Bucs erase early deficit for 43-29 dual meet victory over Cape

Cape’s Carson Kammerer, left, and Milford’s Trent Grant battle it out in the 132-pound bout Wednesday night. Delaware State News/Ben Heck

MILFORD — Six minutes doesn’t sound like a long time, until it comes time to step onto the wrestling mat.

Milford High’s Marquis Gillis, in his first career varsity match, battled through exhaustion to pin his opponent with just over a minute remaining in the 182-pound match.

The junior’s win was one of five consecutive pins that led the Bucs to a 43-29 dual meet victory over Cape Henlopen High Wednesday night.

“It felt pretty cool,” Gillis said. “I knew I just had to push through and do it for the team.”

“He’s never wrestled a day in his life before,” his teammate Trenton Grant said. “He did things perfectly, how he was taught it, and it paid off … he got the pin and really helped us feel comfortable in our spot with the team score.”

Milford’s Trent Grant reacts to the crowd after sneaking away with a 6-4 decision in comeback fashion in the 132-pound bout.

Gillis, a star on both sides of the ball for the Milford football team, just started wrestling practice about three weeks ago.

“He looks like a wrestler, he acts like a wrestler, and tonight he did exactly what he was supposed to do — what I was hoping he would do,” said Milford coach Don Parsley. “After three weeks, there are guys who wrestle for years and don’t look like he does … he just really did a nice job for us.”

Trailing 29-9 through eight matches, the Bucs (1-0) rattled off victories in the final six bouts, including the five pins and a major decision.

It was Dalton Deevey’s 12-3 major decision win in the 160-pound match that got things going, bringing the score to within 29-13.

Rafael Mejia (170), Gillis (182), Matt Hague (195), Bevensky Augustin (220) and Anthony Diaz (285) each pinned their opponents in consecutive matches to erase the 20-point deficit and pick up Milford’s first dual meet win since moving back up to Division I competition this season.

“Coach knew what he was doing,” said Grant. “It was 9-29, and there were some matches in there that we probably weren’t supposed to lose, so morale was kind of down a little bit, but you just have to go around and say, ‘everybody, keep faith, it isn’t over until it’s over.’ We were saying that all night, and it wasn’t.”

Milford’s Dalton Deevey, left, wrestles Cape’s Gary Hayes in the 160 bout.

The Vikings (1-1) picked up consecutive wins in the first two matches, with freshman Holt Baker getting the 18-3 technical fall in the 106-pound bout and freshman Joshua Wright picking up a pin with 1:15 left in the second period in the 113 bout.

Milford sophomore Jack Thode cut the lead in half with a pin in just 48 seconds in the 120-pound bout, but a hard-fought 4-0 decision for Cape freshman Charles Fritchman at 126 to pull the Vikings back ahead 14-9.

Grant’s battle with sophomore Carson Kammerer, in the 132-pound bout, went down to the wire as the Milford junior clinched a 6-4 decision to pull to within five points.

With Grant trailing 4-3 in the third period, a stalling call tied the score 4-4 and he netted the winning two points as time expired.

“We got into a little scramble at the edge, nothing was happening – I felt like I had to roll or something,” said Grant. “I went and it looked like he threw me on my back, but he kept rolling through and I was back up right before time expired and got the two.

“The energy was crazy, you hear the crowd roaring and then I had my teammates there to cheer me on. It was just the best feeling ever.”
From there, Cape picked up a pair of pins and a decision to pull ahead by 20 points.

Luke Bender (138) got his pin with just 23 seconds remaining in the first period, while Finbar Rishko (152) pinned his opponent in the third period. Mike Frederick earned a hard-fought 15-9 decision at 145.

Reach staff writer Ben Heck at bheck@newszap.com

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