ARCHBOLD — The Delta wrestling team is state bound.
Delta topped Northwest Ohio Athletic League rival Archbold 38-27 in a Division III regional team duals final Wednesday night to earn a spot in the first-ever state team tournament sanctioned by the Ohio High School Athletic Association.
The Panthers, who collected nine victories out of the 14 scheduled matches with the Blue Streaks, will compete among the eight Division III teams Saturday at Ohio State University's St. John Arena.
"The bottom line is I couldn't be more proud of them," Delta coach Anthony Carrizales said of his Panthers, who won five of the first six matches. "They're wrestling really, really hard, and they're doing what we've asked them to do. It's paid off for them."
Delta's Jared Mattin and James Dailey paced the way by scoring pins. Mattin took the 170-pound match by taking down Archbold's David Bell in 1 minute, 15 seconds. Dailey claimed victory at 126 by putting Archbold's Lukas Rufenacht on his back at the 4:21 mark .
The Panthers opened the finals by taking the first two matches.
At 106, Alex Dailey started the night by dominating Archbold's Justin Arce. He dictated the meeting from the outset and owned a 4-1 lead after one period en route to a 9-2 win.
Jake Spiess, the state's top-ranked 113-pounder stopped Archbold's Zach Meyer 11-1.
Archbold's Damian Short scored the Blue Streaks' first win when he pulled out a 5-4 victory against Delta's Kyle Keller in a 120 match decided in the final seconds of the third period.
Keller owned a 4-3 lead after scoring a reverse with 30 seconds remaining. However, Short came through with a reverse of his own during the final 10 seconds to give him a one-point victory.
Delta's Dustin Marteney controlled the 132 match with Archbold's Ben Eggers and came away with an 8-0 shutout.
Christian Valentine kept the Panthers rolling at 138 by outlasting Archbold's Justice Zimmerman to post a 9-6 victory. The win gave the Panthers a 4-2 lead after six matches.
However, Archbold 145-pounder Logan Day halted Delta's run of wins by pinning Zach Godsey at the 5:47 mark of their match. Day was comfortably in front with a 15-3 lead when he put Godsey on his back.
At 192, Lincoln Parsley scored Archbold's only other pin by putting Delta's Conner Keller on his back at the 4:54 mark. Archbold's two other victories came by forfeit.
Delta’s Todd Miller stopped Garrett Grime with a 7-3 win at 160 and Devon Richards edged Eli Hammersmith by a 4-1 score at 195 to help the Panthers' cause.
"We're obviously upset we got beat," Archbold coach Brian Becher said. "We don't like losing to them and they don't like losing to us. At the same time, I hope they have a successful weekend down in Columbus."
Contact Donald Emmons at: firstname.lastname@example.org, 419-724-6302 or on Twitter @DemmonsBlade.