The SMHS wrestling team beat Livingston Academy (78-6) and lost to Alcoa (33-45) on Friday night.
“Livingston gave up a lot of forfeits, so that was an easy win. Alcoa has been building up for a couple of years and they were finally able to beat our young team by one match,” said Coach Brian Parker.
In the Livingston match, the Panthers got pins from Juan Loza (182), Justin Johnson (195), Dakota Karge (220) and Chase Eichner (285).
The Alcoa match was exciting as usual.
Starting at heavyweight, Eichner pulled out a come-from-behind pin followed by Cody McCarl’s first-period pin at 106 pounds to give the Panthers a 12-0 lead. The Tornadoes followed with a forfeit, pin and technical fall at 113, 120 and 126, respectively to take the lead 17-12.
Ismael Matias won by regular decision at 132 pounds to cut the Alcoa lead to two points. The Tornadoes went on to win the next five matches with four pins and a decision giving them a 15-45 lead.
While the Panthers answered three more pins by Loza, Johnson and Karge, it was not enough to take the win.
In the end Alcoa had won eight matches to six for the Panthers, giving them the victory 45-33.
“This was a great match and we knew we had to be on top of our game to beat them with two starters out of the line-up. Our guys fought hard today, but Alcoa was the better team today. Our guys performed pretty much like I thought they would. Alcoa’s 152 was tougher than we thought and that was the difference in the match. If one of our loses goes our way, we would have taken the victory, but that is how it goes in wrestling. Anyone can be beaten on any given day,” said Parker.
The Panthers faced Seymour and Sevier County at CCHS Tuesday night, and will host William Blount and Maryville Thursday, before traveling to Heritage Saturday.