Yorkies win round 1, topple Braves 35-25

    PERU — With five consecutive wins starting at 103 pounds, No. 5 Yorktown overcame a 22-12 Bellmont lead to score a 35-25 win over the No. 11 Braves in the title match at the Peru Invitational Saturday.
    It was the third straight win for Yorktown over Bellmont. The Braves had won all 15 previous meetings.
    "Ten points, that's a lot better than last year when we lost by 33, and we closed the gap pretty good. But Yorktown has a very good team. It's going to be  a challenge," stated Bellmont coach Brent Faurote, whose Braves defeated Peru, 62-18, downed Huntington North 34-21, slammed Delta 78-6, and topped Garrett 46-19 to get to the final match.
    "Our goal is to get to the top four (in the state) and to do that we have to beat Yorktown. We just have to figure out a way," said the coach, who will likely have a different lineup in a likely February Team Regional rematch.
    The title match started out with Yorktown forfeiting to Bellmont's Brooks Faurote at 140 pounds. Later, Yorktown decided not to put a heavyweight up against Bellmont's Daniel Meyer, forfeiting that match even though they put a wrestler in at that weight in all other meets.
    "We were disappointed. They would have been favored with (Devon) Jackson, a state runner-up (130) last year against Brooks. We'd rather wrestle," said Faurote.
    Yorktown was obviously aiming for the win and didn't want to take a chance with a loss to Faurote and then a possible loss at 145. Jackson pinned BHS sophomore Jacob Bergman in 1:34 to tie the match at 6-6.
    The Yorkies won at 152 as veteran Andrew Hiestand downed Will Busse 7-4. "Busse let loose in that final period and got a takedown. He just needs to build his confidence and be aggressive," said Faurote.
    John Mahlan, one of four Bellmonters to go unbeaten on the day, scored a 9-3 win over Andie Higgins at 160. "He was going for the major at the end, but couldn't quite get one more takedown," said the coach.
    Ryley Hankenson (5-0)  scored an 18-6 major over Seth Edwards at 171 as Bellmont built a 13-9 lead. BHS junior Ben Baker fell 1-0 to Chase Edwards at 189. "Ben gave up some size to Edwards and couldn't get away in that third period. That's a spot where we could reverse that decision, either with Ben or one of our other strong 189-pounders," stated Faurote.
    Travis Thatcher scored a 5-2 decision over Scott Neff in a battle of state streeters from last year. Meyer took the forfeit at heavyweight.
    The Braves forfeited at 103, then the Yorkies reeled off three straight decisions, including a 12-3 major by veteran Brock Bevans at 112 and a 12-1 major at 125 by talented frosh Chandler Carroll at 125. Rhett Hiestand pinned Willie Mahlan at 130 to cap the runn.
    Bellmont's Dewey Melcher downed Dalton Baysinger 6-0 to conclude the meet.
    "That was probably Dewey's best match. He controlled it the whole way, and that's the way he needs to wrestle," stated Faurote.
    The coach called Huntington North "the surprise of the tourney" as they gave both Bellmont and Yorktown strong challenges. Colin Downey caught Brooks Faurote early for a 5-0 lead, and held him off for a 6-5 decision at 140. Thatcher scored a 14-second fall over Zach Pavey at 215. Jacob Girod, Blake Adams and Will Busse all had falls for Bellmont.
    Bellmont had seven first-period falls in the rout of Delta, with 10 falls overall. John Mahlan had a 19-second fall versus Garrett, and Hankenson followed with an 18-second stopper.
    The Braves had seven first-period falls against Peru.
Peru Championship Match
Yorktown 35, Bellmont 25
140-B. Faurote (B) WBF
145-D. Jackson (Y) p. Bergman 1:34
152-A. Hiestand (Y) d. W. Busse 7-4
160-J. Mahlan (B) d. A. Higgins 9-3
171-R. Hankenson (B) m.d. S. Edwards 18-6
189-C. Edwards (Y) d. B. Baker 1-0
215-T. Thatcher (B) d. S. Neff 5-2
275-D. Meyer (B) WBF
103-Rudy Aguirre (Y) WBF
112-B. Bevans (Y) m.d. Girod 12-3
119-S. Phillips (Y) d. B. Keuneke 5-1
125-C. Carroll (Y) m.d. B. Adams 12-1
130-R. Hiestand (Y) p. W. Mahlan 1:33
134-D. Melcher (B) d. Baysinger 6-0