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CAC WRESTLING | Mustangs finish on the podium

Central Arkansas Christianճ Braden Zini claimed the state title in the 195 pound category as his family celebrates. Kelly Brown photoBuy Photo
Central Arkansas Christianճ Braden Zini claimed the state title in the 195 pound category as his family celebrates. Kelly Brown photo
Central Arkansas Christianճ Braden Zini claimed the state title in the 195 pound category. Kelly Brown photoBuy Photo
Central Arkansas Christianճ Braden Zini claimed the state title in the 195 pound category. Kelly Brown photo

The Central Arkansas Christian Mustang wrestling team put together a great showing in the 1A-5A Wrestling State Tournament over the weekend.

The Mustangs were just two points away from being the runner-up to the state champ Maumelle Hornets. CAC finished third with 196.5 points, while Bismarck had 198 points. Maumelle put together a record-setting performance with 352.5 points.

CAC did finish with a pair of individual state champions thanks to Brandon Zini and Jason Kidder.

Zini was dominant in his four matches at 195 pounds. He won his first two matches by pin, had little trouble in his 15-6 semifinal win, then earned a pin in the finals for the win. Zini finished his season 25-0 and was named the Outstanding Wrestler for the heavyweight weight classes.

Kidder, wrestling at 285, also finished his season undefeated, with a 21-0 record. Kidder won his first match by forfeit, then pinned his next two opponents. In the finals against Ashdown, Kidder worked a 4-2 decision to take the first place trophy.

Kyle Simmons (152) finished as the runner-up in his weight class. Simmons pinned his first four opponents before falling to Maumelle’s Willie Wright in the finals.

The Mustangs had three wrestlers make it through the consolation bracket to finish third in state. Cody Reynolds (113) won his first match by pin, and then lost his second match. A pin followed by a 5-2 win gave him the third place prize.

Braden Quisenberry lost early in the loaded 170-pound division, and then came back with a technical fall in the consolation bracket, followed by three pins to take third.

Jon Andrews (182) won his first two matches easily before falling in the quarterfinals. Andrews pinned his next two opponents quickly for the third place trophy.

Wyatt Keech (120) was the final Mustang to place, finishing sixth in state. Keech had an early win by pin before finding himself in the consolation bracket. A bye and forfeit put him in the semifinals where he couldn’t quite get the win, followed by a loss in the fifth-place match.

Nick Pendleton (132) and Noah Stewart (138) each had a pair of pins that added nine points to the Mustangs’ team total. Preston Barnett, Colt Lloyd, Shane Almond and Jackson Kirby also all competed for CAC.

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