Red Devils win West Regional, qualify 5 for states

It was a successful Saturday for the Newton-Conover wrestling program — both as a team and individually.

The Red Devils held off Pisgah to earn the 2A West Regional crown, while qualifying five wrestlers for next weekend's state championships in Greensboro.

Among the five Red Devils heading to states are Ian Canrobert at 106 pounds, Franklin Wepner at 126 pounds, Tyler Benfield at 195 pounds, Eric Holbrook at 145 pounds and Addison Klutz at 152 pounds.

Wepner also picked up an individual title at the regionals, defeating Polk County's Jose Ramirez in the 126-pound final.

The remaining three Catawba County schools in the 2A ranks will also send wrestlers to state championship competition.

Just like Newton-Conover, Bandys will have five wrestlers represented in Greensboro, including Garrett Hinson at 120 pounds, Camron Crowe at 132 pounds, Andrew Brotherton at 160 pounds, Zac Whisnant at 182 pounds and Peter Guiraud at 195 pounds.

Joining Wepner as an individual champion, Maiden's 160-pounder, Evan Spears, is also going to Greensboro after defeating Brotherton in the finals of their weight division.

Despite entering Saturday undefeated, Maiden's Richard Kerekes, the CVAC wrestler of the year, lost his 152-pound final against East Lincoln's Jeremy Tarleton, 8-6.

Kerekes will still heading to Greensboro, along with Spears, with a chance for both grapplers to become Maiden's first-ever individual state wrestling champion.

Cody Dobbins is the lone Bunker Hill wrestler heading to Greensboro.

2A team scores (points)
1. Newton-Conover 131
2. Pisgah 127
3. North Henderson 118
4. West Lincoln 108.5
5. Owen 107.5
6. Bandys 97
T-7. Chase 91
T-7. Maiden 91
9. West Caldwell 88.5
10. East Lincoln 78.5
11. Bunker Hill 53.5