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The Dukes rule the district mat

Cumberland County High School’s varsity wrestling team was well-represented at the 2020 James River District Tournament Thursday, Jan. 23, at Nottoway High School. The Dukes made their presence known on the mat where they produced three individual district title-winners on the way to clinching the tournament championship as a team.

This is the first time Cumberland has won the district tournament since 2013.

Explaining what it means for the Dukes to win a district championship, Cumberland Head Coach Charles “Burrage” Bristol said, “It means they got what they deserved. The kids show up every single day and put in an awful lot of work and fight really hard at practice, and they put the time in, and they got what they deserved. They earned this, every inch of it.”

Dukes winning district titles in their respective weight classes included senior heavyweight Blake Barker, freshman 126-pounder Cole Dalton and senior 152-pounder Trevor Dayton.

“We expected it from Trevor,” Bristol said. “That we knew was coming. This was Blake’s first year as a starter on the varsity level. The person who he was training with, (Kaijhaun “K.T.” Trent) … went to states for us last year, but Blake never had a varsity match. So big shoes to fill, and he stepped up in a big way.”

Placing second for Cumberland were 113-pounder Celeste Mitchell, 132-pounder Trenton Thomas, 160-pounder Trequan Trent and 220-pounder Thomas Trowbridge.

Dukes placing third included 138-pounder James Miller, 182-pounder Jake Price and 195-pounder Mark Tuttle.

Cumberland 170-pounder Kristen Caleb placed fourth.

The Dukes return to action Saturday, Feb. 1, at Nottoway for the Southside Scuffle in an event that will pose a challenge similar to the district tourney.