Baylor Wrestlers Rally to Win D-II State Duals

Red Raiders Edge Father Ryan, 36-25

Saturday, February 1, 2014 - by B.B. Branton
- photo by Michael Sutherland

FRANKLIN, Tenn. - Winners of four of the final five matches, Baylor rallied to defeat Father Ryan, 36-25, to claim the TSSAA D-II state duals wrestling championship here Saturday night at the Williamson County Agricultural Center.

In a match with four lead changes, Baylor used wins from Tate Robinson (138, major decision), Blake Southerland (152, decision), Bryson Popp (160, fall) and Cayman Seagraves (170, fall) down the stretch to rally for the victory.


“The keys to winning tonight were having state champion Michael Murphy back at 113 (earned a major decision), our wins at 152 (Blake Southerland) and 220 (Jon Schmissrauter) were big as we lost those matches in the dual (in January) and our studs (Robinson, Popp, Southerland and Seagraves) came through for us at the end,” said Baylor coach Ben Nelson.

Baylor, who now has won a D-II record eight state duals titles, improves to 24-7, while Father Ryan, who has won seven dual titles, is 14-3.

The match did have controversy, as at 285 (fourth match of the night with Baylor leading 8-3), the lead official mistakenly stopped the match in the first period when he called the Baylor wrestler (Will Thomas), who was on his back, for grabbing his opponents t-shirt.

The official stopped the match with just under a minute remaining in the period – which he should not have done - and called a technical violation on Thomas for the aforementioned grabbing the t-shirt of Ryan’s Jonathan Spenser. He awarded a point to Spenser, plus three back points.

The official should have let the match continue in case Spenser either pinned Thomas, Thomas got out of the hold and off his back, went out of bounds or time ran out. Thomas ended up pinning Spenser in the third period.

Baylor Quick Start: With the match starting at 182, the Red Raiders won three of the first four matches to lead 14-3 after the pin by Thomas.

Ryan then made its run, winning five of the next seven matches to lead, 26-22, before Baylor had wins from Southerland, Popp and Seagraves.

“The better team won tonight, but we will be ready at the region next weekend (at Baylor) and the state traditional here in two weeks,” said Father Ryan coach Pat Simpson.

Bonus Points: In the dual match in January, won by Ryan (38-27), the Purple Irish were able to score 14 bonus points to Baylor’s nine, while tonight Ryan totaled eight extra points to Baylor’s 12.

Largest Leads: 11 – Baylor at 14-3 … 4 – Ryan at 26-22


Wins: Baylor, 8-6

Pins: Baylor, 2-1

Tech Falls: Baylor, 2-1

Major Decisions: Ryan, 3-2

Decisions: Baylor, 2-1

Baylor 36, Father Ryan 25

182 - Ryan Parker tech fall Hunter Duff, 15- at 21-10 …  Baylor, 5-0

195 – Houston Hooker dec. Cooper Reiniche, 5-4 … Baylor, 5-3

220 – Jon Schmissrauter (Baylor) dec. Ben Stacey, 7-3 … Baylor, 8-3

285 – Will Thomas (Baylor) pinned Jonathan Spenser, 4:38 … Baylor, 14-3

106 - Eli King (Father Ryan) pinned Jack Reynolds, 3:01 … Baylor, 14-9

113 – Michael Murphy (Baylor) major dec. Eason Raymond, 13-0 … Baylor 18-9

120 - Jared Frazier (Father Ryan) major dec.  Andy Atchley, 11-1 … Baylor, 18-13

126 – Kirby Simpson (Father Ryan) major dec. Caleb Canada, 10-2 … Baylor, 18-17

132 – Chris Wesnofske (Father Ryan) major dec. Caleb Powell, 12-4 … Ryan, 21-18 (lead change, 1)

138 - Tate Robinson (Baylor) major dec. Michael Eckhart, 11-3 …  Baylor, 22-21 (lead change, 2)

145 - Marcello Morrice (Father Ryan) tech fall Preston Troxell, 19-4 … Ryan, 26-22 (lead change, 3)

152 - Blake Southerland (Baylor) dec. Ryan Simpson, 7-5 … Ryan, 26-25

160 - Bryson Popp (Baylor) tech. fall Nick Naughton, 18-3 … Baylor, 30-26 (lead change, 4)

170 - Cayman Seagraves (Baylor) pinned John Hagey, 2:00 … Baylor won, 36-26

Note: Father Ryan had one team point deducted for unsportsmanlike conduct

contact B.B. Branton at

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