Broncos fall to Indians in wrestling

Published 8:59 am Friday, February 6, 2009

FRANKLIN—Southampton High School proved to be the better team in a matchup of wrestling rivals Tuesday afternoon.

The Indians beat Franklin 48-30 to improve to 7-10 on the season. The Broncos dropped to 14-7.

The Indians were paced by Dashawn Barner (14-3), Calvin Stringfield (13-1), Corey Johnson (9-2), Jashaun Pope (8-5) and Mitchell Gary, who all won by pinfall. Cody Durham, Shawn Brooks and Latrell Novell also contributed wins through forfeit.

Tuesday’s match began with Franklin’s Anthony Fulgrum pinning Southampton’s Travis Griffin in the 103-pound weight class at 1:19 left in the first period. In the 112 weight class, there was a double forfeit for both teams.

In the 119 weight class Pope pinned Franklin’s Rachel Sing with 46 seconds left in the opening period. In the 125 weight class Novell picked up the win by forfeit for the Indians.

In the 130 weight class Franklin’s Antwain Flyte pinned Southampton’s Jermaine Whitney in the first period. In the 135 weight class, Brooks picked up the win through forfeit for the Indians. In the 140 weight class Durham picked up the win through forfeit for the Indians.

The Indians and Broncos then began trading wins. In the 145 weight class Franklin’s Emmit Artis pinned Southampton’s Brandon Evans in the second period. In the 152 weight class Gary pinned Franklin’s Jordan Cassidy in 25 seconds in the first period. In the 160 weight class Franklin’s Isaiah Hudson pinned Southampton’s Joonkyn Park with 1:25 left in the first period. In the 171 weight class Franklin’s Tyler Childress pinned Southampton’s Jake Pittman in the second period.

In the 189 weight class Barner pinned Franklin’s Tyreek Davis in the second period with 59 seconds left. In the 215 weight class Stringfield pinned Franklin’s Emanuel Ricks in 1:42. In the 285 weight class Johnson pinned Franklin’s Michael Lawyer 40 seconds into the first period.

“It was a good match from both teams,” said Franklin head coach David Johnson. “Southampton is a tough team.”

Southampton coach Johnny McKeller said his team is “peaking at the right time going into Districts, which are Saturday at King George High School.”

“To beat a well established Franklin team is definitely a feather in the cap going into the postseason,” he said. “After our ties last season, we wanted to make sure it didn’t come down to criteria, and we wanted to come away with a victory. We finished our season with seven wins, which is the most I have seen this program accomplish in a long time.

“I could not be more pleased with the way this team has come together over the last month. I am truly blessed by the hard work and character this team has displayed. I am very glad that these guys will get the recognition that they deserve come Sectional time and that we can parlay these successes in the regular season into the postseason.”

Last Saturday the Indians took second place in the Lakeland Rotational in Suffolk, finishing with a 3-1 record.

They defeated Northampton 54-28, York 66-12 and Kings Fork 46-36. Jermaine Whitney and Kenneth Lewis finished with two pins each. Stringfield and Pope each finished with four pins. Johnson, Pittman, Durham and Jeremy McPhillips finished with a pin each. Stringfield also took home the trophy for fastest pinfall with a time of 16 seconds over Lakeland.

“Wow, the look and joy on the kids’ faces is what coaching is all about,” McKeller said after the match.

“The hard work and dedication the kids have put out day in and day out paid big dividends. Everyone is very focused, and the team is like a family. We had this day marked on the calendar to show everyone that Southampton wrestling is just as good as anyone on any given day.

“I told the kids that 30 years from now, they can come back to Southampton High School and look at the trophy and be proud of what they accomplished. I am very proud of what this team accomplished today, and it’s days like today that prove that hard work does pay off.”