When Fort Mill High School head wrestling coach Adam Marullo called Keenan Coston’s number Monday night, he answered.
With the Jackets trailing by two points heading into the final match at 144-pounds, Coston got a second period pin to give Fort Mill a 35-31 win over the Chapin Eagles in the third round of the 5A state playoffs.
“I felt like he was ready to step up,” Marullo said. “He has been working hard all year. He is a gamer.”
Fort Mill will now host the Rock Hill Bearcats at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 7 in the Upper State championship. The Jackets are now 22-2 on the season.
“Rock Hill is always a tough match,” Marullo said. “We already saw them once this year, but this is a different match and they are a different team.”
The Jackets opened the dual at 150-pounds with Fort Mill falling 8-6 in overtime to go down 3-0. Fort Mill got their first win at 157-pounds with Broden Mitcheson holding on for an 8-7 decision to tie the dual.
Chapin regained the lead at 165-pounds with a 11-1 major decision. The Eagles extended their lead with a first period pin at 175-pounds.
Things didn’t get any easier for Fort Mill as they continued to struggle with their heavier weight classes against Chapin falling at 190-pounds by a major decision. Fort Mill also fell at 215-pounds by a major and then were pinned at heavyweight to go down 27-3.
Rotating back to the lighter weights where they have been the strongest all season, Fort Mill needed to go on a run to stay alive in the dual.
“Our guys know we can score points when we need to score points,” Marullo said. “Our guys battled back.”
That run started with Luke Van Beynum (106) getting a third period pin for Fort Mill. That pin was followed by one from Jacob Nally (113) in the first period to cut the lead to 27-15.
Fort Mill hit a speed bump in falling at 120-pounds by major decision.
The Jackets rallied again with Tucker Gibson getting a second period pin at 126-pound and Logan Shope then squeezed out a 3-2 decision at 132-pounds. Aidan Eubanks (138) then got a 15-0 technical fall to pull Fort Mill within two at 31-29 with one final weight class to go.
Mac Banks: firstname.lastname@example.org, @fortprep