‘Revenge’ isn’t normally a word used by anyone associated with Niagara Wheatfield wrestling. However, revenge was on every Falcon’s mind on Wednesday night.
Just barely over a year ago on December 6th the Grand Island Vikings earned a statement win over the Falcons in Sanborn. The Vikings would go on to win the Niagara-Frontier League title for the first time in program history and make it to the final of the Section VI Dual Meet Championship.
On Wednesday night head coach Rick Sweney and his WNY #1 Niagara Wheatfield Falcons took revenge on the #4 Vikings for their third league win of the season and in all likelihood set themselves up for a league title showdown with Niagara Falls in January.
“It’s sweet revenge” stated Coach Sweney following the win. “We lost a tough one last year but we’re better this year.”
The Falcons pulled off a 50-31 win without section champion and state place winner Warren McDougald and sectional place winner Kevin Halford in the lineup.
Although the Falcons won the match, the Vikings stormed to a 21-0 lead with a pin at 182-pounds by Section VI champion Connor Kenney, a decision win at 195 by Matt Newbould, and back to back pins at 220 and 285 by sectional finalist Blake Bielec and sectional place winner Jeremy Fridman, respectively.
Grand Island gave up forfeits at 99 and 106-pounds. In a battle of two sectional place winners the Vikings’ Jack Randle earned a major decision over Wheatfield’s Mark Kuhn at 113 to make the score 25-12 Grand Island. GI’s Miles Coughlin was able to hold Section VI champion Collin Coughenour to a technical fall at 120-pounds to yield only five team points to Wheatfield where the Falcons expected six.
After a pin by Noah Bennett at 126-pounds Kyle Jungier was able to give Wheatfield the final lead with a pin of his own at 132. Two-time state finalist Justin McDougald earned a major decision over the Vikings’ sectional finalist Brian Bielec at 138-pounds in a hard fought match. State tournament wildcard Jake DeWolf earned a forfeit at 145.
With three bouts left and the team score 38-25, Wheatfield junior Ali Assaf put the match out of reach with a second period pin at 152. GI and Wheatfield traded six-for-six at 160 and 170, respectively, as sectional finalist Adam Daghestani and Section VI champion Josh Thibeault finished the dual with first period pins.
Niagara Wheatfield moves to 3-0 in the NFL and 6-1 overall. The Falcons will compete at the Southern Tier Wrestling Officials Association at Salamanca H.S. this weekend. Grand Island drops to 2-1 in NFL action and 10-6 overall. The Vikings will head east to Section III Phoenix H.S. for the Phoenix Round Robin on Saturday.
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