MASSENA - The Massena Central varsity wrestling team used a stronger finish to overcome a strong OFA start in posting a 40-35 NAC decision on its home mat Thursday night.
The visiting Blue Devils built a quick 15-3 lead and were ahead 27-19 with six weights remaining before the Raiders scored wins in four of the remaining bouts.
It was a little scary for a while. OFA wrestled very well but some of our veteran wrestlers really came through and put us in a position to come up with the win, noted coach Scott Perrine after his squad improved to 2-0.
All but two of the 15 weights were decided on the mat in a meet that came down to the final bout. The teams traded 12-6 wins to open with OFAs Bailey Phelps needing three overtime to deny Dan Elman at 152 pounds before Massenas Hunter Perrine beat Cody-Allen David at 160 pounds.
The Blue Devils then fashioned back-to-back pins as Nathan Murdock stopped Sinclair Babb in 1:05 at 170 pounds and Alex Cole halting Alec Romeo in 1:13 at 182 pounds.
Three straight wins by the Raiders reversed a 15-3 deficit as Jeremy Malone pulled away to a 14-5 major decision over Jordan McCormick at 195 pounds before heavyweights Dakota Bernard and Nolan Terrance generated the quickest pins of the night to give Massena its first lead at 19-15. Bernard touched Grewal Garjaks shoulders to the mat in 31 seconds to win at 220 pounds and Terrance followed by finishing off William Pearson in 28 seconds at 285.
The Blue Devils regained the lead when Cordell David pinned Brian Plourde with 49 seconds left in the 99-pound bout and went ahead 27-19 after Zach Roberts drew the only forfeit of the meet for OFA at 106.
In another close battle from start to finish that was scoreless through the first two rounds, Nathan Marshall gained a 3-2 decision over Tanner Lapiene for the Raider win at 113 pounds but OFAs Brody Sheppard followed by working his way to a 12-7 decision over Skyler Cameron at 120 pounds to make it 30-22 heading into the final four weights. Michael Brown cut the deficit to two points with a pin over Austin Lalonde in 2:40 at 126 pounds. Massena then took the lead at 34-30 when Alec Denney won by forfeit at 132 pounds but a pin by Josh Wangler over Jesse Patraw with just 21 seconds left in the 138-pound matchup put OFA back on top heading into the final bout where Austin Amo stopped Adam Rickett 1:06 into the second round to win at 145 pounds and clinch the meet for the Raiders.
OFA was penalized a point for unsportsmanlike conduct following the last bout to account for the final score.
The Raiders now get set to head to AuSable Valley for a Saturday tournament before returning to their NAC schedule next Wednesday in Malone against Franklin Academy starting with the modified matches at 6 p.m.