#TheRecap: Wakulla, Clay Go 1-2 At Manatee

North Florida Matmen staff report

BRADENTON — With January’s focus squarely upon district duals this week and the tournament series, there’s nothing like a scrap against some quality unfamiliar faces in duals mode to get a team prepped for a deep post-season run.

Wakulla and Clay look like they’re already in post-season form, based on their results from last weekend’s Coach Kelly Duals/Hurricane Challenge at Manatee, and although Lincoln had a tougher time than the Trojans are used to, they also put a lot of pieces in place for the next few weeks.

clay 2nd
Clay wrestlers and coaches with their second-place trophy at the Manatee HS gym (Photo submitted by April Bell via Facebook).

The War Eagles ran the table, with an 8-0 record against mainly 2A and 3A competition in the two-day event, while Clay lost only to their region rivals in placing second. Lincoln was 3-5, with just a single match reversal being the difference between that record and a .500 weekend.

Wakulla’s wins, in order, came over Lincoln (61-12), Riverview (63-18), Newsome (51-24), Clay (37-33), Tenoroc (71-12), host Manatee (43-31), Columbus (37-36) and Bloomingdale (63-12).

The War Eagles had four unbeaten wrestlers on the weekend. Matthew Owen (132, 7 pins & decision), Noah Wilson (145, 7 pins & major), John Trevor Hinsey (195/220, 6 pins & 2 majors) and Slade Watkins (220/285, 7 pins & decision) each were 8-0 on the weekend.

Wakulla wrestlers and coaches celebrate a team title won Saturday at the Coach Kelly Duals/Hurricane Challenge tournament at Manatee HS in Bradenton (Photo submitted by Heather Harrell).

George Hernandez (113, 5 pins & 2 decisions) and Cole Baggett (160, 5 pins) were each 7-1 for Wakulla (18-0 in duals for the season). Raymond Hatchman (120/126, 6 pins) and the 170 combo of Jackson Osteen and Jayvon Brown (4 pins & 2 decisions) were both 6-2. Cole Roberts (152, 3 pins & decision) was 5-1 and Jackson Merrick (138, 2 pins/tech/decision) 5-3 for the War Eagles.

Clay defeated Riverview (53-13), Columbus (38-27) and Manatee (45-29) before the loss to Wakulla; afterward, the Blue Devils knocked off Newsome (60-16), Tenoroc (84 to -1), Lincoln (57-17) and Bloomingdale (66-8) to move to 18-1 on the season.

Per records reported to Matmen, Cale Hoskinson was 8-0 for the Blue Devils (decision over Wakulla, pin over Lincoln), while Abdiert Escobar (126; 2 pins over Wakulla/Lincoln), Luke Boree (138, decision/pin over Wakulla/Lincoln), Dominic Martin (145, pin over Lincoln), Jordan Bell (182, 2 pins over Wakulla/Lincoln) and Garrett Tyre (220, pin over Lincoln) were all 7-1.

Derrek Mosley (285) was 6-1, and Tazz Hampton (106, 2 decisions over Wakulla/Lincoln), Luke Davis (120, 2 pins over Wakulla/Lincoln) and Joe Grelli (195) were each 6-2. Luca Fiannca (160, pin over Lincoln) contributed a 5-3 record.

Lincoln had wins over Tenoroc (51-30), Newsome (54-28) and Bloomingdale (54-27), with out-of-area losses to Columbus (54-18), Riverview (42-38) and Manatee (48-26).

Tyler Moss was Lincoln’s only unbeaten wrestler, going 8-0 (6 pins & decision) at 285. Tanner Washburn (195, 4 pins & 2 decisions) was 7-1, while Jimmy Martin (113, 3 pins/major/decision) was 6-2. Elijah Hendley (106, 3 pins & major), Cayden Bevis (170, 3 pins & 2 decisions) and Wyatt Yown (182, 3 pins & decision) were all 5-3, while Patrick Blanca (152, 3 pins) was 4-2 in a regular but not exclusive starting role.

Below follows a summary (where match-by-match results available) of local teams by round:

Rd 1: Lincoln rolled past Tenoroc, with a mini-run of three wins from 170 through 195 to take 15 points in a row. Hendley, Martin, Steven Leger (126), Mekhi Williams (132), Yown, Washburn and Moss had pins, with Bevis taking a 9-6 win.

Rd 2: Wakulla gave up just two contested losses to their nearby rival, with Hatchman, Jae Thaxton (126), Owen, Merrick, Wilson, Roberts, Baggett, Osteen and Watkins all taking pins, with Hinsey adding a 12-2 major and Hernandez an 11-8 win. Hendley (2-0) and Yown (6-4 in sudden victory) had contested wins for Lincoln.

Rd 3: The War Eagles swept every match from 170 on up, giving Riverview just three wins. Hernandez, Hatchman, Owen, Wilson, Roberts, Brown, Hayden Reeves (182), Edenfield, Hinsey and Watkins all had pins, while Julian Harvey (106) had a 4-2 win.

Rd 4: Wakulla showed strength in the middle against Newsome, with five straight wins from 132 through 160. Hernandez, Hatchman, Owen, Merrick, Wilson, Hinsey and Watkins had pins, with Roberts adding a 7-6 win. Lincoln struggled against Columbus’ experienced lineup, with just four wins. Washburn and Moss had falls, with Martin (11-5) and Bevis (11-6) taking decisions for the Trojans.

Rd 5: Lincoln nearly pulled off the win against Riverview, with pins from Blanca, Bevis, Yown, Washburn and Moss, plus majors from Hendley (9-0) and Martin (16-3).

Rd 6: In the battle of 1A northern titans that is likely to be a matchup on the first day of state duals, neither side could establish even a three-match win streak against the other. For Wakulla, Hernandez, Owen, Baggett, Hinsey and Watkins had pins, with Wilson taking a 10-0 major and Brown a 3-1 win. Clay got falls from Davis, Escobar and Bell, with Hampton (9-4), Boree (9-6) and Hoskinson (6-0) all winning by decision. Lincoln picked up a few wins against the hosts, but all were in the uppers, as the Hurricanes swept 106-145. Blanca and Moss had pins, with Omarion LaRoach (220) winning by a 26-8 tech fall and Washburn taking a 6-0 shutout win.

Rd 7: Wakulla only gave Tenoroc one contested win, with Hernandez, Hatchman, Thaxton, Owen, Wilson, Osteen, Edenfield, Hinsey and Watkins all winning by fall. Merrick had a 19-4 tech fall as well for the War Eagles.

Rd 8: The War Eagles hit the 3A gauntlet of Manatee and Columbus, surviving against the hosts with enough firepower between 145 and 220. Hatchman, Wilson, Roberts, Baggett, Reeves and Watkins all had pins, with Hinsey taking a 14-2 major and Owen a 7-0 win. Lincoln also had a high note against Newsome, with six pins from Hendley, Martin, Adam Barnes (120), Steven Leger (126), Washburn and Moss, with Curtis Jones (138) winning by injury-default as well.

Rd 9: Wakulla’s closest dual of the tournament, against long-time 3A program Columbus, came mainly thanks to the uppers, as the War Eagles lost just one match between 160 and 285. Owen, Wilson, Baggett, Hinsey and Watkins had pins, with Hernandez (9-2), Brown (3-2) and Edenfield (7-2) all winning by decisions. Lincoln continued to roll against Bloomingdale, with eight pins in the dual from Hendley, Martin, Blanca, Evan Taylor (160), Bevis, Yown, LaRoach and Moss.

Rd 10: In the other all-local matchup, Clay won every match between 120 and 160 against Lincoln, with the Blue Devils getting pins from Davis, Escobar, Aiden Mayo (132), Boree, Martin, Hoskinson, Luca Fiannca (160), Bell and Tyre, with Hampton taking a 3-0 win. Bevis won by fall, with Martin taking a 17-2 tech and Washburn (6-0) and Moss (6-2) taking decisions.

Rd 11: Wakulla clinched the title, allowing just one contested win against a starter, as Harvey, Hernandez, Hatchman, Owen, Wilson, Baggett, Osteen, Reeves and Hinsey each had pins. Merrick (11-8) and Watkins (6-2) each added decisions in the victory.

Clay and Wakulla go back on the mats Thursday night for district duals competition, with the Blue Devils headed to University Christian for 1A-District 4 and War Eagles headed to Florida High for 1A-District 2. Lincoln gets back on the mat on Friday for 2A-District 2 dual team competition at Columbia.

Complete results as forwarded by the competing teams can be found HERE.

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