By Jerry Holsworth - email@example.com
WINCHESTER - James Wood and Skyline both had a lot to be happy about after Wednesday's quad wrestling meet with West Virginia schools Martinsburg and Hedgesville.
The Colonels had five wrestlers who won all three of their matches, but it was the two losses by Hawks heavyweight Alan Kroh that had everyone scratching their heads.
"I thought that we really did a great job tonight," Skyline coach Matt Keel said. "We wrestled without our 160-pounder, Levi Huston, and we were still able to give Wood a run for their money."
Kroh, who faced two of the top wrestlers in his division in both Virginia and West Virginia, took both of them to overtime before falling.
Kroh's first match was against the Colonels' Austin Woodall, who is ranked first in the state in the heavyweight division. The Skyline heavyweight forced Woodall to go three overtimes before he was able to prevail 10-8 over Kroh. James Wood defeated the Hawks in their match, 37-33.
"Because he's currently ranked number one in the state, there's a lot expected of him," Colonels coach Greg Walker said of Woodall. "I think that he knows what he did wrong in that match, and he certainly came back strong in his next two matches."
In his final match of the night, Kroh took on 2009 West Virginia state qualifier Travis Wheat of Hedgesville and forced him into overtime before falling on penalty points.
"Kroh finished fifth in the district last year," Keel said. "He went up against two of the top wrestlers around, and held his own with both of them. He's come a long way since last year."
Although Skyline lost to both the Colonels and Hedgesville (48-23), the Hawks defeated Martinsburg 39-38.
Wood had an even more impressive performance, defeating Martinsburg 48-36 and just missing a third team victory, losing to Hedgesville 39-35.
Besides Woodall, who won his other two matches by pin, the Colonels got strong performances from Mark Bean (189 pounds), Seth Fauver (171), Cory Schrock (160) and Gage Swartz (119).
All four had sweeps for the night, winning all three of their matches.
"Mark lost to the Hedgesville kid [Stephen Miele] by four points earlier this year and was able to take him 9-7 tonight," Walker said. "That shows an awful lot of improvement. Seth had had a rough four years for us, but his hard work is finally beginning to pay off.
"Cory is one of our team leaders, and he's really come through for us this year. Gage works all year long on wrestling, and it shows. He one of our most intense kids and is having a great year."
Taylor Swartz nearly had a sweep for the Colonels, winning his first two matches against Skyline and Hedgesville before falling to Martinsburg's Andy Stotler by pin (59 seconds).
Hedgesville defeated Martinsburg in its match, 51-24.