Congratulations to Coach Turner and the Wrestling Team as they captured the A-AA State Duals Championship! This is the first Dual Championship in school history!
FRANKLIN, Tenn. – The Red Bank Lions finally reached the mountain top as far as high school wrestling is concerned.
The Lions had finished second to Bradley in the State Duals back in 1995 and it had been 16 years since the Lions had been involved, but they put an exclamation point on a strong dual-meet season by winning the Class A-AA title here at Williamson County Agricultural Exposition Park and they beat two-time defending champ Pigeon Forge to do so.
Lots of folks had predicted that a match between these two teams would be a dandy and they were right. Both teams won seven individual matches, but the Lions just happened to end up with more bonus points.
Both teams had three pins, but the key match and perhaps turning point came at 120 pounds when Red Bank’s Gage Evans was awarded victory by disqualifaction over Jacob Ruiter, who was leading by a comfortable 7-1 margin at the time.
Apparently, an illegal move resulted in an injury to Evans and he was awarded the win when he couldn’t continue.
And while Red Bank had a 28-15 lead following a 17-second pin by Gabe McDuffie at 145, it took a 37-second pin from 195-pound Devin Crawl to secure the win after the Tigers had rallied with four straight wins for a 30-28 lead going into the last match.
Needless to say, Red Bank coach Shane Turner was about speechless when the outcome had finally been decided.
“Once again, to God be the glory,” he began.
“One of the keys was the DQ at 120, but that wasn’t our fault. We still won seven matches, but we shaved some points while picking up others. But this is great for these young men.
“They’ve worked so hard and this is something that can never be taken away. They’ll be state champions forever. It’s unbelievable and it’s so cool that we win a state on the same night that Bradley coach Ben Smith wins his first. But I’m just so proud of these kids,” Turner nodded after his team had improved to 24-2 with the three wins this weekend.
Pigeon Forge now has four runner-up finishes and two firsts in the last six years. Despite that success, Tiger coach Greg Foreman was brief and to the point with his post-match comments.
“I knew it would be a tough match and it was, but the turning point was the disqualification at 120. I know that was a judgement call by the referee and I won’t comment any more than that, but both teams have some outstanding kids. Tonight, Red Bank just happened to come out the winner,” he concluded.
CLASS A-AA CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH
RED BANK 34, PIGEON FORGE 30
(Match began at 220 Pounds)
106 -- Dymond Smith (PF) pinned Gage Swanson, 1:40;
113 – Blake Reichel (RB) major dec. Caleb York, 16-7;
120 – Gage Evans (RB) won by disqualification over Jacob Ruiter;
126 – Trent Comeaux (RB) dec. Elias Bond, 5-4;
132 – Jonah Bird (RB) dec. Seth Workman, 5-3 in overtime;
138 – Matthew Kieta (PF) pinned Cody Slatton, 2:47;
145 – Gabe McDuffie (RB) pinned Adam Baiamonte, :17;
152 – Franklin Darnell (PF) dec. Kaine Kell, 8-1;
160 – Gary Reagan (PF) pinned Jackson Hash, 4:16;
170 – Josh Croley (PF) dec. David Johnson, 2-0;
182 – Ethan Ottinger (PF) dec. Robert Perry, 8-3;
195 – Devin Crawl (RB) pinned Logan Harsson, :37;
220 – Anthony Baiamonte (PF) dec. Devon Suddeth, 5-3;
285 – Anthony Ottinger (RB) pinned James Stinnett, :20.