FAYETTEVILLE — The Fayetteville PK-8 Pirates captured the Fayette County “Battle for the Paddle” Middle School Wrestling Championship on Jan. 30.

And head coach Vernon Farrell said the championship marked a solid conclusion to a season in which the Pirates displayed a good deal of progress.

"Overall, it was a good season," Farrell said. "We had a good group of returners from last year."

A key to the success was a doubling of the roster from 2018-19. "Normally, where was six or sight; this year we had 16," he said. "With the sheer numbers alone, we were able to compete as a team."

Fayetteville won six individual weight classes at the recent county championships.

Following is a list of team results:

• Midland Trail 48, Oak Hill 36

• Fayetteville 45, Midland Trail 34

• Fayetteville 52, Oak Hill 36

County champion — Fayetteville

Individual county champions were as follows:

• 78 — Jamison Swafford, F

• 84 — Josh Delung, F

• 90 — Kirclyn Coleman, F

• 95 — Juan Pecina, MT

• 102 — Max White, MT

• 110 — Aaron Higginbotham, OH

• 116 — Colton Willard, OH

• 128 — Adam Long, F

• 135 — Christopher Hale, OH

• 145 — John Bowman, MT

• 155 — Kaden Lephew, MT

• 171 — Kaiden Nuckols, MT

• 190 — J.D. Mauritz, F

• HWT — Colton Naylor, F

Farrell said eighth-graders Naylor, at heavyweight, and Long, at 128, were key cogs this winter. Naylor was 29-1, with his lone loss coming early in the campaign, one which he later avenged at the Coalfield Conference meet. For the most part, Naylor dominated the competition, said Farrell, with the majority of his wins coming via pin. Long "wrestled well all year," said Farrell.

A seventh-grader, J.D. Mauritz, also made major contributions, losing just three times at 190 pounds.

The county middle school championship event was the first once since the late 1990s, Farrell said.

Email: skeenan@register-herald.com or follow on Twitter @gb_scribe

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