Clearly, 2020 may not have been a great year for most, but it was an unforgettable year for both the Bloomingdale and Newsome athletic programs.
At the very beginning of the year when the pandemic hit, spring sports were canceled, wiping out many seniors’ seasons just as they were getting started. Baseball, softball, track and field, cross country, tennis, lacrosse and flag football were the casualties.
The senior latent Bloomingdale and Newsome baseball teams, along with the Newsome softball team, had great shots at making deep playoff runs before the spring season came to a halt.
Several sports teams completed their 2019-20 seasons at the beginning of the year before the shutdown. The Bloomingdale and Newsome boys soccer teams went deep into the playoffs. The Wolves had a tremendous turnaround season, going 14-2-3 overall after a 5-11-4 campaign the previous season.
They also won their second district title in the last three years when they beat Riverview 2-1 in double overtime on February 6 in the 7A-District 8 championship game. The Bulls went 13-5-3, 4-0 in district play, winning their district. They made it all the way to the regional finals after beating Bartow 6-5 in the previous round. The Newsome girls team made it to the regional finals after a 16-3-2 regular season.
The 2019-20 basketball season also came to a close just before the pandemic hit. The Bloomingdale boys won 15 games after winning only three games the season before, while the girls won 19 games and appeared in their second straight district championship game. The girls also had two players, Erin Leigh and Nya King, hit the 1,000 career point mark.
The always-consistent Newsome boys basketball team won 15 games and made it to the district semifinals. The girls won 16 games and made it to the regional quarterfinals after making it to their district finals. The girls went undefeated in regular season district play.
This fall, the football season was delayed a couple of weeks, but was eventually reinstated. It was a year of firsts for the Bloomingdale football program. The Bulls won their first district championship in the school’s 33-year history, achieving a team-best 12-1 overall record, capped by the team’s first state semifinals appearance in the school’s history.
Bloomingdale had a perfect 8-0 regular season as well. They were led by Head Coach Jake Coulson in his second season, along with Alabama signee, senior wide receiver Agiye Hall; Jefferson transfer, senior quarterback Tre Simmons; and Notre Dame signee, senior cornerback/wide receiver Philip Riley, to name a few.
The Newsome football program made it to their first regional finals appearance in the school’s history after winning its first playoff game in eight years with an overall record of 7-3.
The Wolves had their share of adversity in 2020, having several games canceled due to a positive COVID-19 test at the beginning of the season and the program having to take a 10-day break from all football activities. They were led by third-year Head Coach Christian Yockey, along with junior captain running back Jason Albritton, senior quarterback Kamarii Austin and junior linebacker Caden Huffman.