After defeating its first seven dual-team opponents, Chapel Hill High School has earned the No. 5 spot in the initial News & Observer rankings of area wrestling teams.
Cary is No. 1, and defending state champion Orange No. 2 in the poll released this week. Sanderson is third, followed by Cleveland and Chapel Hill. All of the top five teams were undefeated through last Wednesday.
No. 6 Holly Springs, Wake Forest, Corinth Holders West Johnston and Jordan round out the top 10. Person is 11th, followed by Harnett Central, Carrboro, Western Harnett and Smithfield-Selma.
With almost no seniors on its roster, Chapel Hill improved to 7-0 last week by winning all four team matches in a series of duals Tuesday: against four 4A programs: Durham Hillside 75-6, Durham Jordan 42-35, Raleigh Enloe 78-6 and East Chapel Hill 64-18.
The four-win day came on the heels of last week’s conference win, 45-30, by the young Tigers on the road at Cedar Ridge.
“Tuesday, they did very well,” head coach Tripp Price said. “We saw improvement from Cedar Ridge. Many of the things we worked on after that match were corrected. Coach (Jared) Campbell and Coach (Chase) Kernodle do a great job of seeing what needs to be fixed.”
Several Tigers went 4-0 in Tuesdays duals, some of them wrestling up a weight class at least once, including Camden Bergey (160, 170); Eliot Martin (138, 145); I’Money Rushing (126); And Wesley Kelley (106, 113).
Five others won three matches: George McBurney (220); Joseph Guilavagui (120); Zachary Allen (106, 113); Erik Jens (145, 152); and Roberto Sibrian (182).
Jenry Hogan (152), Matthew Minnick (132, 138); Hudson Price (285) and William Atkinson (132) won two matches.
One of the best things about the blowout wins was that Chapel Hill was able to get some of its youngest wrestlers some experience.
“We were able to get young kids a match, which will help down the road,” Price said.
The Tigers return to Big-8 Conference action in Wednesday with a match against Northwood.
“We still have a long way to go, and Northwood will be a tough test on Wednesday as far as the conference goes,” Price said.