All four local wrestling teams are out of the dual-team playoffs as three fell on the road.
The three road teams all had incredibly hard opponents for the opening round.
North Surry (32-3) had to face Thomasville and the Bulldog fans in the first round. The Greyhounds, ranked second in 2A, fell to the Bulldogs, ranked fifth in the state.
Mount Airy (32-14) faced West Wilkes, the second-ranked team in 1A. Despite missing three starters, the Bears still managed a respectable 44-24 loss to the Blackhawks.
Surry Central (26-11) lost 45-33 to Newton-Conover, the fourth-ranked team in 2A.
The Bears were missing 106-pounder Alex Howard (torn meniscus in his knee), 126-pounder Jackson Blizzard (skin infection at a scrape) and Triston Mabry (pneumonia).
Coach Steve Braune said he had Mabry weigh in even though he was sick, just to try to use a little strategy with West Wilkes.
It was pretty flattering to Mabry that the Blackhawks bumped up their 145-pounder to 152 to avoid Mabry. Jorge Lima is arguably the best wrestler in the state at 145, but moved to earn a technical fall over Andrew Moore.
Braune said he and co-coach Michael Bodnar were very proud of their squad for managing 24 points against an elite team.
Dallas Smith (160) earned a fall, as did Zaqwan Dobson (195) and Mason Timmerman (220).
After Mason’s match, the score was 18-11 for the Bears.
The home crowd was very loud at the start of the match and after Lima’s tech fall, noted Braune, but those three pins silenced the fans.
With Howard, Blizzard and Mabry in the lineup, it’s anybody’s match, he said.
For Surry Central, Coach Stephen Priddy said, “We had a great year. I’m proud of every one of them.”
Newton-Conover forfeited a few weights to some of Central’s best wrestlers like Bryant White, Wes Brown, Nathon Bautista and Kevin Pack, Priddy said.
The weights that were wrestled were decidedly in favor of Newton-Conover. Only Zack Martin (160) won his weight for the Eagles.
“It’s been a long season,” said Priddy. “The dual session is over now. I couldn’t be happier with these guys being 26-11. Now have to switch over our mindset to the individual play.”
Priddy said he won’t know for another week how many of our local wrestlers will be in the playoffs.
The coaches will meet next Wednesday to discuss seeding for the regional tournament.
With the long ride back from Thomasville, North Surry was unavailable for comment.