GREEN COVE SPRINGS — For the past four seasons, whether it’s been 1A-District 3 or 4, the rest of the field has been chasing after Clay, without success.
That trend continued Thursday night, as the Blue Devils secured their fifth consecutive district duals title while losing just four individual matches on the night.
Clay (10-1 in duals for the season) ran through four opponents with largely the same measure of success, with victories over Bolles (78-6, pigtail), FSDB (81-0, quarters), Union County (74-6, semis) and Baker County, 71-10, to win the title.
The Blue Devils will travel to Yulee and will face Episcopal in a 1A-Region 1 quarterfinal dual on Thursday. The Wildcats (7-2), qualifying out as runnerup, will face the District 3 champ and host Hornets in another quarterfinal, in what is Baker County’s first appearance at the Region 1 level. The two winners will then meet in a semifinal dual, with the winner of that moving on to the Region 1 final on January 21 at Osceola.
Clay sent out 22 different wrestlers over the course of the night, and all 22 got their hand raised at least once during the various rounds.
Five of those 22 started all four duals, and four of those five were 4-0 max-pointers, scoring 6 team dual points in every round wrestled.
Luke Boree (145) led that elite group, pinning his way through the tournament, four falls in all. Braden Glavin (113, 3 pins), Hayden Meszaros (152, 3 pins) and Garrett Tyre (220, 2 pins) all were max-pointers.
Jacob Bucci (106, pin & tech), Maverick Rainwater (120/126, 3 pins), Gunner Ivey (126/132, 2 pins), Josh Kumpf (138, 2 pins & tech), Luca Fiannaca (160, pin & decision), Ethan Larsen (170, 2 pins) and Dominic Martin (182, 2 pins) all were 3-0 in regular roles, giving way to a backup teammate at one point or another to share in the wealth of wins the Blue Devils racked up.
Here’s how the rest of the district fared Thursday:
Baker County (7-2 for season, 2nd): The Wildcats secured their groundbreaking first Region 1 appearance behind a quarterfinal win over Keystone Heights (67-12), and for the second time this season, a 43-42 criteria victory over Palatka in the semis; thanks to a full team, Baker had more forfeit wins. The teams had met in a one-off dual meet last month with the same outcome.
Two Wildcat wrestlers were 3-0 on the day, led by a max-point effort from Chase Crews (285, 2 pins). Toby Kinghorn (195/220, pin & major) bonus-pointed through the tournament to a 3-0 performance.
Jareb Lauramore (106, pin), Jonathon Walker (120, 2 pins), Cannon Wimpey (160, 2 pins), Clayton Dennison (170/182, 2 pins) and Dexter Foster (182) each were 2-1 for Baker County.
The Wildcats are now off until this coming Saturday, where they’ll be at Fernandina Beach’s War on the Shore tournmament.
Palatka (1-2 for season, T-3rd): The Panthers picked up their first dual win for 2021-22 with a 42-24 win over Wolfson, but for the second time in as many months found themselves on the losing side of a criteria battle with Baker County in the semi.
Damaris Carr (113, pin), Ishmael Foster (120/126, pin), Alexander McCrystal (126/132, pin), Mikade Harvey (132/138, 2 pins), Brandon Lewis (138/145, 2 pins), Samuel Lafferty (152, 2 pins) and Benjerman Alicea (195, 2 pins) all were double winners for Palatka.
The Panthers were at Fleming Island’s Keystone Memorial over the weekend.
Union County (1-3 for season, T-3rd): The Tigers got their first dual victory of the season with a 60-18 win over Tocoi Creek in the quarters, but then fell to Clay in the semi.
Danny Thornton (195, 2 pins) was Union’s lone double winner. Braden Adams (126), Ian Halfacre (132), Rodney Barnett (138), Dante’ Johnson (145), Jameson Lang (152), Caleb Crawford (160) and Alexander Cortese (182) all won by fall against Tocoi Creek.
The Tigers were at Yulee’s Joe Bees Memorial Battle of the Border over the weekend.
Wolfson (4-9 for season, T-5th): The Wolfpack staged the closest quarterfinal of the day, tying Palatka at 18-18 and 24-24, but just didn’t have the lowers to contend with the Panthers’ more-sizable lineup.
Bryce Frye (160) and Joseph Decunto (182) both won by fall for Wolfson.
The Wolfpack was at Riverside’s USMC Challenge Saturday.
Tocoi Creek (4-9 for season, T-5th): The Toros fell behind, 48-0, on eight straight pins in the middles and uppers before finally scoring in the dual with Union County.
Brielle Bibla (120) had Tocoi Creek’s lone pin, while Adarins Medina (113) won by disqualification.
The Toros were at Yulee’s Joe Bees Memorial Battle of the Border this weekend.
Keystone Heights (4-1 for season, T-5th): The Indians gave up losses in the first eight weight classes of the quarters before getting on the board against Baker County.
Matthew Delano (220) and Jason Bowden (126) each had pins for Keystone Heights.
The Indians were at Riverside’s USMC Challenge Saturday.
FSDB (0-3 for season, T-5th): The Dragons could not find an individual win, but fielded 11 kids in putting together the team’s fullest lineup in several seasons.
Per Trackwrestling, FSDB is now off until January 26, when they are at Pedro Menendez.
Bolles (0-6 for season, 9th): The Bulldogs were the lone team slotted into a pigtail, drawing Clay in that task.
Jack Pyburn (285) scored Bolles’ lone points with a first-period fall.
The Bulldogs were at Fleming Island’s Keystone Memorial this weekend.
Box scores from the tournament can be found HERE. (Prepare to scroll quite a bit if on your phone)
MISSING: If your team isn’t being written about as we move into the duals post-season and middle third of the regular season, it’s due to results gone missing. Go to our SCHEDULES page; if your team is listed as PENDING for a given event on a given day, I didn’t get results. I’ll still take them, at any time; coaches all have my work email.