Lewis wins Regional crown, while three ACHS grapplers claim third-place finishes
By D.N. PENNELL, Jr.
Four members of the Alexander Central Wrestling Team reached the ultimate individual goal each season when they qualified for the NCHSAA Wrestling Championships based on this past weekend’s regional performances.
Alexander junior Ethan Lewis finished 4-0 en route to a 4A West Regional Championship in the 152-pound class on Friday, February 10 and Saturday, February 11, at Hough High School in Cornelius.
In addition to Lewis, who improved to 43-2 on the season, senior Calen Lombardy and sophomore grapplers Tevin Clark and Isaac Chapman also punched their tickets to the showcase of high school wrestling, the NCHSAA Championships February 16-18 at the Greensboro Coliseum.
Lewis has been dominant in the 152-pound weight class all season. The junior’s success continued this past weekend at Hough when he rolled up four more wins. He won by pinfall in his opening match before rolling off three consecutive decision wins to secure the 152 title. In the decisive match, Lewis posted a 3-0 victory over Mooresville wrestler Michael Goins.
Lewis will be making his second appearance at the state finals. He qualified for the first time last season.
At 170 pounds, Alexander’s Calen Lombardy also earned his second trip to the big tourney in Greensboro. Lombardy, who also qualified in 2016, posted a 4-1 record at the West Regional and improved to 40-7 on the season. His lone defeat came in the semi-final round on Saturday when he suffered a close loss in sudden death overtime. Following his only setback of the event, Lombardy rallied for two more wins and closed out a third-place finish in his weight class.
Sophomores Tevin Clark and Isaac Chapman will be making their first appearances at the final this week thanks to a pair of third-place showings at the regional.
Clark posted a 2-0 record on Friday evening before suffering a loss in the semi-final round on Saturday afternoon. The sophomore 195-pounder roared back in the consolation bracket to grab third in his weight class. Clark won by pinfall in a pair of consolation bouts, including a win over Mooresville’s Dakota Ramsey in the third-place contest.
A first-year high school wrestler, Chapman also claimed two Friday wins to earn a spot in Saturday’s semi-final round at 285 pounds. After a loss in the semi-finals, Chapman also rebounded for back-to-back wins to punch his state finals ticket. He defeated Mooresville heavyweight Tyree Westmoreland 3-2 in the third-place match to claim the third spot in the bracket. Chapman improved his individual mark to 33-10 on the season with his 4-1 effort at Hough.
Wrestling for 4A wrestlers is slated to begin at 8 pm on Thursday night, February 16, at the Greensboro Coliseum. The event will continue through Saturday evening with the Parade of Champions and individual title matches.
ADMISSION PRICES FOR SPECTATORS – $ 5.00 for Thursday session only, $25.00 for All-Tournament pass, $15.00 for one-day passes, and $7.00 for Championship session only.