WESTON – Julius Hobbs and Tyler Cutright won Big 10 Conference wrestling championships for the Buckhannon-Upshur Buccaneers Saturday at Lewis County High School.
Hobbs won his 120-pound weight class while Cutright claimed the 138-pound division.
Hobbs wasted little time in the tournament earning three quick pin falls on his way to the championship.
He pinned Bridgeport’s Ashton Nardella in his opening match in 1:29, pinned Shawn Kelley of Grafton in 33 seconds and won the title by pin over Fairmont Senior’s Marko Tarley in 1:40.
“Julius was the stand out of the weekend,” remarked Buckhannon-Upshur head coach Jacob Orr. “He pinned his way through the tournament and wrestled a grand total of about 3 ½ minutes. He had an absolute dominating performance.”
The sophomore is now 41-7 on the season.
Cutright had to work just a little bit harder for his championship than his teammate Hobbs.
He won by technical fall over Joel Meyers of East Fairmont in his opener, won by another technical fall over Clayton Moore in the semi-finals and then won the title by an 8-2 decision over Tanner Hoskinson of East Fairmont.
“TC did a nice job of going out and taking care of business when the whistle blew,” noted Orr.
Cutright, now 41-6 on the season, became a four-time conference place winner.
The two titles helped Buckhannon-Upshur to a runner-up spot in the 13-team event.
East Fairmont won the Big 10 title with 208.5 points while the Bucs owned 148.5.
Fairmont Senior was third with 146 while Bridgeport was fourth with 138.
“This was our best conference finish since 2011,” noted Orr.
Jacob Smithson earned runner-up honors for the Bucs in the 160-pound division just missing out on a championship.
He earned a bye in the first round and then won an 8-1 decision over East Fairmont’s Grant Postelwhait.
In the closest of matches in the title round, he lost a 2-1 decision to Austin Gibson of Bridgeport.
Smithson now has a 39-7 record.
Three Bucs earned third-place finishes – Austin McCartney (126), Breagan Pearson (145) and Alex Bennett (195).
McCartney won his first bout by pin in 4:51 over Devin Barnes of Liberty but lost in the semis to eventual champion Mike Jones of Fairmont Senior by a 12-5 decision. He rebounded to win a 12-10 decision over East Fairmont’s Chance Rundle and won the third/fourth-place match by technical fall in 4:16 over Barnes again.
Pearson beat Preston’s Wayne Cosner in his opener but lost a close 8-7 decision to David Williams of North Marion. He came back to beat Fairmont Senior’s Angelo Manzo by fall in 4:05 and won a 2-1 decision over Bridgeport’s Aiden Gibson in the third/fourth-place bout.
Bennett won an 11-2 major decision over Bridgeport’s Carson Demotto in his first match but lost a 5-2 decision to Preston’s Jacob Gregg. He then downed East Fairmont’s Gavin Hissam by a 5-0 decision and pinned Philip Barbour’s Brandon Kyle in 1:33 in the third/fourth place-match.
Tucker Hurst (132 pounds) took fourth place getting wins over Preston’s Brendan Pacholke by pin Lewis County’s Caden Oldaker by pin, a 6-4 decision over Fairmont Senior’s Tavian Richardson and a 12-3 major decision win over Liberty’s Raiden Childers.
“Tucker had a great showing as he was seeded seventh but wound up fourth,” said Orr.
Two other wrestlers placed for the Bucs as Todd Cutlip won two matches to finish fifth in the 285-pound division and Aiden Wilson won one match to finish in sixth place in the 106-pound division.
“I’m proud of what the team accomplished,” concluded Orr. “Both senior leaders in Austin and Tyler made it back to the podium to become four-time conference place winners.”
The Bucs will return to the mat this Friday and Saturday in the regional championships to be held at Morgantown High School.
1. East Fairmont 208.5; 2. Buckhannon-Upshur 148.5; 3. Fairmont Senior 146; 4. Bridgeport 138; 5. North Marion 130; 6. Grafton 114; 7. Liberty 95; 8. Lewis County 85; 9. Lincoln 76; 10. Philip Barbour 66; 11. Preston 58; 12. Elkins 19; 13. Robert C. Byrd 0.