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Rams place second in duals


By Dennis Atwood - sports@nvdaily.com

STRASBURG -- Strasburg benefited from having a trio of front-line wrestlers available on the same day for the first time this season, and all three went 5-0 to key the hosts to a second place finish with a 4-1 record in the Strasburg Duals on Saturday.

Central finished 3-2 to finish second behind Martinsburg (4-1) in Pool 2. Stonewall Jackson, in a deep rebuilding year, was 1-4 to place fourth in Pool 3.

The 12 participating schools competed in two rounds. The first round had four pools of three teams each, which were merged into three pools of four teams each in the second round, to determine the final standings.

The Rams came in behind Harrisonburg, the only team to finish 5-0 in the event, as the Blue Streaks took first in Pool 1.

Strasburg achieved six pins and two major decision wins in the match against the Blue Streaks, and Nic Campbell's last bout pin in 15 seconds of Anthony Cruz, couldn't overcome an eight-point deficit.

The Rams were short four on their roster, having to forfeit the 160, 170, 195 and 220 weight classes throughout the day.

In the 132-pound weight class, Kent Cadle earned his 100th career win in his last bout, with a decision over Broadway's Tristan Bailey, bringing the Rams to within six (33-27).
Cadle also picked up a 19-4 technical fall against Central's Tony Whetzel, a pin, and two forfeits, for his 5-0 day on the mats.

Cadle, a senior, suffered a concussion, and his only loss of the season, in a bout on Dec. 21 against Manassas Park, the school Cadle transferred from this year.

While with the Cougars, Cadle finished third in the 126-pound weight class in the 2012 state tournament, and was the 125-pound state champion in 2011.

"It felt great to get my 100th win in such a close match," Cadle said. "It's better than getting it on a scrub.

"I would like to work on my top and throwing in legs. I just tested it today, and it's pretty good, but I want to get that better."

After the Rams's Marco Gallagher pinned Broadway's Bret Hankins in 2:38 in the 138 match to tie it up, 33-33, Todd Dean (145) pinned Barndon Gill in 1:55 to put Strasburg up, 39-33.

"I knew I had to get the win, just to boost our confidence coming out with the match," Todd Dean said. "I just went in there and got it done.

"This is my second match back from a [football season] ankle injury. [Against Central's Skylar Wolf] I was gassed in the third period, but I pulled it out."

Dean had three additional pins in the meet.

In the 152-pound weight class, the last bout against Broadway, Tyler Drummond worked a 19-7 major decision over Dustin Ward, to clinch the 43-33 win for Strasburg.

Campbell, having moved up from his 113-pound state championship last year, kept his season record perfect, with a 5-0 day in the 120-pound class. He had four pins and a forfeit.

Campbell had missed several weeks with an illness.

Campbell's last matchup of the day was his toughest, as Broadway's Kyle Rocheford eluded several pin attempts, until Campbell went up 16-4, then finally got the pin at 5:42.

"I was trying to put [Rocheford] to his back, but he was tough, sat there and I couldn't really turn him until I took him feet-to-back," Campbell said. "It's good to have some longer matches. I like to put on a show for the crowd.

"I just went out there, did what I had to do, got four pins and a forfeit, to help my team a lot."

Todd's younger brother, sophomore Hunter Dean (106), also went 5-0.

At 145, Central senior Skylar Wolf (4-1) and Strasburg's Todd Dean had their first bout ever in their four years of wrestling. Dean won by decision, 10-4, but Wolf earned three pins and a forfeit against his other opponents.

Wolf came through in the clutch for the Falcons, pinning Parry McCluer's Nick Harris in 49 seconds to clinch a 42-33 team win in the fourth round, then finished out the day with a 1:18 pin over Brandon Streets of Martinsburg to put Central ahead 39-36, only to have teammate Ryan Freiwald lose by a pin to Chase Griffin as Martinsburg took a 42-39 victory.

"[Dean's] definitely a good wrestler," Wolf said. "We had never wrestled before, always being a weight class away from each other. I was kind of looking forward to it, regardless of the outcome. I knew it would be a good match.

"I'm going meet him again before the year's over, so I plan to improve on how I did against him today. I can't be disappointed [with my day]. The important stuff comes at the end of the year."

"We beat Martinsburg at Clarke County at the beginning of the season, and we just got caught in some middle weight class matches, and lost by three [42-39]," said Falcons coach Roger Barbee. "The kids wrestled hard and worked hard. I was glad to see some of the younger kids and newer kids come out strong. Josh Gum [285] got a pin, and freshman Eric Ramos [126] did well, so not all is in vain."

Stonewall Jackson picked up its only win, 42-26, over Bishop O'Connell. The Generals graduated three front-line seniors, including back-to-back state champions Lucas Ryan (285) and Ricky Tisinger (195), and had seven vacant roster spots on Saturday.

"I thought today was the best day we've had so far in the season," Rams coach Trey Kirkland said. "Giving up four forfeits made it tough. In our five matches, we gave up only five individual [bouts].

"Everyone stepped it up. When we needed a pin today, whoever was on the mat stepped up and got one. Todd [Dean], Kent [Cadle], and Nic [Campbell] have never been together in a match this season, before today. I hope we can keep it up and make a few little adjustments before the postseason."



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