Sulphur junior Nash Moore understands the importance of what a pin can do for a team’s momentum.
All but a couple of his matches this season have ended with a fall and six points for either the Bulldogs or their opponent.
Moore’s pin of Ardmore’s Daniel Cummings with 18 seconds remaining in the first period of the 170-pound bout gave the momentum the Bulldogs needed to earn a 54-27 victory at Ardmore Middle School.
Moore attributed his pin — one of seven on the night for Sulphur — to a certain set of practice drills.
“I was just trying to mostly focus on my shots and I was able to take him down,” he said. “We were supposed to be working more on our shots so we can get them back up. That was the biggest thing about tonight. My coach just told me to try and get the pin so we can get the win.
Moore’s fall tied the score at 6-all after Ardmore senior Ryan Riley had gotten Senior Night started on the right foot for the Tigers with a first-period pin in the 152-pound bout.
Riley says the reality of Senior Night hit him “like a ton of bricks.” He and fellow senior Quintarius Horton started wrestling in the seventh grade, calling wrestling the “greatest thing I have ever done.” Riley became emotional when talking about Horton, who is Riley’s practice partner.
“Me and Q have been together since the seventh grade,” Riley said. “We’ve always been wrestling partners and we’ve always worked hard together. Our goal is to always push each other to the point where we can’t go no more. We want to make each other improve. He’s my best friend. It’s that kind of relationship. It’s come together for us.”
Horton dominated to an 8-1 decision in the evening’s final match to cap off a memorable Senior Night for him.
But, by the time that Horton had stepped onto the mat, he knew that a win wouldn’t affect the dual’s final outcome. Sulphur was well ahead 54-24.
Ardmore attempted several maneuvers to try to score points.
Sulphur countered those moves and pinned its way to a dual win — its sixth in nine tries this season.
Trey Kiser (182) followed Moore’s pin with a first-period fall of his own for a 12-6 Bulldogs lead. Dan Baker needed just 72 seconds to work a pin in the evening’s next match. Caleb Pierce (106 pounds), John Miller (126), Ethan Massey (132) and Josh Watterson (138) tacked on pins of their own to bump up Sulphur’s lead to 54-12.
Ardmore finished the night strong with Oscar Interiano’s second-period pin at 145 and Horton’s seven-point victory at 152.
“I don’t think any of our guys quit on us,” Ardmore coach Kevin Gill said. “They were trying things. Some of them worked, most of them didn’t. They were attempting and wrestling hard. So, I was proud of them for that.”