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WENDELL — A pair of Pirate wrestlers shone through for the home team at Corinth Holders’ 25-team Jolly Roger Invitational over the weekend.
126-pound wrestler Logan Haseley and 182-pound grappler Preston Collie finished first in their respective weight class on Saturday night, rising to the top on day two to help Corinth Holders to a third-place finish in the team scores.
With a host of tough competitors coming into the home facilities of the Pirates, Haseley admitted there’s an intimidation factor to get over when it comes to a tournament that large.
“It’s slightly intimidating to see all the teams come in,” Haseley said. “There’s so much talent coming in day-in day-out.”
But that talent didn’t bother the freshman much in his first appearance in the event.
Haseley, who has a 31-5 record this season, captured a pair of pins to start off his weekend, then captured a win by 3-0 decision to reach the title bout.
Once there, he made quick work of Washington High’s Tristen Nixon, making a run toward the victory after flipping a takedown by Nixon midway through the match.
At the end of the tournament, Haseley, who wrestled at 132 pounds earlier this season, thought the most memorable part was just cutting enough weight in the week leading up to the Jolly Roger to participate, where his skills took over the rest of the way.
“For me, it’s just making weight this week,” Haseley said. “I just had to cut so much and just finally made it.”
Joining him on the podium for the Pirates was Collie, who found himself in the midst of a grueling title match with Wilson Fike’s Zametrie Bagley. Collie, who has a 20-10 record this season, eventually muscled his way to the winning end of a 5-2 decision after a battle down to the end.
“He was really tough, to be honest,” Collie said. “I really had to give it my all. I was extremely focused for this match. I knew it was going to be a tough fight, but I knew I’d come out on top.”
Because of the intensity of the bout, Collie said the feeling of being crowned champion in his weight class was all the sweeter.
“It honestly felt great,” Collie said. “It honestly felt amazing. It was the best feeling ever, to be honest.”
To reach the championship match, Collie captured a pair of pins by fall and escaped by a 3-2 decision in the second round. To this point, Collie said his nice weekend helps him see just how much progress he has made this season.
“We’ve honestly come a long ways,” Collie said. “At the beginning of the season, I wasn’t doing too great. I was kind of slow on my feet, wasn’t really taking any shots. But now, I think I’ve come a long ways.”
In other Saturday performances, Cooper Carlson captured runner-up in the 195-pound weight class for Corinth Holders after falling to Southern Durham’s Jamae Blank in the title bout by a narrow 9-6 margin.
In the heavyweight third-place match, Javari Wright fell to Joshua Savage of Hoke County, securing fourth.
Clayton and Cleveland also participated in the events of the weekend.
The Comets’ Franklin Melton was the top finisher for his program, beating Raleigh Athens Drive’s Fransysco Heyward for third place in the 145-pound weight class.
In the girls matches, Cleveland’s Laura Thompson captured first place in the 132/138-pound class.