Arts & Entertainment

Mason’s Park, Ray Lead Way at Oakton

A MASON HIGH WRESTLER (TOP) FIGHTS for leverage in a wrestling match at George Mason High School earlier this month. (News-Press Photo: Nate Taylor) Steve Parks and David Ray led the Mason Mustangs to a sixth-place finish this past weekend at Oakton High School’s Pinner’s Dime wrestling tournament. This year’s tournament was attended by 12 teams.

Both wrestlers finished a perfect 8-0 over the course of the two-day event and won their respective weight classes. Also placing high at the tournament were Jake Schwind, who took second at 152 with a 7-1 record, Tim Hillegass, third at 145 (8-1), and Barratt Kennett, fourth at 171 (8-2). In the finals at 140 lbs., Ray pinned his opponent, Matt Weir of Mt.Vernon High School, in the third period. Parks routed Ryan Blank of Brentsville 10-0 in his championship match at 189 lbs.

Due to the format of the event, participants had to qualify for entry into Saturday’s portion of the tournament. In order to reduce the field from the original 12 contestants, each weight class was divided into two groups of six wrestlers. On Friday, each wrestler competed in a round robin against everyone in his group. The top four in each group qualified for the Saturday elimination tournament, giving each weight class eight participants. In the Friday action, Parks, Ray, Kennett and Schwind all finished at 5-0 to win their respective groups. Hillegass placed second in his at 4-1. In the course of winning his group at 171 lbs., Kennett placed himself in the Mason record book by recording victories by pin in each of his five matches. The only other Mason wrestler to do this was Mac Cohe during his senior year in 2004. On Saturday, Kennett tied the season record for pins, again held by Cohe, as he recorded his 20th fall. With the season only two thirds over, it is a pretty fair bet Kennett will surpass this mark. He is not alone in his quest for the Mason single season record however, because Parks is right behind him with 18.

This coming weekend the Mustangs will participate in a District Dual Day at Strasburg, in which they will wrestle each of the other Bull Run District schools. This year’s Dual Day is being held in lieu of the traditional weeknight matchups against each district opponent. Wrestling starts at 10 a.m.