Smyrna wrestlers nip Milford, extend in-state streak to 41

SMYRNA — An unfamiliar feeling of uneasiness fell over the Smyrna High gym.

With two matches left, the Eagles were trailing. If they couldn’t find a win, it would be the first time they lost to a Delaware opponent since the final match of 2012.

But Greg Baum allowed Smyrna to take a sigh of relief when he earned a pin for a pivotal six points as the Eagles edged Milford 32-30 in a wrestling showdown late Saturday night.

“My heart started pounding a little bit,” said Baum, a sophomore 120-pounder. “I just went out there fired up. Hopefully next time it won’t be as close because I was really nervous.”

Smyrna has now won its last 41 dual meets against teams from Delaware.

Saturday pitted the defending state champions from Division I and Division II against each other. It also was a meeting between the first place teams from the Henlopen Conference Northern Division (Smyrna) and Southern Division (Milford).

Milford took the lead when Robbie Rouser recorded a pin in the 106 match and Smyrna forfeited at 113. The 12-point swing put Milford in front 27-26 headed into the final two bouts at 120 and 126.

Baum was up 6-4 in the first round when was able to pick up the pinfall 1:43 into the contest.

“I knew I needed to get big points,” Baum said. “I just went out and did my job. It was a tough match, Milford wrestled really well and we just fought it out.”

And the full six points from Baum turned out to be crucial when Milford’s Alex Creasey won the final match of the night with a decision.

Just as important was Terren Carter’s result at heavyweight for the Eagles.

The 285-pound matchup went to overtime before Carter worked his way out on one leg to earn a point for an escape. The senior then was able to keep the score 2-1 in the final 30-second overtime period by not giving up an escape.

“It was pretty tough but I just used what I learned in practice from my coaches,” Carter said. “Milford is a great team they came in and competed and didn’t lay down for us. It was a good test.”

“Fortunately Terren just toughed it out on top,” said Smyrna coach Kurt Howell. “I couldn’t believe how gritty he was.”

The Eagles needed all the bonus points they could get to pull this one out.

Kalen Wilson (160) and Tony Wuest (182) were able to give Smyrna six points with pins in their matches. Two other instances of Smyrna maximizing its points when it had to were major decisions by Chase Archangelo (132) and Nate Bryant (138).

Even when they didn’t win their matches, Smyrna prevented Milford from gaining an extra point or two. Howell pointed out Hunter Moyer, who bumped up a weight class to 195, was able to hold Kenny VanVorst to a 7-0 decision.

“Hunter Moyer did an excellent job of following the script and saving points,” Howell said. “Then we got those bonus points where we needed them.”

Milford had one other pin on the night, from Bart Dalious at 145 pounds.

“We survived and the theme of the night was survival,” Howell said. “We had to find different ways to come up with points. It certainly easily could have gone either way. I’m just proud of the team for finding a way and eking it out.”

Reach staff writer Tim Mastro at tmastro@newszap.com

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