MADISON HEIGHTS — Leading up to the Division 2 team wrestling regional at Madison Heights Lamphere, Farmington High coach Al Beyar knew the difference between moving on and ending the season would be which team could stay off its back.
His premonition proved right, as the host beat Farmington 40-19 Feb. 12 in the semifinal.
“They were close matches, and some probably could have gone the other way, but they didn’t. That’s how it ended up,” Beyar said. “Almost every match went six minutes, but we didn’t quite get the pins we needed and had some dry spells where we needed points.”
The match was closer than the score. Of the 14 matches, each team won six, with two voids going to Lamphere. The biggest difference was the Rams tallied three pins and Farmington had none.
Lamphere opened the match with a 6-0 lead after a pin at 125 pounds. Farmington’s Jesse Jones then put his team on the board with a 9-8 decision, scoring an escape in the final seconds to make it 6-3.
The squads traded victories in the next two matches, with Farmington’s Kavinda Herath winning a 12-5 decision at 140 to make it 9-6 in favor of the Rams.
Lamphere then went on to a streak of four straight victories — two by pin, and one by void and decision each — putting the Falcons in a 30-6 hole.
Farmington responded with a streak of its own, winning the next four matches to cut the Lamphere lead to 30-19.
Farmington’s Matt Detter won a 4-2 decision in overtime at 189; Trent Bekker earned a 3-1 decision; Joe Ghafari took a 3-0 decision at 285; and Daniel Manier had a 14-6 major decision at 103.
Lamphere clinched the match in the next bout, a 13-0 major decision at 112. Farmington then voided at 119 to make the final 40-19.
The Rams went on to lose to Warren Lincoln 45-26 for the regional title.
The Falcons finish the year 22-13 overall after going 3-4 in the Oakland Activities Association Red Division. Farmington was the only D-2 school in the Red and won its second district title in the last three seasons.
“You always want to win a district and advance further than that, but it didn’t happen this year,” the coach said.
Beyar credited his seniors for the success.
“It’s a solid group spread throughout the lineup. It’ll be hard shoes to fill next year,” he said.