Categories
SCHEDULES

#TheSchedule2021-22: Bay

Hey guys!

If your team hasn’t submitted yet, and we’re only needing four more, you still can send your schedule in and have us write a post about it AS LONG AS your competitive season has not begun yet.

We have our 96th schedule overall, with the 7th and last team in 1A-District 1, Bay, sending in tonight. We now have eight districts complete out of 12 so far.

You can see all of our schedules HERE.

BAY

Duals & dual tournaments:

  • Host South Walton, 12/2 (in-school dual).
  • At Suwannee, 12/7
  • At Panhandle Championships, Mosley, 1/7-8

IBTs and roundrobins:

  • At Border Wars IX, South Walton, 12/3-4
  • At Swede Umbach Invitational, Auburn (AL), 12/10-11
  • At Allstate Wildcat Invitational, Valdosta (GA), 12/17-18
  • At Gator Brawl, Wewahitchka, 1/14-15
  • Host 3rd Annual George Mulligan Memorial, 1/21-22
  • At Flagler Rotary, Flagler Palm Coast, 1/28-29
  • At Green Cove Springs Rotary, Clay, 2/4-5

FHSAA events:

  • 1A-District 1 Duals, South Walton, 12/16
  • (if qualifying) 1A-Region 1 duals, District 1 champ to host, 1/13
  • (if qualifying) 1A state duals, 1/21-22
  • Girls District tournament, site TBA, week of 2/7-12
  • 1A-District 1 traditional, Wewahitchka, 2/17
  • Girls Region tournament, site TBA, 2/18-19
  • 1A-Region 1 traditional, Wakulla, 2/25-26
  • States at Silver Spurs, Kissimmee, 3/3-5
JOIN us on Facebook at North Florida Matmen (you can also friend me on my personal page) or on Twitter at @NorthFLAMatmen, or on Instagram at nflamatmen.
The road to Macon and the Georgia state tournaments has begun! Check out the latest on our affiliated site at  http://sgamatmen.wordpress.com
Please support our independent journalism!
We’re on Venmo now: Shannon-Heaton-6
Or if you prefer PayPal, search me at Shannon Heaton (use the site email account to find the correct me).
Categories
MIDWEEK DUALS

#NEDailyRdp: November 30

Nease’s Mateos Zajni (background) works for a fall in the Panthers’ 80-0 dual victory Tuesday night over Tocoi Creek (Photo by Shannon Heaton).

ST AUGUSTINE — As the saying goes, Rome wasn’t built in a day.

But in the palatial setting with imposing pillars over high-rise structures that is the Tocoi Creek High School campus, there’s still evidence of the work-in-progress that the school — St Johns County’s newest high school — is.

There’s quite a few planned lawns that are still mostly dirt, among other things. But the expected future is extraordinarily bright.

Just so with the Toros wrestling program, which kicked off its competitive life Tuesday night by hosting county rival Nease in a dual.

(Athletic director Jeff) Holland used to be the athletic director at my middle school where I taught, and I’ve known him for a long time. When he asked if I wanted to get back in (to coaching), I said no at first, and it was the right thing to say, because if I said no first, I knew he would get me some help,” Tocoi Creek Darick Dunham said.

“Once the help was in place, it was on. And it’s a struggle. Startups are hard. You’re building in pieces. It was a struggle to get certain items, but our AD is great. I have also really appreciated the help of our coaching staff.”

Dunham, who last coached at Pedro Menendez in the 2012-13 season and took several years away for family reasons, started a varsity lineup Tuesday that was composed predominantly if not entirely of first-year high school wrestlers, many of whom may have wrestled their first match against a non-teammate Tuesday night.

The outcome was somewhat predictable, as Nease — with a cadre of experienced middle weights — rolled to an 80-0 victory over the Toros. Tocoi Creek gave four forfeits to the St Johns Panthers, and its two most-experienced wrestlers — junior Brielle and freshman Kendall Bibla, with the elder Bibla wrestling her first two years for the Panthers — wrestled JV Tuesday night to get matches against Nease girls.

Nease got falls from Jacob Lutz (152), Bam Ghazanfari (160), Chad Severt (170), Alan Rivera (182), Jason Choi (113), Anthony Bismi (120), Parker Stamschror (132) and Mateos Zajni (138). Owen Satterfield (21-10 at 145) and Albio Jakupi (17-6 at 195) both won by major decision for the Panthers.

Nease is now off until December 10, when the Panthers will go to Oakleaf to compete in the Friday Knight Lights on December 10. Tocoi Creek goes back to work on Saturday, at Sandalwood’s Optimist Invitational.

A box score from Tuesday’s dual can be found HERE.

JOIN us on Facebook at North Florida Matmen (you can also friend me on my personal page) or on Twitter at @NorthFLAMatmen, or on Instagram at nflamatmen.
The road to Macon and the Georgia state tournaments is already nearly a third of the way done! Check out the latest on our affiliated site at  http://sgamatmen.wordpress.com
Please support our independent journalism!
We’re on Venmo now: Shannon-Heaton-6
Or if you prefer PayPal, search me at Shannon Heaton (use the site email account to find the correct me).
Categories
SCHEDULES

#TheSchedule2021-22: Crestview

Hey guys!

If your team hasn’t submitted yet, and we’re only needing five more, you still can send your schedule in and have us write a post about it AS LONG AS your competitive season has not begun yet.

We have our 95th schedule overall, with the 9th team in 2A-District 1, Gulf Breeze, sending in today. We now have seven districts complete out of 12 so far.

You can see all of our schedules HERE.

CRESTVIEW

Duals & dual tournaments:

  • At Beast of the Beach, Ft Walton Beach, 12/20-21
  • Host Milton, 1/10
  • At Gulf Breeze, 1/11
  • At Tate, 1/26
  • At Dolphin Duals, Gulf Shores (AL), 2/4-5

IBTs and roundrobins:

  • At Border Wars IX, South Walton, 12/3-4
  • At Ryan Blackwell IBT, Gulf Breeze, 12/11
  • At Gator Brawl, Wewahitchka, 1/14-15
  • At 3rd Annual George Mulligan Memorial, Bay, 1/21-22
  • At MyHOUSE Big Bend Invitational, Wakulla, 1/28-29

FHSAA events:

  • 2A-District 1 Duals, Gulf Breeze, 1/5
  • (if qualifying) 2A-Region 1 duals, District 1 champ to host, 1/13
  • (if qualifying) 2A state duals, 1/21-22
  • Girls District tournament, site TBA, week of 2/7-12
  • 2A-District 1 traditional, Ft Walton Beach, 2/16
  • Girls Region tournament, site TBA, 2/18-19
  • 2A-Region 1 traditional, Chiles/Lincoln, 2/25-26
  • States at Silver Spurs, Kissimmee, 3/3-5
JOIN us on Facebook at North Florida Matmen (you can also friend me on my personal page) or on Twitter at @NorthFLAMatmen, or on Instagram at nflamatmen.
The road to Macon and the Georgia state tournaments has begun! Check out the latest on our affiliated site at  http://sgamatmen.wordpress.com
Please support our independent journalism!
We’re on Venmo now: Shannon-Heaton-6
Or if you prefer PayPal, search me at Shannon Heaton (use the site email account to find the correct me).
Categories
MIDWEEK DUALS

#NEDailyRdp: November 29

JACKSONVILLE — The north Florida FHSAA wrestling season kicked off Monday night at Stanton Prep, with visiting Wolfson winning five of the night’s contested matches to take a 51-24 victory over the Blue Devils.

The teams traded pins at 138 and 145, with the Wolfpack’s Max Lewallen first to win by fall in 2021-22, but his six was answered by Stanton’s Jacob Hewitt to make it 6-all.

Wolfson junior Max Lewallen (top, 138 lb) records the first pin in the north Florida high school wrestling season Monday night at Stanton, as Lewallen and the Wolfpack defeated the hosts, 51-24 (Photo by Shannon Heaton).

The teams traded pins again at 152 and 170, with Wolfson’s Liam Strange and Stanton’s Andrew Lin both scoring, with a a forfeit in favor of the Wolfpack at 160.

Wolfson would pull away a bit, going up 30-12 on falls from Joseph Decunto (182) and Dallas Kemp (195), followed by two forfeits each in favor of the competing teams, a double forfeit at 120 and Wolfson favorite at 126.

The dual closed out with the night’s only match to go a full six minutes, as the Wolfpack’s Andrew Harbin had enough offense for a 7-1 win.

Both teams go back on the mats on Saturday. Wolfson will compete in Matanzas’ one-day dual tournament, while Stanton will be at Sandalwood’s Optimist Invitational, an IBT.

A box score from Monday’s dual can be found HERE.

JOIN us on Facebook at North Florida Matmen (you can also friend me on my personal page) or on Twitter at @NorthFLAMatmen, or on Instagram at nflamatmen.
The road to Macon and the Georgia state tournaments is already nearly a third of the way done! Check out the latest on our affiliated site at  http://sgamatmen.wordpress.com
Please support our independent journalism!
We’re on Venmo now: Shannon-Heaton-6
Or if you prefer PayPal, search me at Shannon Heaton (use the site email account to find the correct me).
Categories
#NextLevel

#NextLevel: November 27-28

Here’s a summary of #NextLevel activity that took place either on Saturday or today:

Ethan Pickren

Ethan Pickren (South Walton ’19; Arizona State): Was 2-2 at the Cowboy Open in Laramie, WY, on Saturday, competing at 141. Pickren fell in the round of 16 to Chadron State’s Joseph Ritzen, 9-8, but bounced back for two consi-side victories. On that side, Pickren falled Western Wyoming’s Carson Jensen (2:02) and then held off a late rush in the next round behind riding time and two scoring moves early against Wyoming’s Aidan Noonan in a 6-4 decision. Pickren then lost by fall (4:07) in the consi quarters to Chadron State’s Hunter Gilmore.

Drevon Wallace (Palatka ’20; Allen, no photo available from college): Got the start at 141 pounds Sunday for the Yellow Jackets at Limestone, as his team fell, 37-9, to the host Saints. Wallace fell, 10-1, to Limestone’s Brandon Seawright in one of five bonus-point wins that the Saints racked up.

Chris Bono

Chris Bono (Bolles ’92; Wisconsin): Led his 15th-ranked Badgers (4-0 in duals) to a pair of wins Saturday in Newark NJ, overcoming a determined North Carolina effort (there were seven lead changes in the dual) for a 20-16 win, going on to turn back Hofstra, 38-12.

“We love coming to New Jersey to wrestle. There were some great things today, but in the same breath, we have a lot to work on.”

Two lower-ranked UNC wrestlers defeated Badger opponents to turn an 11-10 deficit into a 16-11 lead, but Wisconsin got a decision and pin at 197 and 285 to take the win. The Badgers took seven weight-class wins in the Hofstra dual. Wisconsin is now done in duals until the Big Ten season begins January 7 with Northwestern, but there are four tournaments on the UW itinerary in December.

JOIN us on Facebook at North Florida Matmen (you can also friend me on my personal page) or on Twitter at @NorthFLAMatmen, or on Instagram at nflamatmen.
We will have, or TRY to have, #NextLevel updates on our Georgia site as well! Check out the latest on our affiliated site at  http://sgamatmen.wordpress.com
Please support our independent journalism!
We’re on Venmo now: Shannon-Heaton-6
Or if you prefer PayPal, search me at Shannon Heaton (use the site email account to find the correct me).

 

Categories
OFFSEASON/PRESEASON

#Seahorse: Alvarado Takes 2 Places

Milton’s Maya Alvarado placed 2nd at 100 lbs and 4th at 108 in the 47th annual Seahorse Open, hosted by Cypress Bay HS on Saturday.

Alvarado was 1-2 against Homestead’s Rebecca Kincade in the 100 weight class, taking the first match in a best-of-3 format, winning, 4-0.

At 108, in a six-wrestler roundrobin, Alvarado was 2-3, with one pin and one win by injury-default.

Locally, Seminole County’s Wolgamuth brothers also made the trip down and placed. Benjamin Wolgamuth was second in the Schoolboy 121-128 division, while Chase Wolgamuth was second in the Novice division for 65-72.

Complete results can be found HERE: SEAHORSE OPEN RESULTS

JOIN us on Facebook at North Florida Matmen (you can also friend me on my personal page) or on Twitter at @NorthFLAMatmen, or on Instagram at nflamatmen.
The road to Macon and the Georgia state tournaments is already nearly a third of the way done! Check out the latest on our affiliated site at  http://sgamatmen.wordpress.com
Please support our independent journalism!
We’re on Venmo now: Shannon-Heaton-6
Or if you prefer PayPal, search me at Shannon Heaton (use the site email account to find the correct me).
Categories
SCHEDULES

#TheSchedule2021-22: Arnold

Hey guys!

Schedules for 2021-22 have started to come in. This is always exciting for us.

We have our 94th schedule overall, with the 8th team in 2A-District 1, Arnold, sending in tonight. We now have seven districts complete out of 12 so far, and we have just six schedules left that we need (Wakulla Christian turned in their schedule as well; that program is staying at the JV level in 2021-22).

You can see all of our schedules HERE.

ARNOLD

Duals & dual tournaments:

  • At The Rocky Rumble, 12/18
  • At The Bash, Rutherford physical host, 1/7-8
  • At Rutherford, 1/26

IBTs and roundrobins:

  • At Border Wars IX, South Walton, 12/3-4
  • At Ryan Blackwell IBT, Gulf Breeze, 12/11
  • At Gator Brawl, Wewahitchka, 1/14-15
  • At 3rd Annual George Mulligan Memorial, 1/21-22
  • Hosts Spearfish Invitational, 2/5

FHSAA events:

  • 2A-District 1 Duals, Gulf Breeze, 1/5
  • (if qualifying) 2A-Region 1 duals, District 1 champ to host, 1/13
  • (if qualifying) 2A state duals, 1/21-22
  • Girls District tournament, site TBA, week of 2/7-12
  • 2A-District 1 traditional, Ft Walton Beach, 2/16
  • Girls Region tournament, site TBA, 2/18-19
  • 2A-Region 1 traditional, Chiles/Lincoln, 2/25-26
  • States at Silver Spurs, Kissimmee, 3/3-5
JOIN us on Facebook at North Florida Matmen (you can also friend me on my personal page) or on Twitter at @NorthFLAMatmen, or on Instagram at nflamatmen.
The road to Macon and the Georgia state tournaments has begun! Check out the latest on our affiliated site at  http://sgamatmen.wordpress.com
Please support our independent journalism!
We’re on Venmo now: Shannon-Heaton-6
Or if you prefer PayPal, search me at Shannon Heaton (use the site email account to find the correct me).
Categories
#NextLevel

#NextLevel: November 23

COLUMBUS, OH — Notre Dame College has been a force in NCAA Division 2 wrestling for many a year now.

But there’s NCAA DII, and then there’s Ohio State.

Tuesday night at the Schottenstein Center in Columbus, the Buckeyes were anything but gracious hosts, handing the Falcons a 51-0 dual loss in the dual-season opener for Notre Dame.

For Falcon freshman Cale Hoskinson (Clay ’21; no headshot available from college), competing in prior open tournaments was not the same as a head-to-head dual against the giant of the state and one of the national powers in Division I, as the Buckeyes’ ninth-ranked Carson Kharchla handed Hoskinson a 24-9 tech fall loss in a match that did go a full seven minutes.

Notre Dame College was off through the holiday weekend and will return to competition on December 4 in-state at the Lake Erie Open in Painesville.

JOIN us on Facebook at North Florida Matmen (you can also friend me on my personal page) or on Twitter at @NorthFLAMatmen, or on Instagram at nflamatmen.
We will have, or TRY to have, #NextLevel updates on our Georgia site as well! Check out the latest on our affiliated site at  http://sgamatmen.wordpress.com
Please support our independent journalism!
We’re on Venmo now: Shannon-Heaton-6
Or if you prefer PayPal, search me at Shannon Heaton (use the site email account to find the correct me).

 

Categories
#TURKEYNWRESTLING

#TurkeyNWrestling2021-22: Hey, Guys, My Bad

Sometimes I get it right. Sometimes I get it really right. Sometimes I get it wrong. Sometimes I get it really wrong. If you were ready to toss your phone or laptop through a window because I either A) ranked you too low or B) ranked you too high in your district, maybe this will set your mind at ease.

Or not. Perhaps only a healthy dose of tryptophan, football and pre-Black Friday shopping will do that (actually, if you can avoid the pre-Black Friday shopping, do; I plan to avoid it by picking up a shingles vaccination at the friendly neighborhood Publix pharmacy as soon as it opens).

Anyway, let’s set the Wayback machine to a year ago today — give or take a day or two — and see how I did with last year’s predictions. Let the laughter ensue! (or not). But first, a little data…gotta have a little stuffing to go with that turkey…

We were 7-for-11 on picking champions last year. This was significantly lower than the previous two years. In each case, the actual champion was projected to finish no lower than third. However, that didn’t keep us from some real clunker picks, particularly in 1A (and we’ll get to those in just a bit).

We were 9-for-11 on picking last-place teams last year. This was a little bit better than last year, which was solidly better than the previous. One miss was small, where the team we picked last was just one away from that spot. But we also did have a swing and a big miss in 3A, and we’ll highlight that in just a bit, too.

So, if I picked your team to win, you should be pleased but not too over-confident. I’m clearly not as good as I once was at picking champs. If I picked your team last, in any of our 11 districts, go get to work, kids.

It’s usually the middle where things get muddled. Two years ago, we had three districts with the top three in order correct; last year, there were two. This year, there were NONE.

If you don’t like where you are projected today, take heart.

Last year, we didn’t think too much of DeLand’s chances. We picked them to finish seventh (last) in 3A-District 2. The Bulldogs not only did not finish last, but also finished very safely in the middle of the pack, 21 points ahead of fifth and SEVENTY THREE AND A HALF ahead of seventh. In fact, DeLand was just 2.5 points — two extra bonus-point wins — short of third. If you’re a little closer to the Panhandle, you can think about Rocky Bayou Christian. For the SECOND TIME IN AS MANY YEARS, some doofus picked the Knights to finish sixth in 1A-District 1. Some doofus thought RBCS wouldn’t rally well from the loss of its top wrestler in 2020. Good thing those kids didn’t read that doofus’s preview a year ago Thanksgiving — or read every word, and clipped-and-saved. In the city of Jacksonville, there’s the case of Englewood, which was tabbed for sixth in 2A-District 3. The Rams, like Rocky Bayou Christian, went on to finish third.

But probably the biggest miss was in 1A-District 3, where a two-team race for the top instead became a four-team race, because Fernandina Beach got tired of mediocrity and pushed for something more, from its best wrestlers down to its least experienced. The Pirates were picked sixth in the district and finished four spots above that prediction, 116 points ahead of sixth and comfortably ahead (36) of third.

The point of walking through those examples?

Where you’re projected today is just that: a projection. And not always a very good one at that. Old Matmen really don’t know everything. Some days, he don’t know anything.

So. Dig in, not too much, to your dinners today. While you don’t have competition until next week, I’m sure you’ll have practice at some point soon, and you don’t want a full belly. Leave that to us old folks. I’ll see you on the mats soon enough.

1A-District 1:

Predicted: 1. South Walton. 2. Rutherford. 3. Arnold. 4. North Bay Haven. 5. Bozeman. 6. Rocky Bayou Christian. 7. Bay. 8. Wewahitchka.
Actual: 1. South Walton. 2. Rutherford. 3. Rocky Bayou Christian. 4. Arnold. 5. Bay. 6. North Bay Haven. 7. Wewahitchka. 8. Bozeman.
Analysis: We did get the top two teams correct in this district, but — for the second straight year — picked the Knights to finish sixth, only to have them reject that premise in favor of something much better. We had North Bay Haven’s sizable but a bit inexperienced room over-valued early (and had we known about the Bucs’ stellar freshman, we might have had NBH pushing Arnold very hard for third). I think we underestimated Bay somewhat, as well. Some of their kids made some solid moves, and that makes me wonder if they won’t do it again, particularly with a more-aggressive offseason presence generally in the Panhandle.

1A-District 2:

Predicted: 1. Wakulla. 2. Suwannee. 3. Florida High. 4. Marianna. 5. Baker County. 6. Godby.
Actual: 1. Wakulla. 2. Florida High. 3. Baker County. 4. Suwannee. 5. Marianna. 6. Godby.
Analysis: OK, so we got the bookends correct. That might have been seen as the easy part. While just 16 points separated second from fourth, we did not expect Baker’s big move — aside from Fernandina Beach, the Wildcats were probably the most egregious whoops we made in last year’s predictions. This became apparent at regions, where the power of District 2 seems to become even larger. I would not have expected Suwannee to finish fourth with the group they had last year, so not only should kudos go to Baker County, but also the runnerup Seminoles. We did think Marianna would have more kids back than they did wind up attracting; the Bulldogs had had a larger set of returners coming back. Injury played a small role here, too.

1A-District 3:

Predicted: 1. Yulee. 2. Bishop Kenny. 3. West Nassau. 4. Raines. 5. Episcopal. 6. Fernandina Beach. 7. Paxon. 8. Ed White.
Actual: 1. Yulee. 2. Fernandina Beach. 3. Episcopal. 4. Bishop Kenny. 5. Raines. 6. West Nassau. 7. Ed White. 8. Paxon.
Analysis: We’ve written on Fernandina Beach’s rise; what made it happen was the increased sense of purpose and intensity up and down the lineup, whereas prior seasons had seen the Pirates rely on a couple of wrestlers here and there. You don’t always see that until it shows up. We also did not expect Episcopal’s rise in level from such a young lineup, but the Eagles, too, showed a team spirit that hadn’t been present in previous teams to the same extent. A couple of teams didn’t meet expectations in the moment, but, again, as we’ve seen in other districts, injuries played a sizable role in that.

1A-District 4:

Predicted: 1. Clay. 2. Bolles. 3. Ridgeview. 4. Union County. 5. Wolfson. 6. University Christian. 7. Bishop Snyder. 8. Baldwin. 9. Bradford.
Actual: 1. Clay. 2. Union County. 3. Ridgeview. 4. Bolles. 5. University Christian. 6. Wolfson. 7. Bishop Snyder. 8. Baldwin. (Bradford didn’t compete)
Analysis: We knew Union County had the chance to have good numbers last year; after all, they’d had the largest first-year program roster I’ve experienced in my covering north Florida. We just didn’t think those numbers would translate into success quite so soon. And while Bolles had some exceptionally-solid kids, there were a few that I expected would get out to regions that did not. Sometimes, on the day, things don’t happen. That was a bit of the case with Wolfson as well; the Wolfpack were outpointed by UCS’ three stars in ways that surprised a little bit. Otherwise, we largely had this one.

1A-District 5:

Predicted: 1. Atlantic. 2. Palatka. 3. Pedro Menendez. 4. Keystone Heights. 5. Lake Weir.
Actual: 1. Palatka. 2. Pedro Menendez. 3. Atlantic. 4. Keystone Heights. 5. Lake Weir.
Analysis: We thought that the Sharks’ returners would see them through to another double-title situation last year, but the group that returned was smaller than we had thought, due to some transfers, and some of the kids that performed well in 2019-20 couldn’t quite duplicate that performance last year. Given that, the rest of our analysis was pretty sound — and, for the most part, pretty predictable.

2A-District 1:

Predicted: 1. Pace. 2. Gulf Breeze. 3. Ft Walton Beach. 4. Tate. 5. Niceville. 6. Choctaw. 7. Crestview. 8. Milton.
Actual: 1. Ft Walton Beach. 2. Gulf Breeze. 3. Pace. 4. Niceville. 5. Crestview. 6. Choctaw. 7. Tate. 8. Milton.
Analysis: Taking duals into account, our predictions were not too terrible, as Pace was the team to advance out and become the first Panhandle team to get to the first day of state duals. Without going back into specificly what was said, I would have to think that the space between the top three teams was not too great (Editor’s Note: we went back and we said the path was not as easy). The only other part that we really missed on was thinking that last year’s Tate group would finish higher than the Aggies did. I also thought the gap between Choctaw and Crestview (or as it turned out, Crestview & Choctaw) would be a smaller one.

2A-District 2:

Predicted: 1. Lincoln. 2. Columbia. 3. Mosley. 4. Chiles. 5. Middleburg. 6. Orange Park. 7. Leon. 8. Gainesville.
Actual: 1. Lincoln. 2. Columbia. 3. Middleburg. 4. Mosley. 5. Chiles. 6. Orange Park. 7. Leon. 8. Gainesville.
Analysis: Working from the bigger schools down, this was the most sound prediction I’ve had thus far, with only Middleburg’s surge into third place — despite missing a few weights up top — the only thing we really we had no predicted answer for. The top of the group fell into place as expected, and, other than the Broncos pushing up to third (they were only one point short of a T-2nd finish with Columbia), so did the rest of the group. Given that Chiles wound up with the highest state finish, the way the top five teams broke down last year showed how strong the district already was…pre-Fleming Island.

2A-District 3:

Predicted: 1. Fletcher. 2. Ponte Vedra. 3. Westside. 4. Riverside*. 5. First Coast. 6. Englewood. 7. Terry Parker. 8. Stanton.
Actual: 1. Fletcher. 2. Ponte Vedra. 3. Englewood. 4. Riverside. 5. First Coast. 6. Westside. 7. Terry Parker. 8. Stanton.
Analysis: What we essentially got wrong was the placement of Englewood and Westside. Englewood just did more with its people a year ago, and Westside — which we have typically gotten wrong on the placement no matter where we predict them — last year did not overall as a group (injury had something to do with that in a couple of key instances. Otherwise, we largely had this district spot-on, with the 1-2, 4-5 and 7-8 all correct.
* — using the school name as it is this year

2A-District 4:

Predicted: 1. Seabreeze. 2. St Augustine. 3. New Smyrna Beach. 4. Matanzas. 5. Belleview. 6. Deltona. 7. Mainland.
Actual: 1. New Smyrna Beach. 2. St Augustine. 3. Matanzas. 4. Belleview. 5. Seabreeze. 6. Deltona. 7. Mainland.
Analysis: What we really missed on was Seabreeze and where the Sandcrabs were going to finish after seeing them win their first district wrestling title (duals) in January 2020. Things never clicked like that again at Seabreeze all of the following season. We thought, a year ago, that New Smyrna Beach was still a year away yet, but they had some key transfers that really helped the group, as well as a dynamite lower weight group that was just as capable as the Barracudas’ middles and uppers. Otherwise, we mostly had a handle on things, although we were definitely surprised how much closer Matanzas was to the top.

3A-District 1:

Predicted: 1. Fleming Island. 2. Oakleaf. 3. Creekside. 4. Bartram Trail. 5. Nease. 6. Mandarin. 7. Sandalwood. 8. Atlantic Coast.
Actual: 1. Fleming Island. 2. Creekside. 3. Oakleaf. 4. Mandarin. 5. Bartram Trail. 6. Nease. 7. Sandalwood. 8. Atlantic Coast.
Analysis: For the most part, we had 1-3 correct — the battle between Creekside and Oakleaf at districts was very, very close at this district last year. We also had the 7-8 right, although we certainly could not have predicted that despite finishing seventh at districts, the Saints would have such a solid state finish. The team we had very little handle on was Mandarin. They had a couple of new kids that made them far more capable than we would have projected. This year, they’re not going to sneak up on anybody. We did actually have the right three teams 4-6, just in a different order that I would not have guessed.

3A-District 2:

Predicted: 1. Flagler Palm Coast. 2. Buchholz. 3. University (Orange City). 4. Forest. 5. West Port. 6. Seminole. 7. DeLand.
Actual: 1. Buchholz. 2. Flagler Palm Coast. 3. University (Orange City). 4. DeLand. 5. Seminole. 6. West Port. 7. Forest.
Analysis: We had a better handle, on the whole, on this district this year, and we were convinced that last year was Flagler’s year. We didn’t see that there would be three weights open all year and that a few of the other weights would be in flux for much longer. However, that didn’t stop us from putting FPCHS back at the top again this season. We also didn’t have much of a handle on DeLand last year; the Bulldogs clearly over-performed our expectations, at least at the district levels.

JOIN us on Facebook at North Florida Matmen (you can also friend me on my personal page) or on Twitter at @NorthFLAMatmen, or on Instagram at nflamatmen.
Georgia has been GAME ON for nearly two weeks! Check out the latest on our affiliated site at  http://sgamatmen.wordpress.com
Please support our independent journalism!
We’re on Venmo now: Shannon-Heaton-6
Or if you prefer PayPal, search me at Shannon Heaton (use the site email account to find the correct me).
Categories
#TURKEYNWRESTLING

#TurkeyNWrestling2021-22: 1A-District 2

The battle for supremacy in 1A-District 2 has been a foregone conclusion in previous seasons. This year, however, the battle for top honors could very well come down to which one of 1A-Region 1’s strongest teams, out of its strongest district (at least at the top), can fill out a complete lineup.

We’re tabbing Wakulla’s experience in making this happen in prior seasons, with the War Eagles defending a run of 11 straight district IBT titles and four consecutive district dual championships as well. The War Eagles won their third straight Region 1 duals title as well, with a runnerup finish in the region IBT and 14th-place finish at states.

But the May graduation loss the War Eagles sustained is a heavy one, with seven graduates gone from this year’s team. Six of those seven made the region tournament (the 7th would have as well, were it not for injury) and five got out to state, led by Kissimmee medalist and region champ Raymond Hatchman (5th at 120 in 1A).

Wakulla does bring back 11 wrestlers that saw significant time last year, but a few in that group were backups last year, battling last year’s seniors in the practice room. Wakulla has eight 2021 post-season starters back, with all of them reaching the region tournament. Three War Eagles — seniors Isaiah Wilson (6th at states at 126), Julian Harvey (106 in March) and Hayden Reeves (145) — all qualified for states.

But Suwannee will make it a fight. Expect that. The Bulldogs will want to rally from a 2021 post-season start that saw them finish second in duals (but not compete in the region round) and finish fourth at district IBTs. However, the “familiar” Suwannee rush was put on at the region tournament, where the Bulldogs were fourth, going on to finish 17th at states.

A graduating class of four May graduates that all were 2021 or prior state qualifiers will be difficult to overcome. That group included March Kissimmee medalist Timothy Jolicoeur (5th at 126).

But the Bulldogs do have as many as 10 projected key returners, seven of them post-season starters that all reached the region tournament. Four of them would go on to states, led by sophomore 1A medalist Austin McKinney (6th at 113). Senior Tyson Musgrove (138 in March), junior Austin Howard (152) and sophomore Topher Pearson (106) also all were Kissimmee qualifiers and will be threats to podium.

Florida High will not be finishing any lower than third in the district this year, but whether the Seminoles can reach for second (or first) might have depended on how much off-season work the returning group did as a whole, following a district runnerup IBT finish, a T-5th at regions and a T-15th at states.

Only Wakulla’s graduation class is larger than Florida High’s, which included five May graduates, region qualifiers all. 2021 Seminole grads Tyler Reeve (region champ & state runnerup at 126) and Emil Ganim (6th at 1A-138) both medaled at Kissimmee and fellow grad Micah Perdue was a region champ (at 195).

The Seminoles’ group of as many as 12 projected key returners is the biggest, numbers-wise, in the district, but with just seven post-season starters, there’s a lot of returning depth that needs to make a jump to becoming the stars they’ve seen in the FSUS lineup. All seven did get to regions, with sophomore Xander Hawkes (160 a year ago) qualifying out for state in March.

Marianna is right now the default choice for fourth, but the Bulldogs can’t rest on that default position. They should be better than a year ago, when four of their six potential returners didn’t compete in the post-season at all or didn’t compete after districts for a variety of reasons.

Marianna does have three returning region qualifiers, one a 2020 state qualifer in senior Ethan Heinemann, who was hurt at districts. The Bulldogs also have no graduation losses to overcome.

Liberty County is the newest team in the district — in fact the region — and is the biggest question mark of the bottom four in the district, but the questions are positives. With two region qualifiers coming over via transfer, the Bulldogs (yes, there are three schools in the district with that nickname) can lay a base down from which to get more kids out. There’s a strong chance that Liberty County could have state representation in its first year.

Of the teams lacking massive amounts of numbers, Godby’s the one with the most experienced “traditional” program history, but the Cougars have to be able to build on more than one projected key returner, which is what they have back for this season. Being in-town, with a coach inside the building and perhaps able to pull some football kids in, could help the Cougars kick-start things this year.

We learned earlier this week that Graceville, which competed independently last year starting in January, would not be fielding a team this year, which is unfortunate for the two kids that lost their sport.

Projected finish: 1. Wakulla. 2. Suwannee. 3. Florida High. 4. Marianna. 5. Liberty County. 6. Godby.

CAPSULES HERE: 1A-DISTRICT 2 CAPSULES

JOIN us on Facebook at North Florida Matmen (you can also friend me on my personal page) or on Twitter at @NorthFLAMatmen, or on Instagram at nflamatmen.
Georgia has been GAME ON for nearly two weeks! Check out the latest on our affiliated site at  http://sgamatmen.wordpress.com
Please support our independent journalism!
We’re on Venmo now: Shannon-Heaton-6
Or if you prefer PayPal, search me at Shannon Heaton (use the site email account to find the correct me).