Wrestlers come out on top

Published 12:57 am Wednesday, December 14, 2022

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By Brian Pitts

Enterprise Record

Brandon Wood picked a great time for his first varsity win, Reid Nail spiked his breakout season and Davie’s wrestling team picked up two wins in its first dual team matches of the season.

Shelby hosted a tri-meet on Dec. 6.

In its first match, Davie made short work of Shelby, winning 62-18. Braxton Hunter (113), Jamarius Pelote (152), Dylan Miller (160), Jerred Alexander (170), Christian Boswell (182), Brysen Godbey (195) and Ryder Strickland (285) gave Davie seven pins. Lawson Hire (132) and Elliott Gould (145) had major decisions, and Nail and Luke Miller received forfeits.

The 42-33 win over Burns later in the evening was a good win on a day when Davie was without star Hunter Testa, who is 12-0 at 182. He was out sick and replaced by Boswell.

Davie and the Bulldogs slugged it out. Burns jumped to a 12-0 lead. Davie rallied for a 15-12 lead. The teams were tied at 21-21 and 27-27 before Davie pulled it out.

Nail stopped Burns’ early momentum with a pin at 126. The junior is becoming a reliable weapon after going 2-3 as a freshman and 13-20 as a sophomore. He improved his junior record to 11-4, and coach Perry Long is not surprised.

“He has gotten better – a lot better – but he wasn’t bad last year,” Long said. “It was just that people avoided Lane Hill and they would throw their best kids on Reid. So Reid caught all the bad boys that avoided Lane. I could tell last year that he turned the corner. Reid knew his job was to try to stay off his back. This year he knows his job is to be an offensive guy, and he’s got to be one of those guys that pins people.”

Davie had run off 15 unanswered points when Hire decisioned at 132 and Luke Miller pinned at 138.

“Luke’s going to work hard,” Long said of the sophomore. “He’s not going to quit. He could be down 10-0 and he’s going to run his stuff and he’s going to eventually get a pin or be in the match.”

L. Miller wasn’t the only inexperienced varsity guy to make a splash against Burns. Pelote, a freshman, pinned at 152 to provide a 21-18 lead.

“Jamarius was on his back,” Long said. “I looked at Marcus (McKnight) and said: ‘He’s getting ready to get pinned.’ As soon as I said that, he must have felt something and wiggled out of there, flipped him over and had him on his back. That was a critical match, because if he gets pinned there, it throws everything off.”

Alexander’s pin at 170 gave Davie a 27-21 lead, and Godbey did the same at 195 to put his team in front 33-27. That set up a big moment for Wood, a junior who entered with an 0-1 varsity record, the loss coming earlier in the night against Shelby. He provided a lift with a pin that created 39-27 separation.

“Their kid’s job was not to get pinned, and Wood had to work really hard,” Long said. “He ran a half on him and turned him with a power half.”

Since Davie always forfeits at 106, it needed Strickland to come through in the second-to-last match at heavyweight. The sophomore did not disappoint as he prevailed 4-3 to put it out of reach, 42-27.

“Ryder led the whole match,” Long said. “You can trip or anything and next thing you know that kid falls on top of you, so we were trying to circle and stay away from him.”

Seven War Eagles went 2-0 for the day, including Pelote, Alexander, Godbey, Strickland, Hire, Nail and L. Miller. Pelote, Alexander and Godbey had two pins each.