Goochland’s young wrestling team continued to learn through another challenging week with home matches on Monday, Dec. 16 against James River District opponents Amelia, Bluestone and Nottoway, and on Wednesday, Dec. 18 against Jefferson District teams Louisa County and Fluvanna County.
While the Bulldogs defeated Bluestone 42-29, they took team losses to Nottoway 36-30, Amelia 40-30, Louisa 49-30 and Fluvanna 49-18. The Bulldogs are young – they start three freshmen – and they have several weight classes that they are still forfeiting. On Wednesday, they forfeited four against Louisa and five against Fluvanna.
“We are just not a program right now that can afford to give up that many points,” Goochland head coach Mike Nadder said. “We’ve got a lot of first-year wrestlers, we’ve got a lot of sophomores who are second-year wrestlers who are starting; they just haven’t had much mat time, so we’re still working on it. It’s still a work in progress.”
But despite Wednesday’s team losses, Nadder said that they wrestled a lot better than they did on Monday. The Bulldogs were missing wrestlers who were out sick, and they had to move up several competitors who were giving up at least 12 pounds in their matchups.
“We’re doing all we can do with the situation,” Nadder said. “We’re hoping after this week to get everybody back healthy and start the first of the year strong with hopefully most of the full lineup.”
Ethan Ford (195) took a win by forfeit against Louisa and worked quickly in his contested matchup on Wednesday to pin his Fluvanna opponent 33 seconds into the match. Jon Daly (170) bounced-back from getting pinned in a back-and-forth battle to winning his Fluvanna match by pin.
Riley Hite (145), whose loss against Fluvanna came while wrestling one weight class up at 152, made quick work of his Louisa match, pinning his opponent 55 seconds in. John Summit (126) pinned his Louisa opponent in the second period, and Ayden Doczi (heavyweight), who took a 7-3 lead by stringing together a takedown and a near-fall, won his Louisa match by injury default when his opponent rolled his ankle. Doczi, who is really Goochland’s 220-pounder, was held out of the heavyweight matchup against Fluvanna after the Flying Flucos had already ensured their team win by points, and he would’ve been giving up a lot of weight against Fluvanna’s heavyweight wrestler who was almost at the full limit.
In Monday’s team win over Bluestone, Summit (126) picked up a pin with 25 seconds left in the first period and Daly (170) earned an early first-period pin. Blake Smith (132) won by pin less than a minute into his match against Nottoway.
Goochland will wrestle in the Five Forks Duals on Saturday, Dec. 21 (9 a.m.) at Dinwiddie High School.
“We’re wrestling bigger schools with bigger programs, and we’re still just trying to grow. We’re still just too green and not enough experience right now,” Nadder said. “But by the time we get to the postseason, I expect things to be a little different. We get some more matches under our belts, get the right kids to the right spots, get everybody healthy and…see what happens.”