Edge of the Mat #4

Edge of the Mat #4

Fletcher results should be arriving mid-morning. Will review VERRRRY quickly and get team rankings out around lunchtime. Getting the full duals on the site will take more time, though.

Here’s our last post to 1010XL’s website. They have been very gracious in working with me even before this website here was even an idea. Please support them and patronize their advertisers.


#NextLevel Notes — December 9

Slowly but surely, Coker College freshman Robert Parland (University Christian ’13) is becoming an anchor in the Cobras’ starting lineup.

On Saturday, Parland’s 7-3 win over Alderson-Broaddus’s Nicholas Nester at 197 pounds secured Coker’s 20-19 victory at the Newberry Duals, where Coker went 2-1 on the day.

Parland later took care of business against Darton College’s Harrison Stadnick, earning an 11-5 decision that contributed to Coker’s 27-13 team win. Parland then went overtime against Jared Merritt of Lake Erie College before falling, 3-1, in sudden victory.

Saturday also marked the return of freshman Shane Carpenter (Creekside ’13) to Coker’s lineup. Mere days after getting stitches removed and a bulky bandage off his knee as a result of surgery to torn meniscus, Carpenter wrestled against Alderson-Broaddus, falling 4-1 at 184.

North Central (IL) freshman Coll Robertson (Ridgeview ’13) went 0-2 at the Wisconsin Open in Madison Saturday, falling to Division I wrestler Christian Pagdilao in the second round of the front side of the bracket, and dropping a 3-2 decision on the back end.

There were no appearances from: Ohio State redshirt freshman Josh Fox (University Christian ’12) at the Cliff Keen Invitational in Las Vegas; Edinboro freshman Victor Espana (Fleming Island ’13) at the PSAC tournament last weekend; Indiana Tech first-year Ben Galloway (Fleming Island ’13) at the Battle of the Rockies duals; Hannibal-LaGrange freshman Kyle McClinton (Middleburg ’13) at the Milwaukee School of Engineering Open, and Iowa Western first-year Jamarius Jackson (Ridgeview ’13) at the Buena Vista (IA) Open. Washington & Lee, home to senior Daniel Igel (Bolles ’10) is off until December 20 and Central Florida club wrestler Chris Fox (Fleming Island ’10) is off until December 21.


December 7 Roundup Story

(Editor’s Note: For story purposes, just need results from Fletcher — they have been promised to me!)

The first clash of area titans proved a one-sided affair Saturday in Matanzas.

#1 Fleming Island and #3 Orange Park, along with seven other St. Johns River Conference squads, tangled on Saturday, and when the day was over, the Golden Eagles reigned supreme within the league ranks.

Behind nine individual titles, Fleming Island far outdistanced the runnerup Raiders, 255-158, for the team title.

Host Matanzas was third with with 145, with Middleburg (101), Pedro Menendez (89.5), Nease (69.5), St. Augustine (47), Bartram Trail (36) and Palatka (7) rounding out the rest of the team scores.

The Golden Eagles won every weight class from 106 through 145 pounds, with Joseph Cooper (106), Chase Robison (113), Xaiver Sampsel (120), Evan McCall (126), Anthony Petrelli (132), David Detwiler (138) and John Martorano (145) all victorious in the streak.

After Menendez’s Rodney Padgett broke the streak with a title at 152, Jerome Abbott became league champion #8 for Fleming Island at 160, with Peter Martorano hitting the mats for the first time in 2013-14 with a title at 195.

Likewise, Orange Park’s Devon Brooks saw his first mat time of the season and at a new weight to boot, taking home the title at 220 pounds. The Raiders’ Christian Tejada was also victorious at 285.

Middleburg’s Jonathan Shoen was the only other @NEFloridaMatmen area champion, taking home first at 182. Matanzas’ Clayton Dennis won at 170 to round out the field of conference winners.

Jensen Beach duals: #2 Clay defeated three state-ranked teams over the course of the two-day tournament to finish third, losing only to the tournament hosts — tied for 4th in preseason Class 2A state rankings — and Tampa Jesuit, ranked 3rd in Class 2A.

The Blue Devils’ wins came over Riverdale (39-33), Palm Beach Gardens (49-21) and Jupiter (48-29), all ranked teams, as well as Centennial (59-15) and Bishop Moore (60-12).

Clay senior Dylan Martin (132) was a perfect 7-0 over the course of the weekend, with Cody Taylor (113), Adam Breindel (145) and Jayvih Tobler (285) all going 6-1. Andrew Klopman (106), Caleb Loyd (152) and Kaleb Collins (182) each were 5-2 for the Blue Devils.

Columbia Tiger Invitational: Newly-minted @NEFloridaMatmen area team member and tournament host Columbia held off Suwannee, 80-73, for top team honors at Saturday’s 10-team meet in Lake City.

Kaleb Warner (132) and Marcus Zeighler (285) were the Tigers’ representatives atop the podium, as each won titles, but Columbia also got runner-up finishes from Cole Horton (106), Josh Wine (113) and Josh Lynch (120) en route to placing nine wrestlers in the top four.

Yulee, with 42 points, took eighth place in team competition, with six wrestlers finishing in the top four. Timothy Worthen (138), Daniel Beverly (160) and Joseph Turner (182) each finished second in their respective weight classes.

Buchholz duals: After stringing together 10 wins at home to start the 2013-14 season, #7 Bishop Snyder ran into difficulties on the road this past weekend.

The competition at Buchholz’s Karen Kearney Duals had a lot to do that. With 3A state-ranked Palm Coast and 2A state-ranked Gainesville in the mix, the Cardinals found rougher going, winning just three of seven duals in the two-day tournament.

Bishop Snyder defeated local rival Oakleaf (42-25), plus had wins over Bradford (41-36) and North Marion (57-6). Brandon Marshall (182) and Nathan Morales (195) were the Cardinals’ brightest stars, as both wrestlers went 7-0 on the weekend.

Oakleaf was 1-6 in six of seven duals reported. No individual results from their dual with West Orange were available at press time. Senior Anthony Hauser went 5-1 in six matches for the Knights, with his only loss coming against Palm Coast.


Sunday notes — updated

Got St. Johns River Conference results from Matanzas coach John White. We’ll have linkable brackets to it first thing Monday, as well as linkable brackets to Terry Parker, and we’ll see if we have results from Fletcher, Columbia or Jensen Beach.

Buchholz results are, as far as what I was sent, completely up on the site. I am missing three duals — all involving West Orange; sadly, one of those is their dual with Oakleaf, so I have no idea on that one. Going to write my roundup portions that I already do have, but not publishing it until tomorrow.

Still not sure how my team rankings are gonna go this week (outside of #1), the missing tournaments could have a great deal to do with that. #5-10, at least, could be completely different.

Tomorrow: #NextLevel piece, updates to just-published Saturday roundup with whatever I have received, 1010XL story, new team rankings…and record-keeping and individual rankings study. Busy.


Ed White Commands Field for Optimist Title

By Shannon Heaton, Northeast Florida Matmen

It might be easy for a younger coach like Ed White’s Jaylen Lee to simply point to his own high school wrestling accomplishments and say to his charges, “Do it like I did it.”

That is the last thing on Lee’s mind, and that might be the first reason why the Commanders are quickly establishing themselves as a Gateway Conference team to worry about in 2013-14.

They were certainly a team to worry about this weekend, as Ed White brought home two individual titles and 10 medals to carry away top honors at Terry Parker’s annual two-day Optimist Invitational, outpointing #6 Ridgeview 228.5-196.

“Now that I’m coaching, I don’t go back on my past,” Lee said of his career, which included a state runnerup effort for Ed White in 2010. “We’re only focusing on how to get them better, how to make them better each and every day. As they progress, they will win more matches. I came in trying hard to have that mindset in them first. You can’t be weak. You’ve got to come out, dominate, and just bring it every day. They’ve listened, and done everything I’ve said.”

Although there were only three Commander wins in the final round of wrestling, two of them were for titles, as Roderick Evans (106) and Armond Holmes (126) walked away with Optimist Invitational brackets representing a team that was dead last out of eight teams a year ago in post-season competition.

“We are like a family; we keep each others’ heads in the game,” Holmes said of the team atmosphere that Lee has built in his first season coaching the Commanders. “When we first came here (to the tournament), We knew it would be a tough competition, and it was. But Coach has things under control, and each one of the guys on our team picks the spirits up of everyone else. It really helps us out. We have a lot of freshmen on this team, and they have picked things up right away. We’re good learners and we have a good coach.”

Ridgeview wasn’t the only challenger the Commanders faced in the team chase, but the Panthers were the most successful one. With titles from Jeremiah Watson (113) and Joey Epstein (126), Ridgeview was able to edge out Sandalwood 196-183.5 for the runnerup spot.

“At the moment, we’re exceeding our expectations,” Panthers assistant coach Zeth Nolda said. “As a whole, though, we’re not satisfied. We’re a very young team, on the whole, but we’re trying to get everyone on the rise. THe kids wrestled well today, and we did a great job. It’s a great start to our season (combined with Ridgeview’s third-place duals effort at Fleming Island on November 23).”

10 different schools had at least one champion on the weekend, with fourth-place Atlantic Coast collecting the most titles (three, en route to 173.5 points). Baker County was fifth at 133, with the tournament-host Braves sixth at 118 and West Nassau seventh at 116.

Ponte Vedra finished with eighth with 83 points, followed by Englewood (63.5), Duval Charter (61), Wolfson (59), Paxon (50) and Providence (45), respectively.

Here’s an individual weight-class title snapshot:

106 — Ed White’s Evans had three pins, all in the first period, including one in 1 minute, 58 seconds over Duval Charter’s Andrew Slade in the final.

113 — After two pins got Watson to the final, he shut down Sandalwood’s Alex Barie completely, controlling tempo and offense en route to a 5-0 decision for the championship.

120 — Atlantic Coast’s Brandon Bemister needed a little time to get his sea legs against Ed White’s Chase Calloway, but wound up with a quick fall just 17 seconds into the second period. Bemister had two pins and a technical fall on his way to the title.

126 — Holmes jumped out to an early lead and held on to turn back Ridgeview’s Trevor Belden, 10-6, in the final, after collecting two pins to get there.

132 — Best match of the tournament between Epstein and Atlantic Coast’s Ollie Dixon, both of whom briefly looked like they might end it via fall much earlier. It took overtime, and an Epstein takedown, to secure the win, which left him spent and gasping for air on the Terry Parker floor after the match.

138 — Englewood’s Kevin Herrera was a couple of tenths over at 132, so moved up and and dominated at 138, with two pins and a very easy-looking technical fall over Ed White’s Darien Tucker, which ended just a few seconds into the third period with Herrera up, 19-2.

145 — Nikeem Burns of Sandalwood brought home the Saints’ lone title with a second-period fall over Chase Gold of Ridgeview after trailing early. Burns had two falls earlier in the tournament as well.

152 — Second sudden-victory final, this time between Ponte Vedra’s Colin Peaks and Dillon May of Atlantic Coast. In the extra time, Peaks took advantage of a poor shot by May to secure the takedown and title.

160 — West Nassau’s Michael Dudzinski wasn’t seriously tested this weekend, bagging two pins and forcing the action in the final, an 11-3 major-decision win over Ridgeview’s Marcus Gomez.

170 — Atlantic Coast’s Triston Ulrich had two quick pins to bring home the Stingrays’ second title, needing just 1:29 to deck Sergio Jordan of Ed White in the final.

182 — Baker County’s Sean Mulkey took it to Dominick Maldonado right from the first whistle, picking up the fall in 52 seconds. Mulkey had two pins and a forfeit victory on the weekend.

195 — The Stingrays got title #3 from Mike Gant, who only needed 28 seconds to deck Ed White’s Atyrus McDowell in the title match. Gant had three first-period falls on the weekend.

220 — The hosts got their lone individual championship here, as the Braves’ Kerry Hardine — who earlier had the fastest pin of the season anywhere in the @NEFloridaMatmen area (6 seconds, in the quarterfinals) — pinned Baker County’s James Carter in 1:26. Hardine had three falls, all in the first period.

285 — With overwhelming favorite Malcolm Kirce of Ridgeview away for a football scholarship interview Saturday, the field opened up for Wolfson’s DeAngeles Harris, and he didn’t hesitate, taking advantage of the forfeit he received in the semis with a fall over Baker County’s Collyn Green in 1:56.


University Christian Takes Episcopal Team Title


  • University Christian senior Jamal Fiffer strains to put Bishop Kenny’s Alexander Condoroteanu to the mat in Saturday’s 285-pound final at the Rob Bierbaum Invitational, hosted by Episcopal. Fiffer pinned Condoroteanu in 1:10 to win the weight-class title (Photo by Daniel Allen).

By Shannon Heaton, Northeast Florida Matmen

One of the area’s year-in and year-out wrestling powerhouses has had its program mostly under wraps through the first four weeks of the 2013-14 season.

Saturday, #4 University Christian made the wait worth it. In the Christians’ first appearance of the year, they amassed six individual titles, and needed every last one of them to overcome a dogged effort from Bishop Kenny in this weekend’s Rob Bierman Invitational, hosted by Episcopal School in the Semmes Athletic Center Friday and Saturday morning.

“When it came down to it, we had a senior on the mat who had to win for us to win, and he did that,” UC first-year coach Kevin Wiley said, referring to top-ranked 285-pounder Jamal Fiffer, whose fall over Bishop Kenny’s Alexander Condoroteanu in 1 minute and 10 seconds secured the Christians’ title, but by a narrow margin. When the smoke cleared, UC outpointed the Crusaders 152-148.5 for the team win.

“We’re young right now, but everyone was battling out there really good. It was an amazing experience,” Fiffer said of the team win. “We’ve just been willing to fight through the whole six minutes of every match.”

The Christians collected titles from 7th-grader Derrick Stumph at 113, Brysen Allen (120), Cody Joseph (145), Daniel Folkner (160) and David Trigg (220) as well as from Fiffer after starting Saturday tied with Bishop Kenny. With just eight wrestlers in uniform, every point counted — and UC counted almost as many as it possibly could, as all eight bagged medals, with Cameron Wiley (106) adding a runnerup effort and Mack Green (182) taking third.

“We’re not reinventing the wheel at UC,” Wiley said. “The kids have bought into the mindset we are trying to preach to them. These were kids that we’re going to depend upon, and they did what they had to do.”

Bishop Kenny picked up its first title from 170-pound Kuba Kaszuba on Friday night due to Kaszuba needing to take the Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) on Saturday. Joining Kaszuba as titlists were Ryan Timmons (106), Nate Caron (126) and Logan Bote (138), but the Crusaders just couldn’t match UC point-for-point when it counted.

“We needed guys in the consis to win, and that didn’t happen as much as we needed it to. But, a lot of them were first-year guys, so just getting there was great for them,” Bishop Kenny coach Paul Schloth said. “Only losing by a few points, it came down to bonus points. That’s how you win tournaments. We had six (in the finals) and they had seven. They had a guy get second and we didn’t. That’s how it goes down.”

Fernandina Beach crowned one champion in 195-pound Kelsey Greathouse, who led the Pirates to a third-place finish with 130 points. Fernandina chased both of the leaders admirably, but couldn’t make up any ground Saturday. Likewise, Mandarin had one champion (Samuel Hernandez at 182) to take fourth with 99 points. Florida School for the Deaf & Blind had no champions, but battled admirably to edge out Episcopal and Bolles for fifth, scoring 77 points to the host Eagles’ 75 and Bulldogs’ 73.

Bolles did have two titlists, though, so didn’t go away entirely empty-handed, as Josh Calhoun (132, also won Friday night in anticipation of SATs Saturday) and Bradshaw Steele (152) took home weight-class wins. Stanton was eighth with 33 points.

A breakdown of each titlist’s path to their win follows:

106 — Timmons had two pins, both in the third period, to win the weight class. He controlled the action throughout against UC’s Wiley, just a 7th-grader, before getting the fall in 5:28.

113 — Stumph only had to wrestle once, pinning FSDB’s Jake Tessar — who is blind — in 1:41. Only two matches were contested in the weight class all weekend.

120 — Allen had one pin and a major decision (15-2) over Fernandina’s Joseph Helm in the finals. Helm seemed to control the tie early, but once the action moved to the mat, it was all Allen.

126 — Caron was solid against Fernandina’s James Hessenauer, not allowing Hessenauer any space at all to open up any offense. Caron also had a pin earlier in the tournament.

132 — Calhoun pinned twice for his title Friday night, decking Bishop Kenny’s Nick Toney in 2:33 in the finals. It was Calhoun’s first wrestling action, as he missed Tuesday’s home dual against Episcopal due to a band concert.

138 — Bote was brutally efficient against Episcopal’s CHristian Rickey in the final, rolling to a technical fall in 4 minutes. Bote also had a fall in the semis.

145 — Joseph’s match against Stanton’s Nicholas Stiles looked on paper like one of the better finals matches of the tournament, and it was, as both Joseph and Stiles had the momentum going their way early. Joseph used a funky style, though, to rip the momentum away from Stiles with a fall in 3:50 in the final. Joseph was one of the rare champions who had three matches, all pins.

152 — Steele also won three times by fall, but it took an impressive roll to overcome the strength of Mandarin’s Noah Perez in the finals, as Steele was in trouble early before getting the pin in 4:38.

160 — Folkner’s match with Fernandina’s Thomas Monaghan wound up the best of the day Saturday – and the most controversial one — as both coaches had a long conference with the referee at the scorer’s table with regulation over and Folkner apparently up, 9-8. The score was changed to 10-all, requiring overtime, but Folkner got a takedown 27 seconds in for the sudden-victory win.

170 — Kaszuba had two pins and a decision en route to the title, taking down Mandarin’s Richard Gagnon by fall in 3:38 for the championship.

182 — Hernandez was in control from the beginning against Florida School’s Wesley Homewood, methodically wearing down Homewood with a fall in 5:18.

195 — Greathouse pinned his way through the draw, taking charge early in the final against Episcopal’s Hayes Oken before picking up the pin in 4:35.

220 — Trigg, by far the most experienced wrestler in the draw, proved it, with two first-period pins — including a 43-second fall over Episcopal’s Conor Chepenik in the final.

285 — Like his teammate Trigg, Fiffer didn’t have to go into the second period in 2 matches. “I have a target on my back, and it’s up to me to hold it (the state’s top ranking in Class 1A),” he said. “If I don’t push myself, nobody will.”


What a day!

What a day today! We have been to two tournaments — with regret, I could not make it out to Fletcher, but I had said to Coach Fallon that might happen. I was at Episcopal at 8:00 and we were done there by noon. I got to Terry Parker around 12:45 and we were there until about 5. After taking care of feeding children, we are about the business of figuring all this out. Here’s what I have:

  • I have paper brackets from Episcopal. I will write up some results on the Tournaments page until I either receive a PDF from them or can make one myself on Monday.
  • Same for Terry Parker. Feel a little more confident about the PDF there but if not, it’ll be done Monday.
  • I have bout sheets and alphas from Buchholz’s duals tournament, with all of Bishop Snyder’s results in hand already. Will start sifting through that after my stories and Episcopal/Parker results are done, as that will be part of the Saturday roundup story that I will publish on Monday.
  • Nothing yet from Fletcher, Columbia, Matanzas or Jensen Beach. Will keep checking the site email address throughout the evening.

Bear with me! It’s all coming soon!


Friday site notes

Good morning. With no dual at Raines last night, the only post was the Wednesday night roundup as promised. Today will be about catching up the record-keeping and editing down the schedule holes. I still need Yulee from Week 2 at Deltona, Baker County’s home-and-home with Bradford (which is promised me when I go to Terry Parker Saturday), Middleburg’s duals at Palm Coast and Lee vs. Stanton on Wednesday night, which I should get from either Lee’s coach today or Stanton’s tomorrow at Episcopal. I sent emails to the Clay staff about Jensen Beach this weekend and to Matanzas about Saturday’s SJR Conference meet. I’ll be working up an email to all coaches about individual rankings today as well.


December 4 Roundup Story

Fletcher has been the top program in the Gateway Conference for quite some time now.

And, while Senators coach Roy Fallon has sought out, right from the start of the 2013-14 season, some of the area’s best competition to toughen up his team, the rest of the Gateway seems to want to be on the move for the top, too.

Take Wednesday night’s quadrangular meet at Forrest — scheduled to be a five-team event, but Paxon arrived with a team but no weigh-in sheet.

THe #10 Rebels, themselves coming off a solid fourth-place finish at Fleming Island’s Keystone Duals, were poised to run the table at home, but another Gateway squad also wanted a slice of the pie that made for a 3-way tie Wednesday night.

In the second of three rounds of wrestling, Atlantic Coast — which had been off for nearly 3 weeks after a sluggish 0-3 start at Fletcher back in mid-November — took down the Rebels, 38-33, after falling earlier to Baker County, 42-32.

Then, in the final round, Forrest rallied, breaking a 24-24 tie with three pins and two forfeits to defeat Baker County, 54-30.

With all three of the round-robin winners taking wins over Englewood, that meant all three teams finished 2-1 on the night.

Triple winners for Forrest were Isaiah Golson (170/82), Malik Brown (195) and Kahlil Welsh (285). For Baker County, Logan Kish (138) and James Carter (220) each won three times.

Atlantic Coast was energized by the first appearance this season from Ollie Dixon, who began the season ranked in Class 3A. Dixon (132) was 3-0 for the Stingrays, as was Brandon Bemister (120), Nacierre Williams (126), Ectrus Barber (145) and Dillon May (152).

Englewood had just one triple winner in 113-pound Archie Brown.

#8 Creekside 48, Bishop Kenny 18: Behind falls from Joshua Cordle (113), Ryan Baker (138), Jared Langdo (145), David Cline (160) and Gus Fischer (195), the Knights won their home opener against a short-handed Crusader team, which had four weights open.

Middleburg 44, #9 St. Augustine 31: The hosts showed the form that had them listed as a preseason honorable mention pick, with falls from Tristan Tollison (138), Travis Neubeck (145), J.T. Davie (160), Jonathan Shoen (195) and Ammon Meeks (285) fueling the victory.

Wolfson opens season 2-0: The Warriors got double wins from Richard Tran (113), Charles Kessinger (126), Joshua Cade (132) and Rafeal Leon (195) in taking wins over Lee (42-30) and Stanton (48-24).

Ponte Vedra 42, Bartram Trail 39: The Sharks were able to pick up three pins to the Bears’ two in the six contested matches, with Zach Gregory (145), Colin Peaks (152) and Michael Swain (170) providing the difference for Ponte Vedra with their falls.

Florida Deaf & Blind 59, Providence 18: Five falls and a technical fall got FSDB out to a strong start in its home and season-opener, as Diego Garcia (106), John Tessar (113), Marcus Maldonado (138), Kyle McCreath (152) and Wesley Homewood (182) had pins and Chasien Taylor (145) picked up a tech fall.

Thursday action cancelled: The scheduled dual between Raines and First Coast was cancelled, according to Raines school personnel Thursday evening. No make-up date was known at press time.


Thursday notes

Working on roundup now. All duals in hand besides Lee vs. Stanton from Wednesday night. No dual at Raines tonight. Live-tweeting at @NEFloridaMatmen returns Saturday morning with pairings from the Bierman Invitational.