Lions surge to open­ing-night vic­tory

Low, mid-weight classes carry the day for QA’s

The Star Democrat - - SPORTS - By DAVID INSLEY dins­[email protected]­dem.com

SAL­IS­BURY — David Stricker’s bout of open­ing-night nerves had been a con­cern for some time.

“You ask my wife, and she’d tell you I was ner vous about tonight for a while,” Queen Anne’s County High’s head wrestling coach said. “It’s been on my mind. I’m glad to get here and get it taken care of, es­pe­cially to come out with the win.”

Stricker’s wrestlers ral­lied from an early 18-0 deficit Wed­nes­day at James M. Ben­nett, win­ning all but one of their eight bouts by pin­fall for a 46-34 vic­tory that got rid of their coach’s but­ter­flies — at least for a night.

“Ben­nett’s a good pro­gram, and early, I was a lit­tle wor­ried,” said Stricker, whose team be­gan with a pin­fall loss at 182 pounds, a for­feit at 195, and an­other loss by fall at 220. “But then, the lower weight classes, and the guys in the mid-classes came through.”

An­gelo Moore (285) bat­tled Ben­nett’s Trevon­tae Hodges through a score­less first pe­riod be­fore pin­ning Hodges mid­way through the sec­ond pe­riod, draw­ing the Lions within 18-6.

Two weight classes later the Lions were even. Fresh­man Lo­gan Unkart (106) won by pin­fall in 1:06, and 113-pounder Michael Corder picked up a for­feit to start the sea­son.

Pa­trick Hugues gave Ben­nett back the lead at 120, tak­ing a 4-0 lead on a take­down and two near-fall points in the first on the way to a 10-1 ma­jor

de­ci­sion. But then Queen Anne’s started its vic­tory string.

The Lions notch falls at 126 (Aaron Pick­ett, 1:58), 132 (Hunter Charles, 1:11), 145 (Eric Smith, 2:55), and 152 (Ja­cob West­fall, 4:57). Isaac Mur­doch (138) picked up a 10-1 ma­jor de­ci­sion.

The 28-point surge put the match all but out of reach, at 46-22, with two bouts to go. Ben­nett took both by pin­fall, Kyshon Watkins win­ning 160, and Yoon­sah Nam tak­ing 171.

“It was a good start for us,”

Ben­nett rookie head coach Justin Bradley said. “But we had a lit­tle trou­ble get­ting some guys out for the lower weight classes . ... And we’ve got to wait a while for some of our guys to make weight a lit­tle bit later on.

“We’ve had a lot of backand-forth with Queen Anne’s over the past few years,” Bradley said. “They al­ways fight hard; they’re al­ways well-coached. We’ve just got to move be­yond this and keep im­prov­ing.”

The Clip­pers’ next meet is the Andy Perez Me­mo­rial tour­na­ment, a two-day event be­gin­ning Fri­day at Cam­bridge-South Dorch­ester. The Lions are off un­til Dec. 12, when they host North Caro­line.

GIRLS’ BAS­KET­BALL N. Caro­line 55, Cr­is­field 37

RIDGELY — Hailey Tem­ple led all scor­ers with 21, as the Bull­dogs won their opener at home. Kandice Thomas added 15 points, Han­nah Ring­gold put in eight, and Hailey Ch­ester scored six.

Kayla Wil­son’s 18 led the Crab­bers (0-1). The Bull­dogs visit Ap­po­quin­imink (Del.) at 6 p.m. Fri­day. Cr­is­field’s next game is Mon­day at 5:30 p.m. at Wi­comico.

Eas­ton 54, Colonel 7

AMER­I­CAN CORNER — Myia Jeter scored 16 points and Emily Grif­fith and Abby Farr added seven each to pace the War­riors in their opener.

Gun­ston 43, SSPP 20

CENTREVILLE — Annabelle Gille­spie had eight points and sopho­more point guard Bri­anna Bar­rett-Kennedy fin­ished with seven to lead the Herons in an East­ern Shore In­de­pen­dent Ath­letic Con­fer­ence clash.

Gun­ston (1-1, 1-0) broke the game open with an 18-point third quar­ter.

BOYS’ BAS­KET­BALL Gun­ston 64, Wye River 18

WYE MILLS — Sopho­more Kylee Rush­ton had 14 points while fresh­man Ash­ton Sea­man had 10 points to lead the Herons.

Gun­ston (1-1) has its ESIAC opener on Tues­day at Worces­ter Prep.

PHOTO BY DAVID INSLEY

Queen Anne’s County 138-pounder Isaac Mur­doch works from atop James M. Ben­nett op­po­nent Ai­dan Hugues dur­ing Wed­nes­day night’s con­test in Sal­is­bury. Mur­doch won the bout by ma­jor de­ci­sion, 10-1.

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