The last time Father Ryan charged into Chattanooga and bested Baylor and McCallie in wrestling, the Purple Irish won the Division II state duals championship.
The Purple Irish swept in Tuesday from Nashville, stayed long enough to beat the Red Raiders 30-26 and the Blue Tornado 45-21 and departed with hopes that the wins at McCallie are an omen.
"You can say that but I'm not," Father Ryan coach Pat Simpson said.
The wins assured his Irish of being in a bracket opposite Christian Brothers, the state's top-ranked team, when the duals begin in Franklin on Feb. 3.
"That's what this was all about today, getting in the bracket opposite Christian Brothers," Simpson said.
Baylor and McCallie each was able to make it a .500 day by defeating Montgomery Bell Academy, 44-27 for Baylor and 40-27 for the Blue Tornado.
"We didn't wrestle poorly, but we didn't take advantage of all the situations," Baylor coach Ben Nelson said. "I thought we wrestled well considering how tired we are from last weekend."
The Red Raiders went 4-2 in a grueling duals tournament at the National Prep Clash in Rochester, Minn.
Father Ryan broke a 13-13 tie seven matches in against Baylor on a major decision from Cole Moseley at 160 pounds and built a 30-13 lead before the Red Raiders stormed back on an overtime decision from Ryan Seaberg at 220 and a pin from Mitch Payne at 285. But that was too little too late, and a decision by 106-pound Michael Murphy left the Raiders four points shy.
The Red Raiders' Zach Watson and Matthew Cate kept unbeaten streaks intact, Watson (126) improving to 31-0 and Cate (152) to 30-0.
MBA won four of the last five matches against the Red Raiders but couldn't overcome a 39-9 deficit built on pins from Watson, Cate, Bryson Popp (145), Ellis Huff (160), Spencer Craig (170) and Matt Bodine (182) and a win by disqualification for Nick Standefer.
According to the latest records on the NWCA site, McCallie's Alex Ward extended his unbeaten streak to 22-0. The senior 138-pounder pinned Ryan's Patrick Cosgrove in the second period and earned his second victory Tuesday by disqualification.
Ward Gossett is an assistant sports editor and writer for the Times Free Press. Ward has a long history in Chattanooga journalism. He actually wrote a bylined story for the Chattanooga News-Free Press as a third-grader. He Began working part-time there in 1968 and was hired full time in 1970. Ward now covers high school athletics, primarily football, wrestling and baseball and University of Tennessee at Chattanooga wrestling. Over a 40-year career, he has covered ...