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.
We are in the homestretch of the fifth round of random selections from the 11 districts. Our ninth team up this round and the fifth from 3A-District 2, the 55th team overall, is Forest.
You can see everything I have on the Wildcats in 2019-20 here –> FOREST
Win/loss record: 12-4 in dual meets reported to Matmen. Please review the attached document for a summary of the Wildcats’ performance in IBT events. All records were as compiled by Matmen.
Season in a nutshell: Forest didn’t get started until the third weekend of December, kicking off with a trip to Lyman and the Bill Scott Holiday Invitational, placing ninth out of 14 teams in the mixed IBT/pooled roundrobin event on the 20th-21st. After the holidays, the Wildcats opened with 3A-District 2 dual team competition on January 9, placing fourth in the district with a 2-2 record. Next up on the 18th was a roadtrip to Jacksonville and Westside’s one-day roundrobin tournament, in which Forest placed third out of 11 teams. The Wildcats then took midweek dual wins on both January 23 and 29, then made a longer trip to George Jenkins for its two-day Moskowitz IBT on the 31st and February 1, taking 15th out of 27 teams in that event. From there, Forest closed out the regular season in dual format, winning the Marion County conference title with three midweek dual wins on the 5th, then taking a 5-2 record (according to our best info, which came from the tournament host) at Belleview’s Diamondback Duals on the 7th and 8th. Forest was sixth at the District 2 traditional tournament, and took a T-23rd finish, with no state qualifiers, in the Region 1 meet at Fleming Island. The Wildcats did lose three key seniors to graduation, including a pair of post-season starters, but Forest can call upon as many as nine post-season starters in 2020-21, plus it has a couple of kids that saw some starting time in bigger events, but fell just short of 15 matches and didn’t compete in the post-season.
Key returners (15+ matches this past season) for 2020-21 (with year in school as they’ll be next year): Jakob Zawosky (junior, 32-6 at 106, district champ, 1 match from states); Gabriele Mulford (senior, 2-13 at 113, 0-2 at districts); Nick Stua (senior, 13-16 at 120, 1 match from regions); Chase Cook (senior, 10-16 at 126, district 4th, 0-2 at regions); Wesley Marren (junior, 10-14 at 132, 1 match from regions); Tyler Miller (senior, 19-13 at 145, 1 match from regions); Casey Carr (senior, 20-13 at 170, 1 match from regions); Josshuel Martinez (junior, 6-12 at 220, 1 match from regions); Kaleb Thompson (senior, 7-14 at 285, district 4th, 1-2 at regions).
Graduation losses (15+ matches this past season or post-season experience) from this year’s team: Steven Holmes (11-5 at 138, did not compete in post-season traditionals); Alvont Graham (17-8 at 182, district 4th, 0-2 at regions); Jacob Pratt (20-11 at 195, district 4th, 0-2 at regions).
2019-20 MVP: Rising junior Jakob Zawosky held down the lower-weight bookend with distinction for the Wildcats in 2019-20, and although he had some struggles against experienced competition at Lyman, things got dramatically easier for him throughout most of the rest of the season. Zawosky was 4-3 at Lyman, during which he started a 13-match win streak, all wins by fall, that carried him through district duals and earned him a title at Westside. Zawosky took third at Moskowitz, with a 4-1 weekend record. The loss in the semis of that tournament touched off a 17-match win streak that was halted only in the Region 1 semifinals. During that time, Zawosky max-pointed through the MCIAC duals, bonus-pointed through Diamondback Duals and added a second bonus-point tournament finish at District 2. Two pins got him into the semis at Fleming Island, where he took two tight decision losses to lose in the blood round. We should see him in Kissimmee before much longer, perhaps even this coming March.
2020-21 captain: While Zawosky will certainly be a captain on the mats in 2020-21, the Wildcats are going to need the rest of their returners to step up some between last year and this year, as just one Forest wrestler besides Zawosky won a match at Fleming Island. One of those who enjoyed some regular-season success that didn’t quite translate into late-February wins was rising senior Casey Carr, who was second among Forest returners in wins for 2019-20. After a slow start at Lyman, in which he was 1-4, Carr went 19-9 the rest of the season. He was 2-2 at district duals, Westside and Moskowitz, then went 3-0 at MCIAC duals and 6-1 at Diamondback Duals, where his only loss was to a state placer. Carr had three matches at District 2, with both of his losses coming by relatively close decisions.
Zander Laurin Warrior: Rising senior Kaleb Thompson was a part-time starter at 285 for the Wildcats, splitting time with another heavyweight. Thompson took four losses by fall — all but one in the first period — at his first appearance at district duals, and started off 0-6 before a win by fall got him off the schneid. The rest of the season, however, Thompson was 7-8, and he was able to avenge two of those first four losses at district duals, one at MCIAC that allowed him to complete a 3-0 night at conference, and the other in the consis at districts, its version of the blood round, which allowed Thompson to extend his season another week and — at Fleming Island — win a match in the consis there. For battling in the face of on-the-mat adversity and just to stay in the lineup, Kaleb Thompson is the Zander Laurin Warrior for Forest.
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