West Lincoln’s Clay Alguire and East Lincoln’s Jeremy Tarleton both brought individual weight class state championship titles home to Lincoln County from the 2A state wrestling meet in Greensboro on Saturday.
Alguire, wrestling in the 138-lb. weight class, was named the 2A classification’s Most Outstanding Wrestler.
“It was tough,” Alguire said. “It was nerve wracking. The competition was really good. I started wrestling my best matches toward the regional meet and it carried on to the states.”
West Lincoln head coach Butch Ross said Alguire “peaked at the right time.”
“His last eight matches have been his best all year,” he said. He wrestled great. His closest match was an eight-point win.”
Alguire took his championship win with a 19-3 technical fall over Pisgah High School’s Hunter Mease.
Tarleton took his title in the 170-lb. weight class. His opponent in the championship meet, Bandys’ Andrew Brotherton, took a win over Tarleton in the semifinal round of the 2A West Regional meet.
“I was a pretty heavy underdog coming in,” Tarleton said. “It feels great to have beaten the people that I beat. I didn’t have an easy walk to the finals. I saw the bracket the day after the regional tournament and I knew it (a rematch with Brotherton) could happen. I said it before the regional tournament — this match could be a state championship final.”
Tarleton defeated Brotherton 11-6 in the state championship finals. East Lincoln head coach Derek Ashley said Tarleton’s performance on Saturday was evidence that he had learned from his first match against Brotherton.
“He didn’t make mistakes,” Ashley said. “The first time he made a few errors and this time he corrected his errors and did an awesome job.”
Tarleton had to take down three wrestlers who entered the meet at a higher seed to take his win.
“Few people know how hard it is to get a state championship in wrestling,” Ashley said. “It wasn’t like he just walked through. He worked really hard. He put in a lot of work with a lot of different people. This has been his passion. He really deserves all the credit.”
West Lincoln sophomore Mack George fell in the semifinal round 3-2 to Newton-Conover’s Collin Minor.
“He wrestled great,” Alguire said. “I think you’ll see him win some state titles over the next few years.”