Moore wins two at state wrestling meet
Published 8:07 am Saturday, February 23, 2008
WINSTON-SALEM — Justin “Weasel” Moore moved two steps closer to the awards platform on Friday.
The Washington Pam Pack sophomore won both of his matches at the N.C. High School Athletic Association Class 3-A state wrestling championships, which are being held at the Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum. He’s now guaranteed at least a sixth-place medal.
Moore (38-5), who is 77-13 over the last two years, picked up a 2-0 decision over Concord senior Michael Poppiti (39-7) in the first round of their 160-pound match. He followed that up with a 10-5 decision over West Rowan senior Nicholas McGorda (32-2) in the second round of the championship matches.
Moore, who went 2-2 at last year’s state meet, will face Parkland senior Greg Gainey (66-1) in the semifinals.
If Moore wins, he’ll wrestle for a state championship in the evening.
The other semi-final pits Mooresville junior Chris Hill (21-3) against Morehead senior Victor Cresenzo (40-11).
Senior Bryant Gardner was pinned by Ragsdale junior Blair Fewell (48-9) in 1:53 in their 145-pound first-round match.
Gardner (33-14) stayed alive in the state tournament with a 12-6 decision over Rockingham County junior Bradley Merriman (32-14) in the first round of the consolations.
The Pam Pack senior will face Union Pines senior Tony Fernandez (54-7) in this morning’s second round of the consolations.
This is Gardner’s first appearance at state.
Junior Martelles Jones was pinned by Southwest Guilford senior Ben Lord (41-2) in 2:26 in their first-round match at 171 pounds.
Jones (23-23) saw his season come to an end after dropping a 6-3 decision to East Rowan sophomore Thomas Lowe (37-6) in the first round of the consolations.
This was the first trip to the state meet for Jones.
Junior Johnnie Smallwood was pinned by Glenn senior Nick Davila (36-10) in 3:42 in their first-round match at 189 pounds.
Smallwood (25-15) was knocked out of the tournament after he lost a 5-2 decision to Northeast Guilford senior Daniel Patrick (32-8) in the first round of the consolations.
Smallwood went 0-2 at the state meet for the second straight year.
Wrestling will resume today at 8:30 a.m. with second-round consolation matches and the semi-finals. The finals are slated to begin at 6 p.m.