11/29/04 — Warriors seventh, Eagles ninth at Turkey Invitational

View Archive

Warriors seventh, Eagles ninth at Turkey Invitational

By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on November 29, 2004 1:55 PM

WILSON — The out-spoken son of a military dad, Eastern Wayne freshman Chris Tesar couldn’t help but feel a little cocky during Saturday’s 2nd annual Turkey Invitational at Hunt High School.

Seeded No. 2 at 103 pounds, Tesar needed just 98 seconds to pin two opponents and secure a spot in the championship match. Fueled by a disappointing second-place finish a week ago at the Falcon Invitational, Tesar refused to leave without the gold medal.

Tesar scored the initial takedown against Smithfield-Selma sophomore Will Eatmon in the title bout. Eatmon spent most of the time on the mat and continually frustrated Tesar, who couldn’t get any combination of moves to work.

“I just kept him down on his back,” Tesar said. “He kept popping up, so I had to bring him down. I’d just sit there and I’d try to get the double arm-bar, and he’d just sit there.

“He had his arms in and was just stalling.”

The two grapplers battled through a scoreless second period and Tesar had choice of either top or bottom to start the third. He chose bottom and immediately collected a reversal for a 4-0 advantage.

Eatmon, as he did throughout the first and second periods, sprawled on the mat. The referee finally hit Eatmon with a stalling call midway through the period. But by then, both wrestlers had spent their energy.

Tesar prevailed 4-0 en route to his sixth consecutive victory.

“It was pretty easy most of the day until you get to a challenging match,” Tesar said. “It changes your mindset a lot. I was getting a little cocky, a little above myself, so I sat down and just changed my thinking.

“I worked hard all day.”

Teammate Travis Turner earned his second gold medal of the season and remained unbeaten in nine matches. The 171-pounder recorded a pinfall in the quarterfinals and edged D.H. Conley’s Sam Falgout 3-1 in the semifinals.

Turner, seeded No. 1, collected a 17-2 technical fall against Tarboro’s Peter Heffley in the finals. Heffley entered as the No. 2 seed.

Brown endured a tough 8-7 semifinal-round loss to Clayton’s Jon Waters, but worked his way through the consolation bracket. The senior 189-pounder, named the Most Outstanding Wrestler in the Falcon Invitational, turned back Smithfield-Selma’s Jordan Carey 6-2 in the bronze-medal match.

Chris Martin posted a 3-1 record and took third at 135 pounds. He pinned Rosewood’s Casey Elrod in the consolation semifinals, and outlasted Greensboro Page’s Tutu Adefalalu 3-2 for the bronze medal.

Eastern Wayne ended up seventh overall in the 14-team field with 92.5 points.

A team full of first-year juniors and seniors, Rosewood turned in its second straight ninth-place finish. The Eagles amassed 79 points and had three medalists — 130-pounder Matt Davis, 215-pounder Clayton Taylor and heavyweight Michael Sander.

Davis rebounded from a tough outing at the Falcon Invitational and earned a silver medal. He spent just 34 seconds on the mat before falling to Pasquotank’s Brandon Brickhouse, a returning state qualifier, in the final.

Taylor recorded a pair of pinfalls until suffering an 8-4 loss against top-seeded Derrick Basnight of Northeastern in the finals. It was just Taylor’s second loss in seven matches.

Sander gave up 35 pounds to Pasquotank’s Steve Young in their semifinal-round match. Young capitalized on a rare Sander mistake and pinned the Eagle heavyweight in 1 minute, 43 seconds.

“Michael wrestles aggressively and likes to throw,” veteran Eagles coach Bill Edmundson said. “Unfortunately he got caught and pinned on a high-risk throw. Michael is an intelligent wrestler who learns and adjusts from all his matches.”

Sander eventually won the bronze medal with back-to-back victories against Daniel Varela (East Wake) and Eric Sutton (Tarboro).

“All things considered, I’ll take it,” Edmundson said of his team’s overall performance. “If you look at our line-up, we are very, very young. Even tough we’re not experiencing a lot of success at these tournaments with our first-year guys, I really admire their enthusiasm and drive to become successful.

“J.D. Baker, Chris Hare, Byron Cavenaugh and Brandon Hill — all freshmen — are eager to learn and excited about the program. Casey and Robbie Hand both experienced success today and I see great things happening for all of them in the near future.”