LAURINBURG — Gradual attrition has hurt the Scotland wrestling team’s depth as its season has progressed, and the effects of those losses were on display Wednesday night during the Scots’ home meet against Hoke.
Scotland forfeited six bouts to the visitors from Raeford as the Bucks rolled to a decisive 66-18 win. The victory was Hoke’s first during the Southeastern Conference portion of its schedule while the Scots remained winless as a team against conference foes.
Scotland head coach Rangel Moore is still waiting on almost a half-dozen players, including 4A state qualifier Zitemus Henderson, to join the team next week after they sat out the first semester due to “off the mat issues.” Several others who were a part of the squad for the first semester are no longer with the program.
Moore and his staff are more focused on who is currently suited up in Scotland red and blue, but he acknowledges its tough to compete when so many key pieces are missing.
“The rest of the guys are coming along, but they’re going through growing pains,” Moore said. “They haven’t wrestled before in their lives, some of the kids it’s probably their third or fourth time on the wrestling mat. I hate that they’re learning during conference time, but it’s part of it.”
Hoke was spotted 36 points after Scotland forfeited six weights — 106, 113, 126, 170, 195 and 220 pounds. The Scots did pick up six points when the Bucks didn’t trot out a wrestler at 138 pounds.
Jacob Young and Dakota McLean were the lone victors in Scotland’s dual against Hoke — Young pinned Trequan Hall in the second period of their 132-pound bout, and McLean won by pinfall against Michael Chieffo in the 145-pound tilt. Moore said both grapplers are ideal leaders for their young team.
“They’re probably the perfect idea of what you want in captains,” he said.
Hoke controlled the match with five victories. Donye Josey pinned Chase Lowery at 120 pounds and Trent Lee won by pinfall over Benoit Deandre at 152. At 160 pounds Jahortli Douglas pinned Lucas Williams, then Trey Paris cruised to a victory by pinfall over Dakota Yarborough at 182. In the 285-pound heavyweight clash, Harley Ellis pinned Johnaton Carmichael.
Scotland will return to the mat Friday for the annual Boneyard Bash at Jack Britt High School in Hope Mills, where several of the premier wrestling powers will convene for the two-day event.
“This week they’ll get to see some of the top state athletes and really get to see what wrestling is about,” Moore said.
Logan Martinez can be reached at 910-506-3170. Follow him on Twitter @L_Martinez13.