Callaway wrestlers win titles
By KEVIN ECKLEBERRY
It was a day of firsts.
Callaway High’s wrestling team participated in the Gary Silva Invitational on Saturday at Gardner Newman Middle School, and Laquize Gilbert and Anthony Elliott both earned their first-ever tournament victories.
Also for Callaway, Curmondre Bray earned a third-place finish, and Ladarious Williams was fourth.
At 160 pounds, Gilbert earned the championship with a 3-0 record, and he beat Central-Carroll’s Caden Horsley in the final match.
“It feels very good,” Gilbert said. “Everybody at Callaway, we work so hard, and finally getting a first-place medal feels just great.”
In a previous meeting between the two finalist participants, Horsley won a close decision, and Gilbert was determined to produce a different result in the rematch.
“Coming in, I knew I had to be aggressive, and work my moves,” Gilbert said. “I wrestled him before, and he beat me by one point. That was on my mind. I knew I had to get back at him.”
Later in the day, it was Elliott’s turn, and he made his way through the 182-pound division with a 3-0 record.
In the championship match, Elliott beat Cohen Perry of Harris County.
Last season, those two men faced off in a tournament at Callaway, and Perry won a close one.
The rematch went Elliott’s way as he outlasted Perry 5-2.
“I wrestled him last year when he came to Callaway, and he beat me in overtime,” Elliott said. “So my mindset was, I’ve got to beat him. I heard him breathing real hard in the last period, and I knew I had him.”
Elliott struggled a bit earlier in the season, but he’s rolling now.
“I was losing at the beginning of the season, now it’s win after win,” Elliott said. “I’m working hard every day at practice.”
Another Callaway standout was Curmondre Bray, a first-year wrestler who enjoyed his highest finish this season.
Bray was a defensive lineman for the Cavaliers, and he has made tremendous strides since joining the wrestling team in December.
Bray finished with a 3-1 record on Saturday, and he beat Preston Feltman of Dutchtown to finish third.
“The best part is, he listens,” Callaway coach Jason Boatman said. “It’s brand new to him. He’s never done it before, but he’s got pretty good instincts, plus he’s willing to learn in the room. He’s paying attention, he’s working it, and then you get a little taste of that success.”
At 126 pounds, Ladarious Williams finished 2-2 to place fourth.
Also winning matches for Callaway were Cameron Poythress (113 pounds), Jak