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WRESTLING: Oak Glen Crowns 4 Champs

Golden Bears finish 2nd place to Liberty

December 30, 2011
By KIM NORTH , The Intelligencer / Wheeling News-Register


For The Intelligencer

ST. CLAIRSVILLE - After two long, grueling days of action in the Best Value Wrestling Tournament, seven area grapplers stood high atop the podium when it was all said and done Thursday night.

Oak Glen, which finished second to Liberty, saw victories from Josh Cornell (106), Zac Brown (113), Tyler Brown (120) and Dylan Davis (220).

Barnesville's Clay Crosier ruled the 126-pound weight division, while St. Clairsville's Cory Ernest captured the 285-pound class. Weirton Madonna's Christian Roe was tops at 195.

Liberty ran away with the team title as the Raiders amassed 327.5 points, which was 73 better than runnerup Oak Glen's 254.5. Dover finished third with 241, East Liverpool was fourth with 214 and St. Clairsville rounded out the top 5 with 207.

Cornell (16-0) pinned East Liverpool's Alex Potts in 3:11 at 106 pounds, while the Brown twins - Zac and Tyler - earned decisions against Williamstown's Dalton George 8-0 at 113 and John Glenn's AJ Pennell (12-2) at 120, respectively. Davis prevailed by beating Harrison Central's Matt Shurina.

Roe earned his championship with a victory against Liberty's Austin Poff, a 9-2 decision.

Crosier, who improved to a sparkling 17-1 on the season, earned a 7-3 decision against Dover's Isaac Hammonds in his championship match.

The Shamrocks' senior led 2-1 after one period and 5-2 after two. Hammonds cut the deficit to 5-3 with a third-period escape, but Crosier was able to record a late takedown to seal the deal.

''Missing qualifying for the states by one match last season has really given me incentive to work harder this year,'' Crosier said. ''I've got some good workout partners that really push me.''

Barnesville coach Jayson Stephen was pleased with Crozier's effort.

''Clay has really been work hard this season and he is getting a lot stronger,'' Stephen said. ''I think coming up just short last season has really made him a more dedicated wrestler. He wants a trip to states.''

The second-seeded Ernest (16-2), was locked in a struggle with Liberty's top-seeded Donavan Vance until he rolled the nearly 300-pounder over on his back for the pin at the 4:50 mark.

''The coaches keep getting on me all the time,'' the 255-pound Ernest said. ''They keep criticizing me on every little thing so that it pushes me to work harder. I've got some good coaches and a couple of guys coming down from West Liberty that push me.''

Liberty's champions were Nick Barker (23-3 at 132) who nipped East Liverpool's Frankie Williams 3-1 in overtime; Daniel Carpenter (10-0) who decisioned Oak Glen's Kole Koper 9-5 at 138; Charles Ayers (19-0 at 170) who pinned Tallmadge's Troy Stricker in 1:04; and Trey Fitzwater (23-0 at 182) who pinned East Liverpool's John Miscuk in 2:29.

Dover had a pair of titlists in unseeded Nick Weininger and Brogan Endress. Weininger, who knocked off second-seeded and undefeated Zack Zide, of Williamstown, in a 4-2 overtime thriller before upsetting No. 1 seed RJ Elam of Liberty in the finals, 4-2.

Zide and Elam were a combined 38-0 when he beat them. For Weininger's efforts, he was voted the event's Most Outstanding Wrestler by the tournament's coaches.

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