By Rob Kiser
FAIRFIELD — The Piqua wrestling team went up against some strong competition — with some solid results — at the Fairfield Invitational over the weekend.
The Indians finished 13th out of 22 teams in a tournament-like atmosphere.
“It had a district tournament feel to it,” Piqua coach Scott Kaye said. “It was good for the kids to experience that.”
Piqua 145-pound senior Andrew Bolin led the way, closing in on the century mark with a second-place finish.
The second seeded Bolin had cruised to the finals and ran his career victory total to 99 with two pins and two technical fouls.
He was in a 2-2 match with top seed Garrett Anderson of Clay when one mistake led to him getting pinned in 3:10.
“He (Andrew Bolin) went for the whole ball of wax, instead of just getting solid points,” Kaye said. “As a result, he got caught. He had another strong tournament.”
Kobe Scott (138) and Tristan Hostetter (126) also placed for Piqua.
Scott had a major decision and pin on his way to the consolation finals.
He then won a thriller in typical Scott style against Vandalia-Butler freshman Jestin Love in the conso finals.
Love hit a four-point move in the second period to go up 6-2.
Scott had a takedown to get within 6-4, then after working that takedown most of the third period — got a three-point nearfall in the final 15 seconds for a 7-6 win.
The fifth seed then faced the only wrestler who had beat him in the tournament — fourth Jensen Quinn of Lakota West — in the third-place match.
West had pinned Scott in 2:59 in the quarterfinals Friday.
It was a very different match one day later — with Scott losing a heartbreaker 1-0.
West’s escape in the second period was the only scoring and Scott nearly won the match with a takedown that was just out of bounds late in the third period.
“That kid had pretty well controlled the match the first time,” Kaye said. “Kobe (Scott) had a tough match the first time. It says a lot of Kobe to come back and wrestling him tough like he did in the third-place match.”
Hostetter had a solid tournament to finish sixth.
The sixth seed had advanced to the semifinals with a pin and decision, before running into eventual champion Chase Craft of Northmont.
Hostetter had two tough matches in the consolations.
Against, Vandalia-Butler state qualifier Josh Suddeth, Hostetter nearly scored at the end of the third period with the match tied 2-2. He would lose in overtime 5-2.
“He was right there with a state qualifier,” Kaye said. “There is nothing wrong with that.”
After losing to the third seeded Suddeth, Hostetter faced fifth seed Sam Ridgley of Lebanon and lost a 10-2 major decision.
“That guy was real solid,” Kaye said. “It was just tough for Tristan (Hostetter) to get anything going. He still had a really good tournament.”
Brennan Hicks (160) went 2-2 with a pin, while Matt Blankenship (182) went 1-2 with a pin.
Sam Herndon (120), Nick Baker (132) and Brett Craft (220) also went 1-2.
“It was good to be in a tournament like this,” Kaye said. “When you go two and out, it gives you a sense of urgency. It makes you understand that every match is important.”
And the Indians will look to use everything they learned Wednesday, when they wrestle at Wayne in a double-dual.
Rob Kiser is Sports Editor for the Daily Call. He can be reached at (937) 451-3334.
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