WILMINGTON — A young Wilmington wrestling squad made its season-debut Wednesday night against an old league foe.
In a back-and-forth dual with former South Central Ohio League rival Washington, the Blue Lions surged ahead at the end for a 38-30 victory.
WHS head coach Kelly Tolliver said Wednesday’s match is part of the learning process for the young Hurricane squad.
“I think we’ve got a lot of work to do,” Tolliver said. “We’ve got a lot of first-year wrestlers that haven’t had enough mat time yet. In another couple of months, I think we’ll be where we need to be.”
After giving up six points thanks to a forfeit at 106, Wilmington eventually took the lead 18-17 thanks to back-to-back pins by Dominic Davidson and Sam Eastes at 138 and 145, respectively.
Washington, which opened the season last weekend in Franklin, regained the lead thanks to wins by William Baughn and Kalub Wilkerson. Baughn was in the closest bout of the night, as he edged Wilmington’s Trent Holiday 9-8 at 152 pounds.
Wilmington retook the lead 30-26 thanks to two straight pins by Kile Holland and Canon Ford, but the Blue Lions won the final three bouts to take the dual.
“It’s always great with Court House,” Tolliver said. “That’s why we picked them for the first dual of the year. We’re always close with those guys. They have a good coaching staff. We all get along really well together.”
The first two hours of the night were an opportunity for Washington Court House and Wilmington youth and middle school wrestlers to take the mat and show off their skills.
Many youth competitions involve multi-mat setups which rarely allow athletes to have the spotlight to themselves. With just one mat setup, all wrestlers had center stage.
“This is the third year we’ve done it together,” Tolliver said. “We’re trying, on purpose, to give those kids the spotlight. In a regular kids tournament, there are eight or nine of them wrestling at once. Here they have the mat all to themselves with the crowd watching them.
“It’s a big deal to them. I think it helps grow the sport a little bit.”
Wednesday, Dec. 5, 2018
@ Wilmington Middle School Gymnasium
Washington 38, Wilmington 30
106: Bryce Warner (WCH) by forfeit
113: Double Forfeit
120: Branton Dawes (WCH) tech falled Donovan Butler (W) 20-2
126: Lee Lynch (W) pin Austin Chamberlain (WCH) 1:05
132: Collin George (WCH) pin Blake Ramsey (W) 1:00
138: Dominic Davidson (W) pin Devin Slage (WCH) 0:19
145: Sam Eastes (W) pin Jordan Rohrer (WCH) 1:53
152: William Baughn (WCH) dec. Trent Holiday (W) 9-8
160: Kalub Wilkerson (WCH) pin Alex Hudson (W) 2:45
170: Kile Holland (W) pin Jared Kuhn (WCH) 0:50
182: Canon Ford (W) pin Dylan Moore (WCH) 1:02
195: Collier Brown (WCH) dec. Truestin Barnes (W) 5-3
220: Jeremy Sluder (WCH) pin Jayden Doyle (W) 1:11
285: Mason Mustain (WCH) dec. Elijah Rockhold (W) 5-1
Matt Sexton covers high school sports for the News Journal. Follow him on Twitter @MattSextonPxP.