Orange wrestling coach Bobby Shriner won his 600th match at the school on Saturday as the undefeated Panthers went 4-0 at the Apex Friendship Duals. Orange has won nine state championships under Shriner – four tournament and five dual-team.
Conference championships: Conference wrestling tournaments will take place on Saturday with most starting at 9 a.m. Millbrook will host the Cap-8 4A, Knightdale the Greater Neuse 4A, Corinth Holders the Two Rivers 3A, Carrboro the Mid-State 2A and Beddingfield the Eastern Plains 2A, among others.
Dual-team championships: The dual-team playoffs are a week away. The first and second rounds will be Jan. 31, the third round and East regional final are Feb. 2 and the state championships are Feb. 4.
The 4A and 2A East regional champs will host their respective championships while 3A and 1A will travel to the West regional champ.
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The state’s lone wrestling ranking website, retrorankings.com, has Orange No. 1 in the 3A East, Carrboro No. 1 in 2A East and Rosewood No. 1 overall in 1A.
Buzzard Brawl: Pinecrest was second, Apex fourth, Holly Springs fifth and Wake Forest and Carrboro tied for sixth in the Buzzard Brawl tournament on Saturday, hosted by Campbell University. The Patriots’ 165.5 points were well behind Cape Fear High out of Cumberland County, which had 259.5.
Holly Springs’ Joshua Lehr (126 pounds), Broughton’s Nick Valdespino (132) and Braxton May-Nicholson (152), Wake Forest’s Sander Cypher (160), Apex’s Connor Castagnegro (182) and Carrboro’s Mark Chaid (195) all took first place in their respective weight classes.
Cary wins Riverside Invitational: Cary’s 243 points made the Imps runaway winners over host Riverside (169.5) and the rest of Saturday’s field. Northern Durham (105) and Clayton (104.5) were fourth and fifth.
Cary had six champions: Kobe Early (106 pounds), Uriel Orellana-Perez (113), Anthony Schiess (126), Delante Robinson (145), Nate Kinsey (152) and Nick Straight (182).
Riverside boasted five: Noah Jacobs (132), Asante Boler (138), Christopher Whitaker (160), Jaden Davis (195) and Michael Ferrish (285).
Voyager Academy’s Ronald Whitt (120), and Green Hope’s Alex Etgen (220) were the other two champs.
Franklinton takes The Belt: Franklinton moved to 19-3 on the season and in the Northern Carolina 2A driver’s seat after going 4-0 in South Granville’s “The Belt” tournament, presented by the National Guard. Defending conference champion South Granville lost 60-22 to the Red Rams.
Fike wins Big East: The Golden Demons wrestling team went 5-0 against Big East 3A opponents in Saturday’s dual meetings. While many conferences schedule their duals throughout the season, Big East teams wrestled all matches on the same day. A 42-31 win over Southern Nash was the closest match of the day.
Pitt County championships: Farmville Central won the Pitt County Championships on Saturday, compiling 164.5 points to best D.H. Conley’s 146 and North Pitt’s 124.5. The Jaguars won six of 14 weight classes.
More conference championship swimming meets are slated for this week at the Triangle Aquatic Center, starting with the North Central 1A at 1 p.m. on Monday. On Wednesday, the Big 8 3A’s meet starts at 7 p.m. The Southwest Wake 4A (5 p.m.) will hold its on Friday, while the Cap-8 (8 a.m.) and Greater Neuse (1 p.m.) are scheduled for Saturday.