Sherando suffers ‘disappointing’ day at tournament

BEALETON – Sherando High School wrestling coach Pepper Martin thought the Warriors would be well represented when they host the Region 4C tournament on Friday afternoon. The number of Sherando wrestlers competing in that event will be less than Martin initially had hoped.

The Warriors took 13 wrestlers to the Class 4 Northwestern District tournament at Liberty High School on Saturday and six earned spots in the top four of their respective weight classes to advance to the next round of postseason play later this week.

“We had a very good week of practice only to come out, particularly in the consolation finals, and fall flat on our face,” Martin said. “Really disappointing. We felt we had a good chance to take nine or 10 to regionals and we only took six, had three in the finals, no champions. Disappointing day.”

A trio of Sherando wrestlers – junior Timmy Dieter and seniors Tucker Anderson and Zack Kales – reached the championship finals but came up empty in their bids for their first district titles.

Dieter was the first Warrior to fall in the finals when he lost a 6-4 decision to Fauquier’s Kyle Budd in the 132-pound bout. Dieter, who had beaten the 2017 Group 4A 120-pound state runner-up by that same score in sudden-victory overtime earlier this season, trailed 5-1 after giving up a takedown and 3 back points in the first period and never recovered.

Anderson, who qualified for the regional tournament for the first time in his high school career, Martin said, lost a 16-6 major decision to Liberty’s Jordan Florence in the 160-pound title match, and Kales was edged by Fauquier’s Tyler Raymond, 3-2, at 220. After a scoreless first period, Raymond gained a 3-0 lead in the second before Kales earned a pair of penalty points to close the gap in the third period.

“Zack wrestled a nice final match at 220. We just couldn’t find a way to tie it and take the lead in the last 25 seconds, being on bottom there. Ended up getting ridden out,” Martin said. “It wasn’t for want of trying, it just was that we couldn’t find a way to get to our feet, get an escape, tie it up and at least go to overtime.”

Sherando senior Zach McCarty earned a spot in the Region 4C field with a third-place finish at 182 pounds, and a pair of freshmen will make their regional tournament debuts later this week after top-four finishes at their first district tournament. Heath Rudolph was third in what Martin called a tough 126-pound division, and the head coach heaped praise on heavyweight Deshawn Lee after his fourth-place finish.

“He’s improved tremendously since the beginning of the year, when we were forced to throw him into our lineup,” Martin said. “… He works hard in practice and he’s very intelligent, a very smart kid, picks up things, and it’s incredible the improvement he’s made during the season.”

Fauquier (210.5 points) won the Class 4 Northwestern District team championship after edging out rival Liberty by 1.5 points, a margin kept intact when Millbrook heavyweight Tavon Blowe pinned Liberty’s Julian Sams in the first period of the final match of the night.

Sherando (126.5) was fifth out of the seven teams in the Class 4 field.