There should be a new No. 1 team in South Jersey wrestling after No. 2 Camden Catholic beat No. 1 Eastern, 30-28 on Monday. Yes, Eastern has had some key injuries, none bigger than the broken hand suffered by defending state champion Hank Stinson, but Camden Catholic enjoyed a stellar effort and deserve to move up in the rankings.
The Irish received pins by Justin Danfield at 152 and Yayne Young at 215. Leading by one with three bouts to go, the key victory was a 6-4 win by Camden Catholic's Trey Pataky at 130 pounds.
Taylor Walsh then clinched the match with a 12-2 major decision. Coach Jerry Boland felt the Irish needed two wins from the three bouts at 119, 130 and 145.
Boland received that formula. Besides Pataky's win at 130, Matt O'Donnell earned a 7-0 decision at 119.
So now everybody in South Jersey will be chasing the Irish, whose only loss was to Group 4 power Jackson (a team that also beat Camden Catholilc).
No doubt, Eastern, should be a viable Group 4 state title contender in another month or so. Camden Catholic meanwhile, will try to hold on to its position as the top team in South Jersey.
At least right now, it would be surprising if the Irish let go of their grip on that No. 1 spot after an inspired effort against Eastern.