CBA wins ECC mat tourney
By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on February 2, 2004 2:01 PM
Charles B. Aycock's 48-point advantage against West Carteret didn't seem in jeopardy when the consolation finals and championship round began Saturday afternoon in the 2004 Class 3-A Eastern Carolina Conference wrestling championships.
The Golden Falcons placed all 14 wrestlers -- 11 in the championship matches and three in the consolation matches. Head coach Kevin Smith sat quietly as each outcome factored into the overall score, leaving some doubts as to whether his team held a safe lead.
The deficit started falling like the stock market in the lower-weight matches. Aycock finished 2-4 in head-to-head bouts against West Carteret and 2-3 in contests against other schools.
Randy Meisenhelder stopped what could have been an impending collapse with a second-period pin against Eastern Wayne's Brian Lincoln in the 145-pound consolation final. Teammates Dustin Gurley, John Robertson and Turner Wood followed up with victories as C.B. Aycock secured its first-ever ECC tournament title in the league's three-year history.
The Golden Falcons amassed a tournament-record 217.5 points and easily dethroned two-time champ West Carteret, which finished with 181. Southern Wayne claimed third with 133.5 points, followed by South Central (81), Washington (79), Eastern Wayne (50) and West Craven (39).
"This was a big tournament for us," Smith said. "This team's focus ever since losing to West Carteret early in the season was getting this opportunity to get a second shot at them.
"I was a little concerned about our lack of practice due to the weather going into the tournament, but it did not seem to be an issue with the kids. Everyone wrestled well today."
Aycock set a school and ECC record with the most medals won in a single tournament -- 13. The Golden Falcons' run to the tournament title was remarkable since it didn't wrestle a single match in the quarterfinal round.
Wood earned his third ECC tournament title. Robertson picked up his second ECC crown, while Derek Lancaster (103 pounds) and Greg Coudriet (119) each earned their first individual conference championships.
The league coaches voted Coudriet, the top seed at 119, as the ECC's wrestler of the year. Coudriet finished unbeaten in eight league matches and boosted his overall record to 33-6.
"I am so proud of Greg this year," Smith said. "This young man made a decision last year after regionals that he was going to make the necessary sacrifices to become a great wrestler.
"Greg spent nearly all of his summer at camps in preparation for this season. I am very happy to see his hard work pay off."
Those four "horses" helped the Golden Falcons rack up 180-plus points and build a 48-point lead heading into the last two rounds. All four recorded either a first- or second-period pin in the championship finals, which kept the Patriots from pulling off a stunning comeback.
Aycock's lead dwindled to 21 points once the Patriots' Jake Anfinson scored a 15-1 major decision against Tim Harrison. The Golden Falcons went 3-1 in their next four matches to secure the win.
Jackson Massey (125), Luan Tran (130), Lynn (135), Blake Brockmeyer (140), Harrison (151) and Lacardra Mitchell (215) each took home second-place honors. Massey shocked two-time ECC champion Adam Hughes of West Craven in the semifinals.
"Our strength all year has been consistency from top to bottom," Smith said. "Thirteen medals this weekend is a great achievement for my younger kids who have been playing catch-up with upperclassmen from other teams all year.
"We had a lot of young kids make it into the finals, and come up a little short. But in nearly every case, they wrestled better against an opponent they lost to earlier in the season."
Eastern Wayne's Tyler Sasser, the county's lone unbeaten grappler, emerged the 160-pound champion. Sasser (22-0) pinned West Craven's Bryan Small in 58 seconds and then shut out Aycock's Will Medus 6-0 in the final round.
Sasser gained his first-ever ECC title and became just the third Warrior to earn a gold medal in the tournament's short existence.
The Warriors put five wrestlers into the final two rounds. Timmy Brown (135), Eric Daughtry (140), Lincoln (145) and Travis Turner (189) each ended up fourth in their respective weight classes.
Southern Wayne's Kevin Hash pulled off a semifinal-round upset against Meisenhelder. But Hash, a 145-pounder, couldn't complete his improbable title run. The Patriots' Frankie Dennis dominated Hash from start to finish in 19-6 major decision.
"Meisenhelder beat Kevin easily in the dual match, but he's come a long way," Saints coach David Lee said. "I was real pleased with the effort of our veterans and our young kids."
The Saints took home nine medals and had 10 wrestlers to place among the top four. Thomas Mosshammer grabbed his first-ever ECC title at 130 pounds. Hash, Jonathan McKinney (112) and heavyweight Paul Robinson, who has 111 career victories, each finished second.
Robinson, the No. 1 seed, wrestled a great match against Washington's Jock Moore. The two staged a memorable championship that ended when Moore put Robinson in a headlock and flipped him onto his back near the Washington coaching area.
Moore, whose only ECC loss occurred against Robinson, received the pin and his second conference title in three years.
"I was not disappointed in Paul's aggressive nature, which is how he normally wrestles," Lee said. "He didn't wait to attack. If he could have ducked that headlock and taken him down, that would have put him the driver's seat."
Josh Richards (103), Victor Darden (135), Mastafa Springston (140), Stephen Witt (171) and Reggie Faire (189) each finished third overall. The Saints have earned 23 medals in three ECC tournaments.
Aycock (10-1) and Southern Wayne (13-8) return to action Tuesday in the N.C. High School Athletic Association dual-team playoffs. The Golden Falcons face off against White Oak, while the Saints meet Manteo.
The site has not been determined.
2004 Class 3-A
Eastern Carolina Conference
(at Eastern Wayne HS)
1. C.B. Aycock (CBA) 217.5; 2. West Carteret (WCt) 181; 3. Southern Wayne (SW) 133.5; 4. South Central (SC) 81; 5. Washington (Was) 79; 6. Eastern Wayne (EW) 50; 7. West Craven (WCr) 39.
103 -- Derek Lancaster (CBA) wbf Timmy Cowan (SC), 1:36; 112 -- Ty Roach (WCt) dec. Jonathan McKinney (SW), 8-0; 119 -- Greg Coudriet (CBA) wbf Kyle White (WCt), 1:18; 125 -- Victor Hojilla (WCt) wbf Jackson Massey (CBA), 3:33; 130 -- Thomas Mosshammer (SW) dec. Luan Tran (CBA), 3-0; 135 -- Travis Varner (WCt) maj. dec. Ronald Lynn (CBA), 16-4; 140 -- Eddo Hojilla (WCt) dec. Blake Brockmeyer, 5-1; 145 -- Frankie Dennis (WCt) maj. dec. Kevin Hash (SW), 19-6; 152 -- Jake Anfinson (WCt) maj. dec. Tim Harrison (CBA), 15-1; 160 -- Tyler Sasser (EW) dec. Will Medus (CBA), 6-0; 171 -- John Robertson (CBA) wbf Patrick O'Reilly (WCt), 3:13; 189 -- Turner Wood (CBA) wbf Leo Noonan (SC), 1:16; 215 -- Gerald Lawrence (Was) wbf Lacardra Mitchell (CBA), 2:31; Hwt -- Jock Moore (Was) wbf Paul Robinson (SW), 2:46.
103 -- Josh Richards (SW) tech fall Jacob Corey (Was), 16-0; 112 -- Robbie Hufford (SC) wbf David Rose (CBA), 2:43; 119 -- Josh Sweezy (SC) wbf Wells Jarvis (Was), 1:59; 125 -- Adam Hughes (WC) wbf Eric Futrell (SW), 0:39; 130 -- Sean Perryman (WCt) tech fall Brad Bouquio (Was), 16-0; 135 -- Victor Darden (SW) maj. dec. Timmy Brown (EW), 20-6; 140 -- Mastafa Springston (SW) wbf Eric Daughtry (EW), 1:40; 145 -- Randy Meisenhelder (CBA) wbf Brian Lincoln (EW), 3:16; 152 -- David Harris (SC) wbf Justin Bremer (WCr), 2:47; 160 -- Bryan Small (WCr) wbf Lee Watkins (Was), 1:51; 171 -- Stephen Witt (SW) dec. Ernest Fordham (Was), 7-0; 189 -- Reggie Faire (SW) dec. Travis Turner (EW), 13-10; 215 -- Aaron Joyner (SC) dec. Billy O'Neal (WCt), 7-3; Hwt -- Dustin Gurley (CBA) dec. Kenny Matthews (WCt), 3-2 OT.
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