Golden Falcons, Eagles compete at Jolly Roger Duals
By Rudy Coggins
Published in Sports on January 23, 2012 1:46 PM
CLAYTON -- Redemption with an extra bonus.
County wrestling rivals Charles B. Aycock and Rosewood faced perhaps their sternest competition of the season Saturday, but carved out a combined -- and surprising -- seven dual-team wins during the inaugural Jolly Roger Duals hosted by Cleveland High School.
The Golden Falcons logged a 3-2 worksheet in what third-year head coach Marc Peck described as the "black-and-blue" pool. His team defeated Swansboro, Wilson Hunt, Corinth-Holders and lost to eventual tournament champ West Johnston.
Aycock avenged a pair of losses to Eastern Carolina 3-A Conference foe Cleveland in the third-place match, and set a single-season school record for dual-team victories with 30.
"Our success was based on a total team effort with 22 of 25 wrestlers on the roster taking the mat at some point in the day," said Peck. "Our young men fought through minor injuries and pain all day, without complaint, they went out and gave it their all.
"Coach (Mark) Bass and I count it a real privilege to coach this group -- perhaps one of the most-dedicated we have ever had."
Senior David Romo (126 pounds), Daniel Romo (132) and 160-pounder Khaleil Owens each concluded the day 5-0. David Romo (35-4 overall) claimed an 8-0 decision over Hunt's Kenan Watson, and edged Cleveland's Cameron Brewer, 3-2, with a last-second turn as time expired.
Owens sealed the Golden Falcons' victory over Swansboro. Jordan Bailey (33-14) collected key points against Corinth-Holders and exacted revenge against Cleveland's Delany Ahola with a pin.
Freshman Zack Howard reached the 40-win plateau and earned the match-clinching points with a pin over Cleveland's Adam Collins.
Rosewood (33-11 overall) emerged runner-up to West Johnston in the championship match, and fell one win shy of tying the program's single-season, dual-team victory mark of 34 set one year ago. The Eagles turned back North Pitt, Knightdale, North Johnston and Cleveland in pool play.
"(We) had a very good day," said Eagles' head coach Bill Edmundson. "Initially, we were concerned because five of the seven teams that have beaten us this year were at the tournament and three of those teams were in our pool.
"It was a great feeling for the team to redeem themselves from three previous losses. We lost a tough match to West Johnston, but I am very proud of the effort we had on the day."
West Johnston emerged victorious in nine of 13 contested individual matches and pinned eight opponents.
Senior captain Taylor McGill improved to a sparking 44-1 overall, while junior Nick Quillen remained unbeaten in 42 outings this season. Angel Jaramillo (113 pounds) and Quadre Ayers (152) have recorded 37 individual wins apiece.
Aycock (30-5) returns home for a senior night celebration Wednesday against ECC foe Triton. Match time is 7 p.m. Rosewood will honor its seniors the same evening during a tri-meet against Wilson Fike and Southern Nash.