By Jake Thompson
AVON — In a back and forth affair Wednesday night between the Avon and Ben Davis wrestling teams, it was the Giants that won out over the host Orioles. Ben Davis trailed 28-27 with four matches remaining and won all four, taking a 46-28 victory.
“It’s always fun coming over to Avon with a little Westside rivalry,” Ben Davis coach Aaron Moss said. “We knew we were fairly solid coming into the last four (matches), so we were excited where we started as far as the weight classes. We knew we had some early matches that were going to be huge and we needed to win a couple and our kids did that.”
Avon coach Israel Blevins said he knew what Moss already had presumed, that the Orioles would need a stronger showing than what they got at the beginning of the meet if they would have a chance down the stretch against the Giants. Not only that, but Ben Davis outwrestled Avon, he said.
“It happened before the last four matches,” Blevins said. “We pinned ourselves in matches, were throwing ourselves to our backs in matches, matches we should have or could have won, we fought to our back. You can’t win a dual meet doing that.”
Ben Davis’ Isaac Whitten (160) pinned Avon’s Bret Hasse to begin the match, but Evan Elmore (170) tallied a win for the Orioles with a 12-3 major decision over the Giants’ Marcus Meridy.
Jonah Zorniger (182) was up 10-6 before pinning Ben Davis’ Walter Wilson, putting Avon up 10-6. Cesar Gutierrez took a tight 3-0 decision over Avon’s Tanner Brandt and the Giants pulled to within one at 10-9.
“Cesar is a senior and it’s only his second season wrestling and he’s better than he looks,” Moss said. “I was excited about his match and felt it was a big win for us. (Isaac) Whitten did a good job as a first-year wrestler getting a big win for us. Those were key match ups. We felt like we won the close ones.”
Avon’s Dylan Jones (220) pinned Dakota Williams, but Ben Davis’ Guy Henson evened those points out with his fall of John Boffo.
After Ben Davis’ Daniel McCarty (106) pinned Bailey Chatterton, the score fell to 21-16 in favor of the Giants. The Giants increased that lead to 27-16 after Avon’s Brian Rassbach (113) was attempting to turn Ben Davis’ Jacob Wynkoop and exposed his back to the mat, pinning himself.
Avon then scored two consecutive falls as Nick Etienne (120) and Quinn Harris (126) pinned Ben Davis’ Yoseph Shibli and Jaylen Roth, respectively.
Avon led 28-27 after those two matches, but those points would be the last the Orioles would score.
Ben Davis’ Levi Moss (132), Kalen Phillips (138), Dylan Lydy (145) ,and Gage Norris all reeled off wins to finish the match.
“I hope we got it out of our system and that’s that and move on toward better days in the next few weeks, for sure,” Blevins said. “We had guys go out and pin guys, but even those were sloppy wrestling. Using stuff that isn’t shown and making stuff up. That’s very frustrating.”