BOILING SPRINGS — During a back-and-forth battle between sixth ranked Boiling Springs and 14th ranked Fort Mill, the Bulldogs momentum took a huge bite out of the Jackets in a 33-22 win in the second round of the 4A state playoffs.
With Fort Mill clinging to a narrow 16-15 lead, the Jackets dropped four of their last five matches, two of those by pin fall as they were knocked out of the playoffs.
They had a good team, said Fort Mill head coach Chris Brock. We had a lot of close matches that we didnt get the job done. We struggled with winning the tight matches.
Fort Mill finished 21-7 on the season, which by its own standards was considered a down year.
When you look at the wins and losses it looks good, but when your goals are higher than just being successful, it still isnt easy ending your season with a loss, Brock said.
The meet started out at the heavyweight division and Boiling Springs quickly went up 6-0 after taking decisions in the first two matches.
Fort Mill came back to tie things at 6-6 as junior Eddie Byrams pinned Riley Pence in the second period at 113 pounds. The Jackets took a 10-6 lead when junior Tyler Turner beat Jonathan Contreras 10-2 at 120 pounds.
Boiling Springs rallied to get decisions at 126, 132 and 138 pounds to retake the lead at 15-10.
Fort Mills Nick Leitten stopped the Jackets' skid at 145 pounds winning 6-0 over Cole Mangum and Malik Long gave the Jackets their last lead of the night, beating Logan Rojas at 152 pounds by a score of 5-4 to make the team score 16-15.
Then things unraveled for Fort Mill.
At 160 pounds, Fort Mills Brandon Mayer and Boiling Springs Asa Brown battled back and forth before Brown scooped up Mayer and slammed him hard to the mat. That slam, which apparently didnt get the attention of the two refs overseeing the match, led to Mayer getting pinned quickly afterwards and then having to receive attention from the training staff. Trainers focused on Mayer's right shoulder, icing it heavily and placing it in a sling.
That win moved the score to 21-16 in favor of the Bulldogs and put Boiling Springs ahead for good.
The Jackets lost at 170 pounds and 182 pounds, which put the score at 30-16 with just two matches left and mathematically clinched things for Boiling Springs.
Fort Mill added a win in the first of those two matches when junior BJ Hurst pinned Baxter Murphy in the first period.
Fort Mill had beaten Spring Valley 52-30 Saturday morning before facing Boiling Springs in the afternoon. The Jackets went up 52-12 against Spring Valley before purposely forfeiting three weight classes to finish the match.
Picking up wins for the Jackets in that early match were Zach Dulcie (220), John Brotemarkle (106), Jake Strong (126), Danny Angel (132), Byrams (113), Turner (120), Leitten (145), Long (152) and Mayer (160).
Boiling Springs had shutout Easley winning 74-0 in their morning match.
Fort Mill's wrestling season is not over with the playoffs; 11 wrestlers from the 13-member squad qualified for the individual Upper State tournament in less than two weeks.