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 have just one more team to work up in the fifth round of random selections from the 11 districts. Our 10th team up this round and the fifth from 1A-District 1, the 56th team overall, is Rutherford.
You can see everything I have on the Rams in 2019-20 here –> RUTHERFORD
Win/loss record: 5-9 in dual meets reported to Matmen. Please review the attached document for a summary of the Rams’ performance in IBT events. All records were as compiled by Matmen.
Season in a nutshell: Rutherford began the season at district rival South Walton’s two-day Border Wars VII on December 6-7, placing T-16th out of 20 teams. The Rams then competed in a midweek quad with three other district teams on the 12th, going 1-2 in that quad. Next up was a trip to Chiles’ Capital City Classic on the 13th and 14th, where the Rams finished 23rd out of 28 teams. That was Rutherford’s last event in December; after the holidays, the Rams went to The Bash, hosted at Mosley on January 3-4. In duals competition on the 3rd, the Rams were 1-3 and placed 10th. Rutherford then took eighth in second-day IBT competition on the 4th. Next up was an appearance at the 1A-District 1 dual team tournament, in which the Rams fell in the quarterfinals. After a week-plus away from competition, next up was a trip to district rival Wewahitchka’s two-day Gator Brawl on the 17th and 18th, where Rutherford was 14th out of 22 teams. The Rams stayed in IBT mode the following weekend, going to district rival Bay’s inaugural George Mulligan Memorial, placing 15th out of 18 teams on January 24-25, and then finished 12th out of 20 teams at region rival Wakulla’s two-day IBT on January 31-February 1. Rutherford went back to Chiles on February 8 for the one-day Timberwolf Duals, placing ninth out of 12 teams with a 2-3 record. The Rams wrapped up the regular season with a midweek dual win on February 13 and then placed fourth at the District 1 traditional tournament. At Region 1, Rutherford was 19th out of 30 teams, sending one wrestler to states, where the Rams placed T-48th in 1A at Silver Spurs Arena. While the Rams had their share of struggles during the season, one highlight for next year is that they lost no wrestlers to graduation. Rutherford can call upon as many as 10 key post-season/regular-season starters, plus the Rams had a couple more kids that saw some time in the lineup last season.
Key returners (15+ matches this past season) for 2020-21 (with year in school as they’ll be next year): Elijah Stillgess (sophomore, 23-24 at 106, district runnerup, 0-2 at regions); Zander Stillgess (7th, 8-22 at 106/113, did not compete in post-season traditionals); Calvin Williams (junior, 14-8 at 113/120, did not compete in post-season traditionals); Colin Dutton (senior, 20-9 at 120, district runnerup, did not compete at regions); Elijah Galloway (7th, 1-26 at 132, 1 match from regions); Christopher Weatherspoon (sophomore, 3-19 at 152, 1 match from regions); Zach Duncan (senior, 10-24 at 160, district 4th, 0-2 at regions); Chad Allgood (junior, 33-19 at 170, district champ, 0-2 at regions); Marco Mejia (sophomore, 8-23 at 182, district 3rd, 0-2 at regions); Xavier Stillgess (senior, 40-12 at 195, district champ, region 3rd, 1-2 at states).
Graduation losses (15+ matches this past season or post-season experience) from this year’s team: None.
2019-20 MVP: In a season where the Rams struggled as a team to fill weights and find team success, rising senior Xavier Stillgess was a consistent bright light for Rutherford in his junior year on the mats, leading the team in wins, reaching the 40 mark at states, his second appearance at Silver Spurs Arena. Stillgess wrestled a weight up from his season-ending 195 for the first two weeks, placing fourth with a 6-2 weekend record at Border Wars at 220. At Capital City, while still at 220, Stillgess was 5-2 and placed fifth, avenging his first loss in the medal-round match. He dropped to 195 for The Bash, with a 4-2 weekend and runnerup finish there (both losses to an Alabama wrestler) and reached the final as well at Gator Brawl, with a 6-1 weekend record. Stillgess won the first 195 title at George Mulligan and reached the final at Wakulla. He was 4-1 at Timberwolf Duals and needed just one pin to claim the District 1 title at 195, one of the Rams’ two district titles. At Region 1, he was 4-1 in placing third, with four pins (two on each side of the bracket), to serve as Rutherford’s sole representation at states. There, he was a scoring move short of getting to Saturday’s wrestling for the second straight year. That should change in March.
2020-21 captain: While Stillgess will no doubt be one of the leaders and captains for Rutherford next season, we look for a second wrestler to fill this space, and rising junior Chad Allgood had the kind of season that suggested he will be a leader on the mat for the Rams in 2020-21. Allgood got out to a slower start in December — as sometimes happens at Border Wars and Capital City — but had a 4-3 weekend at The Bash and was 7-3, placing seventh, at Gator Brawl. Allgood followed that up with a 4-2 tournament at Bay, placing fifth at George Mulligan, and duplicated that win-loss record at Wakulla, placing fourth. Allgood bonus-pointed through Timberwolf Duals and max-pointed through to Rutherford’s first title at District 1. His Region 1 weekend was too short, but Allgood has two more chances to get to Kissimmee, and we think he’ll convert on at least one of them.
Zander Laurin Warrior: It’s really difficult for a 6th-grader, particularly an inexperienced one, to cope with competing with wrestlers that are six years older, usually much stronger, and — particularly in the case for middleweight wrestlers — the most experienced competitors in the lineup. That was the case for rising 7th grader Elijah Galloway, who made his first appearance in the lineup just before Capital City. Galloway made it into the second period — where fall times were recorded — just a couple of times, and it wasn’t until the final round of Gator Brawl, when Galloway won by forfeit. That would be his only victory, but he kept making attempts, with appearances at Bay, Wakulla and District 1, to help the team and try to score points. For continuing to put the singlet on under on-the-mat adversity, Elijah Galloway is the Zander Laurin Warrior for Rutherford.
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