By Dennis Atwood - email@example.com
WOODSTOCK -- The Randolph-Macon Academy Yellow Jackets stung the host Massanutten Military Academy Colonels often and deep, winning five of the seven contested weight classes with pins on the way to a dominant 47-12 wrestling match victory in a superbly appropriate activity for Virginia Youth Health Day on Thursday afternoon.
Illness (mostly the ongoing flu outbreak) and injuries on both squads created four mutual forfeits (113-, 120-, 126- and 132-pound classes) and caused Randolph-Macon to forfeit the 106-pound weight class, while Massanutten had no competitors for the 145 and 170 classes.
"It's one match at a time for all of our guys," Colonels coach Dennis Wymer said. "We have such a young, inexperienced group, but they come ready to roll.
"We've been through a lot of adversity, between illness and injury. We haven't put a full lineup together all year. And we have a lot of first-year wrestlers. But I'm happy I get to do this for them."
The Yellow Jackets scored three first-period pins, accomplished by freshman Mirvalino Baba over first-year wrestler Travis Evans, in 1:26, at 138; at 152 by junior Jonathan Moore, in 1:13, against first-year wrestler Omar Osman; and junior Victor Marshall, who came from trailing 4-2 to pin Ian Thomas in Thomas' debut varsity match, in 1:57.
Also earning pins for Randolph-Macon were senior Christopher Bell, in 2:44, at 195, against first-year opponent Beryl Bushayija and, at 220, where senior Nicholas Anderson (10-3) took on a gutsy Brandon Tate, who wrestled with a recovering shoulder injury to be down only 6-4 in the third period before Anderson got the pin at 5:09.
Tate was receiving extensive trainer treatment after the meet.
"[Tate] wanted to wrestle up [a weight class]," Wymer said. "He wanted to try against [Anderson]. When he wants to challenge someone, he has a vision-quest, I'm not concerned. He'll be fine. [The shoulder] is something he just has to fight through. He wants to be out there."
Yellow Jackets senior Imran Doraney earned a third period technical fall (17-1) against Adam Perry, at 160, to keep his season record unblemished at 13-0.
"I moved up from 152 today because [Jonathan Moore] went at 152 today," Doraney said. "I don't really expect to go undefeated this year. I'm happy that I have that right now, but I'm just trying to get more experience before states comes around. We have six more matches before states, and have the Capital Duals this weekend, so I should have four matches there.
"This a good team compared to the last few years. Usually we've had five or six wrestlers, and we're much more filled up this year."
Massanutten junior heavyweight Eric Crowley celebrated his first meet of the season with the Colonels' only win -- a 1:28 pin of Randolph-Macon sophomore Juan Canella, in the 285-pound weight class.
"It felt great," Crowley said. "I feel like I tried my best, used my coach's teaching abilities and put them to the test. I've been training. I was in [competitive] weight-lifting, but decided to come back for some more wrestling."
"We had a solid performance," Yellow Jackets coach Frank Sullivan said. "We're trying to get everyone healthy. We didn't have a full lineup tonight, so it's a work in progress."