Orange wrestling’s Nate Hecht & Dillon Heffernan discuss reaching state quarterfinals

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Updated: February 1, 2022

For the first time since 2018, the Orange wrestling team has reached the 3A State Quarterfinals. On Monday night in the opening round of the 3A State Dual Tournament, the Panthers defeated Central Carolina Conference rival Northwood 45-27 in the opening round. In the round of 16, Orange broke open a 12-12 tie against Fike with pins in four of the subsequent five matches to beat the Demons 51-24. Fike was the champions of the Quad County Confernce. Orange junior Dillon Heffernan pinned Fike’s Zach Turner in 17 seconds to put Orange ahead 18-12. The Panthers would never lose the lead again. At 170 pounds, Orange senior Nate Hecht defeated Fike’s Jessie Mitchell via pinfall in 1:24. While Orange has won five state championships since 2005, this is the first time the current class of Panthers have reached the state quarterfinals. On Wednesday night, Orange will face Croatan in the 3A Regional Semifinals inside Panther Gymnasium. On the opposite mat, Union Pines hosts Currituck in the other semifinal.

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