12/06/04 — CBA wins tourney at Green Hope

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CBA wins tourney at Green Hope

By News-Argus Staff
Published in Sports on December 6, 2004 1:56 PM

MORRISVILLE -- Unsung heroes.

Before too long, it might be a tiresome mantra for the Charles B. Aycock wrestling team. But until the idea wears off, the Golden Falcons plan to use it as their calling card during the early stages of the season.

A quartet of grapplers claimed gold medals as the Golden Falcons amassed 210 points and captured the Matthews-Griffith Invitational trophy Saturday afternoon at Green Hope. The host Falcons finished second with 203.5 points, followed by Leesville Road (162.5), Raleigh Millbrook (162.5) and Raleigh Broughton (128.5).

Once again, Aycock failed to enter its entire starting lineup for the 14-team tournament.

"Our new, less-experienced wrestlers were really once again a key to our winning this tournament," Golden Falcons coach Kevin Smith said.

Smith pointed out the efforts of 130-pounder Bryant Lancaster and 103-pounder Drake Gurley. Lancaster upset a Green Hope wrestler, a No. 1 seed, in overtime to reach the championship round. Gurley, a first-year wrestler, worked his way through the consolation bracket and returned home with the bronze.

"That is like getting double the points," Smith said of Lancaster. " ... it not only gave us much-needed team points, but took them away from the team that threated to overtake our lead. Drake is really having to learn the sport as he goes. He gets better every week."

Randy Meisenhelder (145 pounds), Tim Harrison (152), John Robertson (171) and Turner Wood (189) each prevailed in their prospective weight classes. Meisenhelder picked up his second individual championship of the season, while it was the first for Harrison, Robertson and Wood. Wood, who helped the Aycock football team record its best year in nearly two decades, competed in his first tournament of the season.

Derek Lancaster took third at 103 pounds. Jason Steed (160) and heavyweight Dustin Gurley each settled for fourth place in their respective weight classes.

The day-long invitational featured six teams which advanced to the N.C. High School Athletic Association dual-team playoffs last season on either the Class 2-A, 3-A or 4-A level. Smith also said he couldn't have asked for a higher degree of competition.

"The coaching staff and I wanted to see some new faces," Smith said. "We have been going to the same tournaments and seeing the same faces for several years now. When we got an opportunity to go to a tough tournament like this one and wrestle head-to-head against a number of 4-A and western regional teams, we jumped at the opportunity."

Smith admitted his wrestlers learned a few lessons.

"We made plenty of mistakes," he said. "Great competition exposes sloppy techniques. We have been getting away with sloppy technique a little this year, but not this weekend. It was a wake-up call for our wrestlers. They know we still have plenty of work to do."

C.B. Aycock opens the dual-team portion of its schedule Tuesday at Washington. The Golden Falcons are the reigning Eastern Carolina 3-A Conference tournament champions.