able to send my guys to college is great; this parade in itself is historic.