11/17/06 — Falcon Invitational V: Aycock eager to defend title for another year

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Falcon Invitational V: Aycock eager to defend title for another year

By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on November 17, 2006 1:47 PM

PIKEVILLE -- Charles B. Aycock's wrestling team anxiously awaits its annual season-opening Falcon Invitational on Saturday. And the Golden Falcons -- once again -- will carry the bullseye between their wings.

Since the tournament's inception in 2002, no one has been able to wrestle the team championship from the Golden Falcons' talons. Opposing teams will be hard-pressed to accomplish the task this weekend. C.B. Aycock returns eight starters and 28 lettermen off last year's squad.

The Golden Falcons are led by six seniors, including state placers Ngu Tran (119/125 pounds), Bryant Lancaster (145) and Ronald Lynn (135). Tran placed second overall in the 2006 N.C. High School Athletic Association Individual Championships. Lancaster and Lynn ended up fourth and fifth, respectively.

"We're looking to a very-experienced senior class to carry a lot of the burden for any early success we have until we can get our younger guys up to speed," said C.B. Aycock head coach Kevin Smith, who begins his ninth season with a 123-20-1 career record.

"We are young in a couple of the lower weights, but we have some talented kids in these spots that should improve exponentionally as the year progresses."

The Invitational's fifth installment includes seven teams that qualified for last season's NCHSAA dual-team playoffs -- C.B. Aycock, Eastern Wayne, Southern Wayne, Rosewood, J.H. Rose, Tarboro High and Wilson Fike. Knightdale, SouthWest Edgecombe, Rocky Mount, Princeton, Manteo, South Central and D.H. Conley comprise the remainder of the 14-team Invitational field.

First-round matches begin approximately at 9 a.m. and day-long admission is $5. The championship round is tentatively scheduled to start between 5 and 6 p.m.