SKIATOOK -- Three area teams arrived at Class 5A and 6A Dual State Friday evening and by the time Norman North took that mat, they remained the lone hope of the trio to move on to today's semifinal round.

Too bad for the Timberwolves, it was top-ranked Muskogee in the opposite set of folding chairs.

A close match for a while, Muskogee cashed in the same couple of forfeits North's been giving up at 103 and 112 pounds most of the season. That turned a 6-5 North edge into a 17-6 advantage for the Roughers. North had to give away six free points a third time, at 171 pounds and those 18 free points were a big part of Muskogee's 52-12 victory.

North got wins from heavyweight Colton Cline, 121-pounder Carter Evans and 125-pounder Josh Kennedy, who scored the T-Wolves only pin.

"We weren't worried about the scoreboard," North coach Jay Gibson said.

But what Gibson wanted to accomplish was getting a couple of his grapplers moved up in the regional seedings. North will be at Yukon, as will Muskogee, next weekend.

The Roughers brought in the No. 2 wrestlers at both 135 and 140 pounds and the T-Wolves just missed in both bouts.

Sterling Wright led Dylan Fields most of the way before falling 13-11 in overtime at 135. At 140, North's Aaron White gave up a third-period takedown in a 4-2 loss to Miles Andrews.

A confidence booster or a letdown for the two T-Wolves?

"I don't know," Gibson said.

Everybody should find out in a week.



n Deer Creek 45,

Noble 22

Noble was pleased to reach Dual State, yet the Bears had more in mind. Coach George had broken down the Class 5A brackets and decided a needle could be threaded, maybe all the way to Saturday evening's championship match.

Wrong.

Josh Long gutted out a 5-2 decision at 215 pound, where all of Friday's duals began. Greg Kilmer, at heavyweight, followed with a 2-1 victory over Deer Creek's Andrew Phillips.

Just like that and the Bears were on schedule, leading 6-0. Yet here's what Deer Creek did beginning with the 112-pound bout.

Fall. Fall. Fall. Decision. Fall.

That was the beginning of what became a lopsided victory for the Antlers, who moved on to face Harrah in today's 2 p.m. semifinal match.

Kaleb Cradduck finally ended Deer Creek's run, getting a 9-0 major decision over Chad Drapper. But another Deer Creek pin at 140 and a Noble forfeit at 145 made it 39-10 Antlers.

Even mathematically, the Bears were finished.

"I'd say the biggest factor is we've got some real young wrestlers and they have a strong lineup from top to bottom," said Waller, who nonetheless left the mat looking forward to returning to Dual State next year. "They have a really good lineup ... We just didn't win those matches that could have gone either way."

Noble did manage a couple of last hurrahs as both Tyler Winkler, at 160 pounds, and Hunter Lang, at 189, earned pins in two of the dual's last three bouts.



n Union 37,

Westmoore 23

Taking on the state's No. 2 dual team, the Jaguars had their work cut out for themselves. To advance to today's semifinal round, everything and then some would have had to fall their way.

A few things did, but not enough.

Union only managed three falls over the dual, the same number as Westmoore (sort of, if you count a forfeit). But the Redskins still claimed nine of the 14 bouts.

Still, things started well enough for the Jags, who got an 11-5 decision from Kyle Factor, at 215 pounds, over Sterling Dunn. Two bouts later, Jag 103-pounder Luc Hoang pinned Brendan Langdon and Westmoore was up 9-3.

It wouldn't hold, though Jag 135-pounder Trey Brown might have provided the highlight of opening day on any of the four mats, when he reversed and pinned Union's Cortez Blalock in the middle of a razor-thin match 45 seconds before the third period whistle.

Clay Horning 366-3526 cfhorning@normantranscript.com

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