The top three teams finished within three points of each other at the Virginia AA Region II wrestling championships at Champe on Saturday, a razor-thin margin in an event that wasn’t decided until the second-to-last bout out of 406 matches.
Fauquier won its fourth consecutive region title with 147.5 points, edging Loudoun County and Skyline, who both finished with 144.5. Brentsville finished fourth with 133.5.
“It was nerve-racking,” Loudoun County Coach Joel Caruso said. “If it’s that close you start thinking back to where you could have gotten more points.”
The Raiders qualified a program-record six wrestlers for next week’s Virginia AA state tournament in Salem, including 138-pound region champ Logan Smith, who dominated his regional bracket and won his second straight region title with a first-period pin in the final.
Smith’s win temporarily gave Loudoun County a lead, but Fauquier won a Michael Villalobos overtime decision at 152 and a Max Strum decision at 182 before Skyline’s Justin Williams pinned Loudoun County’s last finalist, Kyle Schlue, at 220 to seal the win for the Falcons.
Besides Smith, five other local wrestlers won individual championships Saturday, including a trio of Brentsville grapplers – 106-pounder Jeffrey Walker, 113-pounder Brenden Velez and 195-pounder Zach Roseberry.
Briar Woods junior Michael Hulcher was the 126-pound champion, and Woodgrove sophomore Jake David won his school’s first region title at 152.
Elsewhere Saturday, Forest Park crowned four individual champions en route to a strong second-place finish at the Virginia AAA Northwest Region championships at Patriot.
Wins by 106-pounder Tommy Aloi, 132-pounder Dennis Gustafson, 170-pounder Brett Stein and 195-pounder Hayden Mosher helped the Bruins compile 193 team points, behind only Colonial Forge, which totaled 239.5 points to win its 12th consecutive region title.
Osbourn Park 113-pounder Sean Badua, a returning All-Met and defending state champion, and Battlefield 145-pounder Justus Weaver also won region crowns.