Northview's opening dual wrestling match has rarely been easy the past few seasons under head coach Dan Mikesell. As part of beefing up their schedule to prep the Knights for the postseason, Northview has recently faced off with an always tough Bloomington South squad to open their dual match season. While the Panthers have had some talented teams in the past, there is good reason to believe that this one might be their best in recent memory. While Northview dropped a 54-19 decision, there was plenty to enjoy from a fans perspective.
Freshman Brandon Hathaway opened up the action for the Knights at the 145 pound level and battled to the wire with the Panthers Kelley Deckard before succumbing in a 9-7 decision. Sophomore Tommy Herr-Smith had a tough task in taking on South's Kurt Kinser, a senior who placed second in the state last year. Herr-Smith wrestled valiantly in his effort before Kinser got the fall at the 3:47 mark in the second period.
The Knights forfeited the 160 pound class to South's state champion Paul Young and John Beasley dropped a decision by fall at 171 before the Knights got their first win of the evening.
Greg Stultz advanced to 6-0 this season when he pinned Dustin Newell in 1:02 at the 189 pound level. Senior Rob Pasalich put together a nail-biter with South's Levi Pepper at 215. The match went two overtimes before Pepper got the decision by a 2-1 margin
Tyler Grubb defeated Brian Walden at 275 and South continued their streak by winning the 103, 112 and 119 pound classes by fall.
Beau Pingleton would halt the Cougars roll at 125 by winning by fall over Josh Lentz in just 55 seconds. Northview freshman Chris Craft continued his winning ways by getting a major decision over senior Nick Samaro, 10-1.
Another South state qualifier, Tony Withrow, won by fall over sophomore Brian Griffin of the Knights and match concluded with another hard fought battle by Zach Stultz that ended in a tight 7-5 defeat to Nick Viterisi.
While the Cougars celebrated Legends Night as returning South wrestlers came back to cheer on this year's No.2 ranked product, the Knights would also like to invite their own wrestling alumni to come celebrate this team's home opener on Dec. 6 against Owen Valley.