With his emotions beginning to overwhelm him, Deagan Fugitt gave a friendly nod to Nixa’s home crowd after his match Tuesday and hurriedly headed to a hallway outside the gym to gather himself.
Fugitt responded well to ‘Senior Night’ by recording a pin against Waynesville’s Kaiden Cruz in 1:49 as part of Nixa’s 56-18 victory versus Waynesville. The fact it was the Eagles’ final scheduled home match of the season made it bittersweet for the 138-pound senior.
“It’s fun, but sad,” Fugitt said. “I’m not ready to leave. I was fine during my match. It was just the realization that my high school career at Nixa is almost over.”
Fugitt improved to 18-4 by taking care of Cruz, who entered the match with a 14-5 record. Fugitt started the season by winning his first 12 matches.
One aspect of his senior year that has him optimistic he can reach his goal by medaling at State has been his weight management.
“I’ve been doing real well on my diet,” Fugitt said. “I feel pretty big at my weight. I’ve been eating healthier, eating less and working out more.
“I’m feeing very good about this season and have been wrestling great,” he added. “This is my last shot. I’ve got to get it while I can. I’m waiting to accomplish my dreams. Hopefully, they happen.
Nixa 126-pounder Peyton Moore remained undefeated by pinning Waynesville’s Carl Gervacio in 1:40. Moore ran his record to 00-0. A junior, this is the furthest into a season he has gone without tasting defeat.
“It puts more of a target on your back,” he said of being unbeaten. “Kids want to beat you because you are undefeated. They want give you that one loss on your record. I’ve been getting the best out of them. I’m feeling the same every single match. I want to get out there and win.”
Moore posted his 100th career win during Nixa’s foray at the Duncan Southern Oklahoma Invite a week prior to Christmas. During the same tourney, he pinned a state champion in Kaden Smith, of Bridge Creek, Oklahoma and handed a state runner-up a 9-3 defeat in Eli Kirk, of Guthrie, Oklahoma.
“I’ve wrestled high-quality kids,” Moore said. “I’ve got the best of all of them. So, it means a lot to be undefeated.”
Moore feels good about his chances to stay undefeated through the regular season if he can get past upcoming matches against Cael Keck, of Park Hill, and Christopher Coats, of Liberty.
Moore, who is nearing 100 career pins, is on well on pace to join elite company next season by reaching 150 career wins.
“I should be at 130 by the end of this season, so I should easily be able to get 150 next year,” he said.
The Eagles’ John Gholson upped his record to 17-1 by beating Waynesville’s Jacob Forshey 9-2 at 285. Zan Fugitt is 20-1 after a 17-4 majority decision at 120 versus Dustin Green. Michael Turner is 13-4 after an 8-0 win against Colton Justus at 195.
During ‘Senior Night’ festivities, former state-qualifier Kolyn Eli was introduced and it was announced he would try to come back from a torn labrum injury to compete at Districts.
But Eli said he’s taken to the mat for the final time. He was 2-1 prior to his injury.
“I’m not planning on coming back,” Eli said. “I’m probably going to play football in college. If I didn’t have a future in football in college, for sure I would come back. But I do. I’m going to try to pursue football as far as I can. I have (weeks) of physical therapy. I don’t want a permanent injury.
Most recently, Kansas juco Coffeyville has shown strong interest in Eli as a cornerback.
In the girls dual, Nixa prevailed 45-33, thanks to winning matches by forfeit.
The Lady Eagles Ashlyn Eli won by pin in :41 against Waynesville’s Xochiti Medrano at 102. In their last match, Eli needed 3:13 to pin Medrano.
Eli is 24-0 on the season. All of her wins have been by fall, with 22 being in the first period.
Nixa 56, Waynesville 18
106: Trenton Sanders (NIXA) over (WAYNESVL) (For.) 113: William Austin (WAYNESVL) over Sivad Davis (NIXA) (Fall 1:43) 120: Zan Fugitt (NIXA) over Dustin Green (WAYNESVL) (MD 17-4) 126: Peyton Moore (NIXA) over Carl Gervacio (WAYNESVL) (Fall 1:40) 132: Cole Crahan (NIXA) over (WAYNESVL) (For.) 138: Deagan Fugitt (NIXA) over Kaiden Cruz (WAYNESVL) (Fall 1:49) 145: Kevin Cruz (WAYNESVL) over Connor Swensen (NIXA) (Fall 5:23) 152: Dylan Carter (NIXA) over Martin Medrano (WAYNESVL) (Dec 3-0) 160: Issac Peterson (WAYNESVL) over Alexander Bewley (NIXA) (Fall 4:43) 170: Porter Osborne (NIXA) over Aiden Stearns (WAYNESVL) (Fall 1:16) 182: Avry Rutherford (NIXA) over (WAYNESVL) (For.) 195: Michael Turner (NIXA) over Colton Justus (WAYNESVL) (MD 8-0) 220: Charles Speake (NIXA) over (WAYNESVL) (For.) 285: John Gholson (NIXA) over Jacob Forshey (WAYNESVL) (Dec 9-2).
Nixa 45, Waynesville 33
102: Ashlyn Eli (NIXA) over Xochitl Medrano (WAYNESVL) (Fall 0:41) 107: Micyala Ballew (NIXA) over (WAYNESVL) (For.) 112: Josie Moody (WAYNESVL) over Micah Ballew (NIXA) (Dec 4-2) 117: Brittany Williams (NIXA) over Madison Boher (WAYNESVL) (Fall 3:11) 122: Jaylen Williams (WAYNESVL) over Emily Thomassen (NIXA) (Fall 3:08) 127: Brenya Crahan (NIXA) over (WAYNESVL) (For.) 132: Nicole Pilotto (NIXA) over (WAYNESVL) (For.) 137: Kaile Fritz (WAYNESVL) over Harper Simpson (NIXA) (Fall 2:48) 143: Somia McPherson (WAYNESVL) over Addison Eli (NIXA) (Fall 0:51) 151: Kahli McDonald (WAYNESVL) over (NIXA) (For.) 159: Taelor Dorr (NIXA) over (WAYNESVL) (For.) 174: A`Myrah Syyan (WAYNESVL) over Billie Garner (NIXA) (Fall 0:24) 195: Harmony Rust (NIXA) over Jordan Wilson (WAYNESVL) (Dec 9-8) 235: Jordan Brooks (NIXA) over (WAYNESVL) (For.).