HILLSBOROUGH, N.J. -- Franklin High School wrestling saw two grapplers win titles at their respective weights and the Warriors took fifth place as a team at the Somerset County Tournament Saturday at Hillsborough High.
Franklin tallied 96 points, a six-point improvement from taking sixth with 89 points a year ago. Watchung Hills won its third team crown in a row with 185.5 points The Warriors last won the SCT in 2011, the same year they were District 18 champs.
In the 120-pound final, Jaden Williams took first place with a 3-1 decision over Raja Ahmed of North Plainfield. Williams, a junior, took third a season ago at 113. Williams also beat Somerville’s Lucas Marchese in the semifinals, 17-4.
Teammate Marcus Estevez also won gold at heavyweight with a pin in 1:49 against Somerville’s Richard Herrera. Estevez was the runner-up at the SCT in 2019. He’s currently ranked No. 4 in the state at 285 in the latest individual rankings by NJ.com. Estevez also took sixth place at state’s in Atlantic City last year as a junior and has a good of a chance as anyone on the roster to reach the podium in 2020.
Nnamdi James made it to the championship bout at 195 where he fell to Watchung Hills’ John Dusza by way of a pin in a lengthy, 5:35. James, who placed third at 182 in 2019, defeated Bound Brook’s Jahman McNeil in the semis, 8-4.
Ziad Mahmoud took third at 106 as well as he topped Tim Kolshorn of Ridge, 9-6, after he finished in fourth a year ago. Francisco Vasquez came in fourth at 145, too.
So far this season, coach Chris McEvoy’s squad is 8-0 with dual match wins over Rutgers Prep, Hillsborough, Woodbridge, South Brunswick, Carteret, Sayreville, Manville, and Old Bridge and Franklin next wrestles the SCT title winners, Watchung Hills, Monday night in Warren.
McEvoy’s Warriors have gone 33-19 since returning to the helm.
Follow Chris Nalwasky on Twitter @ChrisWasky.
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