SALEM, Va. (WFXR) — Staunton River cruised to the Class 3 state team championship in wrestling, highlighting a night that saw 12 Southwest Virginia grapplers make the top of the podium at the Salem Civic Center.
The Golden Eagles, led by five state champions, topped the team standings with 216.5 points. New Kent placed second with 155, followed by Skyline, Liberty Christian Academy, and Brentsville District.
Colin Martin began Staunton River’s gold rush with a dominant win in the 113-pound final over Turner Ashby’s Hunter Blosser, winning by technical fall, 15-0. Noah Nininger used a late third-period reversal to win his 132-pound match over Skyline’s Phoenix Alyea by a 3-2 decision. Bo Ice needed an escape and a takedown in the third period to secure an 8-5 win over Christiansburg’s Jake Robie in the 150-pound championship. Brady Barns won his match over Elijah Frame of Warren County, 5-0, in the 157-pound final while Macon Ayers earned an 8-2 decision over Lord Botetourt’s T.J. Piluso to capture the 165-pound crown.
Christiansburg didn’t go away empty-handed as Brady Hand defeated William Byrd’s Dominic Pascoe in the 120-pound final by a 16-1 technical fall. The Terriers also made the top of the podium thanks to Xavier Preston’s win over A.J. Marshall of Culpeper County, cruising to a 15-3 victory.
LCA’s Toby Schoffstall won by pin over Rustburg’s Landon Marquis, needing just 91 seconds to secure the championship at 190 pounds.
Glenvar finished as state runners-up in Class 2, finishing with 137.5 points. Strasburg took home the team championship with 209.5 points.
The Highlanders were led by a trio of state champions, including Jake Cline, who returned to the top of the podium and completed a perfect season in his senior year.
Cline, who was upset in the state semifinals last season, defeated Clarke County’s Cannon Long, 7-3, in the 157-pound final. Minutes later, his teammate, Ethan Flowers, won a tight overtime battle against Union’s Johnny Satterfield to capture the 175-pound crown. Then Chase Miller capped off a memorable night for Glenvar by winning the 190-pound final over Radford’s Dawson Martin, marking back-to-back championships.
Xaiden Wynn of James River had a come-from-behind performance to win the 106-pound championship, pinning John Battle’s Owen Almany in the second period.