Winters Mill coach John Lowe said his team was anxious to take the mats Thursday at Centennial High School.
The Falcons went 3-0 on the first day of their own Grindstone Duals last weekend but faltered on the second day and lost all four matches, including two by six points or less.
Safe to say, it left a bad taste in their mouth.
“The whole dual meet thing, we have a lot of guys who haven’t done that before,” Lowe said. “We have a lot of guys who are first-time varsity [wrestlers]. Little bit of experience but are young in terms of being out there and being counted on, and they need to be put in that position a few times to understand.”
Lowe’s team was put to the test again in Columbia and this time they passed with flying colors, as Winters Mill won the first six matches and built a 30-0 lead in an eventual 48-21 victory. The Falcons won 10 of the 14 bouts, including seven by fall, to improve their season record to 4-4.
The Eagles were unable to carry over the momentum after rallying to upset Atholton on Tuesday and dropped to 2-2.
WM’s Brady Forte (106 pounds), Logan Konald (120), Colby Unkart (132), Zach Kirby (138), Matthew Harris (152), Trevor Fawley (182) and Luke Proffitt (195) each pinned their opponents. Garrett Dell (113), Alex Vaginer (126), Cayden Beard (170) and Noah Ocasio (220) won by decision for Winters Mill.
The theme in most of their wins was scoring early and often. Lowe told his team before the match that, “counter punchers end up with black eyes and missing teeth. So punch first. Whatever you do, punch first.”
After Forte scored a quick 24-second pin, Dell picked up one of the biggest wins of the meet. Despite allowing the first take down to Eagles sophomore Christopher Lee, he scored the last six points to earn a 6-2 decision. Konald, Vaginer, Unkart and Kirby all put up the first points in their respective matches to help the Falcons’ lead balloon to 30-0.
Mateo Daly (145) turned a tight match into a confortable 17-10 win with a late five-point move to get Centennial on the board and it started a three-match winning streak. Matthew Harris (152) followed with a fall and three-time state champion Jason Kraisser, who bumped up a weight class to beat third-place state finisher Sean Billups of Atholton on Tuesday, dominated Josh Burndley before pinning him in 3:26.
“I just wanted the guys working, and they worked,” Eagles coach Cliff Kraisser said. “They just got outworked, especially in the lightweights. ... We did OK in the middle and won a couple. We only won two matches against these guys last year, so a step in the right direction.”
The comeback attempt was short-lived, however. Winters Mill answered with four consecutive wins, including a 46-second pin from Fawley, to secure the win.
“They scrapped. Even the guys that got pinned, they were scrapping the whole time. I didn’t see anybody roll over,” Lowe said. “I think we have some conditioning issues that we need to work on over the holiday, but most of them look like they have a game plan, and that’s a good start.”
106: Brady Forte (WM) pin Moiz Sabir 0:24
113: Garrett Dell (WM) dec. Christopher Lee 6-2
120: Logan Konald (WM) pinNick Shapiro 2:58
126: Alex Vaginer (WM) dec. Yusuf Mehboob 8-4
132: Colby Unkart (WM) pin Zaid Narmouq 2:46
138: Zach Kibry (WM) pin Joey Toth 2:27
145: Mateo Daly (C) dec. Isaac Ousley 17-10
152: Matthew Harris (C) pin Alex Love 1:05
160: Jason Kraisser pin Josh Burndley 3:26
170: Cayden Beard (WM) dec. Wadeed Morcos 4-0
182: Trevor Fawley (WM) pin Yash Joon 0:46
195: Luke Proffitt (WM) pin Matt Demme 3:04
220: Noah Ocasio (WM) dec. Noah Bussink 8-1