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 wraps up Round 7 of random selections from the 11 districts. Our last team this round, the seventh team in 1A-District 1 and 79th team overall, is North Bay Haven.
NORTH BAY HAVEN
You can see everything I have on the Buccaneers in 2019-20 here –> NORTH BAY HAVEN
Win/loss record: 4-4 in dual meets reported to Matmen. Please review the attached document for a summary of the Buccaneers’ performance in IBT events. All individual records are as compiled by Matmen.
Season in a nutshell: North Bay Haven began the season with a pair of midweek dual losses on December 10, but rallied in a midweek quad against district rivals, winning two of three duals on December 12. For most of the Buccaneer team, that was it for December competition, but the Lady Buccaneers were one of 27 teams that competed in Matanzas’ Lady Pirate Classic on the 21st. After the holidays, first up for NBHCS was competition in the 1A-District 1 dual team tournament on January 9, in which the Buccaneers reached the semifinals, with a 1-1 record on the night. After a few days away from the competitive mats, NBH returned to competition at district rival Wewahitchka’s two-day Gator Brawl, finishing 20th out of 22 teams there on the 17th-18th. The Buccaneers stayed in-district for their next tournament, traveling to Bay for its inaugural George Mulligan Invitational on the 24th and 25th, placing 11th out of 18 teams. Most of the team wrapped up the regular season with a midweek dual win on the 31st. The Lady Buccaneers kicked off the post-season with a T-84th place at girls’ state at Dr Phillips in Orlando on February 14-15. NBH then placed seventh out of eight teams in the District 1 traditional tournament, and placed 27th out of 30 teams at Wakulla for Region 1, with no state qualifiers. North Bay Haven lost just one key regular-season starter to graduation, as the Buccaneers can call upon as many as 15 post-season or significant regular-season starters in 2020-21, plus a few other kids that just fell short on matches for listing here.
Key returners (15+ matches this past season) for 2020-21 (with year in school as they’ll be next year): William Lundgren (7th, 7-7 at 106, 0-2 at districts); India Junkalan (8th, 1-5 at 106, 0-2 at girls’ state); Hein Le (junior, 6-13 at 113, 1 match from regions); Katherine Lundgren (sophomore, 8-19 at 120, 2-2 at girls’ state, 1 match from regions); Joshua Cox (junior, 5-17 at 126, 0-2 at districts); Helmut vonKnoblauch (senior, 14-14 at 132, district 3rd, 0-2 at regions); Michael Esquivias (senior, 21-9 at 138, district champ, 2-2 at regions); Jonathan Yates (junior, 6-14 at 145, district 4th, 0-2 at regions); Cali Keeny (senior, 5-19 at 152, 1 match from regions); Hana Soto (8th, 0-2 at 154, 0-2 at girls’ state); Lyandro Leon (sophomore, 4-15 at 160, 1 match from regions); Stevens Roberson (junior, 1-19 at 170, 0-2 at girls’ state, 1 match from regions); Jackson Savell (junior, 3-12 at 182, district 4th, 0-2 at regions); Jonathan Serbest (junior, 8-8 at 220, district 4th, did not compete at regions); Layton Simmons (sophomore, 5-15 at 285, 1 match from regions).
Graduation losses (15+ matches this past season or post-season experience) from this year’s team: Ethan Cole (15-4 at 182, did not compete in post-season traditionals).
2019-20 MVP: Rising senior Michael Esquivias joined the Buccaneers for his first varsity season with them this year, and the outcome was that he became the school’s second district champion; he also advanced the farthest that any NBH wrestler had at Region 1 since 2017, getting to Saturday’s competition. His first three competitions were at his final weight of 138, going 6-1 with three pins and five max-point victories. He struggled a bit more at Gator Brawl, with four losses against 2020 or former state qualifier, and that tournament was the only one where he weighed in at 132. He bumped back up to 138 for George Mulligan, and the fit was a good one, placing fourth there. Esquivias then pinned his way into the District 1 final, winning a wild final against a four-year starter. He won twice on Friday at Region 1 to qualify into second-day competition, where he lost to a wrestler on one of the state’s elite programs. I would expect he’ll be in the mix for Kissimmee in March.
2020-21 captain: While Esquivias will certainly be a captain for the Buccaneers, we select a second wrestler in this space where the MVP is not a 2020 graduate as in NBH’s case. Rising senior Helmut vonKnoblauch has made steady progress in his time with the Buccaneers. After going 0-2 at districts in 2019, vonKnoblauch achieved a .500 record and qualified for Region 1 for the first time. vonKnoblauch was 4-3 through mid-January and had a solid tournament at Bay, winning three of five matches, including a pair of pins at the 132 weight class. Although he lost by fall in his first match at districts, vonKnoblauch rallied in the consi side of the bracket to extend his season another week, with two victories to place third. We’ll look forward to seeing him — and the rest of the program — take another step in 2020-21.
Zander Laurin Warrior: Rising junior Stevens Roberson was a frequent starter for the Buccaneers in 2019-20, going up against boys her size, and that can be a tall order for girls of any experience level. Roberson was a starter at 160 for midweek duals, and also had tournament appearances at Gator Brawl and George Mulligan. It wasn’t until the NBH regular-season midweek dual finale on January 31 that Roberson was able to get her hand raised in competition. She took her shot at girls’ state, where two Orlando-area girls with more experience took wins. After a rough year, one would think that would be it for the season, but Roberson went into battle, one more time and this time up a weight, at districts and had her first six-minute match of the season against a male wrestler. For continuing to try and try again in the face of on-the-mat adversity, Stevens Roberson is the Zander Laurin Warrior for North Bay Haven.
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