By Ben Robinson
COLDWATER — The Covington wrestling team traveled to Coldwater on Thursday for a double dual against Eaton and Lima Bath.
And despite several wrestlers being under the weather, the Buccaneers swept the duals, beating Eaton 42-33 and Lima Bath 40-31.
In the opener against Eaton, Lance Miller bumped up from 160 pounds to start things off for Covington with an impressive 16-1 tech. fall victory over Parker Wilken.
Joey Schmelzer then bumped up from 170 pounds to capture a pin in 5:25 over Spencer Reynolds at 182 pounds and Brandon Magee followed by bumping up from 182 pounds to gain a victory via pin in 4:26 over Kevin Melling to make the team score 18-0.
Eaton got on the board as Matt Todd defeated Covington’s Seth Thomas at 220 pounds, but the Buccs responded as Carl Lankford pinned Seth Bowman in 1:56 to push the Buccaneer advantage to 24-6.
The dual then proceeded at the lower weights as Eaton’s Payton Caplinger defeated Covington’s Alexis Roth at 106 pounds to close the gap to 24-12.
Covington followed with two straight victories via pin as Connor Ryan stuck Brian Conard in 3:51 at 113 pounds and Coleman Ryan pinned Cameron Schmidt in 1:51 at 120 pounds.
At 126 pounds, Covington’s Jared Ford dropped a heartbreaking 9-7 decision in overtime and then freshman Riley Richards dropped his bout at 132 pounds to Brandon Weaver.
Keringten Martin ended the two-match skid for Covington with a 14-3 major decision victory over Noah Towe at 138 pounds and Ryan Ford bumped up from 138 pounds to defeat Eaton’s Mac Altom by the score of 5-2 at 145 pounds.
Covington dropped the final two matches of the dual as Branden Robinson bumped up from 145 pounds to 152 pounds and was defeated by Isaac Llo and Daren White made the jump from 152 pounds and fell to Drew Moore at 160 pounds.
The dual against Lima Bath started at 182 pounds and Brandon Magee got the Buccaneers off to a fast start with a 22 second pin of Fielden Deeds.
Unfortunately for the Buccs, they’d find themselves in a hole as Lima Bath won four straight bouts before Connor Ryan got Covington rolling again with a 1:41 pin of Ethan Kohlhorst at 113 pounds.
Coleman Ryan collected a forfeit victory at 120 pounds and Jared Ford followed with a 17-0 tech. fall win over Jackson Barnes at 126 pounds.
Keringten Martin pinned Anthony Melvin in 2:37 at 132 pounds and Ryan Ford, who battled flu symptoms all night, gutted out a 3-2 win over Collin Mell at 138 pounds.
Josh Sowers kept the hot streak going for Covington with an 8-2 decision win over Garrett Garver at 145 pounds to push the Buccaneer lead to 35-20.
Lima Bath put itself back into the match with a victory by Nate Stonehill over Gage Dehart at 160 pounds, but Lance Miller ensured victory with a 19-2 tech. fall victory over Isaac Ingram.
The dual concluded with a Lima Bath win by Tre Terry over Joey Schmelzer at 170 pounds, but the Buccaneers walked off the mat with an impressive 40-31 win.
Next for Covington is a trip to Miami East High School next Wednesday for the opening round of the OHSAA Team Dual Tournament.