By Carey Phillips
Smoky Mountain’s wrestling team ended the regular season 20-11 with wins over Owen and North Buncombe in a tri-match Feb. 5 at Owen.
“We had a pretty decent year, finishing third in conference and just falling short of making it for the state dual tournament, but I was overall pleased with the team success,” Coach Tony Moody said. “We had several young guys pleasantly surprise us. We’re looking forward to the individual regionals and hopefully several qualifying for the state tournament.”
Regionals are set for Friday and Saturday at West Wilkes. The state tournament is Feb. 20-22 at the Greensboro Coliseum.
The Mustangs defeated Owen 57-15. Pinning their opponents were Jose Ramos (126), Isaac Gunter (138), Tyler Watterson (145), Luis Palacios (170), Danner Hill (220) and Eli Grasty (285). Sam Hudson (132) won by technical fall 17-0. Will Frady (195) took a 12-2 major decision. Winning by decision were Ki French (152) 7-2 and Dustin Stephens (160) 8-5. Hayden Hooper (106) won by forfeit.
SM followed that up with a 57-21 victory over North Buncombe. Recording pins were Tito Palacios (113), Hill (220) and Hooper (106). French (152) won a 4-1 decision. Winning by forfeit were Ramos (126), Hudson (132), Stephens (160), Luis Palacios (170), Kobe Coggins (182) and Frady (195).