FERNANDINA BEACH — Like so many weekend events in 2020-21, the inaugural War on the Shore at Fernandina Beach took some hits from Covid.
The Pirates have been more or less lucky on that front, and it’s showed in an upgraded performance this year. But Saturday’s was probably their best, as Fernandina Beach ran up an average margin of victory of 55.5 points in its first four duals of the day before taking down Columbia, 48-36, in a winner-take-all dual for the championship.
Earlier, the Pirates (14-4 on the season) had wins over Mainland (62-12), Stanton (77-0) and Keystone Heights (72-12) before a 53-18 championship crossover win over Middleburg.
Twelve of the Pirates’ 13 starters won three matches or more, with 10 of those 12 going 4-1 or better and six going 5-0. Three of those six were “max-pointers,” scoring 6 team dual points in all five duals contested.
Columbia (11-5) was 4-1 in the tournament, and had four double-digit wins of its own over Middleburg (45-34), a team of extras that is referred to as B Team for this story (65-6), West Nassau (56-23) and Mainland (59-18) in the first championship round.
Even with three weights forfeited, the Tigers had nine guys with three wins or more, with eight winning at least four and five going 5-0. Four of those five were max-pointers.
Middleburg was 3-2 on the day to place third, with wins over West Nassau (42-26), B Team (72-6) and Mainland (42-20) in the championship round. The Broncos (6-7) had eight wrestlers that were 3-2 or better, with four winning four matches.
Mainland (4-8 for the season) was 2-3 on Saturday, with wins over Keystone Heights (42-12) and Stanton (48-12). The Buccaneers had five wrestlers win at least three matches, with four of them winning four.
Keystone Heights (5-5 in duals) placed fifth with a 3-2 tournament, with an early win over Stanton (36-24) and consi-side cross pool wins over B Team (31-30 in criteria) and West Nassau (30-18). West Nassau (5-12) had wins over the B Team (35-24) and Stanton (30-9), while the Blue Devils were 0-5 on the day and 1-9 on the season, with just four wrestlers in the lineup.
A complete set of box scores for the tournament can be found HERE.
Standings: 1. Fernandina Beach 5-0. 2. Columbia 4-1. 3. Middleburg 3-2. 4. Mainland 2-3. 5. Keystone Heights 3-2. 6. West Nassau 2-3. 7. B Team 1-4. 8. Stanton 0-5.
THE ACES OF THE DAY
Fernandina Beach: Freshman Enzo Gamba (145) bonus-pointed through the tournament, with a major decision over Mainland (11-2), along with three pins over Keystone Heights, Middleburg and Columbia.
Columbia: Junior Thomas Greene (152) was a 5-0 max-pointer, one of four max-pointers and one of five unbeatens for the Tigers. Greene had pins over Middleburg, Mainland and Fernandina Beach.
Middleburg: Freshman Tucker Cody (182/195) was one of four Broncos to go 4-1 in the tournament; of the four, Cody was the only wrestler to rack up three pins, with falls over B Team, Fernandina Beach and Mainland.
Mainland: Junior Josh Rodgers (145) was one of four Buccaneer wrestlers to go 4-1, with pins over Keystone Heights and Columbia. Rodgers also posted a 16-0 tech fall in the Middleburg dual.
Keystone Heights: Senior Gabe Adams (285) was one of two Indians to finish the day at 4-1. Adams had three pins as well, with falls over Mainland, Fernandina Beach (the only contested win in that dual) and B Team.
West Nassau: Sophomore Blayden Tharpe (113) was the only wrestler in the tournament not from one of the finalists to go 5-0 on the day, with a pin over B Team and an 8-2 decision over Middleburg.
B Team: Fernandina Beach junior Myles Edgy (182) was one of two Bs to go 3-2 on the day, with a fall over Stanton in the day’s final dual.
Stanton: Senior Grant Kelsey (160) was 4-1 for the Blue Devils, with pins over Keystone Heights, Mainland and B Team, with a 9-8 decision over West Nassau. His only loss was by injury-default.