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LHP's Mike Palazzo named 2017 NHSCA Wrestling Coach of the Year

Wednesday, April 26, 2017  
Posted by: Mattie Potter
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The National High School Coaches Association, NHSCA, is proud to announce Mike Palazzo, head coach at Lake Highland Prep in Orlando, Florida as its National High School Wrestling Coach of the Year.Image result for mike palazzo


Palazzo has brought Lake Highland Prep to the top of the rankings since he took over the program in 2009. LHP was ranked fourth in the nation for the majority of the 2016-2017 season. Lake Highland became just the third school in state history to win five state titles in six years, joining Brandon and South Dade.


This year, LHP set a new team record with points at the Florida State tournament with 298.5 points and a total of eight individual champions. They have wins over top ranked Bethlehem Catholic, Malvern Prep before dropping to #1 Blair Academy.

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“We are extremely pleased to honor Coach Palazzo,” said Eric Hess, Executive Director of the NHSCA. “Coach Palazzo has established Lake Highland Prep as one of the best programs in the country let alone Florida.  He’s exhibited a strong dedication to supporting and developing high school student-athletes both on and off the mat.”


Palazzo is the second coach from Florida to be selected as the Coach of the Year as Russ Cozart of Brandon High School was the Coach of the Year in 2000.


Throughout 2017, the NHSCA will be honoring high achievers in the high school coaching community by naming Coaches of the Year in a total of 20 boys’ and girls’ sports.  It’s the 18th straight year that the NHSCA has presented its National Coach of the Year Awards.


Each one of the honorees will receive a beautiful trophy, plus they will be honored in the National High School Sports Hall of Fame Museum that the NHSCA will be building in the near future.


Past NHSCA High School National High School Wrestling Coaches of the Year

2016 – Scott Green – Wyoming Seminary (Pennsylvania)

2015 – Mike Powell – Oak Park River Forest (Illinois)

2014 – Dave Dean – Lowell (Michigan)

2013 – Steve Tirapelle – Clovis (California)

2012 – Pat Simpson – Father Ryan (Tennessee)

2011 – Cliff Ramos – Collins Hill (Georgia)

2010 – Barry Chooljian – Timberlane (New Hampshire)

2009 – Jeff Sweigard – Central Dauphin (Pennsylvania)

2008 – Bill Jacoutot – Spencerport (New York)

2007 – Jerry Winterton – Cary (North Carolina)

2006 – Mike Polz – Carl Sandburg (Illinois)

2005 – Roy Hall – Davison (Michigan)

2004 – Terry Dubert – Northampton (Pennsylvania)

2003 – Jeff Jordan – St. Paris Graham (Ohio)

2002 – David East – Bakersfield (California)
            Jim Jackson – Apple Valley (Minnesota)

2001 – Dave Crowell – Wilson Borough (Pennsylvania)

            Jeff Jordan – Clarksville (Tennessee)

2000 – Russ Cozart – Brandon (Florida)

            Scott Legacy – Mount Anthony Union (Vermont)

            Herb Stinson – Aztec (New Mexico)

1999 – Lewie Benitz – Lincoln (Wisconsin)

            Keith Healy – Providence Catholic (Illinois)

            Tim Marzuola – Highlands Park (Texas)

            Dick Rhoades – Bald Eagle Area (Pennsylvania)

1998 – Jim Poston – Montgomery Bell Academy (Tennessee)



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