Panthers drop opener to Railroaders

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HOOSICK, N.Y. >> Take some opening match jitters and add a young team with only one senior and that equals a tough first match of the year for the Hoosick Falls Central School wrestling team.

The Panthers won two of the contested matches and picked up a pair of forfeits in a 59-22 defeat against Whitehall-Fort Ann on Tuesday.

Jake Pine and Nolan Foster won their matches, Pine a 10-1 major decision at heavyweight and Nolan, a fall at 4:56 at 132 pounds, the final match of the night.

The bout started at 138 pounds and Whitehall won the first two by pin, Jason Ashline over Logan Powers at 138 and James Rozell over Michael Bolognani at 145 to take a 12-0 lead.

Ryan Sanders was tech falled at 152 and Taylor Bacon was pinned at 160, making it 23-0. Whitehall earned forfeits at 170 and 182 before Bryan Thomas faced off against Brandon Bolster at 195.

Thomas trailed 2-1 after one period, but Bolster chose to start down in the second and he took advantage with an escape and a takedown, then racked up three back points to take an 8-1 lead into the third. Thomas started down in the third, but he turned by Bolster for three more back points before getting pinned at 4:40.

"For the first match of the year, you expect mixed results," said Hoosick coach Landon Nelson. "All [the heavier weights] are at a place where they should be, they can only can improve from here. They'll play a big role this year."

At 220, state qualifier Jake Gregory topped Devin Fitzpatrick, but the Panthers got on the board with Pine beating Logan Dudley at heavyweight.

Pine used a football-style takedown in the first and second period to take a 5-0 lead after one and a 10-1 lead after two.

"The plan was to keep it close in the beginning and get on top and work some back points," Pine said. "I ended up getting a takedown for bonus points."

Nelson said Pine worked a lot in the offseason to prepare for this winter.

"He has lots of mat awareness, he's worked hard and it's paid off," Nelson said. "Whitehall is a tough team, all physical, and we're young this year, so we're trying to get the young guys ready."

The teams traded forfeits at 99 and 106, with Whitehall getting the win at 99 and Gabe Fisher getting the win at 106. Hoosick Falls' Ethan Mattison earned a forfeit at 113 to make it 53-16, but Sam Richard was pinned at 3:28 by Tyler Martel at 126 pounds.

"Sam is up a weight class, he moved very well," Nelson said. "This is only his fourth year wrestling, he's come a long way."

Foster showed why he'll be a strong candidate for a state crown, thoroughly dominating at 132. He led 4-0 after one and 6-0 after two before sticking Jacob Moore at 4:56 for the final margin.

"I'm proud of the guys, we wrestled a tough physical team, now we focus on the rest of the season," Nelson said.


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