Battlefield, Robinson excel but can’t reach the top in 6A
Bobcats, Rams capture five individual crowns; Colonial Forge takes title
chesapeake, va. — Battlefield produced three individual champions and two Robinson wrestlers won titles, but both top-shelf Northern Virginia programs were left looking up at another familiar powerhouse in Saturday’s 6A state tournament at Oscar Smith.
Colonial Forge used its depth to run away with the team title, finishing with 159.5 points, followed by Robinson with 112 and Battlefield with 107.5. Woodbridge was fifth with 86.5.
Colonial Forge had just one individual champion but also had one runner-up, four third-place medalists, one fourth and two fifths. The Eagles went into Saturday with a 13.5-point lead over Robinson, stretched it to 37.5 in the consolation semifinals and led by 53.5 going into the finals.
Robinson went 2-2 in the finals, getting a title right away at 106 pounds from junior Aaron Howell, who defeated Landstown’s Bryce Sanderlin, 7-1.
Howell emphasized that he and his teammates were not going to let the team title pursuit be disruptive.
“We just focus on our individual matches and doing our best,” Howell said. “We wrestle our style and do what we have to do.”
The Rams’ other title came in dramatic fashion near the end of the meet. In the 220 final, sophomore Thomas Mukai pinned South County’s James Momon 23 seconds into the second period.
“He was a little high, and I was able to swim past his head and get him on his back,” said a jubilant Mukai, who gave his father credit for his state title.
“I have to thank my dad for starting me in wrestling,” Mukai said. “He was my first training partner.”
Robinson, fresh off winning the 6A North region title, got runnerup finishes from Nik Gerard at 120 and Tyler Hazard at 145. Hazard fell to one of Battlefield’s three winners — Zac Feight, who pinned Hazard 28 seconds into overtime.
“The whole match I was just thinking that I want it more,” said Feight, a junior who battled from behind in the third period to take the bout into overtime.
Feight and his fellow Battlefield champions all pointed to next year after their victories.
“Our goal is to be the dominant team like Colonial Forge was this year,” Feight said.
Sophomore Brandon Wittenberg got the Bobcats their first title with a 4-1 victory over Tallwood’s Thomas Island in the 113 final.
“I came out strong and kept the pressure on him,” Wittenberg said. “All the conditioning that we do gets the job done. The coaches push us to our limits.
“We’re a young team. We work harder than any other team in the state. I know for a fact that next year is going to be our year.”
Battlefield junior River Curtis used a late flurry to edge Colonial Forge’s Marc Garafalo, 4-2, in the 132 final. The match was tied 1-1 well into the third period.
“He knew what I wanted to do, and I knew what he wanted to do,” Curtis said. “In the end, I think I just pushed the pace a little more than he did.”
McLean’s Brendan Grammes won the 152-pound title, holding off Battlefield’s Ronald Miller, 2-0.
Lake Braddock’s Tyler Matheny defeated Woodbridge’s Zyon Betts, 4-0, in the 182 final.
Spartans claim two 5A titles
Broad Run’s Michael Battista (170) and John Birchmeier (220) won individual titles in the 5A championship to power the Spartans to a fifth-place finish.
Brooks Pointe won the team title with 143 points and was followed by Mountain View (134) and Potomac (115). Potomac’s Devin Sweeney won at 106, Edison’s Robert Garnett took the 138pound title and Stone Bridge’s Arsam Jafaryzad won at 152.
Battlefield’s Zac Feight pins Robinson’s Tyler Hazard in overtime to claim the 145-pound individual championship at Oscar Smith.