MONROE — Three Northwest Conference wrestling teams are competing here today and Saturday in the Midwest 2A Regional Tournament.
Piedmont High School, down near the South Carolina border, will host the two-day event. The top four finishers in each of the 14 weight classes will move on to the state tournament next weekend in Greensboro.
North Surry will have an entrant at every weight class, while Surry Central will have 10 wrestlers in the 14 weight classes.
West Stokes has eight entrants, although only three of them have winning records on the season.
Four teams from the Mountain Valley Conference also have several wrestlers here: Ashe County, Forbush, Starmount and Wilkes Central.
Twelve of the Greyhounds’ 14 wrestlers are regular starters, but a couple are backups getting a chance to show what they can do.
At 145, North’s Devyn Green is out with a shoulder injury. Coach Eric Jessup said it looks like a partial tear of his rotator cuff. If left alone to heal, Devyn could be fine in a month, but if he tried to wrestle and tore it worse, then he could need surgery and jeopardize his entire junior year.
Filling in will be C.J. Pruitt, a junior who will take on second-seeded Danford Carpenter, Lexington, at 25-1.
C.J. might find himself overmatched in the first round, but he could win two or three matches in the consolation brackets, Jessup said.
At 195 pounds, North’s Levi Slate could have been the top seed, but he has slimmed down to 182 and is in the same bracket with Parker Von Egidy, 52-0, whom many consider to be the best wrestler in the state regardless of weight class.
Filling in for Slate at 195 is sophomore Ben Hensley, who takes on fourth-seeded Jeffrey Burton, Salisbury, 15-5.
Going down the weight classes, only the top eight wrestlers are seeded with a number.
At 106, Surry Central’s Nathon Bautista (29-5) is the second seed behind only Quahiygee Martin, Thomasville, 44-5.
North’s Saige Wolfe (28-14) gets the third seed as the top three seeds all get first-round byes.
Teammate Jacob Humphries (14-6) also gets a third seed and a bye at the 113 weight.
West Stokes’ George Patrick (19-8) is the fourth seed. He takes on Millique Bartholow, Central Davidson, 12-22.
Central freshman Garrett Johnson (13-17) faces fifth seed Pavin Chunn, West Stanly (27-13).
At 120, North’s Austin McMillian (39-4) is a top seed with a bye.
Third seed Kevin Pack, Surry Central (38-10) takes on Adrian Rocha, Lexington (2-3).
At 126, North’s Tristen Brannock is the only Northwest wrestler in the brackets. At 41-8, the senior is seeded third, and the top three seeds get a bye.
Central’s Mason Snow often wrestled at 126 this season, but like some other athletes in the brackets, the young men are still growing and need a bigger weight class by the end of the year.
Snow (19-10) will be at 132 and get a sixth seed. He takes on Gage Love, East Davidson (13-14).
North’s Austin Rozier (41-9) is the third seed and faces Wiley Dillard (2-24), a freshman from Ashe County.
West Stokes’ Jacob Widner (17-10) earned a seventh seed and faces Brandon Hogan, Central Davidson (18-18).
North Surry and Surry Central got some bad luck in the 138 draw as their two wrestlers square off in the first round.
Either eighth-seeded Raymond Dance (28-17) or Caleb Lowe (24-15) will get knocked to the consolation bracket right away.
As only the top four finishers advance, the loser will have to win his way all the way to the third/fourth place match to go to the state tournament.
Also at 138, West’s Holden Sands (20-6) earned a fifth seed and goes against Christian Pompey, Central Davidson (7-4).
At 145, Ashe County’s Michael Elliott is the top seed at 40-1. Pruitt takes on Carpenter, the second seed.
Uriel Secundino (28-14) will compete at a higher weight this week. Secundino wrestled much of the season at 132, but like Snow, the sophomore has gotten bigger and couldn’t maintain the weight.
With Dance a senior at 138, Secundino bumped up to the next weight above that and got a fifth seed. He faces freshman Darius Jackson, Salisbury (4-5).
West Stokes’ Nick Wall (8-19) faces sixth-seeded Rhett Byrum, Piedmont (26-15).
The Hounds get another top seed at 152 where Austin Collins is 43-2.
Austin’s only loss was against John Glunt, the second-ranked wrestler in 3A, noted Jessup. He was actually ahead until late in the second period. Then when he fell behind, Austin tried a desperation move to score at the end and was caught.
The other loss on his record was later that same day when Collins was suffering back spasms and gave up a forfeit.
Collins faces Forbush’s Tyler Mitchell (5-20) in the first round as this weight class had no byes.
Central’s Tyler White (8-28) takes on second-seeded Lucas Smith, Piedmont (39-3).
The Wildcats’ Josh Adkins (10-23) faces fourth-seeded Dylan Adams, Wilkes Central (16-4).
At 160, Central’s Zack Martin (33-13) got a sixth seed and takes on Jacob Owen, Central Davidson (16-19).
North’s Dalton Golden, who won the Northwest Conference Tournament, is unseeded at 21-19 and faces seventh-seeded Evan Adams, Wilkes Central (27-11).
“I wouldn’t bet against Dalton,” said Jessup. The way the senior has performed at the end of the season has been phenomenal, better than his record shows, he said.
Not that either local coach expects to beat Dylan Nelson for the title. The Piedmont senior is 43-1 and is considered one of the best pound-for-pound wrestlers in the state.
At 170, two local wrestlers face off in the first round. North’s Corbin Bullins (30-14) is a sixth seed and faces Central senior Calvin Inman (13-19).
Ashe County’s Lucas Miller (30-3) is the second seed and faces West Stokes’ Derrick Drane (8-17).
At 182, Levi Slate (45-4) is the third seed and takes on Forbush’s Tanner Couch (6-21).
West Stokes’ Matthew Craver (5-7) takes on fifth-seeded Malilk Clyburn (26-7) from Forest Hills.
Michael Wood (36-2) of Starmount is the second seed for 182.
At 195, Ashe County’s William Miller (32-5) is the top seed and gets a bye.
Central’s Bryant White (28-11) is fifth and takes on Chase Blankenship, Central Davidson (18-21).
At 220, North’s Cody Slate is a third seed at 23-10. He faces Terrence Kasminoff, Cuthbertson (9-27).
At heavyweight, Golden Eagle Wes Brown (44-2) is the top seed, and Wilkes Central’s Kasain Tillman (28-3) is the second seed. The top four spots get a bye.
North’s Austin Akers (24-16) takes on eighth-seeded Bradley White, Forest Hills (19-10). The winner gets Brown in the second round.
Jacob Wagoner of West Stokes (0-6) gets fifth-seeded Tequan Williams, Thomasville (13-7).