Southern did what it had to do before Jackson Memorial’s two heavy hitters took the mat on Saturday in the latest installment of what over the last decade has been the Shore Conference’s best wrestling rivarly.
The Rams won eight of the first 12 bouts, including a sweep from 113-132, to clinch the match with two bouts left and record a 27-24 win on Saturday in a Shore Conference Class A South match and the opener of a high-powered quad meet at Southern that also consisted of Delbarton and St. Peter’s Prep.
It was just Southern’s fourth win over Jackson Memorial in the last 26 meetings dating back to the start of the 1999-2000 season. The result, combined with Toms River South’s win over Brick Memorial later in the day, created a four-way tie for first place in Class A South among Southern, Jackson Memorial, Toms River South and Brick Memorial.
Jackson Memorial hosts Brick Memorial on Wednesday night. Southern hosts Brick Memorial on Jan. 23. Toms River South has already wrestled Jackson Memorial, Southern and Brick Memorial.
The Rams, who won eight bouts, received a key pin from Chris Crane (113) to take the lead for good at 18-14. Crane’s pin was the Rams’ only bonus points in the match.
Pat Mooney (120) then foiled Jackson Memorial’s strategy of bumping Zach Baker up by recording a 6-2 win. Andrew Tonnessen (126) then defeated Hunter Reese, 4-3, in a toss-up bout to put Zach Wilhelm (132), the state eighth-place finisher at 112 in 2011, in position to clinch the match. Wilhelm recorded a 6-0 win over Jarrett DiGiantomasso, which meant Jackson Memorial’s Brian Hamann (138), a two-time state fourth-place finisher, and Spencer Young, a three-time Region VI qualifier, would have no say in the outcome of the match.
Hamann pinned to pick up his 100th career win and Young won by major decision to account for the final score.
St. Peter’s Prep swept the quad by defeating Delbarton, 28-25, Jackson Memorial, 35-21 and Southern, 38-15.
Delbarton went 2-1 by defeating Southern on criteria (bouts won, 8-6) after a 27-27 tie. Delbarton also defeated Jackson Memorial, 33-31, on a win in the final bout.
Delbarton, ranked No. 7 in the New Jersey Wrestling Writers Association Top 20 Poll, won five straight bouts from 120-145 to wipe out a 21-9 deficit and clinch the match against Southern by taking a 27-21 lead with one bout left.
The key result came when Travis Vasquez, the District 9 runner-up at 106 last year, defeated Wilhelm, 6-3, in the 138-pound bout.
Delbarton rallied from a 31-26 deficit against Jackson Memorial on a win by major decision by Joseph Tavoso (152) and a win by decision by Don Reed (160).
St. Peter’s Prep, ranked No. 6 in the NJWWA Top 20, built a 35-9 lead over Jackson Memorial after 11 bouts and built a 26-0 lead over Southern after six bouts.
IN THE RARITAN QUAD: Raritan defeated Pinelands, 45-15, and Jackson Liberty, 54-18, to record the 500th win in its history.
The Rockets won six of the first seven bouts against Jackson Liberty to build a 33-6 lead. They won 10 of the 14 bouts in all.
Shawnee defeated Raritan, 40-33, in the final match of the quad. The Renegades won the first three bouts to take a 12-point lead and won seven of the first eight bouts for a 29-6 lead. Shawnee also defeated Jackson Liberty, 40-25.
IN THE ROXBURY QUAD: Ocean’s Zach Hertling (138) returned after a two-week absence and recorded a pin and two wins by decision as the Spartans defeated Matawan, 50-21, and Montville, 52-15, and lost to Roxbury, 42-18.