Just one match remains for Hilton Head teammates Talon Seitz and Martin Duane to finish off dual unbeaten seasons, heading a list of nine Beaufort County wrestlers to punch their tickets Friday night into the final round of the state championships in Anderson.
Both Seitz (170 pounds) and Duane (182) ran their season records to 53-0 with a pair of pins in the Class 3-A tournament, though neither can breathe easy with a couple of near-perfect Emerald opponents in Saturday’s title matches.
Seitz, teammate Alex Braden (138) and Beaufort’s Tramone Jenkins (113) will be seeking their second consecutive state crowns. Seitz captured a Class 4-A title last year while at Bluffton High.
Jenkins made the fastest work of his evening, pinning Friday night’s two opponents in a combined 60 seconds to take his record to 55-1 on the season.
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His twin brother, Tramon, has a chance for a family double after reaching the final of the 120-pound bracket. Will Spann gives Beaufort a third opportunity for a state title, reaching the 126-pound final in pushing his record to 56-3.
Hilton Head’s Billy Christie also made the final at 160 pounds, giving the Seahawks a chance to take four trophies Saturday.
Battery Creek will have two wrestlers in the Class 2-A/1-A finals, with Cooper Kaminsky scoring two pins at 195 pounds and Omar Daniels advancing through the 126-pound bracket.
Last year’s tournament produced five titles for Beaufort County wrestlers, as Beaufort’s Tom Murphy and Battery Creek’s Joseph Sanchez joined Seitz, Jenkins and Braden atop the podium.
Three other Lowcountry wrestlers reached Friday night’s semifinals, with Whale Branch’s Stephon Eugene perhaps the most surprising elimination. The Lower State titleist at 182 pounds was stopped 13-2 by Marion’s Tyler Cusack, who placed third at Lower State.
Seitz scored the fastest fall of the meet when he pinned Carl Raines of Pickens in just 11 seconds. He then took out Eastside’s Jack Beehler in 1:49 in a match that never got wrestled two weeks ago when Eastside clinched the 3-A team championship early.
Seitz’s final step comes against Emerald’s Luke Newton, a junior who has lost only once himself this season. Duane, meanwhile, draws Emerald’s Kivontay Clinkscales (40-3) in the 182 final.