In postseason wrestling, it’s all about scoring, surviving and advancing in each match.
Ten Seymour wrestlers entered Saturday’s regional at Jeffersonville High School and three made it out to next week’s semistate at the Ford Center in Evansville.
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The top four wrestlers in each weight division of the regional moved on, and the grapplers who lost in their first match were eliminated from the tourney.
Columbus East won their first-ever regional team title in dominating fashion with 159.5 points, 41.5 ahead of runner-up Floyd Central.
Seymour placed eighth in the 17-team field with 23 points.
All three advancing wrestlers for SHS lost to eventual champions in the quarterfinals of the championship bracket.
SHS sophomore 138-pounder Brandon Penegar placed highest for the Owls, claiming third place on the day.
Penegar opened with a 10-0 major decision victory against Jeffersonville’s Carson Somerville before falling to Floyd Central’s Tristan Sellmer by pin in one minute, 16 seconds in the quarterfinals.
In the third place match, Penegar defeated Southwestern’s Adam Anderson 11-0.
“That was a 5-3 match last week,” Owls coach Todd Weaver said. “(Penegar) is capable of putting a lot of points on the board — and that’s what he did today. You could tell he wanted to wrestle and not just hang on and win. When he does that, he’s hard to take down. He’s a bear on the top, and that’s the thing that wins matches against really good kids.”
Sophomore Justin Ruddick (120) bested Floyd’s Elijah Combs 6-0 before getting pinned by East’s Cayden Rooks (39 seconds). Ruddick lost 10-0 to Greensburg’s Lane Wells to finish fourth on the afternoon.
In the 152, Seymour junior Zack Newton opened with a 6-4 win against Corydon Central’s Tyson Trumpower. Newton then dropped matches to Josh Cooper (13-5) of Jeffersonville and Floyd’s Josh Foster (technical fall) to finish fourth.
“They came out, were aggressive and got points on the board right away in their first matches,” Weaver said of Newton and Ruddick. “Their last matches, it wasn’t that they weren’t being aggressive it was that they needed to look to put points on the board.
Those from Seymour who didn’t move on from Saturday included: John Shuffitt (126), David Shuffitt (132), Jacob Rotert (160), Bradan Thomasma (170), Leo Pena (182), Kevin Corrales (195) and Dalton Miller (220).
“I think, overall, we wrestled pretty hard,” Weaver said. “We knew we would have some match ups that were close. Some of the matches could have swung either way, but unfortunately (Saturday) they didn’t swing our way.
“I’m really pleased with these guys. There are a few that ended their career here today. We’re going to miss them and it will be hard to fill their shoes, but we will do our best.”
The Shuffitts, Thomasma and Miller all graduate from the Owls’ program.