It was not a good omen for Geneva when its wrestling team had no one available at 132 pounds against St. Charles East.
The host Vikings would have to wait six more matches before winning another against St. Charles East in the schools’ Upstate Eight Conference River Division dual match in Geneva.
The Saints, clinging to a 10-9 lead after the first four matches, dominated the middle of the order in cruising to a 46-15 victory.
Barring a very unusual development, it would appear as though the River champion — determined solely on regular-season dual matches — will be decided between St. Charles East (6-1, 3-0) and Batavia on Dec. 20.
“That’s obviously going to be a very important one,” St. Charles East coach Jason Potter said of the Saints’ date with the Bulldogs.
Ryan Valesh merely had to show up to earn 6 points for St. Charles East at 132 pounds, and his equally powerful teammates proceeded to show Geneva little mercy.
At 138 and 145 pounds, respectively, Isaiah Vela and Keone Derain duplicated each other with falls to run the Saints’ maximum-point total to 18.
“I was just trying to keep it going for the team,” Derain said. “Everyone did the job tonight.”
The Saints have showed few weaknesses since vanquishing the field at Conant to start the season.
“That was our goal at the beginning of the year was to win Conant,” Derain said. “It was a great experience.”
Ramon Lopez extended the Saints’ unanswered run to 21 points with a late takedown, 3-point near-fall sequence against the Vikings’ Mike Villanueva to prevail 5-1.
Brad Kearbey, yet another seasoned veteran for the Saints at 160 pounds, then upped the spread to 24 straight in favor of St. Charles East with a hard-fought win over the Vikings’ Alex Kunkel.
Cam Carlson then clinched the match for the Saints by scoring all the offensive points in his duel with Tony Castellveccia at 170 pounds.
“It’s going to have to be here (in the middle of the lineup) where we’re going to have to win (dual meets),” Potter said. “The majority of our experience is in the middle (weights). We’re moving in the right direction.”
Cody Murphy and Jake Bozer finally stopped the bleeding for Geneva (10-3, 1-2) with back-to-back decisions at 182 and 195 pounds, but Peter Banks’ second-period fall and Jake Flores’ 5-3 triumph at heavyweight closed out the Saints’ decisive victory.
Brad Martens, the Vikings’ lone returning state qualifier, who earned a second-period pin at 120 pounds, sounded more like a coach than the top-rated wrestler on the team in the aftermath of the Saints’ win.
“(St. Charles East) started getting the momentum,” Martens said. “We had a lot of swing matches (in the middle) that could have gone either way. It was pretty hard to watch. We got beat pretty bad tonight.”
St. Charles East’s Rubino brothers, Anthony and Ryan, staked the Saints’ to a 10-0 lead with dominant wins at 106 and 113 pounds.
Keenan Freeman put the Vikings on the board, and Martens’ fall was as close as Geneva would come the remainder of the match.
“They kind of took it to us,” Geneva coach Tom Chernich said of the final outcome.Copyright © 2014 Paddock Publications, Inc. All rights reserved.