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By Russ Green-Sports Editor
The Richmond Spartan wrestlers began the 2012-13 season with a home dual Thursday against Excelsior Springs and then traveled to Marceline for their first tournament of the winter.
An Excelsior Springs’ team with an edge on experience dominated the Richmond Spartans in the season-opening dual for both teams Thursday night in the RHS gym.
Richmond managed just three victories in a 56-14 loss to the Tigers.
The Spartans did have some success in the upper weight classes as they won two of the final three matches of the night.
Richmond did not get its first victory of the night until freshman Tommy Wedgeworth began is varsity career with an impressive 15-0 technical fall win over Tiger junior Henry Gatlin in the 145-pound match. The Spartans were open to Darrion McLaughlin for Excelsior Springs at 106 and to Brennen Ladd at 113 to begin the evening.
In the first contested weight class, senior AJ Peterson, a two-time state qualifier for the Tigers, won by fall over Spartan sophomore Garrett McCaughey in 1:18 at 120.
The Tigers picked up another win by fall at 126 pounds when Isaac Dennis stopped Alex Watson in 1:30. Another Tiger state qualifier, AJ Edwards won by fall at 132 pounds with a pin of Dylan Pemberton in 2:56, and Lane Carey also won by fall for the Tigers at 138 when he defeated Dylan Seely in 1:23.
Richmond junior Anthony Bulk drew a tough assignment at 152 as he faced the defending Class 2 champion Brennan Johnson of Excelsior Springs. Johnson, last year’s 145-pound champion, won by technical fall, 20-3.
Excelsior Springs picked up another forfeit with Braxxtin Todd at 160 pounds.
Spartan junior Brock Stokes battled two-time state qualifier Tony Clinesmith in a tough match at 170 pounds. Clinesmith managed to pick up a 7-2 decision for the visitors.