02/02/05 — Golden Falcons continue to soar in postseason wrestling

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Golden Falcons continue to soar in postseason wrestling

By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on February 2, 2005 1:57 PM

PIKEVILLE - Coming off an impressive outing in its season-ending conference tournament, the Charles B. Aycock wrestling team looked a little sluggish Tuesday evening against Wilson Hunt.

But once the Golden Falcons spread their wings, no one could ground them in the N.C. High School Athletic Association Class 3-A dual-team playoffs. Aycock trounced Hunt 52-16 and followed it with a 60-18 romp against county rival Eastern Wayne.

The Golden Falcons (15-1) advanced to the eastern semifinals for the third consecutive season and oppose nemesis West Carteret on Thursday. Eden Morehead and Hillsborough Orange will also participate in the four-team regional at an undetermined site.

"We got done tonight what we needed to get done," Aycock coach Kevin Smith said. "We got through both matches healthy, without any injury. We wrestled well in both matches.

"I was pretty happy with our intensity. I felt like we came out a little slow against Hunt and it took us a couple of matches to get our steam going. We can't have that Thursday."

Heavyweight Dustin Gurley started the Hunt match with a 9-0 decision against the Warriors' Tripp Harrell. Drake Gurley followed with a two-point decision at 103 pounds. Derek Lancaster (112 pounds) and Ngu Tran (119) dominated their opponents by major decision and technical fall, respectively.

Aycock led 16-0.

The Warriors' Chandler Jackson stopped the momentum with a 13-3 victory against David Rose. But Hunt, the Big Eight North champion, wouldn't score again until receiving a forfeit at 160 pounds.

Bryant Lancaster's two-point decision started a 24-0 run. Josh Overton (130), Randy Meisenhelder (145) and Tim Harrison (152) each recorded a pin, while Ronald Lynn prevailed 5-2 against Patric Coleman in their 140-pound bout.

Senior John Robertson joined the program's Century Club (100 wins) with a first-period pin against Walker Holt.

"I was very glad to see that," Smith said of Roberson's milestone. "He's our second kid to get their 100th win this year and we've got another one (Meisenhelder) knocking on the door."

The teams traded forfeits to end the match.

Meanwhile, Eastern Wayne (17-7) had no trouble against a short-handed Hertford County squad. The Warriors spent just 6 minutes and 11 seconds in actual match time to hand the Bears a 72-6 loss.

Eastern Wayne won all six contested matches by fall.

"It went about like I expected," Warriors coach Mike Brown said. "I knew were going to have an easy match against the first team because they're young, and they got (to the playoffs) by the process of being the only team in their conference.

"Aycock went like I expected, too. I had five starters sitting in practice injured Monday and he (Smith) didn't want to take a chance of getting his starters hurt."

The Golden Falcons eliminated an Eastern Carolina Conference opponent from the playoffs for third straight season. Brown and Smith agreed to match up freshman Chris Tesar and Aycock veteran Derek Lancaster at 112 pounds, and neither wrestler disappointed the fans in attendance.

Tesar recorded the initial takedown and Lancaster got a late first-period reversal for a 2-2 tie. Tesar, again, got the upper hand in the second period with an escape and takedown, but then made his one critical mistake.

Lancaster scored a reversal and nearfall to take control of the match. He eventually won 9-7.

"Tesar wrestled him well," Brown said. "He made a mistake and let Derek get a five-point move on him, and it cost him the match."

Aycock won all seven contested matches, including five by pin.

"We're happy with the final scores and we're happy with what we did, but we realize Thursday is where we have to be the most focused and most intense," said Smith. "What we've got to do is get a little sharper on our feet and do a better job of setting up our shots. We're taking too many shots that are too far away.

"I think we can still get a little better on bottom."

West Carteret has eliminated C.B. Aycock from the dual-team playoffs each of the past two seasons. The Patriots have won five of the six meetings, including five straight.

"We've been talking about getting out of our cage," Smith said. "We've put ourselves in a cage the past couple of years and lost a couple of heartbreakers in the third round. This team needs to break out of this cage and they need to realize just how good they are.

"The only way they're going to break out of that cage is to win Thursday."

Notes: Joey Burridge pinned his Hertford County opponent in 11 seconds, giving him the fastest pin for the Warriors this season. Siblings David and Timmy Brown shared the mark of 12 seconds before Burridge's pin. ... Eastern Wayne is 1-2 all-time in two dual-team playoff appearances. ... Hunt is now 0-3 in its last three trips to Pikeville after falling in the eastern semifinals to Eden Morehead in 2003 and '04.