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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.

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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.