01/06/12 — Aycock grapplers seek crown

View Archive

Aycock grapplers seek crown

By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on January 6, 2012 1:48 PM

PIKEVILLE -- Time to start fresh.

After posting 21 dual-team victories and a pair of top-five finishes in two individual tournaments, Charles B. Aycock's grapplers start 2012 in quest of a long-awaited title -- the Falcon Invitational crown.

The Golden Falcons last won the title in 2007.

"We have had perhaps the best start in school history," said Aycock head coach Marc Peck. "The Falcon Invitational will let us know how we stack up to some of the region's best individually. We would like to place in at least eight of the 14 weight classes."

Opening-round matches begin at 9:15 a.m. in the 15-team, double-elimination event. Admission is $10.

D.H. Conley, led by senior 160-pounder Tre Crandall, is back to defend its team championship. Crandall is 27-0 this season. Also in the field are former Falcon champion South Central, and perennial powers Washington and North Pitt.

Eight Golden Falcon grapplers have posted 20-plus individual wins this season -- Jordan Bailey, Jorge Flores, Zack Howard, Charlie Mills, Khaleil Owens, Daniel Romo, David Romo and Preston Tucker. The group has combined for 125 of the team's 162 pins this season, including a team-leading 22 by junior middleweight Daniel Romo.

Howard leads the team with 28 victories. Owens and Tucker have 27 apiece.

"We have gotten back four of five starters and look to peak as we start the second half of our season," said Peck.

Eastern Wayne, led by senior Austin Helm, placed fifth as a team last season. The Warriors will also put sophomore 182-pounder Jamel Barrett (25-6) and sophomore 160-pounder Quadrick Williams (26-6) on the mat.