Times West Virginian
Wrestling has been a staple in Marion County for some time. When the three area high school teams took to the mat Friday and Saturday in Buckhannon for the Big 10 Championship things were no different as North Marion, East Fairmont and Fairmont Senior finished first, second and third in that order.
Not even knowing it, things came down to the last match for North Marion, which won the Big 10 as a team with 193 points.
“It was pretty tight. To tell you the truth I lost track of the team score down the stretch and didn’t even realize that we were close,” North coach Dave Tennant said. “Before the last round we were out probably 15 or 20 points, and we didn’t think we could get enough points to make up the difference.”
But needing to pin Stephen Tustin of Robert C. Byrd, a wrestler that had beaten him earlier in the year, in order to win the tournament, North’s Justin O’Dell got the job done, leading the Huskies to victory.
“The only thing I told him was to win his last match,” Tennant said. “He went out and had an extra motivation about him and he wrestled through it and ended up pinning the kid. It turned out to be huge.”
Overall, all 11 Huskies made the podium with O’Dell, Andrew Lewis, Jakob Guy, Chance Haught and Roger Cummings taking fifth, Kyle Elliott and Gavin Barker taking third, Caleb Kuhn and Ryan Arnett taking second and Joe Efaw and Ryan Elliott, who won his third straight conference title, coming in first.
Tennant said that the third- and fifth-place finishes were key for his Huskies with those guys facing the obstacle of wrestling back through to claim wins.
“At least seven had to do wrestle backs,” he said. “That was big for us.”
For the second-place Bees, Brody Nesselrotte, Hayden Stewart and Dalton Michael finished first in their respective classes, while Daniel Hopkins and Cam Stewart finished second, Dylan Foster finished third, Gianni Vandetta and Matt Hopwood finished fourth and Jordan Leonard finished fifth.
As for Fairmont Senior, Anthony Alvaro, Vincent Delligatti and Braden Mick took home first-place finishes to headline the Polar Bears’ weekend. Chris Carvillano, Brent Barber, Jaron Summers, Bradley Wyne and Brent Wyne also took home third, while Tre Lewis finished fourth.
North Marion and East Fairmont are done until the regional tournament in two weeks, while Fairmont Senior will be in action one more time before then on Thursday as it hosts University at the Woody Williams Armory at 6 p.m.