Battlers Place Eighth at Waynesburg Invite
January 6, 2018
WAYNESBURG, Pa. — A partial Battler squad had two place winners at the 16 team Waynesburg Invitational on Saturday to finish in eighth place overall.
"Today was a mixed bag performance for us," said head coach Sam Gardner. "We held a few guys out in order to have them at 100% for next weekend's Virginia Duals. For the guys who wrestled today we saw some good and some not so good. We need to be tougher mentally. Too many times today we got in positions where if we just sucked it up and kept our wits we would have been in position to win. We didn't do that, and that was my fault as much as anything. We'll train in those pressure situations this week and hopefully raise our performance to a higher level."
Curtis Cox lead the team with a second place finish. In the finals, two second period cradles by his Mount Union opponent cost him as he ended up losing 9-4. He was dominant leading up to the final with a major decision, a technical fall, and a pin in the semi-final. This was the third tournament final Cox has made at AB.
"Curtis had a bad second period," said Gardner. "Stuff like that happens, and in a tournament as large as this one we hadn't had a chance to scout our opponent as we might have. He has the stuff to win those matches, and his time will come. He'll end up breaking through in those situations."
Gino Sita went 4-1 to take third place, losing a tough one point semi-final match at 174. Sita scored bonus points in every match he won. He moves to 18-2 on the season.
"Gino wrestled his first poor match of the season in the semi-finals," Gardner said. "He's having an outstanding freshman year, but like it happens with every freshman he hit a bump in the road. It doesn't take away from his abilities at all. He was able to rebound and wrestle back and take third. I know it wasn't easy for him to rebound, but what this sport teaches you is that there are times in life when you are upset and miserable and you still have to get up and go out and perform. He'll be better for this down the road."
Freshman 197 Alex Eaton continued his strong season posting a 3-2 record on the day. He had three pins, moving his total to a team leading 13 on the year.
"Alex Eaton is a pinner. I believe that true pinners are born with something inside them that makes them that way. He has some moves that you don't expect a kid like him to hit, like the Hungarian Beekeeper [a rolling stack of your opponent on his back when you attack the legs]. For him to lead the team with 13 falls at this point in the year is a testament to his abilities."
Also contributing to the team score was Colton Bethel, who had a pair of wins on the day, including a tough over-time win. Sam Solomon also put up three wins on the day, including a couple of pins. Paul Steger also had a tech-fall victory as well for the Battlers.
Next weekend, the Battlers return to the mat when they will compete in the Virginia Duals on Friday and Saturday at Hampton University.
Return to the WV-Mat front page