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#TheRecap: Fleming 2nd, Nix Earns OW At Flagler Rotary

North Florida Matmen staff report

PALM COAST — Even a team as strong as Fleming Island has few answers as a group for the Southeast’s juggernaut, Lake Highland Prep.

Other than the Golden Eagles, LHP more than doubled up every other team in the tournament in rolling up the Flagler Rotary team title with 391.5 points.

Fleming Island had a 74-point gap between itself and third-place Harmony, scoring 268.5 points and placing 14 of its wrestlers in the top six.

fleming2nd
Fleming wrestlers, including 220 champion and OW Chad Nix, congregate for a partial team picture after the Golden Eagles were second at this weekend’s Flagler Rotary (Photo submitted by Ricki Nix).

Winter Springs (160.5) and host Flagler Palm Coast (143.5) rounded out the top five. Oakleaf was T-7th, with 96.5 points, while Columbia was ninth at 92 and Seminole 10th with 91.

Local teams among the second 10 in the 33-team field were University-Orange City (11th, 91 points), Matanzas (T-12th at 69), Seabreeze (13th, 67), Creekside (16th, 56.5, Bartram Trail (17th, 53) and New Smyrna Beach (18th, 43).

St Augustine (21st, 33.5 points), Pedro Menendez (23rd, 26.5 points), Bolles (24th, 25), Episcopal (25th, 23), Ponte Vedra (26th, 18), First Baptist Christian Academy (27th, 17), Mainland (28th, 16) and Bishop Kenny (31st, eight) rounded out the local representatives in the 33-team field.

Below follows a summary of the tournament, with area* top-six and wrestlers one match short of the top six noted):

106 — LHP’s Ethan Rivera (1st-1A) bonus-pointed through every round of the tournament, with three first-period pins, a 13-1 major and second-period tech fall (15-0 in 2:47) over Highlander teammate Zachary Lewis (pin/dec/tech prior to final). FPC’s Kole Hannant was fourth and Bartram’s Ethan Vugman (11th-3A) fifth. Hannant reached the semis behind victories over Matanzas’ Braden Hawley (17-0 in 2:54, rd of 32), First Baptist’s Chase Jones (:20, rd of 16) and Harmony’s Tanner Hinman (4-3 in the quarters) before losing to Lewis. Hannant then pinned Satellite’s Alexander McMiller (3:57) in the consi semis before falling to Newsome’s Brayden Johnson (12th-3A), 14-3, in the third-place match. Vugman pinned Seabreeze’s Kayla Nguyen (1:01, rd of 16) but then fell in sudden victory, 9-7, in the quarters. He had two bonus-point wins in the consis; after falling to Johnson, 10-1, in the semis, Vugman decisioned McMiller, 9-3, for fifth.

113 — Boone’s Joseph Lytle (12th-3A) also bonus-pointed through all rounds of the weekend, with two pins, a 15-1 major and injury-default victory in the final over Harmony’s Aiden Poe (3rd-2A; pin/major/tech prior to final). Fleming’s Hunter Herrington (7th-3A) reached the semifinals and placed third, while FPC’s Joseph Rizzo (18th-3A) was fourth. Herrington had wins on the front over Creekside’s Cody Smith (2:20, rd of 16) and Bishop Kenny’s Ryan Mayer (12th-1A; 12-1, quarters) before losing to Poe in the semis. Herrington then decisioned LHP’s Joshua Boykin, 7-6, in the consi semis and pinned Rizzo in 44 seconds for third. Rizzo got to the quarters with an 8-3 decision over Winter Springs’ Silas Mantero, but then lost to Poe in the quarters. Rizzo then had three wins on the back to get to the third-place match. Seabreeze’s Joseph Kent was one match short of placing.

120 — LHP’s David McClelland (1st-1A) pinned his way into the final (4 pins in all), then took a 6-0 win there over Fleming’s Ryan Hobson. Hobson got to the final with early pins over Pedro Menendez’s Joseph Lepera (:42, rd of 32) and Boone’s Kris Tellez (:50, rd of 16); after a 5-0 in the quarters over Matanzas’ Ethan Goodman (7th-2A), Hobson falled Master’s Academy’s Brandon Cody (6th-1A) in 3:27. New Smyrna Beach’s Jace Engberg (17th-2A at 126) won four matches on the back to make podium, finishing sixth after losses in the consi semis and to Cocoa Beach’s Billy Day, 10-2, in the fifth-place match. Oakleaf’s Marcus McGee and Episcopal’s Joe Jackson (18th-1A) were both one match short of placing.

126 — LHP’s Danny Nini (2nd-1A) had three wins by fall to get to the finals, where he won by technical fall over Matanzas’ Shaun Culbreth (5th-2A), 22-6 in 4 minutes. Culbreth pinned his way into the semis, with falls over Master’s Academy’s Alejandro Rojas (:10, rd of 32), Boone’s Tyler Matrau (4:51, rd of 16) and Bartram’s Trevor Tagarelli (2:52, quarters) before turning back Harmony’s Dylan Jones (4th-2A, 8-5, in the semi. New Smyrna Beach’s Michael Shannon (8th-2A at 132) was fourth, Fleming’s Riley Holton (7th-3A) fifth and Tagarelli sixth. Shannon got to the semis behind a pin over UOC’s Jonathan Justice (1:50, rd of 16) and 5-2 quarterfinal win over Holton before giving Nini his longest match of the tournament; Shannon then pinned Tagarelli (1:25) in the consi semis. Holton got two bonus-point wins to make podium, pinning Tagarelli (two consi-side pins) in 2:58 for fifth. St Augustine’s Jordan Levy was one match short of placing.

132 — Columbia’s Ian McGuigan (10th-2A) won his first high school tournament by pinning or teching through to the finals, then edging Cocoa Beach’s Michael Watson (9th-1A; 3 pins & decision prior to final), 3-2, for the bracket win. McGuigan teched Bishop Kenny’s Brock Hinson (15-0 in 4:55) and had pins over Boone’s Luis Santos (1:20, rd of 16), Winter Springs’ Aiden Reichert (1:59, quarters) and the hosts’ Andrew Dance (5:39) in the semi. Dance wound up finishing fourth and Fleming’s Isaac Padgett (11th-3A) took sixth. Dance won three times on the front; after falling to McGuigan in the semis, he edged LHP’s Preston Walls, 6-4 in sudden victory before losing by an 18-3 tech in the third-place match to Winter Springs’ Riley Chapdelaine (11th-2A). Padgett got to the quarters, where he took a 6-5 loss to Dance, and won twice on the back to make podium, with a loss by fall to Walls in the fifth-place match. Oakleaf’s Trevor Owens was one match short of placing.

138 — LHP’s Chris Rivera (2nd-1A) bonus-pointed through every round, with three pins, a 13-2 major and third-period tech fall (20-2 in 5:53) over Fleming’s Dalton Williams (12th-3A). Williams won four times to get to the final, with a pin over St Augustine’s Carlos Quintanal (3:18, rd of 32) and a tech over Seminole’s Isaac Epperson (16-0 in 6 minutes), plus decision wins over Matanzas’ Sam Russo (20th-2A; 8-1, quarters) and Lake Brantley’s Chris Labrecque (7-1, semis). The hosts’ Kyle Peacock (8th-3A) was third and Columbia’s Alex McGuigan (6th-2A) sixth. Peacock reached the semis behind two first-period pins and an overtime win over Harmony’s Melvin Ewen (9th-2A) in the quarters before falling to Rivera; Peacock then edged McGuigan, 5-3 in sudden victory, and downed Ewen, 5-2, in the place match. After falling in the quarters to Labrecque, McGuigan won twice on the back to make podium, falling a second time to Labrecque, 3-2, for fifth. Oakleaf’s Logan Gilbert was one match short of placing.

145 — LHP’s Justin Rivera pinned his way into the final (4 falls in all), where he teched Newsome’s Parker Drake (15th-3A at 152; 3 pins & major prior to final). Fleming’s Gannon Janssen (2nd-3A) was fourth and Columbia’s Daveyon Brown sixth. Janssen got to the semis behind two pins and an 11-4 decision in the quarters, but then lost to Drake in the semi; he pinned Brown in 1:27 in the consi semis, but then lost by fall to Cocoa Beach’s James Clark-Herndon (6th-1A, 3:35) in the third-place match. Brown had won four matches to make podium, with an 11-9 blood-round win over Bolles’ Tyson Riley, who was one match short of placing.

152 — Winter Springs’ JJ Contreras (2nd-2A) bonus-pointed through three round,s then took two decisions for the title, including a 12-6 win in the final over Fleming’s Tanner Hill (4th-3A). Hill reached the final with bonus-point wins over Lake Howell’s Phillip Carstens (17-3, rd of 32), Pedro Menendez’s Nathan Luckadoo (2:06, rd of 16) and First Baptist’s Jackson Mills (1:37, quarters), decisioning Lake Highland’s Daniel Williams, 6-3, in the semifinal. FPC’s Blane DeFord (12th-3A) was third, Oakleaf’s David Parkes (17th-3A) fifth and Episcopal’s Reid Hampton (14th-1A) sixth. DeFord had two pins and decisioned Parkes, 7-3, in the quarters, before falling 3-1 to Contreras in the semi; on the back side, DeFord pinned Hampton and took a 1-0 third-place win over Williams. Parkes had two pins on the back to assure a place finish, while Hampton (who’d lost 8-0 to Williams in the quarters) had two shutout major decisions. Parkes then knocked off Hampton, 4-2, in the fifth-place match. St Augustine’s Hayden Yanni (20th-2A) and Seabreeze’s Brock Roberts (17th-2A) were each one match short of placing.

160 — LHP’s Dominic Isola (2nd-1A) teched or pinned his way into the finals, but there had to push past Fleming’s Luke Chop (3rd-3A), 2-1, for the championship win. Chop reached the finals with pins over Oakleaf’s James McClintic (2:49, rd of 32), Ponte Vedra’s Joseph Skinner (3:23, rd of 16), Lake Brantley’s Tymel Isham (5:25, quarters) and then a third-period tech fall over Golden Eagle teammate Jhoel Robinson (15-0 in 5:17). Robinson was fourth and Seabreeze’s Victor Lipsey (20th-2A) was sixth. Robinson had two first-period pins and an 8-5 win over Lipsey in the quarters; in the consi semis, Robinson decisioned Boone’s Colbi Giroux (16th-3A), 8-3, in the consi semis before falling to Harmony’s Sean Seery (4th-2A), 3-1, for third. Giroux then beat Lipsey, 8-6, for fifth after Lipsey had taken two consi-side matches to make podium.

170 — LHP’s Bailey Flanagan (3rd-1A) also teched or pinned his way into the final, then took a 3-2 decision in the championship match over Newsome’s Kohl Drake (2nd-3A; 3 pins prior to final). Fleming’s Gavin Smith (7th-3A) was third and Matanzas’ Quenteen Robinson (1st-2A) fifth. Smith got to the quarters with a 43-second pin in the round of 16, then lost by fall there to Drake. In the consis, however, Smith wouldn’t lose again, with four victories on the back, including a 4-0 win over Harmony’s Will Jacobson (13th-2A) in the third-place match. Robinson pinned his way into the semis, where he fell, 4-3, to Drake; after taking a second loss to Jacobson in the consi semis, Robinson pinned Winter Springs’ Joe Burgess (12th-2A) in 2:42 for fifth. Pedro Menendez’s Connor Spossey (7th-1A) and Columbia’s Joseph Rice were each one match short of placing.

182 — Aside from a 3-2 semifinal win over Fleming’s Nick Janssen (10th-3A), LHP’s Hunter Brinkman (1st-1A) pinned his way through the bracket, with three pins, the last over Creekside’s Jalen Hines (10th-3A at 170) in the final. Hines won three times to get to the final, with a pin over Poinciana’s Jeremiah Jules (3:51, rd of 16), 8-5 win over Harmony’s Marshall Smith (18th-2A) in the quarters and 22-5 tech over Winter Springs’ Luis Valdes in the semi. Janssen wound up fourth. He had a pin in the round of 16 and 11-7 win over Newsome’s Michael Nunn (17th-3A) in the quarters; on the back side, Janssen turned back Smith, 4-2, in the consi semis but fell to Nunn, 6-3, for third. Bolles’ Ethan Asbury (18th-1A) and FPC’s Jayden Austin were each one match short of placing.

195 — Aside from a 4-2 win in sudden victory in the round of 16 over Fleming’s Jeffrey Lascano (3rd-3A), LHP’s Easton Tobia (4th-1A) bonus-pointed through the tournament, with two pins and a 10-2 major in the final over Harmony’s Juan Gomez (14th-2A; 2 pins & major prior to final). Lascano came back from the early loss behind four bonus-point wins in the consis; after a 3-2 loss in the semi, Lascano majored Seabreeze’s Caiden Patton, 13-0, for fifth. Patton got two pins to make the semis, but then fell to Gomez on the front.

220 — Fleming’s Chad Nix (1st-3A) was his team’s lone champion, earning an OW award. Nix pinned his first three opponents in 52 seconds, with falls over Creekside’s Robbie Balke (:13, rd of 32), Lyman’s Gavin Jimenez (:18, rd of 16) and Boone’s Miles Tankovich (:21, quarters) before decisioning Winter Springs’ Marvin Collins (3rd-2A), 7-1, in the semi and Lake Highland’s Matt Kaplan (1st-1A; 2 pins & decision prior to final), 5-2, in the championship match. Bolles’ Jack Pyburn was sixth after losing by fall in the quarters; Pyburn had two pins to make podium, falling, 4-2, in the fifth-place to UOC’s Christian Kennick (5th-3A).

285 — Seminole’s Curtis Ruff (1st-3A) pinned his way into the final with three first-period falls, then took an 8-5 championship round win over Poinciana’s Quaylen Hill (7th-2A; 3 pins prior to final). Flagler’s AJ Cinelli (6th-3A) was third, Oakleaf’s Josh Murrell (18th-3A) fifth and Fleming’s Raul Gonzalez (7th-3A) sixth. Cinelli got to the semis behind two pins and a 1-0 quarterfinal win over Gonzalez before losing to Ruff; he then pinned Murrell in the consi semis and took a 2-1 double-overtime win over Harmony’s Darren Davis (11th-2A) for third. Murrell and Gonzalez each won twice on the back to make podium, and Murrell would take a 3-1 sudden-victory over Gonzalez in the fifth-place match.

* – Note: Not all area teams could be fully recapped in this story due to missing results. Coaches can get with Matmen any time to resolve.

Complete brackets from the tournament can be found HERE.

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