The Caesar Rodney Riders defeated the Polytech Panthers 52-18 in the Henlopen North battle on Wednesday night.

For the Riders, the victory brings them to 1-1 in the division after dropping their opening dual-meet to Cape Henlopen.  On the Panthers side, it was their first meet as a member of the Henlopen North division, and the Riders weren’t very welcoming.

Polytech made some last-minute lineup changes including moving Kody Stevens up a weight-class from 113lbs to 126lbs, but it wasn’t enough to get by CR. Despite Panther head coach Eric Buckson’s best efforts, it was hard to find a match up that suited Polytech’s strengths as they won only three of 13 weight-classes on Wednesday night.

Caesar Rodney took control early, winning the first four bouts of the night. Nick Klink (106lbs), Johnny De Vary (113lbs), Micah Hight (120lbs), and Brandon Scott were all victorious to give CR a 15-0 lead.

The Panthers did their best to respond with back-to-back pins by Andy Schmeusser (132lbs) and Josh Price (138lbs), cutting the Rider lead to just three points after six bouts.  However, that was as close as the Panthers would get to catching the Riders.

CR’s Tony Scarfo (145lbs) took control back for the Riders pinning Jaden McCove, then Seth Brosius (160lbs) and Mike Clavier (170lbs) followed with pins of their own. A Panther forfeit at 160lbs ballooned the Rider lead to 42-18 which they wouldn’t let slip away.

In the end, both the Riders and Panthers finished with three pins apiece on Wednesday night. Along with Schmeusser and Price, the Panthers also had a pin victory from Mark Mullnack at 220lbs but it wasn’t enough.

Polytech returns to the mat this weekend participating in the Bob Rowe Memorial Classic at James M. Bennett high school that runs from Friday through Saturday.

Meanwhile, the Riders are off until Friday, January 11 when they host the Sussex Central Golden Knights before traveling to Pennsylvania to compete in the Escape from the Rock tournament at Council Rock South high school that weekend.