The Season 2015-16: North Bay Haven

North Bay Haven

You can see everything I have on the Buccaneers in 2015-16 here –> NORTH BAY HAVEN

Win/loss record: 5-10 in dual meets up to the regular season-ending Panhandle DUals event, although we did not have match-by-match results, just a final score from the Buccaneers’ dual with Rutherford on January 27. Please review the attached document for a review of the Bears’ performance in IBT events.

Season in a nutshell: The Buccaneers did seem to be significantly improved from the year before, in their first year of the program, although they would have to improve their competitive place in IBTs, in particular, in order to feel better about moving up the ladder in District 1. North Bay Haven did pick up three dual wins over teams at Terry Parker’s Army Duals, with wins in duals against two different district rivals. But the IBT results were tough ones to overcome. The Buccaneers have several kids coming back, keeping them in the sport and having them wrestle year-round will eventually pay off.

2015-16 MVP: The Buccaneers will have a couple of losses due to 2016 graduation, with one of those being 160-pound Brandon Hays, who was NBH’s only district finalist this past season. Hays was perhaps the most reliable point-scorer in IBTs, taking fourth at Chiles and third at Gulf Breeze (he didn’t wrestle at Wewa’s Gator Brawl) and had two dominant wins en route to reaching the District 1 final, the second one coming against a 40-match winner. Hays led the team in victories this past year, and found himself in a tough spot at regions after dropping the first-round match. Hays was the best wrestler on the team a year ago as well, and helped jump-start the program as a whole.

2016-17 captain: Like many sophomores often do, Garrett Hester found the task of wrestling at the higher-upper weights a bit easier this year, but unlike in his freshman year, Hester wasn’t willing to stay up where he started. Hester got out to a good open to the year, earning the only place finish for North Bay Haven at Border Wars, with a third later on in the year at Gator Brawl and again at districts, where he and Hays were the only North Bay Haven wrestlers to get out to regions. But this year, Hester made two drops, going to 195 for Gator Brawl and 182 for districts (if not Panhandle Duals, I can’t be sure, as I don’t have anything for him there). It will be interesting to see how the next two years go and how the program develops while Hester and his fellow 2016 sophomores are there.

Heaton’s Hero: Seventh-graders can compete at 132 pounds, but they’d probably better come to the table with a ton of experience. That’s something that plagued Kurt Howard this year, as he battled with upperclassmen (in a lot of instances) and quality talent (state champ and former state champ in the weight class just within the region). Every result that I had for Howard — he was beaten out for the starting spots at 126 and 132 — that was contested wound up with a loss, but Howard did hang in, at least up until the Panhandle Duals, despite a lot of adversity. For that — remember, he was only 12 or 13 when the season began — Kurt Howard is the Heaton’s Hero for North Bay Haven.

Projected returning starters for 2016-17 (with year in school as they’ll be next year): Micheal Freeman (freshman, wrestled 120 this past year, 0-2 at districts); Micheal Toro (junior, wrestled 126 this past year, 0-2 at districts); Aidan Campbell (junior, wrestled 132/138 this past year, 1 match from regions); Dillon Fuder (senior, wrestled 138/145 this past year, 1 match from regions); Dagon Womack (senior, wrestled 145/152 this past year, 1 match from regions); Jackson Emery (senior, wrestled 170/182 this past year, 1 match from regions); Hester (junior, wrestled 182/195/220 this past year, District 1 3rd place). Also: Kaleb Purswell (8th, wrestled 106 this past year, did not compete in post-season); Howard (8th, wrestled 126/132 this past year, did not compete in post-season).

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