By MATMEN, Sunday, 6:40 p.m.
CELEBRATION — Ever since its inception, the Storm Front Duals have been an opportunity for teams that lost their bids to become region champions — and thus free to compete on the third Saturday in January — to get some work in.
That can leave teams with the feeling that competing in the one-day event is something of a consolation prize. Or, alternatively, the feeling that it is the start to the rest of the season, in which mistakes can be corrected.
Lincoln and Hagerty, at least, are taking the latter view after both teams lost in Friday’s region-final round in Osceola, as both routed their pool competition and faced off against one another for the overall championship.
There, the Trojans won seven straight matches between 195 and 126, rolling up a 42-0 run; two matches later, senior Zaire Fernanders-Jackson’s major at 145 clinched an eventual 58-24 victory for the Trojans (21-5).
Lincoln defeated five opponents with an average margin of victory of 48.2 points per dual, with Pool B wins over St Cloud (72-12), Cypress Creek (69-12), Steinbrenner (57-18), host Celebration (66-15) before more than doubling up the Huskies (11-6).
Six Trojan wrestlers — Vaniel Caceres (12th-2A at 113, 3 pins), Zakary Jurado (19th-2A at 120, 4 pins & decision), Vincent Crump (152, 2 pins), Jashawn Washington (13th-2A, 4 pins), Connor Edwards (3rd-2A at 152, competing at 160, 3 pins) and Jacob Nowak (4th-2A at 195, also competing at 220, 3 pins & decision) — were all 5-0 individually.
Joe Tucker (9th-2A at 106, 2 pins), Fernanders-Jackson (3 pins & major at 145) and Kendrick Scott (220, pin & decision) were all 4-0 for Lincoln. Additionally, David Lopeman (132, pin) and Ryder Luck (17th-2A at 285, pin) each were 3-2 for the Trojans.
Hagerty rolled the group in Pool A, with wins over Windermere (58-9), Olympic Heights (42-36), Gateway (60-12) and George Jenkins (49-18) before falling to Lincoln.
Nikolas Blake (3rd-3A at 132, also competing at 138, 4 pins), Kamdon Harrison (4th-3A at 160, also competing at 170, 4 pins) and Connor Gilliam (16th-3A at 170, also competing at 182, 4 pins & major) all were 5-0 for the Huakies.
Gavin Nelson (145/152, 2 pins, major & decision) was 4-0 and Benjamin Wolgamuth (18th-3A at 1236, also competing at 132, 2 pins & major) 4-1 for Hagerty, while Logan Acey-Kriegshauser (132, pin & decision) had a 3-0 day in a regular role. Clayton Childers (138/145, 2 pins) was 3-1, while James Zena (120, 2 pins) and Landon Revis (220, 3 pins) were both 3-2.
Windermere (2-8 for the season) was 0-4 in Pool A, with additional losses not noted above to George Jenkins (66-12), Gateway (42-21) and Olympic Heights (72-3), but rallied to close out on an up note, with a 34-30 win over St Cloud for ninth place in the 10-team tournament.
Leading the charge for the Wolverines was Egehan Yilhan (106/113, major & 2 decisions), who was 4-1. Lucas Drone (132, pin & decision) and Javier Acosta (145/152) added 3-2 days for Windermere.
Windermere is first up among the three area teams in terms of going back on the mat, traveling to Horizon on Tuesday, while Hagerty will be at the Moskowitz IBT on Friday; Lincoln is off until February 1, when the Trojans host Florida High.