Bobcats gain bonus points in six of eight wins, Lorin pins Riveira in highly anticipated match-up

by Billy Loverocket

The C. Milton Wright wrestling team was playing the role of the young upstart team that was challenging the Goliath on Thursday night at C. Milton Wright High School when UCBAC power Bel Air came for a visit. Unfortunately, for the Mustangs, the Bobcats were still too strong to be toppled on this night.

“You knew this was going to be a tight one,” Bel Air coach Craig Reddish said. “C. Milton Wright’s been kinda gunning for us. I would say John Thornton’s the good young coach up here in our area. He runs our club. He’s really a talented coach and you can tell his team’s a little more on the map. They have some talented young guys. We thought it was all about matchups. We weighed a couple guys in at different weights, they weighed in some guys at different weights. We pulled out some of the big matches. It was exciting.”

Bel Air won eight of the fourteen matches, picking up five falls and a forfeit to power the 42-27 win. Included in those pins was junior Brent Lorin dropping the Mustang’s James Riveira in the third period, 4:40, at 120lbs.

Lorin, who was VSN’s Lightweight Wrestler of the year last year, is working on a third undefeated season, and looking to add his third state title in March. Riveira, a freshman, is a highly decorated junior league wrestler that many thought could hand Lorin his first high school loss.

The match didn’t disappoint the crowd on hand. The action was quick and furious from the start as the two gladiators exchanged the lead several times. In the end, Lorin’s throws proved to be too much for Riveira.

“I had no idea how that match was going to turnout,” Lorin continued. “I’ve been practicing with Riveira over the summer and fall a little bit at a club. We were pretty even, fifty-fifty. So, I had no idea what to expect. After coming through it, I can easily say that was probably the best match I’ve ever had in high school. It was fun. I had an excellent opponent. I had to test everything I had, skills, new stuff. And even in the match I had to constantly think, technique, and it wasn’t all about outmuscling opponents. In no realm of my mind did I think I was going to pin Riveira tonight, but it feels awesome. It’s a great feeling.”

Reddish wanted the match to happen, but at the same time, his main concern was the team pulling out the win.

“We knew that they wanted that. I love those. It’s what you want. That’s why there was a big crowd here tonight. People want to see that big match, but winning the dual meet is first. Brent wanted it. You gotta give James a tremendous amount of credit he bumped up a weight class to do it. The kid’s talented. He’s gonna be tough.”

Mustang coach John Thornton relayed those same sentiments.

“I was proud to see Brent step up to the challenge and take on James. I thought it was an exciting match. They put on a good show for the crowd.”

The dual meet started at 138lbs with Jacob Reed getting the Bobcats in the win column with a 6-1 decision over Ben Anders.

The Mustangs answered right back with a win of their own as Will Tinney (145) won an overtime battle with Grant Cole to even the score at three all.

Liam Bowers came out firing on all cylinders at 152lbs and eventually planted Brayden Santos 29 seconds into the second period to give the Bobcats a 9-3 lead.

The win was especially important since Bowers was favored and the next two matches were considered “swing matches” where any team could grab a win.

“I knew going in that it was a kid that I was going to be able to beat,” Bowers added. “I had hoped that I was gonna wrestle the kid that wrestled in the weight class before me, Will Tinney. But unfortunately, I wasn’t able to get that match up. My thoughts going into the match was I got to pin this kid, I got to get the points for the team because you never know if the score will come down to the last match. I got the pin. I took my time out there and did my best.”

Both aforementioned swing matches would go Bel Air’s way with Dave Abboud picking up a first period fall over Logan Dvorak at 160 and Noah Beyers (170) beating Christian Trombley, 3-0.

Facing a 15-point deficit, 18-3, the Mustangs badly needed not just a win, but a pin, to get back in the meet. Ryan Messer came through with that at 182lbs, securing the fall halfway through the second period against Jarritt Stencil.

Jack Brink stepped on the mat at 195 knowing a win here would be big for Bel Air because C. Milton Wright was trotting out two of their big guns in the following matches. Brink came through for the Bobacts, recovering from a rough start where he gave up the initial takedown, pinning Kris Moreno with five seconds left in the second period. The score now stood at a very favorable 24-9.

“I definitely wanted to get a pin because I knew they had some of their best wrestlers coming up,” Brink said. “So, I wanted to get six and make sure we could keep it close and take the lead before any of them came out. I knew he was going to start out strong and fast, so I just kinda wanted to feel him out to begin with. He ended up getting a takedown. But I was fine with that because I knew going into second period I had to stay calm and work my stuff. I took bottom, I got the reversal, and then I just went to work on top and I got the half, and got the pin, so I was happy about that.”

The script played out as expected at 220 and heavyweight with Wyatt Graham (220) and Sawyer Sturla registering falls to get the Mustangs back on the board, and back in the match, 24-21.

Unfortunately, C. Milton Wright had no 106lber on hand, so they were forced to give up crucial points for free by forfeiting to Trevor Lorin.

With their momentum stalled by the forfeit, Michael Mitrega came through at 113lbs for the Mustangs, and picked up the win, 4-0, over Troy Dureza.

With the score at 30-24, the Mustangs were hoping Riveira would be able to pull off the upset. They certainly weren’t expecting a pin by either grappler.
After the excitement of the Lorin/Riveira clash, Sincere Montgomery closed the door for Bel Air and secured the dual meet win with a pin over Juan Ortega, 3:19, to push the Bobcat lead to 18, 42-24.

The Mustangs ended the night on a high note when Jake Blanchard edged Shy-Ello Mosley, 1-0, to win the final bout of the night, and make the final score 42-27.

“This team’s been surprising me all year long,” said Reddish. “We lost some really talented guys up top, so we have some young inexperienced guys there. We only have two seniors. We have one freshman, and we have 11 juniors in the lineup. We’re really solid in the lightweights through the middleweights. But this is a strong team. We’re gonna have to face these guys in the regional duals. Different matchups here and there could make some different swings, so you never know.”

Thornton felt both teams strategized effectively, but Bel Air executed better.

“We knew there was going to be a lot of fifty-fifty swing matches. We won a couple that we thought we’d win, and obviously we lost a couple. We gave up some bonus points we didn’t think we’d give up. I’m not too surprised with a lot of the matches we lost. A couple that we needed to get we didn’t get. I was proud of them though.”

Both teams had a few tricks up our sleeves. We had guys in weight classes they didn’t think and vice versa. They had Brink at 95. He’s never wrestled there before, including last year. We weren’t expecting that. I think we could have done better. That wasn’t the best version of us. But we’ll see those guys again several times. Hopefully at regional duals. Obviously, we’ll see them at our county and regional tournaments. I’m confident we’ll do better in the postseason.”

Bel Air 42, C. Milton Wright 27
(match started at 138)
138-Jacob Reed (BA) dec Ben Anders, 6-1
145-Will Tinney (CMW) dec Grant Cole, 6-4 OT
152-Liam Bowers (BA) pinned Brayden Santos, 2:29
160-Dave Abboud (BA) pinned Logan Dvorak, 1:53
170-Noah Beyers (BA) dec Christian Trombley, 3-0
182-Ryan Messer (CMW) pinned Jarritt Stencil, 2:59
195-Jack Brink (BA) pinned Kris Moreno, 3:55
220-Wyatt Graham (CMW) pinned Joseph Cirillo, 1:46
285-Sawyer Sturla (CMW) pinned Brandan DeJohn, 2:32
106-Trevor Lorin (BA) won by forfeit
113-Michael Mitrega (CMW) dec Troy Dureza, 4-0
120-Brent Lorin (BA) pinned James Riveira, 4:40
126-Sincere Montgomery (BA) pinned Juan Ortega, 3:19
132-Jake Blanchard (CMW) dec Shy-Ello Mosley, 1-0

Video of all matches:
138-Jacob Reed (BA) vs Ben Anders (CMW)

145-Will Tinney (CMW) vs Grant Cole (BA)

152-Liam Bowers (BA) vs Brayden Santos (CMW)

160-Dave Abboud (BA) vs Logan Dvorak (CMW)

170-Noah Beyers (BA) vs Christian Trombley (CMW)

182-Ryan Messer (CMW) vs Jarritt Stencil (BA)

195-Jack Brink (BA) vs Kris Moreno (CMW)

220-Wyatt Graham (CMW) vs Joseph Cirillo (BA)

285-Sawyer Sturla (CMW) vs Brandan DeJohn (BA)

113-Michael Mitrega (CMW) vs Troy Dureza (BA)

120-Brent Lorin (BA) vs James Riveira (CMW)

126-Sincere Montgomery (BA) vs Juan Ortega (CMW)

132-Jake Blanchard (CMW) vs Shy-Ello Mosley (BA)