Photo by Melissa Vidal
Virgin Valley’s Dayden Payne has the advantage against Moapa Valley’s Jackson Mills in their 220-pound match Thursday night in the new VVHS gymnasium.

After honoring its nine seniors in a pre-match ceremony, Virgin Valley High made it a night to remember for its departing wrestlers.

The Bulldogs recorded nine pins, including eight straight to close out the match, in romping past rival Moapa Valley, 66-15, Thursday night under the spotlight inside the new Virgin Valley High School gymnasium.

The victory closed out the regular-season portion of the schedule as the Bulldogs now prepare for the South 3A Region tournament Friday and Saturday at Western High School in Las Vegas.

Seniors Jose Flores at 132 pounds and Josh Abbott at 145 won their matches by forfeit for the Bulldogs while Moapa Valley’s Zach Anderson defeated Case Crandall, 5-3, at 138 and Aiden Redd pinned Keaton Ogden at 3:26 of the 152-pound match.

Virgin Valley senior Timmy Moeai pinned the Pirates’ William Uri at 1:36 of their 160-pound match, but the Bulldogs forfeited at 170 to lead 18-15 in the team score after six matches.

The final eight matches were all Virgin Valley, however, as Bulldog wrestlers made an emphatic statement by winning all eight by pins.

Senior Cresent Crandall pinned Cropper Henrie in 1:19 of their 182-pound match while junior Nathan Abbott followed by pinning Ryan McMurray in 1:13 at 195.

VVHS senior Dayden Payne won by fall over Jackson Mills in 56 seconds at 220 while freshman Wyatt Hillius pinned Alex Paulino at 58 seconds in their 285-pound match.

Junior Rudy Cannon made quick work of Austin Tafoya at 106 pounds winning by fall just 36 seconds into their match while junior Gage Woods was victorious at 113 by pinning Jorge Cervantes in 1:06.

After junior Vincente Pinto won by fall over Avery Stratton in just 37 seconds at 120 pounds, the final match of the night was set.

Nationally decorated senior Ty Smith made his last appearance at home a memorable one by pinning John Batty in 39 seconds of their 126-pound match. Smith will wrestle for Drexel University in Philadelphia next school year.

The state 3A meet will be held Feb. 9 at The Orleans Arena in Las Vegas.