Returning from injury, Iacona and Clark ‘on top of their game’

WORTON — After several snow-related school closures, and the accompanying cancellation of sporting events, Kent County High School’s wrestlers return to the mat today (Wednesday, Jan. 24) with a home match at 5 p.m.

KCHS (1-5) is coming off a 52-30 loss to James M. Bennett, a much larger school in Salisbury, in its home opener Jan. 17.

The locals received pins from Noah Iacona, Scottie Ford, Ethan Clark and Liam Gallo and a win by forfeit for Alayna Brown.

In an interview immediately after the match, Kent coach Chris Yiannakis said four bouts could have gone either way, which included Gallo’s win by fall at 175 pounds.

Brady Sutton and Anthony Wilson were very competitive in their losses at 144 and 215 pounds, respectively.

Sutton scored the first takedown in his match with Braxton McAvey and led 2-1 after the first period. But McAvey, working from the bottom, took a 4-2 lead 39 seconds into the second period and ultimately got the pin before the period ended.

Wilson, wrestling up a weight class, fell behind 5-0 and trailed throughout, but went the full six minutes with Frantz Augustin in a loss by major decision.

Iacona (132) and Clark (150) are working their way back after being sidelined for nearly a month with injuries. On this night they appeared to be “on top of their game,” according to Yiannakis.

A takedown and near fall combination allowed Iacona to build a 4-0 lead 15 seconds into his match with Rachael Kentzer. By the end of the first period, Iacona’s lead had increased to 7-2. A reversal just 7 seconds into the second period set up his win by pin.

Clark, likewise, raced out to an early lead of 5-0, before sticking Gage Donald in less than a minute.

Gallo, a second-year wrestler, won his match with John Henry on sheer scrappiness. Henry took the lead with an early takedown, but a reversal by Gallo leveled the score at 2-all at the end of the first period. Gallo chose top to start the second period and turned Henry for the pin.

The Trojans, who never led, picked up their first points with Brown’s win by forfeit at 120. Back-to-back pins from Iacona and FordĀ  (138) leveled the team score at 18-18.

Ford improved to 21-1.

James Bennett and Kent County traded pins at 144 and 150, keeping the team score tied at 24 after Clark’s pin in the first period.

Matthew Pecoraro’s first-period pin at 157 restored James Bennett’s lead for good, 30-24.

FYI: Kent County will combine its Legends and Legacy nights — honoring KCHS seniors and members of the youth wrestling program — on Friday, Jan. 26 as part of the home match with Kent Island. The Trojans will warm up with the youngsters at about 4:30 p.m. and then move forward with introducing the seniors.

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