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Recovering Eagles sweep Patriots, Jaguars

By Michael Smith
The Examiner
Grain Valley's Shane Duckworth, front, and Blue Springs South's Gavin Mahurin in their 182-pound match Tuesday at Truman High School. Duckworth eked out an 8-7 decision to help the Eagles top the Jaguars 43-33.

After missing seven wrestlers just two weeks ago due to injury and illness, Grain Valley head coach Jeff Bowman is getting closer and closer to getting his full varsity lineup back.

He had a handful of wrestlers return in time to compete in Tuesday’s tri-dual against Truman and Blue Springs South, including 2020 state medalist Hunter Newsom. That helped the Eagles capture a 46-27 win over the Patriots and a 43-33 victory against the Jaguars at Truman High School. South defeated Truman 42-36.

Jayden Jacobson (160) and Brock Smith (120) also made their returns from COVID-19 quarantine along with Newsom. Bowman also noted that Dru Azcona and Donovan McBride, two of the Eagles’ top wrestlers, should be back soon, as well.

“It’s great to get those guys back,” Bowman said. “We are finally getting the band back together.”

Grain Valley's Cameron Mickelson, top, closes out a first-period pin of Truman's John Chapin in their 170-pound match Tuesday. Mickelson's win by fall helped the Eagles to a 46-27 win.

Grain Valley started off against Truman and got pins from Jacobson, Tanner Barker (138) and Cameron Mickelson (170). Newsom, Gavin Parks (106), Tyler Groves (113), Newsom and Andrew Czeschin (220) all won by forfeit. Smith earned a 11-1 major decision.

“Tanner Barker is our anchor,” Bowman said of his Class 3, No. 3-ranked wrestler according to the rankings. “He’s Mr Consistent throughout the year for the most part. He’s passing the eye test right now.”

The Patriots got forfeit victories from Elijah Wigfall (126) and Gray Cowdey-Mota (145). Senior Dylan McCutcheon got a pin in 1:37, Coleton Treloar (182) won by injury forfeit and Lucas Estes (132) earned a 12-6 decision.

Grain Valley's Hunter Newsom, top, closes out a pin of Blue Springs South's Cooper Boyles in their 195-pound match Tuesday at Truman High School. Newsom, in his first match in two weeks, helped the Eagles to a 43-33 win over South and a 46-27 win over host Truman.

Against the Jaguars, Newsom had his first match in weeks, getting a pin in 1:46 against Cooper Boyles.

“It’s a process because it’s a weird year with COVID and everything,” said Newsom, who’s ranked No. 2 in Class 3 in his weight class. “I am really excited to get back to work and be with my teammates.

“Cooper Boyles is a buddy of mine. It was a great, hard match. Luckily I came out on top.”

So did Parks. He went against a familiar opponent in Logan Mainard. He hooked Mainard in a cradle for a second-period pin.

“We grew up wrestling with each other so we were looking forward to this match,” Parks said. “I went out there and got it done.

“I am 23-2 now, but there are still things I want to do. I want to place at district, go to state and place there, too.”

Groves, Smith, Mickelson and Barker all got forfeit wins for Grain Valley. Justin Deweese (132) earned a 12-2 major decision and Shane Duckworth (182) squeaked out an 8-7 victory.

Grain Valley's Justin Deweese, back, throws Truman's Lucas Estes for a takedown in their 132-pound match Tuesday at Truman High School. Estes won a 12-6 decision but Grain Valley claimed a 46-27 victory.

For South, Tommy LaPour (220) got a pin in 1:23; Sean Rojas (285), Tyler Fields (126) and Jacob Williams (145) got forfeit victories; Trey Greiner (152) pinned his opponent in 33 seconds; and Kendall Outlaw (160) got a 3-2 win.

The Jaguars took on Truman in the final match of the night, and with the score tied at 36-all, Greiner got a pin in 3:06 for the deciding victory for South.

“The people I practice with help me out a lot and the coaches,” Greiner said. “The coaches work with me on my moves and (work) us hard and fast.”

LaPour was another Jaguar wrestler to finish 2-0 on the day. He’s coming off a second-place finish at the Suburban Conference Championships last weekend.

“The coaches really helped me improve a lot this year,” LaPour said. “My teammates pushed me a lot. This was a really great week. I faced an amazing wrestler in Xavier Doolin in the championship match. It’s starting to build my confidence and my double leg (takedown) is getting better.”

Blue Springs South's Tommy LaPour celebrates a win by fall in his 220-pound match Tuesday at Truman. LaPour went 2-0 on the night but the Jaguars went 1-1, defeating Truman but losing to Grain Valley.

Boyles, Rojas, Will Larsen (113) and Mainard won by forfeit and Taylor Williams (145) earned a pin.

“Being short-handed, I knew we would be in some tough matches,” said South coach Doug Black, who has five wrestlers in quarantine. “We left some points out there in both duals. We can’t do that – not when it’s January. It’s going to cost you big time, but we’ll get there.”

For Truman, McCutcheon celebrated Truman’s Senior Night with a pin against August Kienast.

“I was really happy with myself,” McCutcheon said. “I was pretty close to going to 145 tonight because we have a two-pound allowance. But I decided to go to 152 because I felt I had a better chance there.

Truman's Dylan McCutcheon, top, tries to take down Grain Valley's Anthony Greco in their 152-pound match Tuesday. McCutcheon earned a first-period pin but Grain Valley claimed a 46-27 victory.

“I knew the kids I was going to wrestle weren’t state champs, but they weren’t bad. I knew it wasn’t going to be easy and I knew I would have to fight.”

Nathan Noda (138), Treloar and Estes all earned pins for the Patriots. John Chapin (170) and Jericho Vhale (120) both won by forfeit.