WRESTLING

Lexington High Wildcats lead Midlands’ gold rush at state wrestling tournament

Special to The StateFebruary 26, 2013 

Lexington led a parade of seven Midlands gold medalists at the South Carolina state wrestling tournament on Saturday at the Anderson Civic Center.

The Class 4A state champion Wildcats produced three individual champions, including two-time winners Jackson Myers and Nate Meagher. Andy Szalwinski joined his Lexington teammates atop the awards stand. Lugoff-Elgin’s Jerelle Hannah, White Knoll’s Patton Gossett, Dreher’s Chris Bloch and Brookland-Cayce’s Deonta Patterson round out the Midlands champions list.

Myers capped a 51-0 season with a 3-0 run at state. The junior star pinned his way to the finals and beat Bluffton’s Levi Jordan 6-0 in the 113-pound title bout for his second gold medal. He has a chance to become the winningest Wildcat wrestler in history next season and match the three-gold career of Clay Cavanaugh (1992-94). Myers was the winner at 106 a year ago.

Meagher scored three decisions on the way to his second straight title at 220, closing the book on a 41-4 season.

Szalwinski, who was the runner-up at 113 last season as a sophomore, upgraded his prize with a win at 120 by winning three straight decisions — the biggest being a 5-3 win over Fort Mill’s Tyler Turner.

Hannah, a senior transfer, kept alive a tradition of success for the Lugoff-Elgin program by winning 182-pound honors in his first season as a Demon with a 5-1 win over Stratford’s Noah Shuler in the title match.

Junior Patton Gossett followed the lead of his older brother, Asa, by winning a heavyweight state championship. Asa Gossett was a 285-pound winner in 2001. Patton matched the achievement with a 3-0 performance, including a first-period pin of York’s Beau Nunn in the final.

Bloch won 152-pound honors in Class 3A, ending a 15-year gold medal drought at Dreher.

Patterson beat Gilbert’s Madison Leitner in the Class 3A 113 finale. Patterson (36-7) became the 10th state champion in B-C mat annals.

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