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Wayne Post
  • Smith's pin lifts Midlakes to win over Pal-Mac, league title

  • With the dual meet and the Wayne-Finger Lakes East league title on the line and Midlakes clinging to a three-point lead, the Screaming Eagles sent Tyler Smith to the mat.While the pressure might’ve rattled some, the 195-pound senior was excited that everything came down to him. Smith said adrenaline pumped...
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  • With the dual meet and the Wayne-Finger Lakes East league title on the line and Midlakes clinging to a three-point lead, the Screaming Eagles sent Tyler Smith to the mat.
    While the pressure might’ve rattled some, the 195-pound senior was excited that everything came down to him. Smith said adrenaline pumped him up and he became focused on his goal. The senior needed just 33 seconds to pin Palmyra-Macedon’s Todd Brockhuizen to give Midlakes a 45-36 win and a league championship.
    “(I used an) arm drag, I went to my go-to move and got a cradle,” Smith said. “Obviously, since it was close I wasn’t going to let it go. I had to get the six (points).”
    The win wrapped up the Screaming Eagles’ second straight Wayne-Finger Lakes East title. Midlakes is 6-0 in league dual meets and 21-0 overall. The New York State Sportswriters Association ranked Midlakes as the No. 1 team among small schools in the state on Jan. 10.
    “I knew it was going to be a tight match coming in,” Screaming Eagles coach Steve Howcroft said. “(Pal-Mac is) always a good battle. We have similar coaching styles and a lot of good match-ups.”
    Pal-Mac finishes the league dual-meet season with a 4-2 record and is 15-6 overall. The Red Raiders are 12th in the NYSSA’s ranking.
    “(Midlakes) already beat Fairport, who is the top-rated large school (in Section 5), so that is the best team in Section 5 overall, large or small,” Pal-Mac coach Brian Quick said. “Sometimes it’s easy to get really scared, so I’m just proud that they came and wrestled. They weren’t scared. We had a good match with them.”
    Midlakes’ Grant Young opened the meet by pinning Cody Grandy in 5:22 at 220 pounds. Pal-Mac’s Anthony Prince won by forfeit at 285. Screaming Eagle Hammond Raes pinned Kyle Elmer in 1:34 at 99, but the Red Raiders pulled even again when Adam West pinned Jason Charlette in 1:34 at 106.
    Midlakes regained the lead with consecutive pins. Ralph Mateo pinned Emerson Block in 40 seconds at 113, and state champion Sean Peacock pinned Troy Ludolph in 42 seconds at 120. Pal-Mac’s Jake Allen pinned Jeshuran Eldridge in 3:53 to close the gap, but Midlakes Derian Woodard won by forfeit at 132.
    The Red Raiders then took three-straight matches to go ahead 33-30. Taylor Jones pinned Dylan Forbes in 40 seconds at 138, Justin Rifenberg recorded a 9-5 decision over Robert Middlebrook at 145, and Max Lloyd pinned Cody Maher in 2:16 at 152.
    “I told him he looks like a cross between a grizzly bear and an anaconda now,” Quick said of Lloyd. “He’s a good pinner and he’s good from all three positions, which makes him tough to get through. When he gets a cradle hooked up it’s hard to get out of it. He’s a finisher.”
    Page 2 of 2 - The Screaming Eagles tied the match when Justin Grimes earned an 8-1 decision against Andrew Hamilton at 160. Hamilton recorded a late escape to prevent it from being a major decision. Midlakes’ Collin Fox won by forfeit at 170. Cody Bourgeois earned a four-point near fall in the third period to earn a 6-1 decision over Jeryd Graham at 182. Quick was happy for his seniors — Bourgeois, Rifenberg and Jones — who were able to win their final matches at home.
    Smith then sealed the match for Midlakes.
    “We started at 220 and we had two guys weighing in at 195, so we had options of who we put out there,” Howcroft said. “We knew it might come down to that last match, so I decided to keep him at 195. It came down to that match and I felt pretty confident he could go out there and get a win for us.”
    Midlakes and Pal-Mac both will compete in the league tournament next weekend.
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