CVCA tops South for W.Va. Duals crown

PARKERSBURG – Nick Havener’s pin with 32 seconds left in the opening period during his 195-pound match against Parkersburg South’s Matt Dixon sealed the West Virginia Duals team title here Saturday inside Memorial Fieldhouse as Cuyahoga Valley Christian Academy defended its crown by besting the Patriots, 35-27.

Despite giving up forfeits at both 106 to Logan Ball and to Patriot heavyweight Dane Mills, the Royals left town with the top prize and didn’t lose a single dual during the two-day tournament.

In the championship finals, South led 6-0 after Ball’s forfeit, but Ryan Bennett came out aggressive versus Patriot Lance Hill and cut the deficit in half following a 5-3 decision at 113.

Parkersburg South’s Braidon Knotts managed to avoid a pin against Ohio State recruit and the nation’s top-ranked 120-pounder in Nathan Tomasello for 3:35, but the Royals took the lead 9-6 and never trailed again. Tomasello pinned his way through the tournament.

CVCA proceeded to capture four of the next five matches to take control as it built a 26-9 cushion.

Josh Decatur scored an 11-2 major decision versus Patriot 126-pounder Kyle Knotts and Jordan Quiocho, who earlier got a takedown with six seconds left in overtime to edge Parkersburg’s Trapper Hays, 3-1, was doubled up 6-3 by Royal 132-pounder Andy Dobben.

Although Tyler Richards nipped Royal Ricky Simonelli at 138 via a 6-4 decision, CVCA followed with a 9-1 major decision at 145 thanks to Jeff Hojnacki topping Jake Alexander and a pin at 152 when Chip Sturek lost in 3:12 to Matt Dobben.

Parkersburg South, which returns home for senior night on Thursday versus Cabell Midland and George Washington, also got wins by Briar Shively (160), Tyler Newhart-Koreski (182) and 220-pounder Zach Haddix. Shively got a mat slapper on Mike Meadows in 2:33 while Newhart-Koreski registered a takedown with 27 seconds left in the match to score a 4-2 win versus Noah Havender, who recorded the first takedown. Haddix also had a 4-2 decision against Paul Gibson. At 170, Royal Tyler Maclellan blanked Drake Mills, 3-0.

“That was awesome,” PSHS head coach Donna Dixon said of Quiocho’s victory versus Hays, last year’s 120-pound Class AAA state runner-up.

The Patriots, who defeated rival PHS earlier this season, 44-28, knocked off head coach Chris Way’s Big Reds 48-25 on Saturday afternoon.

“When you look at the PHS match, we improved our score this time,” coach Dixon added. “I think we’re moving in the right direction.”

PHS finished fourth after suffering a 34-30 defeat to Dayton Christian. Springboro’s 64-14 victory against Roane County placed the Raiders sixth while Hedgesville took seventh after a 46-34 win against Lewis County. Thanks to Brooke’s 38-28 victory against Cabell Midland, the Bruins took ninth.

“The good thing is some of the kids are starting to win the close matches,” Way said of his Big Reds, who will conduct the Mountain State Athletic Conference tournament next Saturday.

“This weekend we were in the fight in a lot of matches that came down to the third period and overtime and we were able to grind out and win some of those we weren’t able to earlier in the season. We still need to progress more.”