“He did not win a single match, but this year he has a winning record,” Western Tech’s Solera said. “He’s kind of like the firestarter for the team because he’s the lightest guy on the team and he’s shown a lot of heart and perseverance.”

He certainly got the attention of Western Tech’s defending state champion.

“I know he fired me up. I was ready to go after I saw his match,” Anthony said.

Gatewood’s win brought Western Tech within three, 30-27, but Alex Ciekot pinned Thomas Anderson to bump it back to 36-27 before Anthony’s pin made it 36-33 and Isennock iced it in the final match.

Eastern Tech’s other points came on pins by Ian Chiveral (170) and Cullen Jones (182).

Western Tech’s Carlos Winston (145), Payton Beechum (195) and Necho Freeman (220) registered pins, while Tony Simuel (152) and Austin Harrison (160) won decisions.

Beechum has won 16 of 18 matches this season and Harrison has lost only twice in 20 bouts for the 5-6 Wolverines.

“They (Western Tech) have got a lot of good wrestlers on that team,” Cross said. “They have done a good job bringing the program along.”

Meanwhile, Cross, whose young squad graduated three state qualifiers, likes the direction of his program.

“We’re still competitive and we’re still getting the wins,” said Cross, whose squad’s only losses were to Owings Mills, Perry Hall and Mount Hebron (by seven points).