Wilkes Central was able to weather the storm early, and late, in its home opener against Starmount on Friday night in Moravian Falls.
And thanks to a strong showing from their middle weight classes, the Eagles defeated Starmount 48-33 in their Mountain Valley Athletic Conference wrestling opener.
The contested bouts were even at six apiece for both teams ,but it was the Rams (0-2 in MVAC action) who controlled the lower and upper weight classes for the most part.
But according to Wilkes Central Head Coach Mike McCann, the middle weight classes belonged to the Eagles.
“The kids wrestled hard and the middle weight classes are the meat of our lineup and they know I expect a lot out of them and they’re all upperclassmen,” said McCann. “Trent’s (Hunt) a senior and Tradin’s (Allen) a senior; Jordan’s (Jarvis) a junior and Nick Hartley’s a senior and they did well tonight.”
Starmount built up a 15-6 advantage after the first four bouts following Cole Nixon’s pin of Zach Cox at 126 pounds.
The Rams took three of the first four bouts with lone exception being Tyler Holland’s match with Mikey Ramos at 106 pounds.
Holland built a 4-0 lead after the first period, and led 7-0 but Ramos got on the board in the second period. The sophomore then scored a takedown, and ultimately, the pin with 18 seconds left in the period.
“I didn’t know if he was going to get it because the Ramos kid was wrestling well,” said McCann. “He was countering Tyler really well and was giving him a fit and I didn’t know if he was going to get the win but I was glad he was. Tyler caught him and was able to pin him.”
The Eagles won the next six bouts. First, Corben Call and Hunt earned forfeit wins at 132 and 138 pounds, respectively, to take the lead.
Then Russell Ames (145 pounds), Allen (152 pounds), Jarvis (160 pounds) and Hartley (170 pounds) all earned pin fall victories to build an insurmountable 42-15 lead.
Ames and Jarvis earned second period pins while Allen and Hartley pinned their opponents in the first period.
After the match, McCann applauded Jarvis for his win against Sterlin Holbrook (an All-MVAC selection last winter) but also singled out Logan Bowlin’s match with Starmount’s Austin Jones at 113 pounds, which Jones won 10-8.
“We had some big matches,” said McCann. “The decision at 113 and the pin at 152 against Sterlin Holbrook were big matches because if we had given up six there at 113 and had gotten three or a pin (at 152), it could’ve been a lot different.”
Starmount made things close late with pin fall wins at 182, 195 and 220 pounds to cut the Eagles lead to 42-33 with one bout left.
But Jahad Martin added on one more win for good measure with a second-period pin on Caden Abernathy at 285 pounds for the Eagles, who return to the mat on Friday at Elkin.