Davis brothers now at UT-Chattanooga


Published: Thursday, January 19, 2006 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Thursday, January 19, 2006 at 12:00 a.m.
One of the area's best tag teams is soon to be reunited.
Former Gainesville High School wrestler Nick Davis, who won FHSAA state championships as a junior and senior, has transferred from Minnesota to the University of Tennessee Chattanooga where his older brother, John, a state champ as a GHS senior, competes.
Nick, who redshirted last season, faced a numbers crunch with the Golden Gophers, where All-American Matt Nagel was the 165-pounder and 14th ranked Gabriel Dretsch wrestles at 174. Coaches at Minnesota forecasted a bright future for Nick, but he was going to have to wait for an opportunity.
Nick also cited the opportunity to wrestle in the starting line-up with his brother this year, being closer to home, in a warmer climate, with significantly greater scholarship and with the new coaching staff at UTC as contributing factors in his decision.
Additionally, the opportunity to wrestle for United States' World Freestyle team coach and former NCAA national championship coach Joe Seay will provide Davis with excellent collegiate and Olympic training. Seay is joined by assistant coaches Sammie Henson and Chris Bono, current U.S. world team members, as well as four-time NCAA All-American Steve Hamilton.
Since transferring to UTC from George Mason early in his college career, John has been a standout at 184 pounds and is a senior this year. Nick hopes to compete at either 165 or 174 and after becoming eligible for the Jan. 31 meet with The Citadel, will have four years of eligibility remaining.
Matt Koz, the former starting 197-pounder at Minnesota, joined Davis in transferring to UTC.
MORE GRAPPLING: Buchholz went 4-1 last Friday at the Baker County Duals Tournament, capturing first place in a meet for the first time in more than a decade.
The Bobcats, who dropped the sport for a few years before reviving the program two seasons ago, have made a full commitment to wrestling, now fielding three teams that compete at various levels.
A couple of the varsity team standouts are 103-pounder Hunter Winter (20-2) and 152-pounder Lee Harvey (20-2).
Buchholz is in the midst of a big week, as it faced North Marion in the final dual meet of the season Wednesday, will compete in the city championship Friday and the Bobcat Duals on Saturday at Santa Fe Community College, an event featuring (among others) GHS, Suwannee, Baker County and Columbia.
  • GYM DANDY: Bronson High School will be retiring the H.A. White gymnasium in a brief ceremony before the tipoff of Monday's 8 p.m. boys basketball game with visiting Oak Hall.
    All fans and former players are invited to attend, and all former coaches will be honored at midcourt at halftime of the game.
    A new gym will open next season. ONE TO WATCH: Who has been the top newcomer in area basketball this year?
    The answer, boys or girls, probably is Newberry freshman forward Simone Durden.
    Averaging 20.7 points- and 15.7 rebounds, the multi-talented Durden is one of the primary reasons the Panthers entered the week 11-2.
    ANOTHER TO WATCH: Santa Fe junior runner Chris Trebilcock joined the Raiders' cross country team a year-and-a-half ago because he was told the extra work would help reduce his mile time in track.
    It turns out Trebilcock is pretty darn good in his adopted sport.
    After having a personal best of 18:38 as a sophomore, Trebilcock dropped his time to 17:39, making him a regional qualifier. He also finished 15th in the prestigious Bobcat Classic, running a 17:48.
    Trebilcock's goal for his senior year is an ambitious one, but one he believes hard work could help him attain: a sub-16-minute time.
    BIG FOOT: Former Buchholz kicker Ben Davis is having quite a career at Division 2 Harding in Searcy, Ark.
    Davis followed up a sophomore season where he made 13-of-18 field goals (a school-record 72.2 percent) by making 11-of-16 as a junior, including the game-winner in overtime against then-No. 1 Valdosta State (also the defending national champs).
    In his career Davis also is 52-of-54 on extra points (96.3 percent), making all 27 of his attempts this past season. He was named second-team All-Gulf-Coast-Conference following the season.
    Davis is one of three former Buchholz kickers currently on college rosters. The others are Eric Nappy (Florida) and Geoff Troy (Merchant Marines).
    TWO-SPORT STANDOUT: After finishing as one of the conference leaders in blocks, Kittery Neale has moved from the volleyball court to the basketball court. The 6-foot-1 middle blocker/power forward's said her first game for the Davidson hoops' team was Tuesday against Elon.
    Neale was the Florida Dairy Farmers' Class 2A basketball player of the year in 2005 and is the only player, boys or girls, to score more than 2,000 points in her Eagles' career. She also helped lead OHS to the volleyball final four as a senior.
    NOTE TO FOOTBALL COACHES: When they have the information available, local football coaches are asked to notify The Sun by e-mail (pattonj@gvillesun.com) or phone call (352-374-5074) regarding the times they will be holding signing ceremonies.
    John Patton is The Sun's high school sports editor. You can reach him by calling 374-5074 or by e-mail at pattonj@gvillesun.com.
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