Bartlett 160-pound junior grappler Kevin Reeves found himself in the center of controversy when he was twice called for slamming his opponent to the mat.
Reeves, a Tennessee state qualifier a year ago, dominated both of his region wrestling opponents, muscling them into the air before taking them to the mat. Twice, against different opponents, the wrestling official charged Reeves with the foul, the second time costing the Panthers a shot at their first state team tournament appearance.
“I just thought he was wrestling hard,” first-year head coach Daniel Longo said of Reeves’ effort. “It’s a judgment call.”
Even more remarkable than the foul was the reaction of opposing coaches. Reeves, who was charged with slamming Houston’s Greg Watkins in the final match of the Region Satellite wrestle-offs, was given the win when Houston wrestling coach Walt Holmes told officials he “didn’t want to win a match by disqualification.”
One day later, Cordova wrestling Coach Brian Loeffler didn’t share Holmes’ reaction. With the Panther’s state qualification in Reeves’ hands, the junior faced his second disciplinary call.
Cordova’s coach willingly accepted the official’s opinion and Bartlett finished one slot away from the state dual meet championship.
The controversial calls over-shadowed a strong Panther performance in the dual meet competition. Second to Arlington in regular season district action, Bartlett fell to Collierville in the first round before knocking off Arlington for the third place team slot. In a true-second place wrestle off, Bartlett and Cordova stood toe to toe with the Panthers succumbing by six.
Senior heavyweight Adrian Keeley continued his unbeaten season with a 3:36 pin over Houston’s Alexander Tekle in the satellite wrestle off and Bartlett also got pins from Adam Washburn, Christopher Hall and Braun Stephens.
Bartlett finished its dual meet season with a 19-10 mark.
Bartlett 40, Houston 33
106: Alex Carroll (Bartlett) beat Travis Arthur (Houston), 9-7. 113: Edward Brown (Houston) pinned Rasheed Benchamkha (Bartlett), 3:48. 120: Steven Poe (Bartlett) beat Brittin Roedel (Houston), 11-9. 126: Alaa Shihadeh (Houston) pinned Wyatt Scherer (Bartlett), 2:54. 132: Jacob Carter (Bartlett) beat Matthew Dale (Houston), 17-4. 138: Braun Stephens (Bartlett) pinned Nate Drabik (Houston), 1:19. 145: Christopher Hall (Bartlett) pinned Cameron Murphy (Houston), 2:59. 152: Dalton Mock (Houston) beat George Stewart (Bartlett), 7-4. 160: Kevin Reeves (Bartlett) inj. def. Greg Watkins (Houston). 170: Ben Asadoorian (Houston) pinned Spencer Long (Bartlett), 2:21. 182: Cole Young (Houston) pinned Joshua Glass (Bartlett), 0:30. 195: Jeremy Washburn (Bartlett) pinned Sina Setayeshpour (Houston), 2:23. 220: RJ Myers (Houston) won by forfeit. 285: Adrian Keeley (Bartlett) pinned Alexander Tekle (Houston), 3:36.