PHS Wrestlers Finish 12th in Tiger Classic
The Pinecrest wrestling finished 12th in the Tiger Holiday Classic in Chapel Hill last week.
The Patriots competed against 36 other schools from several states in the event, including some of the top teams in North Carolina.
Head coach Travis Flinchum took eight of his varsity wrestlers this year, compared with the two to three wrestlers taken in years past, because he felt he “had more wrestlers able to compete at a top level tournament and do well.”
That appeared to ring true as the Patriots made a big improvement over last year’s appearance. The Pats finished with 103.5 points, up from 60.5 points and a 20th place last year. Four of the wrestlers medaled in the top four.
Team captain Dustin Roemer won all four of his matches in the 145-pound division. Roemer’s record now stands at 22-0 and he is currently ranked No. 3 in combined North Carolina divisions at 145-, according to the Dec. 29 edition of retrorankings.com.
After pinning J.D. Wynn, of Orange High, in 1:27 of the first period, Roemer finished his first day of the tournament by beating John Thomas Cameron, of South View, currently ranked No. 3 at 152- 4A, with a decisive 15-0 technical fall.
Day Two of the competition saw Dustin paired up against two more 4A ranked wrestlers, No. 2 Kelvin Dixon at 152 and No. 4 Hunter Hefner at 145.
Roemer beat New Bern's Dixon with a 8-3 decision and Mooresville's Hefner with a 8-4 decision to finish in first place at 145.
Patriot junior Zac Lupien got off to a rough start his first day when a close 3-4 loss to Jack Britt's Cory Maxwell sent him to the consolation bracket at 103 pounds.
Winning his way through four more matches the first day with two technical falls, a pin and a 10-8 decision, Lupien went into the second day with enough momentum to face off against two No. 3-ranked opponents, 3A Jake Smith and 2A Nathan Fallon, and win.
Lupien beat Havelock’s Smith with a 7-3 decision and pinned Croaton’s Fallon 56 seconds into the second period to bring his record to 20-2 and take home a third place finish at 103.
Flinchum was pleased with the two freshman varsity wrestlers he brought to the Tiger Classic this year — Dallas Roemer and Rider Excell — who also placed in the top four.
Dallas Roemer finished his first day at 130 pounds with two decision wins — 6-1 against Union Pines’ Taylor Walker and 7-3 against A. Mobley, of Cave Springs.
He was dropped to the consolation bracket during the second day with a 2-10 major decision loss to No. 1 ranked 3A Zach Jaramillo, of Havelock.
Roemer then won a 10-6 decision against New Bern to send him to the finals match against Robbie Gladwell, of Croaton, and a 8-5 decision win to finish in third place and bring his record to 20-2.
Excell won his first match at 152 with a 11-3 major decision before falling to No. 3-ranked 3A Paul Duggan at 152 and dropping to the consolation bracket.
Once there, he pinned Clayton’s Ethridge and beat Jack Britt’s Akers with a 6-2 decision to continue into the next day.
Excell won a tight 10-9 decision against Aaron Bell, of Irmo, to get him to the finals before losing in a 13-0 major decision match to No. 1 ranked 2A Piedmont’s VonEgidy, earning him a fourth place finish and bringing his record to 16-7.
Pinecrest will host Lumberton tonight 6 p.m. in an SEC meet.
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