Prep wrestling -- W. Carteret rallies, clinches ECC match
By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on December 14, 2004 1:58 PM
PIKEVILLE -- Wrestling archrivals Charles B. Aycock and West Carteret grappled for nearly two hours Monday evening and once again the two teams staged another spine-tingling classic.
The Golden Falcons appeared poised to snap a four-match skid, including three straight losses on their home mat, against the Patriots. But West Carteret seized the final three bouts en route to a come-from-behind, 33-29 victory in the Class 3-A Eastern Carolina Conference contest.
The Patriots (8-1) remained unbeaten in three league outings and lead the current series against the Golden Falcons 5-1. Aycock dipped to 1-1 overall and 1-1 in the ECC.
"When their backs were to the wall, they found a way to win matches and that's the sign of a very good team," Aycock coach Kevin Smith said of the Patriots. "It's where we've got to get. Our kids have got to understand to win big matches you have to do super-extraordinary things. We just didn't get those extraordinary performances tonight like we needed."
The intense, emotion-filled battle featured seven lead changes. Aycock's biggest advantage was eight points at 29-21, while the Patriots never led by more than three until the final margin.
Trailing 21-20, Golden Falcon heavyweight Dustin Gurley recorded the initial takedown and two nearfall points in the opening period. The Patriots' Kenny Matthews avoided the pin and nearly turned the tables on Gurley in the second period.
However, Gurley worked through and survived without yielding a point. Matthews gained a penalty point in the third, but Gurley hung on for the 4-1 win.
Drake Gurley extended the Golden Falcons' lead to 29-21 with a first-period pin against Jason Shenk.
Then came the turning point.
Aycock's Derek Lancaster dominated the early portion of his match against 112-pounder Paul D'Elia, who was involved in a car accident earlier this month. Lancaster scored two second-period reversals and led 6-2 after four minutes of action.
D'Elia collected four straight points including a match-tying takedown to force overtime. Neither wrestler could score in the first overtime as Lancaster attempted a single-leg takedown, while D'Elia opted for the double-leg takedown. They battled to a stalemate.
Lancaster took the bottom position to start the 30-second overtime and on the whistle D'Elia kept a tight grip on Lancaster's ankle. Lancaster never managed to get to his feet and D'Elia grabbed the riding time point.
"That was a match that we really needed to win," Smith said. "To go into double overtime is tough. I don't fault my kid and I certainly don't fault his kid. It was a tough match that just didn't go our way."
West Carteret's Hunter Heverly gained control of Ngu Tran in the third period and claimed an 11-4 win. That closed the Golden Falcons' gap to 29-27.
"(D'Elia) was in a car wreck 11 days ago and they said in 10 days he could come back to wrestle. This is the 11th day," West Carteret coach Dan Varner said. "He's cold and he definitely stepped up.
"We thought we could get a pin at 19. He needs to get out of his comfort zone a little bit and I think he'll get more pins. We really thought we would get one there."
Gazing at the scoreboard with his team lined up near the exit toward their locker room, Smith nodded toward Greg Coudriet. The senior, who missed two weeks because of a knee injury, checked in and received a loud approval from the Aycock faithful.
The Patriots' Kyle White never flinched.
The two worked each other for the initial takedown, which Coudriet finally got in the closing seconds of the first period. Coudriet chose bottom to start the second period and White eventually nabbed the biggest win of his career as time expired.
Varner called it a "funky move."
"We teach about getting your position better one little step at a time and darned if he didn't do it," a grinning Varner said. "He got the arm, stretched it and hooked it with his leg. He worked the head and when (Coudriet) came around, he hooked that funny cradle and there was no way that Greg couldn't have been pinned the way he had him.
"What a way to end the match."
Aycock received wins from Bryant Lancaster (130 pounds), Ronald Lynn (140), Randy Meisenhelder (145), John Robertson (171) and Turner Wood (189). Lancaster triumphed in overtime, while Wood tallied the final three points in a 14-11 decision against Patrick O'Reilly.
The Golden Falcons return to action this weekend in the two-day WRAL Invitational at Athens Drive in Raleigh. They will participate in the Cary News Invitational, another two-day tournament, later next week.
"In several matches, we were this close," Smith said with his fingers nearly touching each other. "The kids have to find a way to take the next step up. We don't want to be a second-place team.
"We're going to go back into the room tomorrow (today) and re-focus on the rest of our season. We're going to clean some things up."
West Carteret 33
C.B. Aycock 29
130 -- Bryant Lancaster (CBA) dec. Brennan Wright, 4-2 (OT); 135 -- Victor Hojilla (WC) wbf Josh Overton, 1:37.4; 140 -- Ronald Lynn (CBA) maj. dec. Christian Topping, 11-2; 145 -- Randy Meisenhelder (CBA) wbf Spencer Glasgow, 2:43; 152 -- Frankie Dennis (WC) wbf Tim Harrison, 1:04.1; 160 -- Jake Anfinson (WC) dec. Jason Steed, 5-2; 171 -- John Robertson (CBA) maj. dec. Ryan Offenberger, 11-2; 189 -- Turner Wood (CBA) dec. Patrick O'Reilly, 14-11; 215 -- Billy O'Neal (WC) wbf Charles Covar, 2:35; Hwt -- Dustin Gurley (CBA) dec. Kenny Matthews, 4-1; 103 -- Drake Gurley (CBA) wbf Jason Shenk, 1:24.9; 112 -- Paul D'Elia (WC) dec. Derek Lancaster, 7-6 (2 OT); 119 -- Hunter Heverly (WC) dec. Ngu Tran, 11-4; 125 -- Kyle White (WC) wbf Greg Coudriet, 4:00.
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