The work continues. We are bringing back, for its sixth year, #TheSeason. We didn’t do these first year, but have ever since. It’s something nobody else does. We compile all season records and write a wrapup for each team.
This post kicks off our fifth round of random selections from the 11 districts. Our first team up is out of 1A-District 3, the fifth from the district and 47th team overall, is Paxon.
You can see everything I have on the Golden Eagles in 2019-20 here –> PAXON
Win/loss record: 3-32 in dual meets reported to Matmen. Please review the attached document for a summary of the Golden Eagles’ performance in IBT events. All records were as compiled by Matmen.
Season in a nutshell: Paxon began the season at Gateway Conference rival Terry Parker’s two-day Arlington Optimist Invitational, where the Golden Eagles placed 10th out of 12 teams on December 6-7. After a midweek tri-meet saw them open their dual season on the 11th with a pair of losses, the Eagles then went to district rival Fernandina Beach’s inaugural Dual in the Dunes tournament on the 14th, where Paxon compiled a 1-4 record and placed ninth. It stayed in district the following weekend for the Yulee Duals on the 20th-21st, but couldn’t find a win in eight duals there. After the holidays, the Golden Eagles were back in action at Terry Parker for the USMC Duals on January 10-11, where Paxon was 0-7 and placed 14th. It had a midweek dual win on the 16th and split a pair of midweek duals on the 22nd before going back to Parker for the Parker Duals on the 24th and 25th, where the Golden Eagles finished 0-9. They went to Fletcher for the Gateway traditional tournament on January 31 and February 1, placing 12th out of 15 teams. Paxon then completed the regular season with a midweek quad, going 0-3. The Golden Eagles then finished eighth at the 1A-District 3 traditional tournament, and finished T-29th at Region 1, with no state qualifiers. Paxon graduated just one key post-season starter from its 2019-20 team, but the Golden Eagles could call upon as many as nine wrestlers with either post-season or key regular-season experience in 2020-21.
Key returners (15+ matches this past season) for 2020-21 (with year in school as they’ll be next year): David Kang (junior, 7-19 at 126/132, did not compete in post-season traditionals); Ashton Burgess (senior, 7-26 at 132, 1 match from regions); Jared Aten (senior, 8-17 at 145, district 4th, 0-2 at regions); Michael Dramis (senior, 22-12 at 152, district 3rd, did not compete at regions); Alex Denyakin (senior, 12-13 at 152/160, did not compete in post-season traditionals); Logan Holman (junior, 6-15 at 160, 1 match from regions); Cameron Avery (senior, 7-18 at 182, 1 match from regions); Daniel Harman (senior, 5-15 at 182/195, did not compete in post-season traditionals); Matthew Brunelli (sophomore, 11-16 at 195, district 4th, 0-2 at regions).
Graduation losses (15+ matches this past season or post-season experience) from this year’s team: Joshua Leynes (6-15 at 170, 1 match from regions).
2019-20 MVP: Rising senior Michael Dramis led the team in victories (22), with the corresponding highest degree of success in tournaments during the course of the season. Like many of the Paxon kids experienced, Dramis got off to a slow start, with a 2-5 record while competing between 152 and 170 in December. Things started to turn for Dramis in January, however, as he was 6-1 with three contested wins at USMC Duals. Dramis the compiled a 6-3 record, with three more contested wins, at Parker Duals two weeks later, and earned Paxon’s only place finish at Gateway, taking fourth at 152. Dramis also had the Golden Eagles’ top finish in the District 3 traditional tournament; while he didn’t compete at regions, he would have had a reasonable chance to get to the second day of competition there.
2020-21 captain: Rising senior Jared Aten was one of just two Golden Eagle wrestlers that made it out to the Region 1 tournament. It was a pretty rough start for Aten, as he won just one of his first nine matches. But, from the end of USMC Duals on to the end of the year, Aten finished those matches at nearly .500, with two pins at Gateway and, with an extended season on the line, a hard-fought decision over a senior in the District 3 blood round. Aten is one of a group of a rising Paxon 12th-graders that could be part of a changing of the guard for the Golden Eagles.
Zander Laurin Warrior: Being the only freshman on what’s essentially otherwise a group that had experience from a year ago can be difficult, but rising sophomore Matthew Brunelli battled the difficulties of that and being a freshman upper-weight at the same time, getting out to regions in the process. Brunelli was the starter at 195 for each tournament except for USMC Duals, with at least one win each for the regular-season events, including a 2-2 Gateway tournament, and held down the upper end of the lineup at each of Paxon’s last three tournaments. For doing so and sticking through the most difficult season (the first), Matthew Brunelli is the Zander Laurin Warrior for Paxon.
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