Connor Ryan is in control of his opponent at the Northeastern Invitational.

December 8, 2012 – Northeastern
The Covington High School wrestling team put in a strong team performance at the Northeastern Invitational on Saturday, going 5-0 at the event to take first place out of ten teams. The victories improve the Buccs’ overall record to 6-0 this season.

Covington earned dominant victories during the first three rounds of the tournament. In the opening dual, the Buccs defeated Triad, 63-6. Brock Smith (138) picked up a 12-6 win over district qualifier Andrew Zirkle, while Jake Sowers (152) earned a pin over sectional champ Damian Boldman. Also earning pins for Covington were Ryan Ford (132), Daniel Jennings (145), Kyler Deeter (160) and Ben Miller (170). Connor Ryan (106), Michael Cox (113), Brian Olson (195) and Justin Daniel (220) also picked up wins for the team.

In the second round, Covington defeated Northeastern, 65-12. Connor Ryan (106) and Daniel Jennings (145) each earned victories over district qualifiers – Ryan, a 17-2 tech. fall over Chris Cullison, and Jennings, a pin over Johnny Dean. Ford (132), Sowers (152), Miller (170), A.J. Ouellette (182), Daniel (195) and Olson (220) each picked up pins, while Cox (113), Deeter (160) and Wolfe (285) also earned victories.

The Buccs kept things going in the third round with a 65-6 victory over Southeastern. Five Covington wrestlers pinned their opponents – Ryan (106), Jennings (145), Ouellette (182), Olson (195) and Wolfe (285). Also getting wins were Cox (113), Ford (126), Smith (138), Sowers (152), Deeter (160) and Miller (170).

Covington then had to defeat Springfield to advance to the finals, and came away with a 54-24 victory over the Panthers. Sowers (152) picked up a nice pin over district qualifier Sam Grayson, while Ryan (106), Ford (126), Sowers (152), Deeter (160), Miller (170), Ouellette (182) and Olson (195) also pinned their opponents. Dustin Freeman (138) and Brock Smith (145) each picked up forfeits.

Covington had a very competitive championship dual with Urbana. Jordan Wolfe started things off at 285 lbs, and picked up a huge come-from-behind pin over Beau Bassell to give the Buccs a 6-0 lead. Connor Ryan (106) then followed with another key victory – a 6-5 decision over jr. high state qualifier Jaylin Cameron. Michael Cox earned a forfeit at 120 lbs, followed by Ryan Ford’s pin at 126 lbs, giving Covington a strong 21-0 lead. Urbana responded though with a forfeit win at 132 lbs, a pin at 138 lbs and a decision at 145 lbs to narrow the gap, 21-16.

Jake Sowers got the momentum going again for the Buccs with a 5-1 decision over Ethan Edwards, before Kyler Deeter (160), Ben Miller (170) and A.J. Ouellette (182) each picked up pins to seal the victory for Covington. Urbana would win the next two bouts – an exciting overtime victory by two-time Jr. High state champ Jack Harris over Brian Olson (195) and a pin by state-placer Same Harris over Justin Daniel (220). Covington won the tournament with the 42-25 victory over the Hill Climbers.

While the event was not set up as an individual tournament, the host school awarded medals to the top three wrestlers based on criteria of winning records and pins. Taking first for Covington were Connor Ryan (5-0, 2 pins), Ryan Ford (5-0, 4 pins), Daniel Jennings (3-0, 3 pins), Jake Sowers (5-0, 3 pins), Kyler Deeter (5-0, 3 pins) and Ben Miller (5-0, 4 pins). Brian Olson (4-1, 3 pins) took second, while Michael Cox (4-1, 1 pin), A.J. Ouellette (4-1, 1 pin) and Jordan Wolfe (3-2, 2 pins) each took third.

Also wrestling for Covington as unattached wrestlers were Dustin Freeman (138), Cole Smith (160) and Brandon Magee (170). Smith finished the tournament with a 4-0 record with 3 pins, while both Freeman (1 pin) and Magee (1 pin) finished 2-1 overall.

Covington travels to the Versailles Invitational on Saturday, December 15, for another dual meet tournament.

Daniel Jennings turns his opponent for a pin.