Arbogast wins 2A wrestling title
Randolph-Henry High School’s (R-H) varsity wrestling team was limited by injury and illness during the Region 2A Championship Saturday, Feb. 8 at Poquoson High School. Nevertheless, the Statesmen produced a regional champion, a regional runner-up and a fifth-place team finish out of 14 teams competing.
Winning a regional title was freshman Brycen Arbogast in the 106-pound weight class.
R-H Head Coach Zack Mowery said Arbogast pinned his opponent in the regional final in less than a minute.
Senior 170-pounder Danny Parrish was recovering from the flu Saturday, Mowery said.
“He competed but wasn’t 100%,” the coach said. “He ended up taking second in the region, losing in the last 8-10 seconds in a good match.”
Parrish faced an opponent from Nandua High School that he will likely see again in the state tournament.
“I feel (if) healthy, Danny can beat this kid,” Mowery said.
Wrestlers finishing in the top three of their weight classes at regionals qualified for the state tourney, and those placing fourth are the first alternates for state, competing if one of the top three is not able to.
Statesmen set as first alternates include sophomore 113-pounder Shawn Copeland and senior 152-pounder Izaia Foster.
Mowery said his wrestlers sustained three heart-breaking losses at regionals that are probably three of the worst he has dealt with as a coach.
“Chandler Newcomb dislocated his shoulder in the semifinals when he was beating his opponent by six points,” the coach said. “So he was medically unable to compete for the rest of the tournament, which concluded his wrestling career at Randolph-Henry, which that hurt. He’s a senior. He was ranked in the state. That one hurt.”
Newcomb wrestled in the 145-pound weight class.
The other two difficult losses were suffered by Copeland and Foster.
“Shawn was winning by six points and Izaia was winning by nine points, and they ended up getting pinned in the third period to lose those advancement matches,” Mowery said. “Those stung as well.”
R-H was without sophomore 220-pounder Daniel Lara, who was sidelined by injury.
The Virginia High School League Class 2 State Championship is set for Feb. 21-22 at the Salem Civic Center in Salem.
“I feel like we should have two state champions,” Mowery said. “Danny was in the state finals last year. I feel like he can get back to the state finals, and Brycen should win a state title. I don’t want to say ‘easily,’ I don’t want to sound cocky, but Brycen, that kid’s something special.”