Blackman visited Stewarts Creek High School on a cold Tuesday night for the much anticipated Region 5 matchup between the Blaze and the Red Hawks. Both teams have had the date circled all season as a key region matchup and the tension in the gym Tuesday night was extremely high. Because the school zone was split when Stewarts Creek opened three years ago, several former Blackman kids are now at Stewarts Creek and as a result, a friendly rivalry has emerged between the two schools.
Blackman’s Coach Ronnie Bray had high hopes for the Blaze after coming off of an impressive 4th place at the GP West tournament last weekend but everyone knew that this was going to be a close one.
The dual started off at 152 pounds as Landon Fowler squared off with Creek’s Levi Silvers. Landon gave us a scare by giving up an uncharacteristic 2 pt. takedown early in the first period but rebounded with an escape and a takedown of his own to take the lead 3-2. Silvers proved to be tough to turn and Fowler had to settle for a 7-2 decision which gave Blackman a 3-0 lead. At 160, Cole Tillman took down Eli Haynes with a second period pinfall and Matthew Sells followed that up at 170 with a 13 second pin over Austin Martin giving Blackman a 15-0 lead.
Stewarts Creek’s John Olivieri scored the first points for the Red Hawks at 182 lbs with a second period pin over Blackman’s Hunter Winters. At 195 Andre Bravo stayed on his recent win streak and pinned Drew Harris at 3:39 in the second period. At 220, Sam Luker took on Creek’s Dre Trotter. After a couple of small mistakes, Sam fell behind in the second period and was forced to fight off his back to survive the period down 2-7. A great wrestler never gives up though and Sam came through big time. The third period is where great wrestlers do their best work and Sam ended up winning the match with a PIN in the third helping Blackman extend the lead to 27-6.
At 285, Jamil Hughes gave up a pin to top ranked Barber and Creek reeled off two more pins over Liam Elam (106) and Zack Dallas (113). Creek’s three pins cut Blackman’s lead to 3 points (27-24). With three wins in a row, Creek was hot and man did they keep things rolling. Dylan Coggins managed a major decision over Tre’von Thomas and Gabe Rogers earned a 6-0 decision over Clayton Apland giving Creek the lead 27-31.
With three to go, the gym started getting louder and the tension rose. Freshman Jalen Brown started the 132 pound match with a takedown but fell behind in the third period against a very tough Treavor South. A late escape gave Brown the point he needed and when time expired, he was ahead 5-4. (Creek ahead 30-31). Elijah Cox at 138 faced off against Souksavong and fell behind early 4-1 at the end of the first period. A strong second period and two sets of near-fall points helped Elijah overcome and he won the match 9-5! (Blackman ahead 33-31)
ONE MATCH TO GO – –
At 145 pounds, with everything on the line and only a 2 point lead, it was make it or break it for Junior Dan Fehlman. Dan wins, and we win. He loses…..well you get the idea. Dan came out of the gate like a bat out of you know where and got the first takedown. Everything seemed fine but Dan got a locked hands penalty and the Creek wrestler just wouldn’t go away. After nearly turning Fehlman to his back at least twice, it looked like it could be anyone’s match. In the end Dan settled down, got a nice reversal, and finished smart and strong winning 4-2!
BLACKMAN WINS!!! (36-31)
It was a great dual against very tough competitors. Everything you want to see in a wrestling match. The fans were loud and involved and the atmosphere was electric. If just one match goes a different way, the result is not the same. What a great night of wrestling and what a great experience for our guys!
GO BLAZE! Check out the PHOTOS page for pics of the action.