The Season 2016-17: Creekside

CREEKSIDE

You can see everything I have on the Knights in 2016-17 here –>  CREEKSIDE

Win/loss record: 16-6 in dual meets. Please review the attached document for a summary of the Knights’ performance in IBT events.

Season in a nutshell: The Knights began the year with eight consecutive dual wins, winning the Matanzas Duals team title on the first weekend of the year, and after an 11-1 through the first 2 1/2 weeks, Creekside’s competition level increased, and the Knights had some more struggles as a result, going .500 in their final 10 duals in 2016-17. The opposite seemed to be true for IBT and round-robin events, as Creekside had probably its least-productive tournament showing in its first one. However, that was followed up by a solid third at Yulee’s Battle on the Border and an even more-solid third at Osceola’s Kowboy Invitational. The Knights were able to crack the top 15 at Flagler Rotary and finished just outside the top 10 at Clay’s Rotary event. Although projected to finish second, Creekside was determined to regain its District 4 team title and succeeded with an 11.5-point margin of victory, moving 13 wrestlers to the Region 1 tournament. The Knights then added a top-five finish at Chiles, with three state qualifiers and three additional wrestlers finishing a match short. Creekside should enter as the favorite next year, with 13 returning post-season starters, its expected 220 starter back from injury, and some solid depth.

2016-17 MVP: Junior 170 Brandon Dickman entered the 2016-17 season as St Johns County’s top wrestler, and wrestled accordingly, winning his first 33 matches of the year and collecting firsts at Ridgeview, Yulee and Osceola, at least as far as IBTs or round-robins were concerned. Nineteen of those 33 wins were via fall. Dickman’s only regular-season loss came in the finals of the Flagler Rotary, against a multiple-time 3A state placer, but he rallied to close out in-season competition with six straight wins (five via fall or tech fall), then added seven more Ws in collecting District 4 and Region 1 titles, with five of those resulting in bonus points. The effective state championship was contested in the semifinals of states on the final day of the season, with second-ranked Dickman taking just his second loss of the season, but a pair of overtime victories on the back side netted him third place. He’ll enter 2017-18 as the likely top-ranked wrestler statewide, at whichever weight he goes.

2017-18 captain: Junior 152 Brendan Jones got out to a very quick start in 2016, winning his first seven and 11 of his first 12 matches, but then hit a few snags as the competitive level at his weight class picked up at Ridgeview Rumble, Battle on the Border and the Kowboy Invitational between mid-December and mid-January. Jones did have a fourth-place effort at Flagler Rotary, reaching the semifinals there, and added a second podium finish at Clay’s Rotary as well. Jones bagged a pair of bonus-point decisions in winning the District 4 title, but fell in the Region 1 quarters by the margin of a single takedown. Still, though, he was able to win three matches in the consi rounds to punch his ticket for states. Jones had a too-quick day in Kissimmee on Friday at states, but as the lone returning state qualifier, his leadership will be vital next season.

Heaton’s Hero: Sophomore Jack Tellin, early on in the season, was 8-3 while competing for the Knights at 145, but to suggest that his next string of matches was a rough go would be a serious understatement. Tellin lost 16 in a row, all with bonus points involved before taking a victory at Osceola in mid-January. After missing a couple of duals and Flagler Rotary, Tellin returned to the varsity lineup, now at 160, which was clearly a help to the team as a whole, if not necessarily for him, as that spot in the lineup had been a tougher one to find production for the Knights. Tellin had one week to get ready for districts at the new weight, but was able to get out with a fall in the consi semis. That would be the last win of his season, but Tellin contributed to the Knights’ winning team score. For “taking one for the team,” and making it work reasonably well, Jack Tellin is the Heaton’s Hero for Creekside.

Projected returning starters for 2017-18 (with year in school as they’ll be next year): Luke Davis (sophomore, 106, district champ, 1 match from states); Colin Brown (junior, 113, district 3rd, 1-2 at regions); Jake Summers (junior, 120, district runnerup, 1 match from states); Max Patterson (senior, 126, district runnerup, 1-2 at regions); Jalen Hines (sophomore, 132, 0-2 at districts); Josh Benavides (sophomore, 138, 1 match from regions); Jacob Cooney (senior, 145, district champ, 1 match from states); Brendan Jones (senior, 152, district champ, region 4th, 0-2 at states); Jack Tellin (junior, 160, district 4th, 0-2 at regions); Dickman (senior, 170, district champ, region champ, state 3rd); Trey Chesser (junior, 182, district champ, 2-2 at regions); Caleb Dickens (junior, 220, district 3rd, 0-2 at regions); Josh Saunders (senior, 285, district 4th, did not compete at regions). Also: Danny Haila (senior, 160, did not compete in post-season); Ethan Robison (junior, 160, did not compete in post-season); Saul Storey (junior, 220, did not compete in post-season).

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I covered wrestling for 15 years up north and "retired" in 2011. But as I thought I had in 1992, I couldn't stay away. Started Northeast Florida Matmen in 2013, Northwest Florida Matmen in 2015. New initiative this year is to create a space on my sites where ALL Florida results can be stored, searched, reviewed and used by my readers, with NO COST TO THEM.

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