Match of the Week
to CR 35-20
to Suffer First Defeat
Photos: Sussex Central's Jordan Lowe (above) puts a three-point near fall on CR's Toddy Martin at 137. Below, SC's Teddy Thompson starts the move that pinned CR's Zack Kopp at 154.
GEORGETOWN -- Sussex Central High School proved yet again that it is the only Henlopen Conference wrestling team that can challenge the vaunted Caesar Rodney program on Friday, Feb. 2, 2001.
And although the Golden Knights lost 35-20, they put a scare into a CR squad that had to win the dual meet's last five matches to secure a likely sixth consecutive conference regular season championship.
Before falling to 9-1, the Knights led 20-19 on a stunning Teddy Thompson pin of highly regarded Zack Kopp at 154 and didn't surrender until 217-pounder Jack Roach was reversed by CR's Mark Reynolds with 2 seconds left in their match for a 32-20 CR lead entering the heavyweight bout.
The Riders' 80th consecutive conference dual meet win lifted them to 10-0 in the conference and 11-0 overall.
Thompson's and Roach's matches were the most pivotal and most exciting matches of the evening.
Thompson completed a Knight comeback from a 10-0 deficit when he pinned Kopp in 5:16 after leading just 8-7.
That pin, combined with Kyle Isaacs' 7-6 decision over CR's Garrett Faulkner at 121, Corey Strohmeyer's 17-5 major decision over CR's Josh McGregor at 127, Jordan Lowe's dramatic 7-6 decision over CR's Todd Martin on a reversal with 14 seconds to go at 137, and Reheim Brunskill's 18-4 major decision over CR's Steve Crew at 147, staked the Knights to their 20-19 advantage.
Thompson's pin would be the Knights' last win, however, as CR ran off consecutive decisions by Brian Rigby at 162, Brian Palmer at 173 and Tony Harris at 189 to take a 29-20 advantage that put the Knights' backs to the wall and their hopes on the back of Roach in the 217-pound match.
Roach fell behind Reynolds 7-2 after the first period but began to use his bulk to wear Reynolds down in the second period to forge an 8-8 tie entering the third period.
Reynolds went ahead again 11-8 on an escape and takedown in the first minute of the third period, only to see Roach tie the match 11-11 with a reversal with just 13 seconds left.
But just as everyone prepared for overtime, Reynolds stunned the packed house with a reversal with just 2 seconds left for a 13-11 victory that clinched the Rider win.
Sussex Central 20
Photo: Sussex Central's Corey Strohmeyer posts a three-point near fall in his 17-5 major decision over CR's Josh McGregor.
Sussex Central coach Phil Shultie on his team's performance:
"I just thought we did a great job tonight. It came down to the 215-pound match. I thought it was going to go into overtime, hoping we would win, but it didn't work out that way. I'm pleased with what we did. Like I said before, CR has a good team. I think this showed our guys exactly what we can do tonight. I'm very proud of what we did."
Shultie on Teddy Thompson's surprising pin of CR's Zack Kopp at 154:
"I thought 154 would be a real good match and it went our way. No (I didn't expect a pin). I knew it was going to be tough to beat him because I think Kopp has been him every time they've wrestled, but he (Thompson) showed tonight what he's able to do."
Shultie on this year's 35-20 loss compared to last year's 32-15 defeat:
"I think the matches this year were a lot closer than what they were last year. This was close. The score doesn't show that at the end, but it was a close match. They're (Riders) tough. I'm very proud of what we did. It would have been nice to be on top. When Teddy pinned, we came back. I could see him winning and I thought we'd pin at the heavyweight to win the match or tie, but not this time ... maybe next time."
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