Wednesday, February 12, 2014
For the second straight year, the Summerville wrestling team will face Lexington in the Lowerstate championship match.
The Green Wave grapplers earned a 44-20 win over Dutch Fork Monday in the third round of the Class AAAA playoffs to advance to the Lowerstate title game. At 6 p.m. Friday, Summerville will host Lexington, which defeated Ashley Ridge 39-19 in the third round.
Last season, the Wildcats defeated Summerville 33-25 in the Lowerstate round en route to claiming the 2013 state championship. However, this season the Green Wave has already defeated Lexington twice so Summerville is hoping to turn the tables on the Wildcats.
“We've been working hard at practice and have more intensity this year,” Summerville co-captain Daniel Smith said. “Everybody wrestled for six minutes tonight or until they got their pin. We only have one thing on our mind right now and that's a state championship so we're leaving everything on the mat.”
Summerville also won its matches in the first two rounds convincingly, handing Stratford a 55-12 loss Saturday and following it with a 49-22 win over White Knoll later that day.
Green Wave coach Darryl Tucker says he is pleased with his team's playoff performance.
“That is huge momentum wise because you want to get better with each match especially in a playoff series and we've managed to do that,” he said. “We've got everyone healthy right now and that is a big part of it, but we are also wrestling with a lot of confidence.”
However, he isn't taking anything for granted.
“Our first two matches with them were very close,” Tucker said. “It's hard in this sport to beat teams over and over again. But we are one of the final four standing and we relish the opportunity. We are going to give it all we have on Wednesday.”
Summerville lost four of the first eight matches against Dutch Fork to only lead by 6 points. But the Green Wave then won five straight weight classes to put the match out of reach for the Silver Foxes.
Momentum took a turn with the 147-pound match as Smith battled for a 2-1 decision. John Van Slooten, who has battled an injury much of the season and received forfeits in several matches which he was healthy for, then earned a 3-2 decision at 154.
Anthony Collins (162), Jamal Lucas (172) and Chad Wood (184) all followed with a Summerville pin to give the Green Wave a 44-14 lead entering the final match. Dutch Fork won a second-round pin at 197 for the 44-20 final.
The wrestling started in the 222-pound weight class, where Summerville's Julian Gibbs earned a first-round pin. After a Dutch Fork major decision, James Sass earned a 6-0 decision for Summerville at 108 and Justin Connelly earned a first-round pin for the Wave at 115.
The Silver Foxes picked up points at 122, 134 and 140, but Summerville's Tyler Fachko won by technical fall at 128.
Against Stratford, Summerville earned bonus points in seven matches.
Notching wins for the Green Wave were Guy Murray, Robert Larson, Eric Henderson, Sass, Connelly, Fachko, Smith, Van Slooten, Collins and Wood.
Against White Knoll, Summerville earned bonus points in nine matches. Notching wins for the Green Wave were Jamal Lucas, Corey Alumbaugh, Murray, Sass, Fachko, Van Slooten, Collins, Wood and Gibbs.