CLEVELAND -- The Soddy Daisy Trojans were a totally different wrestling team on Friday night than they were on Tuesday.
The Trojans were humbled in a two-point loss to Baylor at home on Tuesday evening, but they responded to a serious challenge from coach Jim Higgins here at Jim Smiddy Arena as they pinned a 61-9 defeat on the always-proud Bradley Bears.
Unlike Tuesday when the Trojans appeared to just be going through the motions, they came out firing on all cylinders against the Bears, winning seven of their 12 matches with pins while adding a technical fall, two major decisions and two regular decisions.
"I'm a lot happier tonight than I was on Tuesday, but my guys were hungry and I think they wanted to make a statement," said Higgins after the Trojans had improved to 16-3 with their latest victory.
"I wanted to see them respond in a positive way and they did as they bounced back from Tuesday's loss. We're getting closer to what we're looking for and that's to be sharp for the two big state tournaments in February. I feel good about tonight's match," Higgins added.
The action began at 138 and Austin Williamson needed just 96 seconds to give the Trojans a lead with their first pin.
Gage Richmond followed with a second-period technical fall while Turbo Smith extended the lead to 17-0 with a first-minute pin at 152.
Robbie Clark put the Bears on the board with an 8-2 decision at 160, but by the time Bradley's Toribio Navarro claimed a first-period pin at 106, the outcome had long been determined.
Blaike Henry, Tyler Hixson, Cody Grant, Jacob Stevens and Alex Oliver all had additional pins for the Trojans while Garrett Alexander and Luke Reno both registered major decisions.
Austin Houser and Tucker Russo added wins by regular decisions as the Trojans closed out their regular-season dual meet schedule with a resounding victory.
Bradley coach Ben Smith was hoping for better results and for sure, a closer match.
"The biggest thing I admire about Soddy Daisy's effort is how they rebounded after a tough loss on Tuesday. I knew they would regroup and be ready to fight when they walked in here tonight as they always bring their best effort when they wrestle us," Smith began.
"I feel certain that we're better than we showed, but we seem to have test anxiety. Soddy Daisy is putting it together under the lights. I expect us to win every time we wrestle, but I need to realize that this is a long process.
"We can be a pretty good team if we're firing on all cylinders. Tonight's results don't reflect our hearts. I hate it for our seniors, but I really expected a much closer match. Our backs are to the wall now," he nodded, referring to the upcoming Region Duals, which will be held at Cleveland next Thursday.
Soddy Daisy will face the loser of Wednesday's Cleveland-Walker Valley match while Bradley will face the winner in Thursday's semifinals. Both winners will advance to the State Duals in Franklin on Feb. 1-2.
Bradley is now 14-4 following Friday's loss.
SODDY DAISY 61, BRADLEY CENTRAL 9
(Match started at 138 Pounds)
106 -- Toribio Navarro (BC) pinned Jacob McClure, 1:18;
113 -- Austin Houser (SD) dec. Dyer Rose, 9-4;
120 -- Jacob Stevens (SD) pinned Dakota Bromley, 3:23;
126 -- Tucker Russo (SD) dec. Dakota Ream, 3-2;
132 -- Alex Oliver (SD) pinned Taylor Kazy, 4:00;
138 -- Austin Williamson (SD) pinned Caven Rogers, 1:36;
145 -- Gage Richmond (SD) won by technical fall over Colter McConnell, 3:49;
152 -- Turbo Smith (SD) pinned Jacob Staton, :59;
160 -- Robbie Clark (BC) dec. Branndon Hunt, 8-2;
170 -- Garrett Alexander (SD) major dec. Eric Goins, 9-1;
182 -- Blaike Henry (SD) pinned Nathan Adams, 2:44;
195 -- Tyler Hixson (SD) pinned Alex Forgey, 3:01;
220 -- Luke Reno (SD) major dec. Zachary McFarland, 15-7;
285 -- Cody Grant (SD) pinned J. J. Johnson, :49.
(Email John Hunt at firstname.lastname@example.org)