Christopher Johnson finished his high school career with six state championships. Karina Gordon finished hers with five.
Now, they’re the Miami Herald’s Athletes of the Year for Classes 7A-5A.
Johnson — who starred in both football, and track and field at Dillard — won his six gold medals all on the track, as one of the best sprinters in the nation and part of a powerhouse program. As a senior, he defended state championships in both the 100- and 200-meter dashes, and he also won gold as part of the Panthers’ 400 relay as a sophomore in 2021.
Dillard also won its first team state title in 2021.
Johnson was then the Herald’s Broward County Boys’ Track and Field Athlete of the Year for Classes 4A-3A in each of the last two years, and was also Florida Dairy Farmer’s Mr. Track this year after setting a new state record in the 200 by blazing around half of the track in just 20.40 seconds, but this is all just secondary to the two-sport star.
His main priority is football, and he was also the Herald’s Broward County Offensive Player of the Year for Classes 4M-3M and will play at Miami next year. He was the No. 17 running back in the Class of 2023, according to the 247Sports composite rankings, after rushing for 1,118 yards and 17 touchdowns, and also adding 32 catches for 280 yards and four touchdowns in his final season in Fort Lauderdale.
“Every time he touches the ball, he’ll have an opportunity to take it all the way,” former Panthers coach Tyler Tate said last year.
Gordon piled up all of her championships on the hardwood and was the Herald’s Broward County Girls’ Basketball Player of the Year for Classes 7A-5A this year after leading St. Thomas Aquinas to a third straight state title.
The Raiders have won three state titles in girls’ basketball and Gordon has been a part of all three, one of the program’s best players since she was a sophomore. As a senior, she averaged 15.8 points per game.
She signed with East Carolina.
Although she didn’t become a star until she transferred to St. Thomas Aquinas, Gordon already had championship experience before she arrived in Fort Lauderdale. When she was still in middle school, Gordon won a pair of state titles as a role player at Miami Country Day.
“A lot of the time, you get young players who come in as freshmen and sophomores, and they’ve really got to work their way into the moment and into playing an elite role,” Raiders coach Oliver Berens said in March. “She always wanted to have the ball and step up in big moments.”
▪ Stoneman Douglas senior Christian Rodriguez was the Broward County Baseball Pitcher of the Year for Classes 7A-6A and helped the Eagles go undefeated, and win the Class 7A championship and a national title. He signed with Florida.
▪ Western senior Dean Rothschild was a first-team All-Broward County selection in both boys’ lacrosse and boys’ bowling.
▪ St. Thomas Aquinas senior Anthony Herrera was the Broward County Cross Country Runner of the Year, and a first-team All-Broward County selection in track and field. He’s committed to Florida State.
▪ Flanagan junior Shamar Henry was a first-team All-Broward County selection in both track and field, and cross country.
▪ Samuel Collingwood was the Broward County Boys’ Water Polo Player of the Year and led the Raiders to the Class 1A championship. The senior was also a first-team All-Broward County selection in swimming and diving, winning the Class 3A championship in the 50-yard freestyle.
▪ Cypress Bay junior Peyton Looky was a second-team All-Broward County selection in both girls’ basketball and flag football.
▪ St. Thomas Aquinas junior Kamryn Corporan was a first-team All-Broward County selection in flag football and an All-Broward County honorable mention in girls’ basketball.
▪ South Plantation sophomore Elena Lam was a first-team All-Broward County selection in both girls’ volleyball and beach volleyball.
▪ Dillard junior Christiana Coleman was a first-team All-Broward County selection in both track and field, and cross country, and helped the Panthers win the 3A title in the 3,200 relay.
▪ Stoneman Douglas junior Gabriela Caro was the Broward County Girls’ Wrestler of the year and won the county’s first state championship in girls’ wrestling.