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Firebirds take 2 in Hunt triangular match

Posted on May 21, 2021

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Hunt’s James Harrison, left, grabs Southern Nash wrestler Jackson Wall's leg in their 195-pound match during Wednesday's triangular match.

Sheldon Vick | Special to The Enterprise

Hunt’s James Harrison, left, grabs Southern Nash wrestler Jackson Wall's leg in their 195-pound match during Wednesday's triangular match.

WILSON — A tough season staggered forward for the Hunt High wrestling team as the Warriors came up empty on their mat in a triangular match Wednesday against Neuse Charter of Smithfield and 3-A Big East Conference rival Southern Nash.

The Firebirds exited with a 36-15 defeat of Hunt before edging the 1-A Carolina Conference Cougars 33-27.

The Warriors, who have two team wins, thought they would get No. 3 when they faced Neuse Charter in the final match and junior Ayden Cox pinned Tyler Long in their 120-pound match. With all other matches being decided by forfeit, the Warriors and Cougars tied at 36-all. However, Neuse Charter was awarded the team win on criteria, which pointed to its six forfeit wins to five for Hunt.

In the first match, the Warriors won just two of the six contested bouts. Senior Tryston Myers pinned Southern Nash’s Trondrayl Newsome in the first period of their 220-pound match right after James Harrison pulled out a thrilling 10-9 victory over the Firebirds’ Jackson Wall, with Harrison scoring in the final seconds to secure the win.

Southern Nash won the other four matches by fall as senior Terrence Raspberry stopped Isaiah Jenkins in the 285-pound bout, Luis Arrellano downed Hunter Batchelor at 138 pounds, Luke Coble beat Rod Loftin at 170 and Jadel Davis pinned senior Aundrey Loftin at 182.

Those four Firebirds also won their matches against Neuse Charter in another forfeit-fest. Raspberry, Coble and Davis were all qualifiers for the North Carolina High School Athletic Association tournament in 2020.

The twin losses dropped the Warriors to 2-12; however, as head coach Ronnie Sutton pointed out, the team records mean absolutely nothing outside of conference boundaries in this strange season wrought by the COVID-19 pandemic. There will be no dual-team playoffs, but each NCHSAA conference will crown a champion. With teams limited to 14 tri-matches and no individual tournaments permitted, the NCHSAA is only holding postseason individual regional and state championships.

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