SYRACUSE – It was pin or be pinned Thursday night on the wrestling mat between Wawasee and Concord. Nine of the 10 bouts were falls, Concord with five of them plus three big forfeits in a 52-30 victory over Wawasee.
Concord were spotted an 18-0 lead after a pair of forfeits and a 39-second pin by Miguel Novoa over heavyweight Austin Bickel. Derek Dunithan earned a forfeit for Wawasee at 106, but Kevin Sibel took the only non-six of the night, scoring a 15-2 major decision against Ricardo Romo. Concord would then get four pins in the next five matches to put the team dual away.
“It’s tough when you give away 18 points in forfeits without doing anything at all,” said Wawasee head coach Paul Meyer. “That’s just how it went tonight. We also gave away too much ground on some of their pins. But young kids will do that.”
Bailey Stockman and Luis Ortiz both scored first-period pins on Mike Sautter and Xavier Ortiz. Zach Ramirez rallied from a tough first period against Marcos Mejia to pin the Wawasee sophomore at 2:39 and Seth Shroyer and Ronny Shortt had maybe the best dual of the night, going three rounds before Shroyer got the mat slap with 22 seconds left in the third period.
Shortt nearly had Shroyer pinned twice, and looked to have had Shroyer in dire straits in the third period before the Concord junior wriggled out of a hold and flipped Shortt for the pin.
Wawasee’s four pins all were impressive. Tristin Ponsler continued his hot start to the season, needing just 59 seconds to put away Eliut Ramirez. Zac McKee was a little more efficient, driving Jonathan Garcia to the mat for the pin at 24 seconds.
Zach Ford was down 7-4 to Leandro Rodriguez in the third period before finding a loose grip on Rodriguez for a takedown and pin at 5:19.
Stephen Possell ended Wawasee’s scoring and the matches with a dominant pin of Darryl Spencer with five ticks left in the first period.
“Zac McKee has come a long way for us,” Meyer said. “I call him a football player that has turned into a wrestler. He works hard in the room and has turned things around. Zach Ford has been wrestling in the program for a long time. He just battled and wrestled. He’s not your two percent body fat machine, but if you get out of position like the Concord kid did against him, he will take advantage.”
Wawasee falls to 2-20 overall in duals this season, but Meyer isn’t the least bit worried about the lopsided record.
“Between injuries, grades and washout, when you have a program that is based on toughness and you want excellence every day, the old adage is the cream will rise to the top,” stated Meyer. “Those who stay will be champions. I firmly believe that if we push and push, what doesn’t kill them will make them stronger.”