Thursday, January 21, 2010
The Covington High School wrestling team traveled up north to face perennial power Coldwater in a matchup of two of the area’s best dual meet teams. The dual didn’t disappoint as the competition came down to the very last match – which Covington won – to give the Buccs a 39-33 victory over the Cavaliers. The win was Covington’s first over Coldwater in 10 years, dating back to the 1999-2000 season.
Coldwater – a deep team boasting 40 wrestlers – got off to a big start. The Cavaliers opened at 160 lbs with an 8-3 win by district qualifier Trevor Kunk over Covington’s Aaron Devenport. Dustin Gillis kept things going for the Cavaliers with a pin over Brian Olson at 171 lbs. Coldwater then built a 27-0 lead by taking forfeits at 189, 215 and 285 lbs.
At this point, the Buccs had very little room for error. At 103 lbs, Covington’s Brock Smith found himself down 4-0 to district qualifier Mason Kuether, but rebounded to take an 8-4 lead before pinning his opponent. Bryton Lear then picked up a forfeit for the Buccs at 112 lbs, to cut the lead to 27-12.
Covington then came through on a series of key matchups. At 119 lbs, after giving up the opening takedown, Matt Breisch won a hard fought 5-2 decision over district qualifier Jeremy Post – who was undefeated against division III wrestlers going into the bout. In the next match, Jake Sowers (125) found himself in a scoreless third-period bout before pinning Chad Fietshands with one second remaining. Kyler Deeter (130) then put in an impressive performance in an 8-4 victory over Coldwater’s Alex Timmerman, to cut the Cavaliers lead to 27-24.
Dylan Gustin (135) then gave Covington its first lead of the night, 30-27, with a first-period pin over Coldwater’s Troy Mullencamp. The Cavaliers took the lead right back at 140 lbs, as Dale Hamberg battled back from a 4-0 deficit to pin Tyler Tebbe and give Coldwater a three-point lead, 33-30. Andrew DeHart then answered for the Buccs with a quick 29 second pin over Brian Hemmelgarn at 145 lbs, as Covington regained the lead, 36-33.
This set up the final match of the evening at 152 lbs, where the winner takes all. Covington’s Justin McMillion squared off against Coldwater’s Nate Harlow in a very evenly matched contest. After a scoreless first period, Harlow struck first with a reversal in the second period, but McMillion answered to knot the score at 2-2. Harlow would enter the third period with a one-point advantage, however, as McMillion yielded a technical violation point. Trailing 3-2, McMillion quickly scored a reversal to take a 4-3 lead as his opponent scrambled for an escape. McMillion closed the door, however, with a three-point near fall, to win 7-4, and give the Buccs their 20th win and keep their unbeaten streak alive.
In the earlier dual, Covington defeated Lehman, 72-12, as every competing Buccaneer picked up a victory. Earning pins for the Buccs were Brian Olson (171), Brock Smith (103) and Tyler Tebbe (140).
In reserve action, Covington’s Alex Bitner (130) pinned Coldwater’s Andy Roessner, while Brandon Flora (135) pinned Coldwater’s Jacob Fink. Covington’s D.J. Seger lost a hard-fought 9-5 decision to Alex Bowler, while Cody Adams (160) dropped his bout with Ben Koesters.
Covington – currently ranked as the No. 4 division III wrestling team in the Miami Valley – travels to No. 1 ranked Dixie on Tuesday, Jan. 26. The dual starts at 6 pm.