Silver Knights Competitive at OVAC
The Silver Knights’ wrestling team participated in the Ron Mauk OVAC Wrestling tournament January 14-16 at the Wheeling Civic Center. Coach Chad Snider said he was really happy with how the boys did at OVAC’s and even though they didn’t have anyone place, several wrestled very competitive.
“I have never had this many wrestlers make Friday’s evening session,” he said.
After moving down to the 138 weight class, Mike Doyle, a sophomore, has been showing definite improvement.
“Mike does a very good job at staying in matches and rarely gets pinned,” Snider said. “As he develops his style, you will see his name more often in the match stats.”
Doyle was pinned in the opening round, but went onto win two consolation matches. One was a pin over Robinson of Union Local in the first round of the consolations. Later in the day, Doyle defeated Westover of Southern Local by decision.
In the 145 weight class , Chase Cooper , a senior, added 3 wins to his record. His opening match was very close to pinning the 6th seed, Mark Johns of Edison, but the official stopped the pinning combination when Johns tapped out (often times wrestlers do this if they are injured). Johns then pinned Cooper putting him into the consolation bracket, where he pinned Dodds of Harrison Central, and then Pickenpaugh from Caldwell. He then suffered a rough 15-1 loss to Wright of Beaver Local, knocking him out of the tournament.
Brandon Keys was very close to earning a spot on the podium. Keys wins included decisions over Pritchard of Magnolia, Taylor of Union Local, and McGaha of Wheeling Park before losing to Mays the 8th seed from Beaver Local by a 5-4 decision in the last seconds of the match. Keys looked to have the match sealed, in the final seconds when Mays shot in flat and Brandon ended up sitting on top facing his feet. It was an awkward position when Brandon went to spin for the score, he slid off of Mays, narrowly missing putting Mays to his back.
The Silver Knights’ last wrestler to make some noise was heavyweight, Cory Chipps. He lost his first match by decision to Woodburn of Beaver Local, but rallied to win his next three. Chipps pinned Willard of Morgantown and Fogle of Toronto. Chipps wrestled very well in his following match defeating Gilliam from Harrison Central 4-0. He later narrowly lost 2-1 to Six from Clay-Battelle.
“I was happy with Cory’s performance, because Six pinned him earlier in the season,”Snider said.
Chipps showed dominance towards the end of the match, but wasn’t able to draw a stalling call that coach Snider felt was necessary due to the opponent blocking off on bottom and not really trying to improve his position.
“I was somewhat disappointed that we did not have anyone place, but not in how the boys wrestled,” Snider said. “I hope that being so close to placing at this tournament only motivates them in and out of the practice room for later competitions.”
The Knights ended the tournament in sixth place in their division and will be in action tonight at St. Mary’s in the battle for the Middle Island Trophy in a quad against Doddridge, Ritchie and St. Mary’s.