A season from now, junior Jimmy Baumann wouldn't be surprised if the Dublin Coffman wrestling team equals or even surpasses what it accomplished this winter.
The numbers back him up.
Nine of the Shamrocks' 14 competitors in an 11-team Division I sectional Feb. 29 at Newark are eligible to return. Coffman won the sectional title with 308.5 points, 52.5 ahead of runner-up Lancaster (256).
Seven of the Shamrocks' 13 competitors in the district tournament March 6 and 7 at Hilliard Darby qualified for the state tournament, which was to have been held March 13-15 at Ohio State but was indefinitely postponed March 12 by the OHSAA because of the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic before being canceled March 26.
Four of the Shamrocks' state qualifiers are eligible to return, including sophomore and 2019 state champion Seth Shumate at 195 pounds.
"Me and many others on our team had high goals that they wanted to achieve and I just feel terrible for our (eight) seniors who've put so much into not only this season but the last four years," Baumann said. "Looking towards next year, I know our goals are going to be to do more than to just win the district tournament as a team or qualify to the state duals tournament. I know we're fully capable of competing with the schools from Cleveland and Cincinnati."
Coffman, which went 5-0 in the OCC-Central Division to win its fourth consecutive league title, reached the quarterfinal round of the state team tournament for the second consecutive season and fourth time in five years before losing to fourth-seeded Wadsworth 39-19 on Feb. 8 as the No. 5 seed.
In the individual postseason, the Shamrocks won their second consecutive district championship, scoring 174.5 points to finish 47 ahead of runner-up Delaware (127.5). Last season, they won their first district title in 18 years.
"Some things that made my team special this winter was the bond we all created," Shumate said. "We were a little distant with each other last year, but over the summer and into this season, a good bond was formed between most of the team and it caused us to love the sport more. Some of the best memories of this season were seeing my teammates' hard work pay off and all the late nights of work we put in."
Shumate finished 43-0 this season after going 50-1 as a freshman.
In addition to Shumate, Baumann (138), seniors Davante Cooper (120) and Corey Crawford (106) and sophomores Ismael Ayoub (132) and Riley Ucker (220) qualified for state for the second consecutive season.
The other state qualifier was senior Nick Copley (182), who finished 38-8.
Cooper finished 29-15 and Crawford went 31-11. Ucker went 40-13 as a freshman and 40-8 this winter, while Ayoub finished 20-7 this winter after going 30-9 last season.
"I felt like I could do more this season and it's all over," Crawford said. "(We're) one big family with a lot of talented people with a lot of potential and the best in central Ohio."
Baumann went 36-6 this season and has a career record of 109-18.
"Our coaches have shown great leadership throughout this time and have been extremely (encouraging) in regards to keeping the morale high with our team," Baumann said. "They've been doing a great job in reaching out to us as well as reminding us that in life, we can only control the controllables. Looking back on this year, I was really proud of how we were able to come together as a team. This is why we really surged to the top of teams in the Central District and I'm really excited for the direction that we're going in."
In the OCC-Central, Baumann (132), Copley (182), Crawford (113), Shumate (195), Ucker (220), junior Casey Magyar (170), sophomores Mitchell Broskie (160) and Niko Gonzalez (145) and freshman Rahul Raghuram (106) made first-team all-league and Cooper (126) and seniors Erik Arndt (138) and Cam Callahan (152) made the third team.
Shumate was named league Wrestler of the Year and coach Chance Van Gundy was named league Coach of the Year.
The other district qualifiers were Arndt (152), Broskie (160), Gonzalez (145), Raghuram (106), senior Leo Alvarez (170) and sophomore Rupert Moore (126).
Freshman Dillon Halter (heavyweight) is another eligible to return after placing sixth at sectional.