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Four state titles heading back to Randolph County

Stephanie King

After two days of wrestling, the championship matches of the 2020 NCHSAA State Individual Wrestling Tournament took place Saturday evening. Six Randolph County wrestlers reached the final round vying for a state title. In the 1A classification, Uwharrie Charter sent four wrestlers to the finals in Heaven Fitch, Gage Beal, Jerry Jimenez, and Sergio Saldana. In the 2A classification, Wheatmore sent two wrestlers to the final round in defending state champion Ethan Oakley and Devin Daugherty.

The championship round began with a 120-pound weight class, but the first Randolph County wrestler would not take the mat until the 132-pound match. Ethan Oakley was first up battling his opponent through three rounds. Oakley picked up the win in a 13-4 decision to earn his second straight state title and his third overall. The senior finishes the season with a 60-1 overall record.

Jerry Jimenez would be the next Randolph County wrestler to take the mat in the 152-pound weight class. It was a hard-fought battle for Jimenez, but the senior came out on top with an 8-4 win for his first state title. He finishes the season with a 61-4 overall record. Sergio Saldana was the next county wrestler in the 220-pound weight class and his night would not end the way he wanted. Saldana ended up falling by pin to his opponent.

Wheatmore wrestler, Devin Daughtery, took the mat in the 2A 285-pound weight class. He put up a fight before falling in a 4-3 decision. As the final two matches came around, Uwharrie Charter junior Heaven Fitch took the mat in the 106-pound weight class. She took control early and never relinquished her lead. She defeated her opponent in an 11-3 decision to become the first female to win a state title in the NCHSAA State Individual Championships. She finishes the season with an overall record of 58-4.  The final match of the evening featured Gage Beal from Uwharrie Charter. He battled his opponent and took the lead, before being crown state champion after his opponent went down with a match-ending injury. Beal finishes the season 58-4 overall on the season.

The Uwharrie Charter Eagles also finished as runner-ups as a team. Heaven Fitch was also named the Most Outstanding Wrestler for the 1A Classification.

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