The Saline Hornet wrestling team finished the SEC Dual meet portion of their season tonight with match ups against SEC Red foe Monroe and SEC White foe Chelsea. The night proved to be very exciting as the Hornets went 1-1 on the night.
Saline jumped out to an early 18-6 lead against Monroe after the first five matches. Starting things out for the Hornets was 189 Josh Brannan who earned a hard fought 6-3 decision followed by a forfeit for Zach Sabin. Monroe got on the board with a pin at 285 but Saline answered with a forfeit for Brent Marvin and a hard fought 7-5 decision for David Gould at 112. The Hornets would need every point of their 18-6 lead as the meet went back and forth the rest of the way. Monroe got a pin at 119, team score 18-12. Kolton Malinczak earned a tech fall at 125, team score 23-12. Monroe got a tech fall at 130, team score 23-17. Daniel Poupore received a forfeit at 135, team score 29-17. Elliott Hill earned a decision 8-2 at 140, team score 32-17. Monroe earned a tech fall at 145 and a pin at 152, team score 32-28. At 160, Cade Gilless put the meet out of reach with an impressive 7-2 victory over a very tough Monroe wrestler, team score 35-28. Monroe did get a pin at 171 to tighten the score to 35-34. With this win the Hornets have defeated all of their SEC Red opponents in dual meet competition.
The Hornet’s night did not get any easier as they had to face a very tough Chelsea squad in their second dual of the night. This meet featured some great back and forth action all night with no team winning more than two matches in a row. Zach Sabin struck first for the Hornets with decision at 215. Monroe followed with a pin at 285. Marvin pinned his opponent in :44 sec for Saline to put the Hornets up 9-6. Chelsea earned the only back to back victories of the meet at 112 and 119 with a surprise pin and a decision. Chelsea took a 15-9 lead that they would never relinquish. The Hornets continued to battle with Malinczak earning a hard fought decision in overtime at 125. Chelsea earned a tech fall at 130. Daniel Poupore made quick work of his opponent at 135 with a fall in :22. Team score at this time was 20-18 Chelsea. Chelsea earned a pin at 140. Elliott Hill came back with a well deserved major decision verse a quality opponent at 145. Chelsea answered with a pin at 152. Saline answered at 160 as Jaylen Caruana earned a pin for the Hornets. The Hornets found themselves down 28-32 with two matches to go and Saline needing to win both. Unfortunately, the comeback was not in the cards as Chelsea won a back and forth battle at 160 to take an insurmountable lead 28-36. Josh Brannan finished strong with a decision at 189 for a final team score of 31-36.
Saline is 5-0 in the SEC Red, 10-2 in overall SEC competition, and 17-9 overall.
The Hornets will compete this weekend at home as they are hosting the Second Annual Ryan Estrada Duals.