By Ted Schultz
For The Tribune
COLUMBUS — A young Seymour team went into Columbus North shorthanded Tuesday night, and that may have made a difference in the Owls’ defeat.
Seymour had to forfeit four weight classes, giving the Bull Dogs 24 points. North forfeited three weight classes, but won five of the seven contested matches to claim a 51-30 victory.
The Owls’ first victory in a contested match came at 145 pounds, where junior Sam Chandler pinned Josiah Green in 3 minutes, 48 seconds to cut the Bull Dogs’ lead to 18-12.
“He is one of our better guys,” Seymour coach Dan Rasey said. “He was out last year with a hip injury, so it’s kind of one of those things where we’re getting everybody back into the fold. He’s definitely one of the workhorses in the room.”
Following Chandler’s victory, North won five consecutive matches, including three pins and a forfeit, to take a 45-12 lead. Rasey bumped Ryan Pike up from 195 to 220, and Pike pinned Jonathan Morales in 5:37.
“With our 220 (Waylon White) being out with the flu bug, it gave us an opportunity to get Pike away from an experienced senior,” Rasey said. “Pike hasn’t wrestled since sixth grade, so it’s one of those things that we’re kind of getting him back into the flow as a sophomore, just trying to get him a little bit more mat time. We’re going to need us at sectional to do something for us.”
The Owls were also missing 152-pounder Sam Castetter, who is out with a knee injury, and 285-pounder Carlos Ortiz, who was in Puerto Rico.
Picking up forfeit wins for Seymour on Tuesday were Ro Baltazar at 120, Dane Botkin at 106 and Ricky Bogard at 113.
“For as young as we are, there’s a lot of positives there,” Rasey said. “I know it doesn’t show on the scoreboard, but there is a lot of good things we can build off of in the next three weeks. Sectional is the main goal. We have to get ready for sectional because we’re going to see these guys again. We have a lot of things to clean up, but it’s nice to see that we’re making the progression from where they were Day 1 to where they are now.”