LAINGSBURG — The score was 12-11.
One match point. That’s how close Laingsburg wrestling came to a Division 4 team district wrestling championship Thursday.
The Wolfpack fell 38-36 to Dansville, falling just short of a come-from-behind victory.
Eight days ago, the same two teams faced each other.
“We lost by 25 to (Dansville) last Wednesday so we came back with a new plan, put some people in different positions, put a lot of pressure on kids,” Laingsburg coach Shawn Baynes said. “Almost our entire lineup was different this time around. The team stepped up to (the challenge) but we just lost some close tight ones.”
The Wolfpack — which finished its team wrestling campaign with a 9-10 record — opened the night with a 49-23 win over Webberville while Dansville made quick work of an undermanned Bath squad, 65-12.
In the championship match, the Aggies won five of the first six opening matches, winning two by fall and one by technical fall, while the lone Laingsburg win came on Aden Baynes’ 48-second pin at 130 pounds.
Coach Baynes said he expected a close one and got it.
“There was a plan (going in),” Baynes said. “I knew how some of the matches would go. There was only one match that I thought would go the other way. But, in any case, I knew this was going to be a three- or four-point dual either way.”
Down 23-6, the tide turned in favor of the Wolfpack as Devin Nash pinned his 152-pound opponent and kick-started not just a Wolfpack run but a streak of pins.
Laingsburg won four of the next five matches, all by fall, as the streak was only interrupted by a Dansville 11-second pin at 189.
With the score 36-35 in favor of Laingsburg, Gabby Motz stepped onto the mat to try and seal the win for the Wolfpack. But it just didn’t fall into place. After a back-and-forth match which was 2-2 after one period and 8-7 after the second, Motz lost 12-11.
“Wish it could have went our way but it’s alright,” Baynes said. “We have a lot of young people, we’ve only got two seniors, we’re going to be good for awhile.”
For coach Baynes the focus is now on the future of Wolfpack wrestling.
“This season was about putting in the work,” Baynes said. “Next season is about trying to do something special and continue to move forward with our young group.”