Hoke wrestling posts pair of upsets in state tournament

Bucks move on to face No. 2 Lumberton in East regional semis

Hoke County’s Nate Oakes sets up his pinfall against Millbrook’s William Murray in the 144 lbs. weight class. Oakes and the rest of the Bucks wrestlers upset Millbrook and then host Pinecrest in the first two rounds of the 4A East region dual-team championships. PJ WARD-BROWN/NORTH STATE JOURNAL

Hoke County got off to a strong start in the state 4A Dual-team championships.

The Bucks received an 11 seed in the East, putting them on the road for the first two rounds, at No. 3 Pinecrest.

Hoke pulled off back-to-back upsets to storm through the first two rounds, however.

First, the Bucks had a dominating win over No. 6 Millbrook, winning by a 60-15 score.

Geronimo Oxendine (215 pounds), Nathan Oakes (144 pounds), Ceric Griffin Jr. (150 pounds) and Orion Becton (175 pounds) were among the Bucks to get wins by pinfall against the Wildcats.

The round one win earned Hoke County a date with host Pinecrest, and the Bucks again were able to cruise past a higher-seeded team, dispatching the 3-seed by a 58-22 score.

Hoke now finds itself in the final four of the 4A East region. The Bucks will head to Lumberton and take on the No. 2 seeded host team in a third-round matchup. The winner of that dual match faces the winner of No.1 Laney and No. 12 Cardinal Gibbons.

Other Hoke County sports news:

The Bucks’ boys’ basketball team kept its winning ways going with a 72-55 win over Scotland. Hoke has now won three straight, all on the road, to move to 12-6 on the year, 4-3 in conference.

The girls’ team took a loss at Scotland, falling, 77-45, for their third straight loss.

Hoke County girls’ swimming finished third at the Sandhills Conference meet, while the boys’ team finished in fifth place. Sachi Matthews finished second in the girls’ 200 free and third in the 50. Megan Moore finished second in the 100 free and third in the 100 back.