Castillo captures Carroll Invitational championship in first varsity tourney
by Allen Worrell
Freshman Gerardo Castillo captured the 160-pound championship Saturday and four other Carroll County wrestlers finished second as the Cavs placed fifth out of 11 teams in the Carroll County Invitational.
Castillo, wrestling in his first varsity event as a first-year wrestler, went 3-0 in the 160-pound division to earn the only individual title of the meet for Carroll County. He defeated Martinsville’s Cody Martin 4-2 in overtime in the championship finals. Not only was Castillo wrestling in his first varsity event, he actually was wrestling up a weight class.
“Gerardo is actually a 152 pounder. We had three guys wrestle up in weight class, so I am very tickled with how he wrestled,” Carroll County wrestling coach Jason Morris said. “He went out and showed a lot of really good things, especially for a freshman in his first tournament and wrestling up. He wrestled very well. He’s come a long way in the last three weeks.”
Earning second-place finishes for Carroll County were junior Bronson Bowman at 145 pounds, junior Logan McCollum at 170 pounds, sophomore Cameron Lawson at 285 pounds and freshman Jarrett Thomas at 106 pounds. Bronson went 2-1 in the 145-pound ranks, his only loss a 6-0 decision to Ryan Crowell in the championship round. McCollum also won his first two matches to reach the 170-pound championship before falling in 4:42 to Caleb Starnes of Western Guilford (N.C.).
Thomas won three matches in the 106-pound weight class to advance to the championship round. There he fell by pin to Roanoke Catholic’s Noah Harilla. Lawson went 2-1 for the day, advancing to the heavyweight championship round before falling to East Wilkes’ (N.C.) Zach Faircloth.
Carroll County junior Joey Rotella won four matches in the 152-pound division. He pinned Graham’s Hunter Cook in 4:05 in the Consolation Finals to place third. Sophomore Gavin Scott also won a pair of matches for Carroll in the 152-pound division, while Josh Brooks won a match at 138 pounds for the Cavaliers.
“Our young guys wrestled very tough. Overall I thought we wrestled good but not great,” Morris said. “We had a lot of technical things we have to make adjustments on. The first tournament you kind of figure what you need to work on, what you are good at as a team, what you need to work on. We saw things we did well and we saw a lot of things that have to be improved. But it was not for lack of effort. I thought we had a great effort.”
Also winning individual championships Saturday were Graham’s Dustin Hagerman (113 pounds), Western Guilford’s David Bobeck (120), Roanoke Catholic’s Briank Sakalas (126), Western Guildford’s Nick Battem (132), East Wilkes’ Derek Woodie (138), East Wilkes’ Cody Mathis (152), Martinsville’s Alberto Garcia (182) and Jarren Burnette (195) and Western Guilford’s Josh Taylor (220).
Western Guilford won the Invitational as a team with 190 points. Martinsville was second with 186 points, followed by Graham (125 points), Roanoke Catholic (114.5), Carroll County (113), Marion (110), East Wilkes (83), Galax (64), Covington (35), Floyd County (33) and Tazewell (29).
Carroll County is scheduled to be back in action Dec. 7-8 in the Titan Toughman at Hidden Valley High School.
“We are just looking forward to getting back in the room and improving what we are doing. We’ve got a lot of growing to do in all aspects, especially performing during completion,” Morris said. “I think the kids are putting forward great effort in practice, it just has to translate into competition. The kids we have are working very hard and showing a lot of growth, especially the younger guys.”
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