Dramatic ending at Mexico wrestling triangular

Dramatic ending at Mexico wrestling triangular
Deacon Haag celebrates his last second win over Brady Zimmerman of Hannibal on Wednesday. [Eric Mattson]
Dave Faries

For the first two minutes, Deacon Haag and Hannibal’s Brady Zimmerman eyed each other, each cagily daring the other to take a shot. At the end of the fourth minute, Zimmerman earned 3 points with a take down, and 3 more in the third period when Haag narrowly avoided a pin.

But the final 15 seconds were a flurry. Haag lunged suddenly and tossed his opponent to the mat, securing a dramatic 7-6 decision in the last contested match of Wednesday’s triangular at the Sports Complex.

“I heard ‘15 seconds’ and I thought ‘I have to try something,’” Mexico’s 220-pounder said. “It ended up working.”

The win was one of the few Mexico was able to claim over a strong Hannibal squad, which features the state’s top ranked wrestler at 170 pounds. But the Bulldogs opened the meet with a series of individual victories over Macon.

Haag’s match in the opening dual may not have been a last second nail biter, but it still had the crowd on edge. The Tiger’s Ethan Prewitt took a narrow lead in points. Haag tried out several moves to right things, but to little avail.

Prewett turned him, but with less than 20 second remaining in the first period, Haag made a comeback, winning by fall.

Ricardo Juarez set the tone early on in the Macon round. He made quick work of Logan Hillard, pinning him at the 1:35 mark.

“I was prepared,” Jaurez said. “I told myself I was just going to wrestle hard.”

Mexico’s Cameron Beasley squared off against Bodie Legan. The 152-pounder turned his man on the mat with 1:14 on the clock. It took 30 seconds, but he earned a fall 1:15 into the match.

In the 158 round Terrell Williams scored early points over Macon’s Isaac Kauffman and the dropped him on the edge of a circle. Williams held him for a pin, but time ran out. The buzzer sounded ending the first period before the referee blew his whistle.

“It felt so close,” Williams said. “But as long as I kept moving, I knew I could beat him.”

He took his shot early in the second, winning by pin at 2:40.

Lucas Bramer lasted just 40 seconds against the Bulldogs’ Jokiah Sewell in the 170 class. By then, Sewell had a 7-1 advantage in points, but he put Bramer on the mat.

The win made Mexico’s 170 standout 21-0. But he had a more difficult challenge awaiting him in the Hannibal round.

“I focus on one match at a time,” Sewell said. “I think I need to set up my shot better.”

The Bulldogs’ Caleb Prater worked deliberately, but lost by fall to Dalton Cashatt at 195. In the heavyweight round, Emille Scanavino made a clever move to break a leg hold in the first and took his match into the second before Macon’s Matt Osman picked up the win.

The Tigers offered no opposition to Keith Ransom or Dylan Mosley.

Although Juarez didn’t spend much time on the mat against Macon, his battle with Chad Culp of Hannibal was epic.

Neither wrestler could gain control in the first period, although Juarez took Culp to the verge on one occasion. Juarez led 2-1 going into the second and picked up another point a minute in before the stalemate resumed.
But Culp scored 2 in the third to send matters into overtime.

The action was fast and furious in the first tie breaker, but the score remained deadlocked. In the second OT period, Culp held Juarez on the mat, but the Mexico 120-pounder appeared to keep his shoulder free, primed for a reversal. The referees thought otherwise and awarded Hannibal the win.

“Ricky will be a better wrestler for this,” head coach Gayle Adams said.

Ransom faced Koen Ramage at 138 and for a brief moment appeared to be in trouble. The Pirates wrestler had him at a disadvantage, but Ransom broke free. With a minute gone, Ransom began to assert himself, earning a take down. He then scored a series of points before the buzzer.

He led 7-2 after one and soon stretched that to 12-2. Points weren’t necessary, however. Ransom won by fall at 2:39.

Mosley topped Hannibal’s Nathan Messina by a 7-4 decision. But, he said, “it was a lot closer than it should have been.”

The Bulldogs’ 145 stalwart gave up 2 points early, but gained a point back driving Messina to the edge of the circle, and 2 more shortly after for a 3-2 lead. He was taken down in the second but managed to turn his man.
It was 7-4 after two and remained there, with Mosley fending off everything Messina tried.

Williams took care of Hannibal’s Danny Jeffries quickly, pinning him at 1:11. But Sewell struggled with the vaunted Trevor Wilson. He got into trouble early and then battled for a reversal. But the state number one couldn’t be budged and Sewell lost by fall.

“He was a little off his game,” coach Adams said.

When it came to the 195 round, Prater and the Pirates’ Ryan Ross measure each other, locked in an even match through one. It wasn’t until late in second that Prater went down, losing by fall.

Emille Scanavino had no opposition. Haag’s thrilling decision ended the night.

“Deacon wrestled six minutes,” Adams pointed out. “Anytime you wrestle for six minutes you give yourself a chance.”


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