Despite winning four out of six matches, Fort Mill High wrestling coach Chris Brock said he was disappointed in how his team performed in finishing ninth out of 16 teams at the U.S. Military Duals at Lexington High School over the weekend.
Fort Mill won the consolation bracket, but after losing to Summerville and being upset by White Knoll, the Jackets fell into a position where at most they could wrestle for a ninth-place finish.
“I am certainly not happy or content with how we performed,” Brock said. “We have got a ways to go. We have got to get more heart and grit. We were hot and cold this weekend. Things are so unpredictable when you don’t have your normal starters in the lineup.”
The Jackets are still without key wrestlers such as heavyweight Zach Dulcie, who Brock calls “day-to-day” while nursing a knee injury.
The dual tournament pitted Fort Mill, ranked sixth in 4A, against six other teams over the weekend. On Friday, they wrestled Carolina Forest, winning 43-32, but fell to third-ranked Summerville 37-26.
That put them wrestling White Knoll Saturday morning. Fort Mill had beaten White Knoll earlier in the season 44-19. However, the two teams wrestled each other closely and Fort Mill had a 25-24 lead before dropping three out of the final four matches to lose 39-31.
That loss bumped the Jackets out of the main bracket into the consolation bracket.
Whatever Brock said to his team after the White Knoll match worked, because from there they dominated Ridge View, winning 72-10 and despite struggling early with Chapin and Dutch Fork, the Jackets came from behind in both. Against Chapin, Fort Mill trailed 27-18, but won the last five matches to to win 43-27. The Jackets trailed Dutch Fork 27-21 before winning the last four matches to get the 41-33 victory.
Leading the way during the tournament was senior Nick Leitten, who went 6-0 over the weekend and remained undefeated on the season.
Juniors Eddie Byrams, BJ Hurst and Tyler Turner also dominated their weight classes and were 6-0 in the event. Freshman Caleb Cisco and sophomores Nigel Bostick and Dan Angel got four wins in the tournament. Senior Will Hooker and freshman John Brotemarkle both earned three wins.
Fort Mill opens its Region III-AAAA schedule this week with matches against Northwestern on the road and then York and Clover at home.