KETTERING — Northmont’s varsity wrestling team scored a 51-15 victory Thursday over Lakota East at Trent Arena in its first match of the evening during the Kettering-Fairmont Alumni Duals.
Andrew Knick, a sophomore and state qualifier last season, got the Thunderbolts off to a solid start by winning his match (132 pounds) by a fall (pin) in 2:55 over Sean Ackerman.
Northmont forfeited matches at 120, 126 and 138 pounds but won every match in head-to-head competition.
“We gave up a lot of points on forfeits, but I thought we had a chance to win probably 75 percent of the matches and we ended up winning all of them,” said Northmont Coach Scott Newburg. “We had some kids that really squeezed some wins out that might not have happened a couple of weeks ago. We’ve really picked up our conditioning. We had four freshmen starting tonight, Eli Newburg, Colin Mellott, Noah Wilkins and Phillip Tracey, but it is a big difference when you move from junior high to high school because the matches go from four and a half minutes to six minutes, so that is like wrestling an extra period. It’s a little bit of an adjustment.”
Sophomore James Wilson (145 pounds) followed Knick’s victory by winning by a fall in 4:22 against Connor Rose.
Senior Ezra Smith also won by a fall in 2:39 in the 152 pound match against Brennan Williams.
Eli Newburg (160 pounds) followed with a 7-4 decision over Elijah Wood.
Senior Fouad Saleh (170 pounds) scored a 3-2 decision over Hayden King.
Philip Tracey (182 pounds) scored a 19-11 major decision over Brayden Theis.
Senior Dylan Moran, a district qualifier last season, was winning his match against Drew Katona when Katona threw three consecutive illegal forearm shivers to Moran’s face. Katona was disqualified and Northmont was awarded six team points while Moran received treatment for cuts from the unnecessary roughness.
In the final contested match freshman Colin Mellott scored a 7-1 decision over Kyle Collett in the 106 pound match.
“I am real proud and impressed with our kids,” Newburg added. “We get better in every practice. We always tell the kids that if you make a mistake, make an aggressive mistake. We want our opponents backing up and that is what we are doing. Any mistakes we make in matches we go back and correct it on Monday and Tuesday in practice and hopefully we don’t make the same mistakes again in our next match. If we make other mistakes we correct those and hopefully by the end of the season we cut it down so our mistakes are at a minimum so that we can win some good matches against some good teams.”
While Northmont was winning its match against Lakota East the Fairmont Firebirds scored a 49-24 victory over Cincinnati Oak Hills. Northmont went on to face Oak Hills later in evening and scored a 46-28 victory. Winning both matches on the night were Colin Mellott, Andrew Knick, James Wilson, Ezra Smith, Fouad Saleh, Philip Tracey, Dylan Moran, Bryan Heyward, and Seth Frantz. Northmont won 20 of the 22 matches it wrestled.
The Thunderbolts will return to action on Wednesday and Thursday, Dec. 27 & 28 when they compete in the annual Greater Miami Valley Wrestling (Coaches) Association Holiday Tournament at Butler High School.