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El Dorado finishes strong to beat El Modena
PLACENTIA – After the first six matches of Thursday's Century League dual between El Dorado and El Modena, neither team was able to gain an advantage on the scoreboard.
The remaining matches told a different story.
The sixth-ranked Golden Hawks won seven of the final eight matches to turn a 15-15 tie into a 44-18 home victory.
"It was kind of what I thought it would be," El Dorado coach Steve Lawson said. "I knew that their good kids would win, and I knew that our good kids would win.
"We highlight in the room five or six matches that we need to win four of those six to win a dual. I think we got fortunate with kind of like the role players. The kids that aren't the stars have to beat their kids that aren't the stars."
The dual started at 195 pounds.
El Dorado ran off a string of six consecutive victories, five that went the full three periods, to turn the tide of the match.
Mark Brown (126) snapped the 15-15 tie with a 10-4 decision, Steven Castillo (132) followed with a 7-2 victory and Noah Patterson (138) won by decision for a 24-15 lead.
The next three matches helped El Dorado clinch the match. Gino Roman won by major decision at 145, as did Michael Miller at 152. Next up was Conor Duke (160) in his first varsity match.
"We've been trying everybody here and there," Lawson said. "I rolled the dice on that one, put him out there and he won."
Duke proved Lawson right, winning by fall to seal the victory.
"I had some butterflies in my stomach," Duke said. "I was glad I got the arm around him and put him on his back. I'm glad I got the opportunity."
El Dorado opened the dual with consecutive pins, from Joel Watermeier at 195, who trailed 9-1 at the time, and Gress Lawson at 220. Dante Duke's victory at heavyweight gave El Dorado a 15-0 lead.
El Modena won the next three matches, two by pin, to tie the score at 15. The next victory for the Vanguards wouldn't come until the second-to-last match (James Richardson at 170).
"They outwrestled us," El Modena coach Corey Schuld said.