Yellowjacket wrestlers headed to states

Williamstown grapplers sending six to Huntington

JOSH HUGHES, The Marietta Times Williamstown’s Brandon Burrell wrestles Sissonville’s Caiden Carpenter during a Class AA, Region IV quarterfinal matchup in the 106-lbs. weight class Saturday afternoon at Williamstown High School. Burrell went on to win the match and finished third place in the weight class to qualify for the state tournament.

WILLIAMSTOWN — The 2019 AA/A Region IV Wrestling Championships are in the books, and a few area teams looked to send their wrestlers to the state tournament later this month in Huntington.

The day belonged to Point Pleasant, as they dominated a majority of the weight classes. Isaac Short claimed an 8-3 victory over Wirt County’s Logan Powell in the 106-pound weight class.

Hunter Poole couldn’t avenge his Tiger teammate’s loss, as he fell to Point Pleasant’s Christopher Smith in the 113-pound weight class by fall. The Big Blacks bested Wirt wrestlers in the 120 (Derek Raike over Kolton Parsons in a 7-5 decision) and 132-pound (George Smith over AJ Garrett in a 12-2 major decision) weight classes, en route to winning in nine different weight classes and the team score. That score of 321.50 more than doubled Winfield’s second place score of 150.50. Wirt County just missed second place, but they still finished on the podium in third with 147 total points.

Hometown Williamstown sent eight wrestlers to this year’s regional, and six of them moved on to Huntington. Brandon Burrell kicked things off for the ‘Jackets, as he defeated Sissonville’s Caiden Carpenter in a consolation semifinal match to move on among the 106-pounders. He would later win the third place match over Man’s Brandon Maynard in a 10-6 decision.

Colton Slagle made it to the first-place match in the 126-pound weight class, and he beat Mingo Central’s Gavin Farley and Wirt County’s Wyatt Powell (Powell won third place in the class) to make it. He lost in the final to Point’s Justin Bartee via pinfall.

Casch Somerville fell in the 145-pound weight class final to another Big Blacks’ wrestler, Wyatt Wilson. Julian Stoneman continued the good showing for the ‘Jackets, as he moved on to face Point’s Logan Southhall at 160. Southhall won the match by pinfall, but Stoneman advanced, nonetheless.

Caleb Stansberry grinded out a tough 4-3 decision win in a 170-pound consolation semi over Sissonville’s Cole Hughart to make it to the state tournament, but he lost in the third place match to Point’s Nazar Abbas via pinfall.

It was a great showing for the ‘Jackets, and head coach Ryan Scott hopes to carry this momentum into the Big Sandy Superstore Arena.

“We wrestled the best we wrestled all year,” Scott said of his team’s effort. “We only brought eight kids to the tournament, and six of them qualified, so that’s pretty good. Colton Slagle upset the No. 3 kid in the state, Wyatt Powell from Wirt County in the semis. That was a really big win for him. It was just, overall, a real great weekend for us. We’re going to qualify a lot more kids from a Class A school than people thought.”

The Ravenswood Red Devils finished right above Williamstown in the team standings, at fifth place. The Red Devils had state qualifiers in a quartet of third place finishes from Ethan Tanner at 113, Cody Smith at 132, Preston Menas at 138 and Dalton Moore at 182. Ravenswood’s Ethan Lane advanced to the state tournament at 220 with a consolation semi victory over Chapmanville Regional’s Josh Atwood, via pinfall. Ravenswood’s other qualifier was 152-pounder Colton Clark, who lost a 20-5 technical fall in the finals to Jamie Ward of Winfield.

Calhoun County sent three wrestlers to the regional tournament, and Dalton McCune (at 170) was the sole Red Devil to advance to the state tournament. He got there with a win over Mingo Central’s Chris Toops and a pinfall win over Sissonville’s Hughart. Winfield’s Chance Dixon blanked him 3-0 in the final, but he will be present and accounted for at state.

Wirt County head coach Danny Life’s Tigers, who are ranked second in Class A, will take six grapplers to state and that includes 195-pound regional runner-up Glen McFee, who fell 7-1 to Winfield’s JD McCallister.