WINSTON-SALEM – Perennial wrestling powers Catawba Bandys, Eden Morehead and Cary took top team honors in the North Carolina High School Athletic Association state wrestling championships on Saturday night at the Lawrence Joel Veterans Memorial Coliseum.
Bandys, which shared the 1-A/2A tournament title in 2004 with Brevard and won it outright last year, had 114.5 points to 96.5 for runner-up Croatan. The victorious Trojans had beaten Croatan in the finals of the NCHSAA dual team championships two weeks ago.
Three Bandys wrestlers earned state titles, including Patrick MacIntosh at 140, Byron Sigmon at 152, which was his third state championship, and William Gilleland at 160.
North Henderson and Salisbury tied for third with 59 points and Mayodan Dalton McMichael was fifth with 53.5.
Chris Bullins of McMichael won his third consecutive state title and set a new North Carolina high school consecutive career win streak mark with 159, beating previously unbeaten Austin Ollis of Polk County in the 171 pound finals. Mullins was named the 1-A/2-A tournament’s Most Outstanding Wrestler.
In 3-A action, Bobby Shanor at 119 and 160-pounder Allen Shelton won state championships to lead the way for Morehead, which also won the 3-A dual team title a couple of weeks ago.
Morehead’s 108.5 points gave it a 18.5-point margin over runner-up West Carteret, which moved into second with 90 points. Jamestown Ragsdale was third at 87.5, followed by Winston-Salem parkland with 73 and Hickory St. Stephens with 72.
Chip Reed of Kernersville Glenn, the 215-pound champion, was named the Most Outstanding Wrestler of the 3-A championships.
In the 4-A championships, Nick Koren at 135 and Thomas Ferguson at 140 earned state titles for Cary, which helped the Imps hold on to the advantage in the team scoring. Mount Tabor countered with championship sat 171 by Austin Trotman and Anthony Clinton at 189 while Harry Glenn at 103 finished second.
Cary had 122 points to 115 for Mount Tabor, with Watauga third with 83. East Gaston was fourth with 79 and 2006 dual team champion Davie was fifth with 73.
It was the Imps’ third tournament title in the last four years and eighth in the 20 years since the 4-A schools have had their own championship.
Watauga had a trio of grapplers to win state championships, including 112-pounder Travis Coffey, 119-pounder Matthew Moretz and 130-pounder Jacob Earp. Coffey was selected as the Most Outstanding Wrestler of the championship.
Justin Sparrow of East Gaston won his third state title, taking the 145-pound crown.
This is the fourth year that Lawrence Joel Coliseum has hosted the event. Wendy’s and the Carolina Ford Dealers are the presenting sponsor for the state wrestling championships, and the event is sponsored by the Greater Winston-Salem Sports Commission and the Winston-Salem Convention and Visitors Bureau.
The NCHSAA, with a strong tradition in wrestling, has been offering a championship in the sport since the 1930’s. Classified championships have been held for 20 years.