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Wrestling: Dixie Hollins controls St. Petersburg City Meet for fourth straight year

ST. PETERSBURG — The other teams at the St. Petersburg City Meet looked at Dixie Hollins on Saturday and engaged in some wishful thinking.

Maybe the Rebels, winners of three straight city titles, would not be able to cope with the loss of three starters. Maybe the Rebels' inability to field a full lineup would be the key to unseating them.

Maybe the rest of the field should have known better.

Adjustments are what the Rebels do best at this meet, where they are an emerging dynasty. After all, Dixie Hollins may change, but the results do not.

Though they fill those lineup holes with underclassmen, the Rebels won their fourth straight title, posting 222.5 points to outscore Northside Christian by 39.5. Dixie Hollins was so dominant it had 11 of its 13 wrestlers place in the top three and had the title wrapped after the 112-pound match in the finals.

"We were better than I expected us to be," Rebels coach Nick Spataro said. "There were some doubts coming into the tournament because we were banged up. But we had a lot of guys who really stepped up for us."

Dixie Hollins had five champions: Tyler Sunseri (112 pounds), Brandon Knapp (160), Brandon Bell (171), Luis Aldana (189) and Dominic Irrizarry (285).

The most outstanding wrestler award went to Northside Christian's Brian Travis, who pinned the Rebels' Dana Harrington in 3 minutes, 35 seconds in the 125-pound final between defending state qualifiers.

"I was nervous going into the match, but I just had to keep my head on straight and wrestle hard," said Travis, who is ranked No. 1 in the state in his weight class. "I was surprised I was able to get a pin. I thought the match would only be decided by a few points."

Travis helped the Mustangs win six straight bouts in the finals. Dryden Dennis (130) and Dalton Dennis (135) recorded pins within the first two minutes of their matches. Cliff Barker (145) and Zane May (152) also won via pin. Northside's other champion, Anthony Melillo (140), won by decision.

St. Petersburg's Joshua Brown (103), Lakewood's Cole Hardman (119) and Admiral Farragut's Blaine Ward (215) also won in the finals.

St. Petersburg City Meet

Team scores: Dixie Hollins 222.5, Northside Christian 185, Lakewood 178, Admiral Farragut 118.5, Northeast 110, St. Petersburg 88, Boca Ciega 61, Gibbs 29.

Finals: 103: Brown (SP) d. Wilmington (Ns) 8-6; 112: Sunseri (DH) md. Mercado (BC) 10-2; 119: Hardman (Lw) d. Vasquez (Ne) 6-4; 125: Travis p. Harrington (DH) 3:35; 130: Dr. Dennis (Ns) p. Johnson (Lw) 1:53; 135: Da. Dennis (Ns) p. Cho (Lw) 1:35; 140: Melillo (Ns) d. Bueno (DH) 6-0; 145: Barker (Ns) p. Teetor (Lw) 1:20; 152: May (Ns) p. Collins (Gi) 5:12; 160: Knapp (DH) d. Piquette (Ns) 9-7; 171: Bell (DH) d. Price (Lw) 5-4; 189: Aldana (DH) p. Mayhew (AFA) 1:05; 215: Ward (AFA) p. Mayhone (SP) 4:54; 275: Irrizarry (DH) p. Roane (Ne) 5:25.

Consolations: 103: Wolfenbarger (DH) md. Agerskov (Lw) 9-1; 112: Zimmerman (Lw) p. Plumtree-Slocum (Ne) 4:12; 119: Halisky (DH) bye; 125: Nelson (Ne) md. Scarpino (Ne) 12-0; 130: Keers (Ne) d. Boylson (DH) 12-9; 135: Lovell (DH) tf. Mitchell (SP) 21-4; 140: Mcgee (AFA) tf. Moser (SP) 16-1; 145: Mengel (DH) p. Deese (Ne) 2:45; 152: Moore (Lw) d. Okwonko (SP) 5-2; 160: Jones (AFA) p. Bracher (Ne) 1:07; 171: Petrusich (AFA) p. Benjamin (BC) 4:12; 189: Diaz (Lw) p. Curotto (SP) 0:33; 215: Allen (Ne) p. Stewart (Lw) 0:53; 275: Moore (BC) p. Jun (AFA) 0:36.

Wrestling: Dixie Hollins controls St. Petersburg City Meet for fourth straight year 01/15/11 [Last modified: Saturday, January 15, 2011 11:11pm]
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