NC State (1-0) opened their dual season with a 34-6 drubbing over West Virginia on Sunday. Despite West Virginia’s big conference affiliation and advantageous geographical location in terms of talent pool, this was always going to be a mismatch. Tim Flynn was a great hire and I believe the right guy for that program, but it’s just simply too early in his tenure for them to compete with what Pop has built in his time here. Especially considering the crop of guys we have returning from last year’s sixth-place team.
The final result was never in question, but there were some interesting matchups to give this dual a little spice. The first of which was supposed to come at 125 with #10 Jakob Camacho wrestling the guy who ended his 2021 season, #9 Killian Cardinale. Unfortunately, for undisclosed reasons Cardinale has not yet taken the mat this season, and that continued on Sunday afternoon. Instead, Jakob kicked off the dual with a 14-4 major decision over backup Colton Drousias. At 133, we got to see a new face to the lineup - Kai Orine has impressed early this season, putting together a 6-0 record that includes a win over teammate and starter for the past two seasons, Jarrett Trombley. Kai got his opportunity and he took advantage of it with a 4-1 win.
At 141, 149, & 157 it was more of the same as Ryan Jack, Tariq Wilson, and Ed Scott all kept the ball rolling for the Pack, pushing the lead to 18-0 after five bouts.
In the marquee match of the evening, #11 Thomas Bullard took on young stud #14 Peyton Hall. This was a very tight contest through two periods, but really opened up in the third and a couple of mental errors ended up costing the Wolfpack senior as he fell, 6-3. Now, this isn’t a bad loss by any means - Hall will be in the All-American mix again this year. But this match looked a lot like what has plagued Thomas in year’s past. In these matches against his other podium contenders, he needs to get his offense going. He is too reliant on his top game and scrambling, and against the best guys in the country the margin for error is too small to leave to one or two coinflip exchanges. He’s got to be more active on his feet and create more scramble situations to increase his scoring opportunities. Easier said than done, but he came back for a reason. This is the last ride, let if fly young man!
Following a deflating result like that, I can’t imagine a better way to reverse our fortune than the debut of the Brothers of Destruction. Hayden came out for his first appearance at 174 and did not give any indication that strength will be an issue up two weights. He horsed his opponent around for a 19-3 tech fall and then signaled his brother’s entrance by raising the roof. Trent answered the call with an absolute plastering. There’s really no other way to put it - see for yourself below.
That is another highly-skilled man of similar age and weight, and you’re able to just dispatch of him within half a minute?? I don’t think people understand just how truly special this dude is. His brother too. Two matches, eleven team points. We are so blessed to have these two.
At 197, Isaac Trumble continued his undefeated start (9-0) to the season with a dominating 17-0 tech fall victory. Isaac looks to have filled out a little more this year, and I am very curious to see him against some tougher competition. The jury is still out on whether he has developed some reliable leg attacks, and I’d love to see him work those against the lesser competition like he faced on Sunday. But most of his takedowns came from his opponent’s attacks, so it’s tough to tell. I do know that this has been an area of focus for the coaching staff in regards to Trumble’s development, so we’ll see. This will determine what his ceiling is for this season.
In the final match of the afternoon, another new face broke into the lineup. With two early-season victories over Deonte Wilson, Owen Trephan locked up an opportunity to be our starter at heavyweight. Unfortunately, his showing on Sunday left a lot to be desired. Owen looked sharp early, but gave up two takedowns late in the second period and was unable to steal the victory late. I know that the head-to-head results matter, but it’s going to be hard to justify keeping the reigning ACC Champion on the bench if we can’t get results against guys who are ranked in the 30s. This competition is wide open in my opinion, and probably won’t be decided for a while.
#5 NC State 34-6 West Virginia
- 125: #10 Jakob Camacho (NCSU) major dec. Colton Drousias (WVU); 14-4 (4-0 NCSU)
- 133: Kai Orine (NCSU) dec. Garett Lautzenheiser (WVU); 4-1 (7-0 NCSU)
- 141: Ryan Jack (NCSU) dec. Caleb Rea (WVU); 8-7 (10-0 NCSU)
- 149: #2 Tariq Wilson (NCSU) major dec. Jeffrey Boyd (WVU); 13-4 (14-0 NCSU)
- 157: Ed Scott (NCSU) major dec. Alex Hornfeck (WVU); 22-8 (18-0 NCSU)
- 165: #14 Peyton Hall (WVU) dec. #11 Thomas Bullard (NCSU); 6-3 (18-3 NCSU)
- 174: #4 Hayden Hidlay (NCSU) tech fall Dennis Robin (WVU); 19-3 (23-3 NCSU)
- 184: #3 Trent Hidlay (NCSU) pin Anthony Carman (WVU); 0:22 (29-3 NCSU)
- 197: #19 Isaac Trumble (NCSU) tech fall Jackson Moomau (WVU); 17-0 (34-3 NCSU)
- 285: HM Michael Wolfgram (WVU) dec. HM Owen Trephan (NCSU); 6-5 (34-6 NCSU)
This wasn’t a riveting dual, the Pack controlled from start to finish. But it felt great to be back in Reynolds supporting this team in person. And there was a decent crowd for a Sunday afternoon competing with NFL timeslots (1,374 according to GoPack). The boys return to action on Thursday, December 2nd as Gardner-Webb make the trip to Reynolds. I hope to see you all there!