East Wake found itself in a deep hole early in its Greater Neuse River 4A Conference dual wrestling debut Tuesday night. But with a little help from some really new additions, the Warriors rallied for a 42-39 victory.
What the Warriors gave were three forfeited weight classes, helping the Trojans to build a 27-6 lead. And then East Wake reeled off six pins, enabling the come-from-behind win.
Three of the pins came from grapplers fresh off of the Warriors’ football team who competed after only one day of practice. Those individuals were Dylan Williams at 170 pounds, Alston Willard at 195 and Zack Willard at 286.
Williams’ pin came in one minute, 14 seconds over Sanad Musafer, Alston Willard’s in 1:16 over Matt Orr and Zack Willard’s in 51 seconds over Vincente Gomez.
“We got three kids back from football,” said Warriors coach Brian Staples. “And all three came through with pins. Getting them back on the team was big for all of us. We won where we had to, got pins where we had to have them, and two kids that lost – Khadeem Dublin at 126 (pounds) gave up a major decision (four team points) and Ryan Flippen at 132 lost by technical fall (five team points).”
Had Garner managed victories worth six team points in those two bouts, the match would have been knotted at 42-all and would have gone to tiebreaker criteria.
The Warriors (2-2 overall) also received pins from 126-pounder Cody Staples, who put East wake on the board with a 2:44 stoppage of Hunter Williams, 145-pounder Tyler Barabasz in 4:26 over Kameron Bridges and Samuel Hand over De’Ante Jones in 1:31 at 152 pounds.
East Wake did receive a forfeit for its only non-combative win, that coming from Jamie Cosentino at 160.
Despite having four of its top wrestlers out with the flu, Garner (3-5) built the 27-6 margin on forfeit wins by Kalim Harris (103), Bryan Roblero (113) and Michael Outlaw (138).
Also involved in building the gap in the team scores were the 11-2 major decision victory by Mason Crawford over Dublin and the 23-8 technical fall triumph by Flawell Hall.
Crawford used a proficient leg attack in the neutral position, scoring a takedown on a single-to-double leg maneuver, while stretching his lead at the outset of the second period on a straight double-leg attack.
Hall was methodical building his lead, taking Flippen down and releasing him seconds later, a 2-1 point exchange in Hall’s favor. For good measure before allowing Flippen to escape, Hall mixed in a trio of two-point near falls.
“I think we could have beaten them (Warriors), if we had a stronger lineup in there than we had,” said Garner coach Ryan Tingle. “To lose our first conference match is tough to take, because we have a lot of tough conference teams ahead of us on the schedule.”
East Wake erased the 27-6 deficit with the pins by Barabasz, Hand, the forfeit to Cosentino and the pin by Dylan Willliams.
The teams exchanged falls to wrap up the seesaw match. Garner took leads of 33-30 and 39-36 on respective pins by Antwain Mercurias at 180 over Adam Gorlesky in 1:23, and Matt Knowles over Freddie Ector in 2:42 at 220.