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Lafayette Jeff wrestling edges Harrison, 28-24
December 26, 2013Lafayette Jefferson High School
The Lafayette Jeff wrestling team had to battle from an early deficit in early bouts, roaring back in the lighter divisions to grab a 28-24 victory on the road against the Harrison Raiders Wednesday night.
The Bronchos improved their record to 16-1 on the season, while Harrison dropped to 22-3.
“This feels really good to beat Harrison here,” said senior T.J. Robinson, whose big win over Max Haywood at 138 pounds gave Jeff a commanding lead as the bouts wound down. “My past two years we lost to Harrison. It’s great to finally beat them my senior year.”
Starting at 170 pounds, the Raiders quickly built a 15-3 lead by winning four of its five bouts. The Raiders’ Issac Mathis (170), Daniel Wright (182), Seth Meyer (220) and Michael Kern (heavyweight) scored wins to build Harrison’s advantage.
But Jeff started to mount its comeback when Bronchos veteran Dustin Miller pinned Angel Gonzalez 40 seconds in the 106-pound bout
The surprise came at 113, when Jeff freshman Clay Jones used a reversal with 20 seconds left to edge defending sectional champion Daniel Davis, 8-7.
“We knew 113 was going go to be pretty good match,” said Harrison coach Scott Van Der Aa. “We had a really good senior and they had a freshman who’s been wrestling for a long time, so we knew that would be close. They knew it would be a good match. That’s why you heard excitement on both sides after each guy scored.”
Harrison’s Trevor Brown slowed the Jeff rally with a convincing 11-6 victory over Avery Grimes at 120. The Bronchos’ Austin McGreevy got his team going away with a major decision, 16-4, over James Kim after just missing a pin opportunity in the first round of the bout.
Then, Jeff’s Cordaro Armstead, in his first match after a suspension, built a 7-3 lead after two rounds against Alyair Alvarez at 132, then hung on for a 9-4 win to give the Bronchos their first lead in the match, 19-18.
“I decided to give my team a little energy and just told myself I couldn’t lose,” Armstead said. “Everybody was yelling at me telling me to get up, and once he messed up a little bit I tried to take advantage of it and put him on his back. I still think I can do better.”
Robinson added an exclamation point at 138, controlling Haywood before pinning him with 11.4 seconds left in the first round, giving Jeff a 25-18 lead.
“He had a nice catch and pancake,” Jeff coach Tom Miller said. “T.J.’s a senior and he always goes hard for us. That was a big win for us.”
The bout that took the air out of Harrison’s auxiliary gymnasium, though, was at 145 when sophomore Matt Grammer used a reversal with 15 seconds left in the bout to score two points and beat defending sectional champion Jack Roetker, 4-2.
“It seemed their kids were able to pull off the wins at the end of matches tonight,” Van Der Aa said. “Their conditioning really made a difference for them. They are a conference and sectional opponent, so we’ll see them several more times. We taped individuals to see how each one can improve, and that will be our goal at practice tomorrow.”