Houston Report - Postseason Outlook

Bloged in News and Information by Russell Pate Friday February 2, 2007

The Houston Report:
“District Preview and Regular Season Recap”
By Russell Pate
ITW Staff Writer

Part I:

Houston Power Rankings (with my pre-season rank in parenthesis)

There are a clear top 6 a step above the rest based on season long dual and tournament strength.
1. Cy Fair (2):
2. Cinco Ranch (1)
3. Klein (3)
4. Woodlands (4)
5. Klein Oak (6)
6. Houston Westside (7)

And we’ll take the easy way out and declare the next 6 all close enough to be tied. Anyone could win depending on dual, small tournament, state tournament, etc…
-Katy Taylor
-Mayde Creek
-Beaumont Westbrook:
-Morton Ranch:
-Cy Ridge:

Part II:

Klein/Woodlands District
Top Team - Woodlands. They are easy to forget sometimes because of a schedule that takes them away from Houston so often. However, they have the depth to compete at the District and Regional level, and Spjut and Hinton should land them at least in the top 10 come state.

Other Contenders – The word “other” doesn’t do Klein and Klein Oak justice. Either team could win the district tournament and both should place in the top 8 at regionals. Come State Tournament time Klein will need big points from Chris Nguyen and Phil Thomas to crack the top 10.

Top Individuals –
Spjut is a state favorite at 119
Hinton has a chance to win at 285
Thomas is a darkhorse at 180 and could go anywhere from 1st to DNP

Darkhorse - Look out for Jon Elijah from Oak dropping to 215. He could place.

Katy District
Top Team – Cinco Ranch. They should win a 6th consecutive district championship, an incredible example of consistency in a district as tough as any year in and year out. Their district makes them a darkhorse at the regional level, but look out for them at state. Everyone knows about potential champs Sheets, McNair, and Harris, but their season could be made or broken on the wide shoulders of heavyweight John Gioffe who has quietly gone undefeated with wins over Haynie (allen) and Goen (rockwall).

Other Contenders – Taylor, Katy, Morton Ranch, and Mayde Creek will all fight for 2nd. All are above average but the edge probably goes to Taylor and their post-season experience and coaching.

Top Individuals –
Jamie Sheets (145) looks to bookend his career with freshman and senior state titles.
Matt Harris (160) has suffered a few losses but is still defending champ
Will Morris (171) is as good a bet as any to reach the finals and lose to Kyle Anderson
215 boasts 2 top state contenders in Strake’s Steve Nijoka and Mayde Creek’s Benson

Darkhorse – The previously mentioned John Gioffe (285)

District 24
Top Team – Beaumont Westbrook. They sit so far outside of Houston they don’t get recognized for what they are, a very good wrestling program. This year should start a streak of district titles that lasts as long as this current alignment.

Other Contenders – Brazoswood is the clear 2nd place, but the young Clear Creek ISD programs are on the right track.

Top Individuals –
Gerald Moulton (189) Is the only real state place contender. More important he is just a junior and just keeps getting better. He was an alternate in 05 as a freshman, a qualifier as a soph last year, a potential placer this year, and as a senior next year a ….

Darkhorse – Jamaal Bufford (171/180) of Brazoswood is in a tough weight class but could make noise in Austin with the right circumstances.

Cy Fair District
Top Team – Cy Fair. They will likely qualify 15 for the regional tournament and will be very tough to beat there. State is still an unknown but they handled their last unknown pretty well (state duals).

Other Contenders – Cy Ridge is a solid 2nd place in the district.

Top Individuals –
Mike Murray (145) is the favorite in the state.
Austin McCain (125) should compete for a state place
Matt Cantelmo (285) will be in the mix at every level as he comes up big in big matches

Darkhorse – Drew Pikulski (140) keeps it close against great and average wrestlers alike. This spells upset either for or against him. This makes him a good day away from the podium.

HISD District
Top Team – Westside. They will look best at the state level and could make unexpected noise in the way Klein Oak did in 2005 (3 qualifers, 3 finalists).

Other Contenders – none.

Top Individuals –
James Hazzard (160) is amongst the best in the state.
Trent Murrell (152) looked like weight hurts him at 152, but he can beat anyone not named Brent Rogers

Darkhorse – Brandon Tullos (171) has big wins and big losses this year. Which one will show up for regionals and state.

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