The junior Rams had three grapplers to place in the meet, while the junior Braves placed one.
Chesterfield's Dalton Harper was the lone local wrestler to win a state title Saturday, going a perfect 4-0 with four pins in the 107-pound class. Harper's win marked his second consecutive state title.
"Obviously, we're very excited to have a kid like that joining the varsity squad next year," Chesterfield's head varsity wrestling coach Lance Abernathy said. "In the short history of our program, Dalton is the first middle school wrestler to win a state championship two years in a row."
Abernathy said a large part of Harper's success was the result of him coming up through Chesterfield's youth program that was started five years ago.
"Starting out young has really paid off for Dalton," Abernathy said. "If his work ethics continue to improve, he's going to be a force for years to come."
For Cheraw, its highest finisher was 92-pound Joshua Johnson, who fought his way to second place.
"Joshua had a real good day for us at the tournament," Cheraw's middle school head coach Eric Jones said. "He fought hard against some of the best wrestlers in the state."
Johnson finished the tournament 3-1, losing in the championship match to a wrestler from East Side who has not been defeated in two years.
Chesterfield also had a wrestler claim a second-place finish at the tournament - 157-pound Jeffery Walker went 3-1 to get there.
"Jeffery wrestled extremely well on Saturday," Abernathy said. "He's had a good year for us, but his performance Saturday was by far his best. He showed several flashes of potential, that if he is willing to work at it, he's got a chance to be good at the varsity level."
Chesterfield's other placer at the tournament was 135-pound Parker Anderson, who was involved in a controversial fourth-place finish.
"Parker was probably the third best wrestler at the tournament, but I guess it just wasn't meant to be," Abernathy said.
A questionable call and no-call in the final three seconds of the match resulted in Anderson's loss in the consolation finals. With the score tied in the final period, the referee credited Anderson's opponent with a 1-point escape, as Anderson let him up just to drive him back down to the mat on his back. The referee claimed time had expired before Anderson had his opponent back down on the mat for what could have been the winning 2-point takedown.
For more information on this story, please read the February 5, 2004 edition of the Cheraw Chronicle/Chesterfield Advertiser.