Six-packs may be popular among adults and youth, depending on the type of preferrred beverage beng consumed. But the six-pack Princeton's wrestling team carried into the Rosewood High gymnasium Friday night, wasn't all that palatable for the Bulldogs.
Especially since that six-pack represented the number of unfilled weight classes. That was the number of walkover weights the Bulldogs handed Carolina 1A Conference rivals South Lenoir and Rosewood Friday evening in a dropping a pair of decisions.
South Lenoir turned back the Bulldogs in the opener, 51-30, while Rosewood rolled past Princeton in the nightcap, 62-18. Rosewood out-wrestled South Lenoir, 62-16.
Despite bringing in 11 wrestlers to the triangular meet the Bulldogs presented wrestlers to the mat in only eight weights.
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In this case, the six pack, like all bad things, came in threes.
The forfeited weights bookended the meets for the Bulldogs, with the first trio of walkovers coming in the light-weight classes (106, 113 and 120 pounds, respectively.) The second set of passes came in the upper weights (182, 195 and 220 pounds, respectively).
With each forfeit worth six points, and giving up six weights essentially put the Bulldogs in a 36-0 hole before the a bout is even wrestled.
"It's hard to overcome that," said assistant coach Forrest Stewart. "Especially with new guys on the team. Even though they are giving up 36 points, they don't give up at all."
Making up six points can be a daunting task, which in the case of the meet with South Lenoir, was a little easier to digest in that the Blue Devils returned the favor in part by forfeiting three weights. The first weight of the night, at 285 pounds, resulted in a forfeit win for the Bulldogs' Matthew Peedin, who enjoyed an unbeaten night after stopping Rosewood's Adam Henn in a scant 16 seconds.
Following that walkover by Peedin, the Bulldogs did not taste victory again until the 145-pound weight class, when Taylor Farrell stopped Daniel Delgado in 1:27, trimming the Blue Devils' lead to 33-12.
Consecutive forfeit wins at 152 by Dillon Pace and 160 by Jesse Tomljenovich drew Princeton within 33-24, and a 44-second pin of South Lenoir 170- pounder Hunter Taylor by the Bulldogs' Cody Parrish, shaved the deficit to 33-30. But the upper weight forfeits enabled South Lenoir to seal the win.
Although the score did not reflect it, the Bulldogs gave a solid account of themselves against the Eagles, losing 26-18 in competitive bouts.
Michael Daughtry gave Princeton its first win of the match, stopping Nick Martin 2:51 into their 126-pound matchup, shaving Rosewood's lead to 12-6.
DIllon Pace snapped a three-bout winning streak by the Eagles, when he completed an unbeaten night with a pin of Cameron Melt in 2:34, giving Melt his second loss of the season and slicing Rosewood's margin to 26-12.
Tomljenovich followed with a stellar effort in his 160-pound tussle with Caleb Smith, only to suffer a heart-breaking pinfall loss in overtime.
Tomljenovich scored an escape early in the second period to take a 1-0 lead, which he held until the final second of the third period, when Smith pulled free for an escape to send the match into an extra period.
Smith quickly scored what would be the winning takedown, taking Tomljenovich to his back, and securing the pin at 6:43 for a 32-12 Eagles advantage.
That pin set off a string of five consecutive Rosewood wins, including the three upper weight forfeits to put the meet away.