Led by sophomore AJ Leitten, the Fort Mill Yellow Jackets placed third in its Beef ‘O’ Brady’s Championship this past weekend.
Fort Mill had three wrestlers in the finals and three in the consolation finals in the 14-team tournament held at Fort Mill High.
Leitten was Fort Mill’s only winner as he went 6-0 at at 126-pounds in the tournament. Leitten defeated Lake Norman’s Zac Rainess 4-0 in the finals. Leitten was named Most Outstanding Wrestler for his second straight tournament, this time for those at 152-pounds and under.
Jackets junior John Brotemarkle and senior Jake Strong both finished second. Brotemarkle finished second at 113 pounds, falling in overtime, and Strong lost 10-3 at 138 pounds.
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Fort Mill head coach Chris Brock said he thought his squad did well considering they had six wrestlers of 10 place in the tournament that attracts top teams from the Carolinas and other states.
“For the level of competition, it isn’t bad,” he said. “Some guys were a pleasant surprise. We still need to fill some gaps in the lineup.”
Fort Mill’s Steven Hamilton, Evan Stankovits and Jack Debbout all finished third in their weight classes.
Hamilton finished third at 145 pounds scoring a pin in the second period over Mooresville’s Noah Clemmons. Stankovits held out over Lake Norman’s Noah Augustine 3-1 for a third place finish at 152 pounds. Debbout wasted little time in his consolation finals, pinning Mooresville’ Joey Haracopos 49 second into the first period.
Fort Mill will wrestle a dual match at Weddington this week and then go to Charleston for the Coastal Clash next week as one of 80 teams scheduled to participate in the largest high school sanctioned wrestling tournament in the Southeast.
Falcons in top 10
Nation Ford had four individuals place in the Beef O’ Brady’s tournament with two wrestlers getting to the finals. As a team, the Falcons finished eighth overall.
The Falcons’ Robert Land and Jacob Gravely both finished second in their weight classes after losing in the finals. Land lost to Fort Dorchester’s John Parker 5-3 in overtime at 145 pounds and Gravely lost 10-4 to Lexington’s Thomas Painter at 152 pounds.
“We made some progress,” said Nation Ford head coach Leon Boulware. “I was real impressed with Jacob and Robert. The guys are learning how to compete.”
In the consolation finals at 132 pounds, Nation Ford’s Dalen Byerley beat Mooresville’s Tucker Key 6-2. Byerley, who won his 100th career match earlier this month, was upset in the semifinals by North Gaston’s Ian Machomer.
At 195 pounds, Nation Ford’s Major Strait finished fourth after losing to Fort Dorchester’s Asa Gaillard 5-0.
Nation Ford heads to Boiling Springs this week for a dual match, before traveling to River Bluff this weekend for a tournament in Lexington.