The dream of winning a state championship is still intact for nine Beaufort County wrestlers after the first day of the S.C. High School League Individual Championships.
Three wrestlers from Beaufort High School and two apiece from Battery Creek High School, Bluffton High School and Hilton Head High won their opening matches Friday at the Civic Center of Anderson, advancing to this morning's semifinal round.
In Class 4-A, Beaufort High's Kenan Jackson (160 pounds), Clint Wright (171) and Maliek Maldonado (215) advanced. Jackson pinned T.L. Hanna's Jacob Allen and will face Rock Hill's Colin Meachem in the semifinals. Wright pinned Coleman Heliyer of Spartanburg to advance to face Lugoff-Elgin's Will Connell. Maldonado earned a 9-4 decision against Dillon Sherfield of Laurens, advancing to face Theo Sheppard of Lugoff-Elgin.
In Class 3-A, the semifinals will feature a pair of showdowns between the rival Bobcats and Seahawks, as Bluffton's Levi Joly and Hilton Head High's Label Lewis both advanced at 112, and Bluffton's Austin Farmer will face Hilton Head High's Chris Ordonez at 125.
Joly and Farmer both won in overtime, as Joly pinned Clifton Burton of Travelers Rest in the extra period and Farmer won a 5-3 decision against Belton-Honea Path's Scott Loudermilk. Lewis, the runner-up at 103 pounds last year, beat Blue Ridge's Jordan Ludd 7-2, and Ordonez won 3-1 over Danny Kimball of Greer.
Battery Creek also put two wrestlers through to the semifinals, with Bear Childers pinning Kory Dixon of Chester at 215 and David Ratliff earning an 8-5 decision over Tre Long of Eastside at 285. Childers will face Dreher's Chris Green in the semifinals, while Ratliff will take on Nuji Holmes of St. James, who beat the Dolphins junior to clinch the Sharks' win in the Class 3-A dual playoffs and handed him another loss at last week's Lower State qualifier.
It wasn't all good news for local wrestlers, though. Two wrestlers ranked No. 1 in their weight classes fell on the first day, as Hilton Head High's Campbell Miller dropped a 12-9 decision to Fort Mill's Ryan Dugas at 130 and Bluffton's Manuel Lopez lost 6-0 to Randy Warren of West-Oak at 160.
Battery Creek's Chris Bockelman (103) and Delmar Sanders (130), Bluffton's Michael Meyerink (135) and Jason Williams (145), Hilton Head High's Matt Johns (119) and Nick Bautista (215), and Beaufort High's Trey Arant (145) and Thyrik Legree (189) also lost their first-round matches and will need two victories today to place in the top four.
Bishop Blast tournament: Beaufort High split a pair of games on its first day of action in North Charleston, defeating Andrews 11-5 and falling to Goose Creek 2-0.
Against Andrews, Ariel Promislow earned the victory, giving up seven hits and striking out five. She also had two hits and two RBIs at the plate. Sara Crawford added two hits and three RBIs, and Michelle Brown also had two hits. Cassandra Norris and Natalie Moore had hits for the Eagles.
Jenny Mullins had a strong pitching effort for the Eagles against Goose Creek, but took the loss despite yielding only three hits and no earned runs. She finished with 10 strikeouts.
Brown, Moore, Mullins and Molly Clark each had one hit for the Eagles (1-1), who left nine runners on base.
Beaufort High continues the tournament today at Hanahan.
VARSITY BOYS LACROSSE
Hilton Head High 18, Irmo 4: Charlie Jackson scored six goals and had two assists, and Nick Roberts added four goals and five assists as the Seahawks rolled to an easy win at Irmo.
Hayden Lovette, Eric Rzeczycki, John Ferrebee and Colton Henley added two goals apiece for Hilton Head High (2-0).
Clayton Reed and Madison Gayle split time in goal, combining for seven saves for the Seahawks, who take on Ridge View at 12:30 p.m. today in Columbia.