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Wrestling

Robinson High School Wrestling Wins Virginia Class 6 Championship

VIRGINIA BEACH — Robinson”s Joshua Pence said that during wrestling practices this season, he often found himself marveling at the amount of talent in the room.

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Pence and the Rams validated that assessment Sunday, crowning five state champions and rolling to the Virginia Class 6 title at the Virginia Beach Sports Center.

Pence did his part by topping Ocean Lakes’ Trenton Campos, 6-4, in the 132-pound final, shortly after teammate Tristan Corbin shut out Riverbend’s Carson Main, 9-0, to take the 126-pound crown.

The onslaught continued at 145, where Sammy Gerard, a state champion in 2019 who was disqualified from his opening state tournament match last year when officials couldn’t stop his nose from bleeding, became a two-time title winner with a first-period pin of Ocean Lakes’ Jaden Campos.

Robinson’s Liam Gordon, a state champ at 145 a year ago, added the 170-pound title Sunday by downing Patriot’s Vincenzo Corvetto. Finally, heavyweight Cooper Rudolph, whose definition for “Rams” — Relentless Athletes Manufacturing Success — became the team’s slogan, downed Kellam’s Jake Thompson, 5-1, in the day’s final match.

To be fair, various coronavirus restrictions across the state robbed this tournament of some of its usual contenders, including defending champion Oscar Smith and Landstown, which went into quarantine and had to sit out its region tournament.

Still, Robinson Coach Bryan Hazard said the Rams realized that at any point they could suffer a similar fate.

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“There was never a day when I wasn’t expecting my principal, my . . . to come up to me and say, ‘You’re done,’ ” Hazard said. “So we just told our kids to go out and have fun. This was their outlet, and they did it well.”

In other finals, Centreville’s Mac Cafurello became a two-time state champion at 120, and he wasn’t bashful about letting everyone know it. Upon completing his 11-3 decision over Westfield’s Robert Rerras, the Wildcats senior raised his arms and extended two fingers on each hand, then hit a double biceps pose.

“Got to flex on ’em a little bit,” a smiling Cafurello said after adding the title to last season’s 106-pound crown.

A Centreville wrestler also came up big at 138 as Jake Crowder, who had failed to place in his three previous state tournament appearances, outdueled Riverbend’s Zachary Ortega, 6-4, in the title bout.

Lake Braddock’s Korlan Tran (106), Woodbridge’s Tyler Tanev (113), West Springfield’s Sean Coughlin (152), South County’s Brian Gordon and Forest Park’s Charlie Lopez (182) also won state titles.

Robinson amassed 141 points and was followed in the team race by Riverbend (76), Westfield (71.5), Lake Braddock (65) and Forest Park (57).

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