Washington’s Devon Van Cura (standing) flips his opponent during the Pam Pack’s loss to West Carteret on Tuesday. Van Cura would go on to win his match 18-3. (WDN Photo/Brian Haines)

Archived Story

Pack falls to Patriots

Published 10:09pm Tuesday, January 22, 2013

The Washington wrestling team entered Tuesday’s match with West Carteret looking to remain in a tie for first place in the Coastal Conference but the Pam Pack’s dreams of a conference title took a major hit as it fell 47-23 to the Patriots.
The Pam Pack got down early and could not right the ship as West Carteret jumped out to a 17-0 lead and never looked back.
Washington got strong performances from David Giordano, Jason Gardner, Devon Van Cura and Ian Stroud to name a few, but it was not enough to lift the Pack past the Pats.
“Not to take anything from West Carteret because they are a really good team, but a lot of the time my team just did not come out ready for the challenge,” Washington coach Daniel Riggs said. “First place in the conference was on the line and we just didn’t step up and didn’t want it enough.”
The Pam Pack fell 12-0 after Lane Jackson was pinned and the team had to forfeit a match in the 106-pound division. Riggs tried to rally his troops after that and pleaded for more intensity but the Pack only provided it in brief flickers.
After Washington’s Cameron Davenport fell to Dustin Smith the Pack trailed 17-0, but would get its first points of the evening when Jason Gardner delivered a 10-2 victory in the 120-pound division to make the score 17-3.
Giordano followed up with a strong effort as he pinned Greg Simpson with 54 seconds remaining in the second round.
“Giordano really stepped it up tonight,” Riggs said. “The kid that he wrestled is pretty good and he went out there and took it to him. … He finished his shot and that’s what we’ve been preaching to him since Day 1.”
The Pack went cold after that and lost four straight as Chris Bohn, Ranardo Wanliss and Jordan Grazier each lost their matches and WHS had to forfeit in the 138-pound category. That slide put the Pack behind 38-9 before Van Cura busted the skid with an 18-3 victory over Andrew Moore.
“I was very pleased with his match because he only had a couple of seconds left and he needed three points for the tech-fall (technical pin),” Riggs said. “Most guys would have been like, ‘I’m fine with what I got’ but he kept going and got us the tech-fall at the buzzer.”
Washington would drop the next two matches as Ned Batts and Chris Coogan fell to their opponents and the Patriots lead increased to 47-14.
However, Washington finished the night strong as Jay Campbell earned a 7-4 victory before Ian Stroud, who was bumped up to the 220 classification, pinned his opponent in the first round.
“He was trying a move that we’ve been trying to teach him and it worked tonight,” Riggs said. “We’ve been trying to tell him that it works – (former state champ) Marquin (Hill) used to do it  — and tonight it worked. It’s a bear hug and you pull the guy across your hip and when he did it he got the kid right on his back and pinned him.”

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