Six advance to state semifinals

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Two each from Grayson, Carroll and Galax were one win away from the state finals Saturday.

By Craig Worrell, Sports Editor

SALEM –– A half-dozen Twin County wrestlers put themselves one win away from the state finals in their respective weight classes, finishing Friday’s first two rounds undefeated during the Group A and Group AA state tournaments at the Salem Civic Center.


In Group A, brothers Edu and Jose Rojas of Galax each reached the semifinals, along with Grayson County’s Cody McGuire and Richard Pugh.

Edu Rojas earned a 14-4 major decision over Appomattox’s Eric Muddiman and then pinned Caleb Gibson of Castlewood 3 minutes and 41 seconds into the 119-pound quarterfinals. At 130 pounds, Jose Rojas needed but 27 seconds to dispose of first-round opponent Cody Phillips of Lee, then decisioned Jay Silvas of Strasburg 5-2.

McGuire registered an 8-0 major decision over Joey Reel of Appomattox and followed with a first-period pin of Neriz Meza of Northampton in the 125-pound class.

Pugh, wrestling at 130 pounds, worked over J.J. Kelly’s Nate Addington 9-2 in his opener and reached the semis with a 10-2 defeat of Cumberland’s Kentuan Huges.

In the double-A tournament, Carroll County senior Drew McCraw and sophomore Blake Bowman won their first two matches to reach the championship semis.

In the 130-pound class, Bowman managed an escape to start the third period and earned a 15-0 technical fall over Chancellor’s Louis Pina in the first round, then toppled Warren County’s Spencer Bunce 8-5 in the quarterfinals.

McCraw, wrestling in the 285-pound class, got past Rustburg’s Keith Williamson 10-3 in his first match of the day and decisioned Mike Carlson of Millbrook 4-1 in the quarters.

Final results will be in Wednesday’s edition of The Gazette.