In wrestling action in The Pit at George Mason High School Saturday, the George Mason Mustangs went 2-1 in competition against Yorktown, Freedom (Woodbridge), and Region B rival Stonewall Jackson.
After a 55-16 opening round loss to the Patriots, the Mustangs defeated Freedom 37-15 and then ended the day on a high note, as they avenged an early-season loss to Stonewall with a 36-30 victory. This stood in sharp contrast to the 56-15 thumping the Mustangs took at the hands of the Generals in December. A large part of the reason for the day’s successes was the performances of Mason underclassmen Manny Yusupov, Tim Hillegas and Jake Schwind who each went 2-1. Ramsey Hanna went 3-0 with two pins and a technical fall to lead the Mustangs. Steve Parks went 2-1.
Saturday also saw the return to action of senior Andy Millar, who underwent knee surgery in December and had not wrestled at all this season. His first match, against Yorktown’s Jay Beckmann was promising, despite the final score being 9-8 in Beckmann’s favor. Shaking off the rust of nearly a full year’s layoff, Millar battled back from a 9-1 deficit to nearly overtake his opponent. His other match turned out much better as he posted a 12-7 victory over his Region B rival from Stonewall.
It was Yusupov’s pin at the three-minute mark that provided the margin of victory and broke a 30-30 tie against Stonewall to lead the Mustangs to their season’s fourth dual meet victory, 36-30. Beginning at the 135-lbs. weight class, the match score seesawed back and forth as the Mustangs claimed victories at 140 (Schwind), 145 (Millar), and 160 (Hanna) to negate losses at 135 and 160. After a series of offsetting forfeits, the score stood at 30-30 when Yusupov came through with the big win for Mason
On Thursday, Feb. 8, in their final home event of the season, the Mustangs will host Manassas Park, Liberty, and Edison in the Pit. It will also be Senior Night, as the team will recognize the careers of its four Seniors, Rick Schumann, Andy Millar, Ramsey Hanna and Roger O’Brien. Wrestling Starts at 5 p.m.