ST. PARIS – Graham dominated on Wednesday during the first two rounds of the Division II regional team state duals tournament. The Falcons beat St. Mary’s, 80-0, and Bellefontaine, 76-0, to earn a place in the regional semifinals next week.
“This is postseason. We’re real happy. The state duals is really good for the team to come together,” GHS Coach Jeff Jordan said. “That dual format is exciting and each week it gets a little tougher and tougher until we get down to St. John (Arena, where the state tournament takes place).”
The Falcons first faced St. Mary’s, which knocked out Urbana, 41-25. The elation was short-lived, as Graham got major decisions from Hunter Hyden (170 pounds) and Gage Braun (182) and pins or forfeits at every other class.
Bellefontaine didn’t fare much better, despite facing a Falcons’ squad that has had to shuffle wrestlers around due to injury.
“We just can’t get healthy. Last week, we had St. Ed’s, and Rocky (Jordan) had an emergency appendectomy and Mitch Moore broke his thumb, and we’ve got two state champs out. We’ve not had our full lineup in yet, and I’m hoping – I better knock on wood – that we’re going to have them back by the sectional. That’s all I want.”
Tanner Jordan (106), Jordan Crace (120), Jeffrey Thomas (132), Isaiah Stickley (138), JD Stickley (145) and Ryan Thomas (160) all won via pin. Jeffrey Thomas pinned his man in seven seconds.
Joey Sanchez (152), Braun (182), Kavan Sarver (195) and Johnny Shafer (220) each earned points via forfeit. Dawson Show (113) and Andrew Shaffer (128) got technical fall victories, while Hyden (170) and Khrizdon VanHoose (285) won via decision.
MECHANICSBURG – The Indians showed they’re a contender for a Division III team state title on Wednesday, taking the first step back to the big stage in the team duals tournament with a 66-9 victory over Northwestern and a 72-6 win over Covington.
Against Northwestern, Mechanicsburg got decisions from Corey Bogan (160) and Dustin Knapp (182). Everyone else won by pin or forfeit.
Things got even more serious against Covington. The Buccaneers beat North Union, 50-24.
But Mechanicsburg then dismantled Covington.
Tyler Wetzel (132), Colt Yinger (152), Corey Bogan (160), Dylan Hartman (220) and Dylan Hartley (285) each won via pin.
David Maxwell (113), Isaac Bryant (126), Tanner Smith (145), Kaleb Romero (170) and Alex Walton (195) got points via forfeit.
Ben Stroud (120) got a technical fall victory, Dustin Knapp (182) won a major decision and Alex Rhine (138) won a decision.
The Indians advance to the regional semifinals next week.
Reach Justin Miller at 652-1331 (ext. 1776) or on Twitter @UDC_Miller.