Grant Landis

Grant Landis tangles with his opponent from Moorefield.

BAKER — What a difference a week makes. After going 4-1 and winning silver at the Fort Hill Super Duals, the Trojan wrestling team took a step backward last week going 2-3 at the Baker Brawl, hosted by East Hardy.

The tournament started out rough for Hampshire as Strasburg won the first match (44-27). Martinsburg was next, and they easily dismantled the Trojans (50-18). In the final match of pool play, the Yellow Jackets of Moorefield buzzed by Hampshire (46-21).

“We’re not scoring any points. You can’t win if you don’t score,” explained Coach Hardinger.

After finishing in last place in Pool B, Hampshire picked up wins in cross-pool competition defeating Page County (60-12) and Central High School (60-12).

“We wrestled alright and we are fighting off our backs better, but we just need to get better on our feet and ride better,” said Hardinger.

“We need more mat time I guess. It doesn’t help that we had 2 days off last week for snow days, so we were a little bit rusty to start out with, but now its time to get serious because the season is starting to wind down. We only have 6 more weeks then it’s all over.”

With the weather forecast looking pleasant for the upcoming week, snow days appear to be unlikely, and Coach Hardinger plans to work on footwork and riding better during practice sessions.

“We need to start figuring out how to get back points and take-downs.”

One of the bright spots so far this season is the outstanding performance of heavyweight Ben Lambert. After going undefeated at the Baker Brawl, Lambert improved his season record to 22-0.

Although the unblemished record is impressive, Hardinger isn’t surprised with the amount of early season success of Lambert.

“He might see some big kids this weekend, and I know he will see some great competition at the Viking Smash.”

    The Trojans are back on the mat this weekend competing in the Andrew Kenney Memorial Tournament at Sherando HS with a scheduled start time of 9 a.m. o

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