FAIRMONT — Hulking Fairmont Senior heavyweight and defending state champion Zach Frazier generally makes a mockery of his foes on the mat, pile driving and pancaking them into submission before even 30 ticks come off the clock.
Overmatched opponents from South Harrison and Doddridge County followed the outline accordingly Wednesday at the 201st Fairmont Senior Field House as Frazier notched pins in 14 and 12 seconds, respectively.
Grafton’s Garrett Ware, however, a distinguished wrestler himself who placed fifth in the state tournament a year ago, presented a worthy opponent for Frazier, molding a situation of such rarity it couldn’t be missed.
“I think a lot of people kind of waited around to watch that match. That was one of the reasons why they stuck around,” said FSHS coach Mark Delligatti with the Frazier-Ware bout being the last of the quad match.
“I knew I had a good one, so I was excited for it,” Frazier said. “It’s always fun to compete.”
The two behemoths went at it, locking their arms and heads together in the early going, each attempting a subtle positional shift to use the massive frame of the other against themselves with their momentum tumbling downward. Neither fell for the gambit as the bout remained scoreless after the first round.
Frazier took a 1-0 lead with an escape off bottom when he got his feet and steadily raised into more upright posture before spinning loose. He then shifted gears into bulldozer mode, driving Ware out of bounds three times, the first of which was accompanied by a cotton swab plugging up a bloody nostril.
In the final round, Ware began on the bottom and was deterred on his first escape attempt with Frazier flattening him, but costing himself some blood droplets in the process. Frazier got the cotton swab treatment in both nostrils before eventually putting a wrap around his entire nose, sacrificing oxygen.
“I just couldn’t really breathe,” Frazier said. “This happened to me in the same match against the same person last year.”
Ware evened the tilt at 1-1 when he escaped Frazier on his second try and evaded a final lunge by Frazier to keep him in his mits. With the score tied, the two latched again nose to nose before Frazier needled his way underneath of Ware’s arms, bucking the giant just a bit off of his feet for a takedown.
“That was an underhook. I tried to control him with that,” said Frazier, who wouldn’t let Ware weasel free. “He was trying to get out of bounds, so I locked around the body real quick and just brought him inbounds.”
After snatching him, Frazier maneuvered Ware onto his back and crushed his shoulders to the mat for the pin with 1:08 left in the bout, cementing a 63-18 crushing of the Bearcats.
FSHS also defeated Doddridge County, 54-24, and fell to South Harrison in a close one, 42-39.
While the Polar Bears went 2-1 on the day, the weight classes are still in flux. The roster is still tattered, and the wrestlers are still mostly neophytes.
“Right now we’re a young team, and we’re not real good, but I think we’re going to be,” Delligatti said. “We wrestled mostly freshmen and sophomores, and then we’ve got one senior and two juniors and that’s it.
“We may be able to get (senior) Caleb Masters back and (junior) Rhett Heston back, which would give us a little more experience, but until then we’re wrestling with young kids. They’re having fun and they’re working hard; they just have to get better, and I think we will.”
Outside of Frazier, 145-pounder Daxx Leonard, 132-pounder Tanner Hoskinson and 126-pounder and 2016-17 state qualifier Kevin Brewer, there aren’t many established players in the team’s lineup.
Leonard went 0-1 on the day as he sustained an injury and retired. Brewer amassed a 2-0 mark with a pin and decision, and Hoskinson gutted out a sickness to go 2-0 as well with a pin and a forfeit, his fall coming against Doddridge when he worked a cradle.
“Tanner, I didn’t think he was even going to be here tonight (because of a sickness). In fact he lost like six or seven pounds, but he still went out there and battled. He wrestled a guy where it looked like a 10-pound difference because he lost so much weight,” Delligatti said. “He did a nice job. Tanner is going special.”
Aside from Hoskinson and Frazier, the only other FSHS wrestlers to accrue a perfect 3-0 mark on the evening were 106-pounder Tyler Harrison and 113-pounder Marko Tarley. Harrison tallied two pins, one of which came in just 21 seconds, and a forfeit. Tarley collected a pair of pins as well, including one with just 37 seconds left in the final round, and a 7-3 decision. He nearly ripped off a clean slate of pins, earning a pair of near falls in the second round of his decision victory versus Doddridge.
Freshman Zach Toothman went 2-0 with a pair of pins after filling in for the injured Leonard against Doddridge and Grafton. The aggressive 138-pounder grappled his way to a cradle to earn his first fall, while his second came in just 56 seconds despite wrestling up a class at 145.
Nick Scott, Will Runyan, and Justin York all went 2-1 on the evening. York, a 220-pounder, had a pair of pins, while Scott had a pin and a 7-6 decision and Runyan won by pin and forfeit.
Tavian Richardson, Gavin Hayes, Angelo Manzo and Iain Campbell also each wrestled for a victory in the quad with Richardson going 1-0 with a 9-4 decision and Hayes 1-1 with a pin.
Email Bradley Heltzel at email@example.com or follow him on Twitter @bradheltzTWV.
Source : http://www.timeswv.com/sports/fshs-s-frazier-downs-grafton-s-ware-in-thriller-polar/article_7ec52c82-e098-11e7-9372-4ffedb0fd4fe.html1032