By NewsLine Staff

Creekside Knights wrestling finished the 2016 season with three state qualifiers who turned into two state placers. In the past eight seasons, since the program’s inception, the Knights have produced 22 state qualifiers, five regional champions, five state placers and one state champion.

The team was led by three-time district and regional champion, senior Gus Fischer (195), who placed fifth at state and two-time district champion, regional runner-up and sophomore Brandon Dickman (152), who placed fifth at state. Senior Willy Lulias (182) was the district and regional runner-up who qualified for the state tournament

Coach Rick Marabell said, “We concentrated on preparing for district, regional and states this season by going to tougher tournaments and not worrying about who we beat during the season.”

This was an unusual season for the Knights who had a 15-9 dual match record. This is a program that consistently won 82 percent of their dual matches, sporting a 120-27 dual match record prior to this season.

“We knew we would take some lumps this season, but I knew if we stayed on course with our drilling and preparation for the postseason, that in the end it would pay off,” Marabell said.

The Knights have continued to be the top performer in St. Johns County with a strong showing in the postseason. The team finished the 2016 season as the team district runner-up, fifth place finish at regional and 20th place finish at the 2A state tournament. The Knight individual achievers this season are the following: four district champions, 10 regional qualifiers, three regional placers and state qualifiers along with a regional champion and two state placers.

Photo courtesy F. Nelson

Creekside wrestlers Gus Fischer, Willy Lulias and Brandon Dickman.

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