McALESTER — In all but one weight class, whichever wrestler had a better first round ended up winning his match.
In nine of Tuesday’s 14 matches, that wrestler wore a blue Pryor Tigers singlet, leading to a 51-19 win against the McAlester Buffaloes at McAlester’s Bob Brumley Gymnasium.
“Almost 93 percent of the time, the first point scored wins, so that’s huge,” said Pryor coach Roger White, a former McAlester wrestling coach. “I think the other 7 percent are new wrestlers that don’t know how to push themselves.”
Counting matches that ended with first-round falls, Pryor outscored McAlester in the first round by a combined score of 42-12. Three falls in a row by Pryor middleweight wrestlers Cody Foos, Kelvin Grubbs and Chase Biggs, pushed Pryor’s lead to 30-10.
Tanner Hughes then beat McAlester’s Jonathan Herrick in the 160-pound weight class, with Hughes taking a 2-0 lead with a first-round takedown and ultimately winning the match 11-5. Caleb Reece then pinned James Remedi in the 182-pound weight class, giving Pryor an insurmountable 26-point lead with three matches left.
“We’re not where we’re going to be as far as physical (strength),” Buffs coach Tim Thomas said. “I probably had three guys in the lineup that didn’t wrestle all through the break that we just had or the week before because of some kind of sickness. And then I also had three football players in the lineup that came out yesterday.
“So shape was definitely an issue for about half our lineup.”
McAlester’s two biggest victories came from wrestlers who’ve recorded very little practice time this season. Despite battling bronchitis the last two weeks, Buffs senior Hunter Scott still pinned Lance Linvingston just 58 seconds into the 133-pound weight class, at the time cutting Pryor’s lead to 12-10.
“I was just going to try to end it as fast as I could, because I just got over being sick,” Scott said.