Evenly matched match

Luke Harper’s pin helps Hickman rally to tie undefeated Rock Bridge.
Wednesday, December 17, 2003 | 12:00 a.m. CST; updated 6:14 p.m. CDT, Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Correction: In this story's print version, the name of Philip Van Hove, a Rock Bridge High School wrestler, was incorrect. The Web version has been corrected.

Hickman wrestler Luke Harper said his team needed a spark.

The Kewpies and Rock Bridge tied at 33 on Tuesday at Rock Bridge.

The Bruins led 24-6 when Harper pinned Philip Van Hove in 12 seconds. It was the fastest pin of the match.

“I knew the momentum was starting to change because we had won the last two matches,” Harper said. “Coach (Doug Black) came up and talked to me beforehand and I knew I had to do something to get the team excited.”

The Bruins won the first five matches, including two pins. At 140, Jake Hardesty pinned Kevin Croom in 1:16, and 152-pounder Brady Wilson pinned Scott Schneider in 42 seconds. The Kewpies (0-3-1) forfeited the 145-pound match.

It wasn’t always easy for the Bruins (2-0-1).

In the 171-pound match the Bruins’ Erin Slate defeated Zach Arnold 8-4. Arnold, though wrestling sick, led 4-3 after the first period.

Slate came from behind with two takedowns and an escape.

The Kewpies’ Keenan Simon (189) stopped the scoring spree by defeating Ryan Sadich 10-8. The Kewpies won the next five matches.

“I was just thinking there’s got to be a turning point for us to come back,” Simon said.

Simon led 10-5 after the second period. Early in the third period Sadich scored an escape, then a takedown with 20 seconds left.

Black said that he was proud of the way his team wrestled.

“They could have buried us right there but we fought back,” Black said.

Rock Bridge coach John Kopnisky said that momentum changes are part of dual meets.

“It was one of those things where it did change, but we were hoping it would flip back to us,” Kopnisky said.

At 103, Jordan Lanham defeated Dustin Noell 15-8. Lanham, a freshman improved to 8-3.

Lanham led Noell 7-6 after the first period. He almost pinned Noell with a three-point near fall in the second period, but Noell reversed it for two points.

Lanham sealed the match with another three-point near fall and a reversal in the third.

Lanham’s win and the forfeit at 112 brought the Kewpies within three points of the Bruins with four matches left.

The Kewpies took their first lead after the 119-pound match. Tony Pescaglia pinned Ronnie Simms in 3:31.

The Bruins weren’t giving up, though.

Rock Bridge tied the score at 27 when Pat Elmore (125) defeated K.C. Pescaglia in a 7-6 decision.

The Kewpies took the lead again with a pin at 130. Aaron Brady pinned Kiffer Slate in 4:48.

The Kewpies forfeited the final match at 135 for the tie.

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