Five Freshmen Cement A1 as Toughest District in 2016

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By Rob Sanders

Incoming high school freshmen are always an enigma when it comes to their impact on the high school scene. Entering high school with experience of competing on national teams can provide some insight as to how they may handle the high school scene. There isn’t an accurate way to put a numeric value on the potential impact of freshmen, so they don’t contribute any criteria to the serpentine of districts. Phillip Moomey and Nick James earned state medals for Kearney, and this was a huge bump that fueled their chase of Millard South for the A1 district and state title.

In total, there were five freshmen who collectively cemented A1 as the toughest district. All five were battle tested heading into the season and made their presence known throughout the year. Their names are listed below along with their 2016 state finishes:

Blake Jackson of Millard South, 2nd at 106
Camden Russell of Millard West, 4th at 106
Phillip Moomey of Kearney, 5th at 113
Creighton Baughman of Papillion LaVista, 5th at 120
Nick James of Kearney, 3rd at 132
The influx of incoming freshman talent is sure to alter the parity of class A district results this season. Especially with the influx of talent to the 106 weight class.

The A1 district was the deepest and eight wrestlers with 24+ wins didn’t advance to Omaha. Here’s the list:

106-Salvidor Aguirre of Kearney, 24-9 record
113-Gavin Howard of Omaha Bryan, 31-13 record
120-Jordan Bober of Kearney, 26-12 record
126-Austin Coufal of Millard South, 28-19 record
132-Colby Pedroza of Hastings, 26-15 record
145-Derick Young of Omaha South, 25-18 record

160-Douglas Weidner of Omaha Bryan, 29-8
160-Matt Sorich of Millard West, 35-15

To analyze the class A state qualifiers, every state medal winner was categorized according to the district they qualified through. This gives us 4 mega district teams, and here how the numbers look:

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A1

Most state champions
Second most state finalists
Most 3rd place finishers
Tied for most 4th place finishers
Placed 3 qualifiers at 113,120,132
Placed 2 qualifiers at 106,138,145,152,160,182 & 195
Placed 1 qualifier at 13 of 14 weights
48.2% of qualifiers placed in top 6
A2
Second most state champions
Most state finalists
Tied for most 4th place finishers
Placed 3 qualifiers at 126,285
Placed 2 qualifiers at 106,113,120,195 & 220
Placed 1 qualifier at 12 of 14 weight classes

42.8% of qualifiers placed in top 6
A3
Second most 3rd place finishers
Second most 6th place finishers
Most weights with 3 total placers: 170,182 & 220
Placed 2 qualifiers at 138 & 160
Placed 1 qualifier at 10 of 14 weight classes
32.1% of qualifiers placed in top 6
A4
Tie for second most 2nd place finishers
Most 5th place finishers
Most 6th place finishers
Placed 3 qualifiers at 170
Placed 2 qualifiers at 126,132,145 & 152
Placed 1 qualifier in 13 of 14 weight classes
32.1% of qualifiers placed in top 6
Looking at the top two districts and their respective team district scores, A1’s top two teams directly translated their spots the state tournament with Millard South widening the gap. Teams from A2 accounted for the 3rd, 8th and 10th place finishes.
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Teams in A1
Highest placing teams were 1st and 2nd
3 teams finished in the top 6
5 teams finished in the top 15
Teams in A2
Highest placing team was 3rd
3 teams finished in the top 10
5 teams finished in the top 15
Teams in A3
Highest placing team was 7th
2 teams finished in the top 10
5 teams finished in the top 20
Teams in A4
Highest placing team was 4th

2 teams finished in the top 5

3 teams finished in the top 15
Because the class A schools have been serpentining for 5 years, there is parity in the districts. Imagine how much tougher it would’ve been if Omaha Central hadn’t been without the services of Dax Galloway and Corbin Foster. Both Galloway and Foster would have scored lots of points at state for the Eagles if the injury bug hadn’t bitten them.
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