VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — Jacob Powers, a senior from Camden Hills Regional High School in Rockport, got off to a fast start Friday during the first day of competition at the 22nd annual National Senior Wrestling Championships at the Virginia Beach Convention Center.
A two-time Class B state champion at 160 pounds and fourth in his weight class at last month’s New England championships, Powers won his first two matches at the nationals to advance to Saturday’s Round of 16.
Powers first earned a 5-1 decision over Kyle Thomas of Maryland, then edged Chandler Smith of Kansas 6-4 to advance in the championship bracket.
Smith had earned a first-round bye in the 160-pound class.
Powers next faces Patrick Rhoads of Missouri, who is ranked 15th nationally in the 171-pound weight class by USA Wrestling but has dropped down a weight class for this tournament
In the days leading up to the nationals Powers — who has been accepted by Division I Lock Haven University but not yet firmed up his collegiate plans — participated in a three-day invitation-only training camp hosted by Virginia Tech University.
Two other Maine wrestlers, Scott Carpenter and Spencer McCormick of Calais, both lost their first-round matches and were relegated to the consolation bracket.
Carpenter, a three-time Class C state champion, lost a 10-6 decision to Cameron Kirby of Maryland. McCormick, a Class C state champion as a junior and a runner-up this year, lost by technical fall to Chase Boontjner of California.
The senior nationals continue through Sunday.