Cougars win twice, Oak Ridge once at 3-team dual
By David Pimentel
El Dorado wrestling hosted a three-team dual Thursday that included Oak Ridge and Whitney. Both local squads defeated the Wildcats before the Cougars rallied to defeat the Trojans on a pin by John Kunkle in the evening’s final match.
Oak Ridge, minus its top guns, opened its 47-24 win against Whitney. Starting at the 160-pound weight class, Whitney got on the board first with pin of James Lee before the Trojans made it 29-6 with a technical decision by James Portilla (170), a pin by Bishane Sagal (182), and forfeits awarded to Patrick Irwin (195), Eugene Cheong (220), and Aidan Storlie (285).
Whitney got another pin against Kevin Belcher at 106s, before a forfeit to Trevor Cazares (113) and a 9-2 decision by Eric Tikhonov over Nakano (120) made the team score 38-12. The Wildcats then picked up two wins: a 12-6 decision over Daylin Wofford (126), and pin of Austin Scott (132).
Oak Ridge secured the team victory when Blake Persijn (138) received a forfeit bringing the team tally to 44-21. Each team picked up a decision in the final two matches, as Whitney won 3-0 over Nick Diaz (145), and Trojan John Ploke won 7-1 at 152s.
The Cougars then took the mat against Whitney. Jeremiah Romero (160) beat his opponent 18-7, before Tyler Land fell victim to a pin at 170. El Dorado’s Alex LeBaron (182) won 10-8, and Zach Brazell received a forfeit at 285 after double forfeits at 195 and 220. Willy Gadow had a 15-9 advantage when the Wildcat wrestler was forced to injury default at 106, bringing the Cougar’s lead to 19-6.
After another double forfeit, Whitney got its second win with Nakano’s 3-2 decision over Alex Ollar, who bumped up from 113s. El Dorado’s Jacob Tabatchnick (126) won a 14-7 decision but Marcus Douglas (132) was pinned to put the Wildcat’s within striking distance at 22-15. A forfeit for Nathaniel Erskine (138), a 9-4 decision for Dan Carey (145), and a pin for John Kunkle gave the Cougars a 37-15 victory.
The final dual was an inter-county battle with five lead changes. At 160 Trojan James Lee was up 3-0 in the second period before Tyler Land turned a takedown to a pin to put El Dorado up 6-0. Oak Ridge ran up a 22-5 lead behind Portilla’s 10-1 major decision over Romero, Segal’s pin of LeBaron, and forfeits to Irwin and Storlie. The Cougars answered with a run of their own as Brazell (285), Gadow (106), and first-year wrestler Ollar (113) all won by pins as El Dorado grabbed a 23-22 advantage.
The Trojans recaptured the lead after a forfeit to Tikhonov (120), and Wilson’s 11-10 decision in the ultimate tie breaker match against Tabatchnick (126) made it 31-23. The Cougars came right back when Douglas (132) and Erskine (138) were in tight matches, but both got pins in the third period putting them in the lead 35-30.
In another closely contested match, Ploke (145) put Oak Ridge within two points with a takedown in triple overtime for a 7-5 decision against Carey. In the “winner-take-all” final match of the dual, Kunkle was able to secure El Dorado’s 41-33 win with a second period pin.
Cougar Richard Silva won 8-1 over Wofford in exhibition to end the night.