Ruzic, Wenzel, Tieffel lead the way at the IHSA Class 1A Individual State Finals 

By Curt Herron – for the IWCOAThe 2024 IHSA Class 1A Individual State Finals will certainly be one to remember because of the great stories that played out during the three days of intense competition at the State Farm Center on the campus of the University of Illinois in Champaign. 

There were two three-time champions who were four-time medalists in Auburn’s Joey Ruzic and Dakota’s Noah Wenzel and there was a two-time champion, three-time finalist and four-time medal winner in Benton’s Mason Tieffel. They each left a great legacy for their programs that will be the envy of future athletes at those schools for years to come.

Wenzel and Ruzic were three-time IHSA champions, joining St. Charles East’s Ben Davino and Jayden Colon, Joliet Catholic Academy’s Dillan Johnson and Mount Carmel’s Seth Mendoza in that exclusive club. In addition, Tieffel, Ruzic and Wenzel were three of the 14 individuals who have competed in a title match in each of the last three IHSA Individual Finals in Champaign.

Also, the annual regular feature of the Finals, seniors who put it all together at the right time and close out their high school careers as champions even though they haven’t placed before because they believed that they could be state champions, such as was the case with Olympia’s Bentley Wise and Manteno’s Carter Watkins.

And there is the other great tradition of the juniors that have been accomplishing a lot of good things who put it all together and become state champions, which significantly changes the way that others see them from previously being one of the state’s better individuals to becoming the best in Illinois such as Rockridge’s Jude Finch, Illini Bluffs’ Jackson Carroll, Coal City’s Landin Benson and Unity’s Hunter Eastin.

In addition, there were two juniors who found the right setting with new teammates and coaches that helped move them up on the awards stand to become champions, as was the case for Marian Central Catholic’s Brayden Teunissen and Althoff Catholic’s Jason Dowell.

And in another common theme that occurs each year at the Finals, there were three freshmen who made a great first impression in Champaign by winning titles, Johnsburg’s Eric Bush, Carlyle’s Preston Waughtel and Marian Central Catholic’s Jimmy Mastny.

Obviously, there’s also the sad stories of accomplished seniors who didn’t make it to the awards stand one last time, and those who fell short for the second time on the championship mat or individuals who entered with outstanding records and then lost as many or even more matches at state than they had suffered up to that point.

With 12 of the championship matches being decisions and nine of those determined by three points or less, there were obviously a lot of tales of woe and reflection on what may have been if only this, that, or the other thing had gone a bit differently.

Carlyle junior Tyson Waughtel lost in sudden victory to fall just short of a third-straight title and an unbeaten season and also missed out on sharing a title win with his brother, Preston, while Herrin senior Blue Bishop and Tremont junior Bowden Delaney suffered two-point defeats on the title mat to finish with the same number of losses in Champaign as they had during the rest of their season.

The High School of Saint Thomas More senior Brody Cuppernell and Marian Central Catholic junior Vance Williams both lost three-point decisions to settle for second-place finishes for the second year in a row.

Unity junior Kaden Inman, St. Francis sophomore Jaylen Torres and Vandalia freshman Max Philpot all were either in the lead or within one point of their opponent in the late going before falling just short on the title mat.

In another disappointing set of circumstances, Oakwood/Salt Fork senior Bryson Capansky not only fell in the championship match but also lost in the dual team sectional as his team just missed out on making a return trip to the IHSA Dual Team Finals, where they took fourth place and won their first trophy last season.

Despite their disappointment, the good news for Peoria Notre Dame junior Ian Akers, East Alton-Wood River junior Drake Champlin, Coal City sophomore Brody Widlowski, Vandalia sophomore Dillon Hinton and Lena-Winslow/Stockton sophomore Eli Larson, in addition to those mentioned earlier, is that all of them still have one or two more opportunities to be a state champion. 

But winners and losers in the title matches are not the only stories of the IHSA Individual Finals. Two other champions from a year ago, Marian Central Catholic senior Anthony Alanis and Riverdale sophomore Dean Wainwright, had to settle for third-place finishes.

And there was also the disappointments suffered by two individuals who had placed second in both 2023 and 2022. Illini Bluffs senior Hunter Robbins fell one win shy of a medal and Richmond-Burton junior Emmett Nelson wasn’t feeling well and did his best to take sixth place to claim a third medal.

Two seniors who had won medals for four-straight years, Farmington’s Keygan Jennings and Newman Central Catholic’s Brady Grennan, and two that won state medals the last three years, Harrisburg’s Tony Keene and Newman Central Catholic’s Carter Rude, not only didn’t win titles in their final seasons, they failed to get to the Grand March, though Jennings and Rude did get that opportunity a year ago.

Fortunately, there were a lot more good stories to tell than bad ones. Among those were Unity Christian sophomore brothers Clinton and Garrett VerHeecke both getting medals for the second year in a row. And there was history made by two seniors who were on co-op teams, Oblong/Hutsonville/Palestine’s Ian Rosborough and Red Bud/Valmeyer’s Ty Carter, who both became the first medalists for their programs.

Fifty schools had all-state competitors, with the reward being a medal for a top-six finish. Class 1A champion Marian Central Catholic led the way with six and Class 1A runner-up Coal City was next with five. Roxana, which took third place and Vandalia, who took fourth place, both had three medal winners. Others who had three all-staters were De La Salle Institute, Newman Central Catholic, Oakwood/Salt Fork, Olympia, Princeton and Unity. Nine schools had two medalists, Benton, Carlyle, Chicago Hope Academy, Hoopeston Area, Illini Bluffs, Murphysboro, Riverdale, Rockridge and Unity Christian.

Here’s a look at the 2024 IHSA Class 1A Individual Finals, with the weight classes listed in the same order that they were conducted at the State Farm Center in Champaign.

132 – Jude Finch, Rockridge

Even though the 132 weight class featured four individuals who had won multiple state medals and were hoping that their third or fourth state appearances would finally result in a title, a first-time medalist in 2023 who didn’t win a tournament until the final weeks of the regular season emerged as the state champion after beating two of the multiple medal winners late in the season and the other two in Champaign. In the 132 title match, Rockridge junior Jude Finch took a 5-2 lead over Marian Central Catholic junior Vance Williams with a takedown with 1:06 left and went on to claim a 7-4 victory to cap a 43-6 season. Finch, a three-time qualifier who took third place at 126 a year ago, became the eighth individual from Rockridge to win a state title and its first since Dallas Krueger and Nolan Throne were both champions in 2020. After opening with a fall in 1:40 over Clifton Central senior Kayden Cody (25-12), Finch won 9-2 in the quarterfinals over a two-time medalist, St. Joseph-Ogden’s Holden Brazelton, and reached the title mat with a 4-2 victory over Richland County’s Carson Bissey. Late in the season, Finch, one of the two medalists and three qualifiers for coach Lucas Smith’s Rockets, showed that he could win close matches against seniors who were three-time medalists when he won 3-2 over Farmington’s Keygan Jennings for first at Orion’s Bob Mitton Invitational and claimed a 2-1 victory over Newman Central Catholic’s Brady Grennan to win the title of the Fulton Regional.

“I got it done,” Finch said. “I figured it out and I wrestled my butt off and did what I wanted to do the whole year and I accomplished it and I’m proud. I worked my butt off every day at practice, I didn’t take one day off and I was going, going, going, no matter what. I’ve got wonderful coaches, they get done what needs to get done, they’re the best. I took losses, but I bounced back, you’ve got to keep wrestling. I was down, but I kept wrestling all six minutes of the match, 

no matter what. It feels great, you know it.”

Williams (44-9),  who took second at 132 a year ago and fourth at 132 in 2022, followed a fall with a 6-2 decision over Roxana’s Brandon Green Jr. before earning his spot on the title mat with an 8-0 major decision over Jennings. Williams was one of six qualifiers and three finalists for the Hurricanes, who won their first IHSA Dual Team title one week later when they beat defending champion Coal City 34-27 in Bloomington. Grennan (46-5), who took fifth at 126 a year ago and placed third at 120 in 2022 and also was third at 113 in 2021 at the IWCOA Finals, lost to Bissey by a tiebreaker 6-3 in the quarterfinals and had to beat Oakwood/Salt Fork junior Pedro Rangel (45-7), Brazelton and Jennings in the wrestlebacks before winning 5-1 over Bissey to claim third place for the third time. Bissey (48-3) took fourth at 126 in 2022 to become his first school’s first medal winner, but didn’t compete in the 2023 postseason because he failed to make weight in the regional. Roxana sophomore Brandon Green, Jr. (46-6) claimed his first medal and won 7-5 in sudden victory over Jennings in the fifth-place match to become of three medalists for the Shells, who took third at Dual Team state. Jennings (42-7) was second last season at 113 after taking sixth at 113 in 2022 and fifth at 106 in the IWCOA. Brazelton (47-3), a junior who took third at 132 a year ago and sixth at 120 in 2022, had two wins by technical fall but came up one win shy of a third medal. Lena-Winslow/Stockton sophomore Arrison Bauer (41-13) also fell one win short of his first medal.

“I’ve always wanted to wrestle in college and my coaches have told me that I’m good enough, so this is just practice and it can get me to the next level,” Bissey said. “I was fourth in 2022 and last year at regionals, I missed weight by .3 pounds. So I took that personally and I just got better and that’s not happening again. It feels great (to place again) but I can’t let it get to me, I need to get better and I want to come back next year stronger than ever.”

138 – Mason Tieffel, Benton

When future discussions about who some of the most important athletes have been who helped to raise the bar in a significant way for wrestling in southern Illinois, Mason Tieffel certainly needs to be mentioned. The Benton senior capped an impressive career in which he won state titles as a junior and senior after taking second as a sophomore and third at the IWCOA Finals in 2021. Tieffel was one of 14 individuals who competed in championship matches in each of the past three seasons. He capped a dominant unbeaten season with an 18-6 major decision over Vandalia’s Dillon Hinton in the Class 1A 138 title match. He opened with a fall in 3:00 over Riverdale junior Kolton Kruse (38-16), followed that with a pin in 2:17 over Illini Bluffs’ Ian O’Connor in the quarterfinals and got a fall in 2:49 over Sandwich’s Cooper Corder in the semifinals. Tieffel, who finished 56-0 after winning his final match on Tuesday in Benton when his team fell to Vandalia in the dual team sectional, went 52-2 and was also a state champion at 138 a year ago after going 47-5 and taking second place at 126 in 2022 and also went 33-1 to finish third at 120 in 2021, giving him a career record of 188-8. His only losses in state tournament competition were to Dakota’s four-time champion Phoenix Blakely in the title match in 2022 and to Lena-Winslow/Stockton’s Garrett Luke in the semifinals in 2021. Tieffel became Benton’s first two-time champion, three-time finalist and four-time medal winner. He won six other tournament titles this season, taking firsts at Civic Memorial’s Bradley, Unity, Carbondale’s Murdale, Goreville/Vienna’s Blackcat Brawl, the Herrin Regional and the Vandalia Sectional, He also beat Hinton in two other title matches by major decision, at Civic Memorial and the sectional.

“It’s been a really fun season,” Tieffel said. “This is what I’ve wanted since I did it last year. I’ve done a really good job this year and I’ve just kept working hard trying to get better and working as hard as I can in every match. And my team has been doing a great job this year and it’s just been really exciting. The target’s on your back, so you just have to keep working harder. I was confident since I put in the work this offseason and this season. The coaches have been great for me and the team has done a really good job this season. It’s been really exciting having a team behind me and they’ve all worked hard this season, so they deserve it, too. Everybody in Benton, the whole town has been really good to me and the coaches have been great and the team is amazing. Every kid on the team works hard in practice and they’ve pushed me and they do whatever I need to do to help me reach my goals, so it was really nice having them all.”

“He’s had a great career and it’s something that he’s worked his whole life for,” Benton coach Aaron Robinson said. “Every good thing that’s happened to him, he’s earned it. We’re moving in the right direction and he’s a big part of that. Having a guy like him in the room kind of ups the game for everyone else. Our kids are homegrown kids, they’re from Benton. We’ve got some kids that are coming through that are going to make some noise in the next few years.”

Hinton (46-4), a sophomore who went 46-7 last year and placed fifth at 132, was hoping that he or freshman teammate Max Philpot at 106 might become the fifth individuals from Vandalia to win a state title and the first since Jarek Wehrle in 2021 at the IWCOA Finals. Although both were thwarted, they were the top finishers for coach Jason Clay’s Vandals, who had three medal winners and one week later finished fourth at the IHSA Dual Team Finals. Hinton opened with a fall in 3:13 over Marian Central Catholic junior Andrew Alvarado (34-14), who placed fifth at 113 in 2023. After edging Mercer County’s Ethan Monson 5-2 in the quarterfinals, Hinton earned his spot on the 138 title mat with an 8-2 decision over Princeton junior Ace Christiansen (39-7), who responded to that setback with two close decisions to take third place. After edging O’Connor 3-1 in sudden victory, Christiansen, one of three medal winners for 2020 IWCOA Hall of Famer coach Steve Amy’s Tigers, beat Corder 5-4 in an ultimate tiebreaker to claim third place. Corder (35-5), a freshman who was the lone medalist for Sandwich, earned his spot in the third-place match after beating Dwight’s Dylan Crouch 7-3 in the semifinal wrestlebacks. Crouch (49-3), a junior, went on to take fifth place with a 5-3 victory over Illini Bluffs senior Ian O’Connor (48-10), who joined his father and coach, Shawn (fourth at 98 in 1987), as medalists for the program at the Glasford school that was started and coached for 35 years by his grandfather Pat O’Connor, a 2009 recipient of the Lifetime Service Award from the National Wrestling Hall of Fame – Illinois Chapter. Falling one shy of a medal were Mercer County senior Ethan Monson (46-6), who took fourth at 120 in 2022 fourth at 106 inn the IWCOA in 2021, and Coal City sophomore Mason Garner (37-6).

“I think everybody’s done their best and that’s all that me and coach could ask of them,” Hinton said. “I think it’s really cool for me to be able to do all of this stuff. And there’s always next year. I think that our team is definitely able to do anything that we put our minds to.”

“It’s a big deal because there are bigger schools that bring a lot of guys here and we get three kids in the semis and only brought four,” Christiansen said. “We have awesome coaches and they push us to be our best and I think that helps you out in times like when you’re in double overtime. This feels amazing.”  

144 – Jackson Carroll, Illini Bluffs

After going 47-8 last season but falling one win shy of a medal at 138 to miss out on joining 145 state champion Paul Ishikawa and 106 runner-up Hunter Robbins as medalists for Illini Bluffs, Jackson Carroll was determined that he not only wouldn’t be denied of making it to the awards stand this year, but that he also would follow in two-time champion Ishikawa’s footsteps and win a title. And after capturing close decisions in the quarterfinals and semifinals, the Tigers junior got a late takedown to edge Unity’s Kaden Inman 8-7 in the 144 title match to become the fifth individual from his school to become a state champion. He was one of two medalists for coach Shawn O’Connor’s Tigers, with the coach’s senior son Ian taking sixth at 138. But there was also disappointment for Illini Bluffs as senior Robbins, a two-time finalist, was unable to win a third medal at 113. The state title match was much different than Carroll and Inman’s matchup one week earlier in the Olympia Sectional finals where Carroll captured a 14-5 major decision. Carroll, who finished 51-2, opened with a fall in 1:49 over Frankfort Community freshman Lucas Parker (35-19) and followed that with a 5-2 decision over DeKalb’s Miles Corder. He reached the title mat with a 12-7 decision over Murphysboro’s Bryce Edwards. Carroll won five other tournaments this season, Illinois Bluffs, LeRoy Bowman, Quincy Notre Dame, the Knoxville Regional and the Olympia Sectional. His lone losses were in tournament finals to Newman Central Catholic’s Carter Rude at Erie/Prophetstown and the Lyle King Princeton Invitational.

“I’ve worked for this my entire life,” Carroll said. “I knew it was close, but I actually didn’t know what the score was at the time, I just knew that I needed a takedown. The philosophy is to just score more points than the other guy. My community is absolutely amazing. There were people in the front section and that was our basketball team, and I expect them to win state, too. That’s just how close our community is. Small school, big dream, that’s how everyone in the school is. The kids I work with, I think we have the best practice room in the state.”

Inman (44-8), a junior who was one of two finalists and three medalists for coach Logan Patton’s Unity Rockets. His classmate, Hunter Eastin (47-6), became the Tolono school’s sixth individual to win a state title when he beat the High School of Saint Thomas More’s Brody Cuppernell 5-2 in the 190 finals. Inman won a 14-4 major decision over Cumberland sophomore Owen McGinnis (44-7) in his opener and then captured a 7-1 victory over Richmond-Burton’s Emmett Nelson. Inman earned his spot on the 144 title mat in dramatic fashion as he prevailed 3-2 by ultimate tiebreaker over Rude in the semifinals. Unity’s season lasted another week as it qualified again for the IHSA Dual Team Finals. Chicago Hope Academy senior Santiago Chapparo (50-3) surprised many by placing third with a 7-1 win over Edwards. Chapparo, a native of Columbia who was familiar with freestyle but not folkstyle when he started training at Beat The Streets and then joined coach Dan Willis’ Eagles, was one of his two medalists for his team after falling 3-1 to Nelson in his opener before winning his next five matches, with the first four of those being by two points or less. Edwards (46-9), a junior, was one of two semifinalists and medalists for Murphysboro. Rude (45-3), a senior who took second last year at 138 and placed sixth at 126 in 2022, fell 6-5 by ultimate tiebreaker in the semifinal wrestleback to Chaparro to compete for fifth place, which he won by medical forfeit over Richmond-Burton junior Emmett Nelson (48-3), a runner-up at 126 last year and at 113 in 2022, who was unbeaten heading into the Byron Sectional but was unable to perform in his usual fashion due to an illness. However, he toughed it out to qualify again and also to place for a third time.

“I trusted myself and knew that if I wrestled my hardest, that I could make it, and hopefully get a chance at winning it,” Inman said.” I think I wrestled my best and there was a few seconds on clock when I got scored off of, so I was right there. Thirteen seconds and I would have won, so it was close. (Hunter Eastin taking first) It definitely eases the loss, I’m proud of Hunter, me and him worked very hard. He accomplished his goal and I just fell a little short.  

“After I lost in the first round, I was nervous and confused and I kind of felt down on myself as if I wasn’t good at wrestling,” Chaparro said, through translation by teammate Ismael Montero. “I want to thank coach Willis because told me to stay loose and stay focused because it didn’t matter that I lost as long as I kept pushing to win the next ones. In Columbia, it’s mostly all Freestyle, so coming here I had to learn the new rules. The competition here is really crazy and everyone is so talented.”

150 – Bentley Wise, Olympia

Heading into the postseason, Bentley Wise was enjoying a successful season but with one just tournament title, he was just another good individual who would be trying to get to state for the first time and maybe placing while two-time qualifiers and two-time medal winners looked to be more likely to win the 150 title. But following his championship at one of the state’s toughest regionals, Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley, the Olympia senior was confident that he was going to finish on a high note at state, even though he had come up one win shy of trips to the state finals in each of the past two seasons. Two weeks later, Wise indeed appears to have been very realistic about his prospects since he not only won the title at his own Olympia Sectional to earn his first trip to the IHSA Finals but he also wound up taking top honors in Champaign. Wise capped a 44-8 season by claiming a 5-3 decision in the 150 championship over Herrin senior Blue Bishop, who was the favorite at the weight and reached the title mat with a 46-1 record. After Bishop took a 3-2 lead with a nearfall, Wise answered with an escape and takedown and then hung on to become the fourth individual from his school to win a state title and the first since 2001, when his coach, Josh Collins, followed a Class A title win at 112 in 2000 with a second championship at 125. Wise, whose other title was at Unity in mid-December, was one of three medal winners for the Spartans, who finished ranked among the state’s top 10 teams. He won by technical fall in 3:51 over Nazareth Academy senior  Andrew Fowler (28-14) in his state debut, followed with a 9-2 decision over Wheaton Academy’s Chasen Kazmierczak and then won a 13-4 major decision over Oakwood/Salt Fork’s Grant Brewer in the semifinals.

“Being here was amazing,”  Wise said. “My goal was to make it to state, everything else was just calm, and it just kept going up and up, I wouldn’t stop. (Coach Josh Collins as the last champion) “It’s awesome, I love it.”

Bishop (46-2), who was hoping to become the first state champion for the Tigers, joins Jake Holliday (2006-2008) as the only three-time medalists for the school. Bishop took fourth place last year at 145 and was sixth at 132 in 2022. He had won all five of his Illinois tournaments, Lawrence County, Cumberland’s Skull and Crossbones, Carbondale’s Murdale, the Herrin Regional and the Vandalia Sectional, and had been unbeaten against Illinois competitors, with his only other loss being by a 4-2 score to Evansville North, IN’s Cale Bonenberger in the finals at the Johnston Invitational in Paducah, Kentucky. Bishop, the,lone qualifier for coach Kelsey Lewis’ Tigers, followed an 8-0 major decision over Byron freshman Brody Stien (33-16) with a 3-1 quarterfinal win over Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley/Fisher’s Carson Maxey before earning his trip to the 150 title mat with a 6-4 decision over Riverdale’s Blake Smith in the semifinals.

“I’m pretty proud of all the things that I’ve accomplished,” Bishop said. “It was frustrating falling short today but at the end of the day, you just have to keep pushing. I want to give a shout out for PSF Wrestling, it’s a great group.”

Smith (50-3), a junior, won his first medal and joined Dean Wainwright (third at 120) as the Rams’ two placewinners. After getting edged by Bishop, Smith defeated Coal City’s Brant Widlowski 8-2 before winning 9-2 over Maxey in the third-place match. Riverdale kept its season going for another week by qualifying for its first trip to the IHSA Dual Team Finals since 2007. Maxey (40-10), a senior, was the lone medal winner for the Falcons, who were also one of the state’s top-ranked teams. Widlowski (47-5), a senior who took fifth at 120 in 2022 and sixth at 106 in 2021 at the IWCOA Finals, took fifth place with a fall in 5:37 over Oakwood/Salt Fork senior Grant Brewer (41-6), who also won his first state medal. Widlowski was one of five medalists for the Coalers, who finished second in Class 1A while Brewer was one of three medal winners for the Comets. Falling one victory shy of winning their first state medals were Wheaton Academy junior Chasen Kazmierczak (39-9) and Roxana senior Braden Johnson (35-9).

157 – Jimmy Mastny, Marian Central Catholic

Since there’s no team scoring at the IHSA Finals, determining who had the most team points might usually require some calculation. But there was no need to do that to figure out who was the most dominant Class 1A champion since Jimmy Mastny won all four of his matches by fall while Mason Tieffel won his first three with pins before claiming his second title with a major decision. The Marian Central Catholic freshman joined junior Brayden Teunissen (120) as one of the two champions, three finalists and six medal winners for the Hurricanes, the eventual Class 1A champions, who are coached by Jordan Blanton and Ryan Prater. Mastny and Teunissen are the fifth and sixth individuals from the school to win titles with the others Dylan Connell (2018 to 2020 in 2A, 2021 in IWCOA 2A), Elon Rodriguez (2021 in IWCOA 2A), Nik Jimenez (2021 in IWCOA 2A) and Rich Powers (1986 and 1987 in A). Mastny and Connell both won titles as freshmen. On a day where 12 of the title matches were decisions, including nine which were decided by three points or less, Mastny recorded the lone fall while Benton senior Tieffel had the other outcome, a win by major decision. Mastny wrapped up his impressive debut state finals with a 28-1 record and capped things with a fall in 3:23 over Oakwood/Salt Fork’s Bryson Capansky in the 157 title match. After opening with a fall in 1:20 over Shelbyville sophomore Ryne Peavler (40-9), Mastny got a pin in 0:57 over Mercer County sophomore Eli Burns (22-7) and then handed Murphysboro’s Liam Fox his first defeat in 50 matches when he recorded a fall in 5:57 in the semifinals. Mastny, who was top-ranked heading into state, only lost once all season, 3-1 to Mount Carmel’s Edmund Enright (39-4), who lost 5-2 to Warren Township’s Aaron Stewart in the Class 3A 157 championship, which was one of the most-anticipated title matches. The freshman also won titles in his other three tournaments, the Chicagoland Christian Conference, the Johnsburg Regional and the Byron Sectional. 

“Just as soon as the season started, I knew that I could win it,” Mastny said. “Now we’ve got team sectionals and team state.”

Capansky (43-7), a senior and the top finisher and one of three medalists for coach Mike Glosser’s Comets, who’s returned most of the members of last year’s team which made program history by advancing to the IHSA Dual Team Finals for the first time and finishing in fourth place. He assured himself of his first medal after winning a 10-7 decision over Oregon’s Anthony Bauer in his first match and then prevailing 4-3 over LeRoy/Tri-Valley’s Connor Lyons in the quarterfinals.Capansky won another close match in the semifinals, a 9-6 decision over Hoopeston Area’s Ayden Larkin, to advance to the 157 title match. Oakwood/Salt Fork lost to Roxana in the sectional and fell short of a second-straight trip to the IHSA Dual Team Finals.

“It was pretty enjoyable and a lot of fun,” Capansky said. “I enjoyed my last remaining time with my teammates and I just came out here and had fun. It means the world. I came all this way, I was a three-time state qualifier and this is my first time ever making it this far, so I’m grateful. It’s been really enjoyable and I’ve enjoyed every minute of it. It’s two schools, but we’re just one big family. And my teammates came out and proved what they could do, too. I’m very proud of my teammates and what they’ve accomplished this year.”

Fox (51-1), a senior who won his first state medal and was one of two who placed in the top six for coach Shea Baker’s Red Devils, bounced back from his only loss of the season, which was handed to him by Mastny in the semifinals, to take third with a 10-2 decision over Roxana sophomore Lyndon Thies (47-7), who was one of three first-time medalists for coach Rob Milazzo’s Shells, who went on to take third place at the IHSA Dual Team Finals in Bloomington.

 “It feels great,” Fox said. “I put in all of the work in the offseason that led up to this and I wish I could have gone a little further so that I could have been in the finals, but everything happens for a reason. (Success of southern Illinois wrestlers) We all work together in the offseason, which I think plays a big part into. And I think that we can compete with any of the top guys, we’re just as tough. In my sectional bracket, a guy (Bryson Capansky) is in the finals, I took third and (Lyndon) Thies took fourth, so that’s as tough as it gets.”  

In the fifth-place match, Newman Central Catholic junior Daniel Kelly (45-6) captured a 13-7 decision over Hoopeston Area junior Ayden Larkin (42-14), which avenged Larkin’s 8-6 win over Kelly in the quarterfinals. Both of them won their initial state medals with Kelly being one of three top-six finishers out of four qualifiers for coach Brian Bahrs’ Comets while Larkin was one of two medal winners for coach Chris Kelnhofers’s Cornjerkers.Two seniors who had successful season but fell one win short of earning a first state medal were Oregon’s Anthony Bauer (36-8) and LeRoy/Tri-Valley’s Connor Lyons (41-11), although the latter’s season didn’t conclude since he and his Panthers teammates competed in the Dual Team Finals for the second year in a row.

“We got four guys down here,” Kelly said. “It just comes down to how we practice and the room that we’re in. We’re all really close and we’ve all wrestled each other since we were like five years old and that brings everyone together. You just have to come back strong and wrestle your match and just go for what you can at that point. it feels great.”  

165 – Landin Benson, Coal City

Throughout most of his athletic career, Landin Benson has considered himself to be a football player first and a wrestler second. But after running over the competition at the IHSA Class 1A Finals to capture top honors at 165 much as he had done in the fall as a running back in football, the Coal City junior who’s an All-Stater in both sports, may be reevaluating which of the two that he is actually better at. Benson opened with two falls and closed with two narrow decisions, getting past Tremont’s Bowden Delaney 3-1 to capture the 165 championship and improved to 26-2 on the season. One of five top-six finishers who earned medals for IWCOA Hall of Fame coach Mark Masters’ Coalers, Benson earned all-state honors for the first time on the mat after pinning Princeton’s Casey Etheridge in 3:49 in his opener, getting a fall in 1:38 over Hillsboro’s Zander Wells in the quarterfinals and then edging edging Marian Central Catholic’s Max Astacio 3-2 in the semifinals to join 126 runner-up Brody Widlowski as two finalists for the Coalers, who lost 34-27 to Marian Central Catholic in IHSA Dual Team Finals to fall short of repeating as 1A champions, He qualified for state for the first time in 2023 but only won one match. Benson won three other tournaments this season, the Illinois Central Eight Conference, the Wilmington Regional and the Chicago Hope Academy Sectional after taking second place at the Lyle King Princeton Invitational Tournament, where he suffered his first loss by a 4-0 score against Delaney, who improved to 25-0 with that title win. In the fall, the football All-Stater ran for 1,444 yards and 26 touchdowns to help lead the Coalers to an 8-3 season.

“Being a state champion has been a goal and I knew that it wasn’t out of reach because I’m going to go up against whoever’s in front of me,” Benson said. “It’s just amazing to win it. We all want to win team state just as much as we all want to win individual state. Team state, we won last year, so winning back-to-back would be amazing. It’s always been football and then wrestling, now I’m All-State in both sports.”

Tremont junior Bowden Delaney (45-2), a three-time qualifier who won 42 matches a year ago and reached the quarterfinals at 126, earned his first state medal but fell just short of becoming the third individual from his school to win a state title and the first to accomplish that since 1985, when Russ Witzig, a 2022 IWCOA Hall of Fame inductee who has had a successful coaching career at Triad, took first place at 167 in Class A. Delaney is the fifth Turk to reach the Grand March and the first to get there since 1985 when Eric Burden joined Witzig as a finalist. It’s the third year in a row that the Turks, who are coached by 2006 IWCOA Hall of Fame inductee T.J. Williams, have had a state placewinner, which is a first for the school. Delaney won six tournament titles, taking firsts at PORTA, Unity, Lyle King Princeton Invitational, Heart of Illinois Conference, the Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley Regional and the Olympia Sectional. His only other loss came to Marian Central Catholic’s Max Astacio, who lost 3-2 to Benson in the semifinals.  

“I know that I can wrestle better but I’ll learn and move on from it,” Delaney said. “I really wasn’t wrestling my best and he’s a tough opponent, and that’s when I have to be at my finest, and I just wasn’t tonight. It’s fun to look back on it and see how big the growth was. So I have to learn from this and work hard in the offseason and go get it next year.”

Genoa-Kingston senior Brady Brewick (42-4), who became his school’s second medal winner and first since Clay Chaberski took second at 215 in 1A in 2010, won the third-place match with a 4-1 decision over Rockridge sophomore Ryan Lower (46-5), who joins the 132 champion, junior Jude Finch, as medal winners for coach Lucas Smith’s Rockets. Unity junior Ryan Rink (43-12) took fifth place by medical forfeit when Marian Central Catholic senior Max Astacio (39-8), who took fifth place at 160 last season, was unable to go. Astacio was one of the six medalists for the Hurricanes. Rink, a first-time medal winner, joins 190 champion Hunter Eastin and 144 runner-up Kaden Inman as medal winners for coach Logan Patton’s Rockets. All three also got the opportunity to compete in the IHSA Dual Team Finals in Bloomington. Northridge Prep senior Jon Suter (35-5) fell one victory shy of becoming his school’s first medalist and Princeton sophomore Casey Etheridge (32-11) also was one win away from a top-six finish.

175 – Carter Watkins, Manteno

While a lot of the IHSA Class 1A champions have more to accomplish at their schools and others are excited about the success that they will likely have at the collegiate level, Manteno senior Carter Watkins appears to be more inclined to end his career by reaching the prep pinnacle after winning the 175 championship with a 7-2 decision over Lena-Winslow/Stockton’s Eli Larson. Watkins (37-2) opened with a fall and then won his next three matches with decisions to not only claim his first medal in the sport but also to become the second individual from his school to win a title, with Ross George being the other in 2007 when he took top honors at 130 in Class A. Watkins is also only the sixth Panther to win a medal at state and the first since Stevie Silva placed at state for the second time in 2018. The lone qualifier for Manteno, which is coached by Ed Spiewak, Watkins won by fall in 4:49 in his opener over another individual with the same last name, Illini West junior Shawn Watkins (35-11) before capturing a 7-2 decision over Riverdale senior Zachary Bradley (48-6) in the quarterfinals. He earned his spot in the finals, something that had only been done two other times at the school by George in 2006 and 2007, with a wild 13-10 decision over Hoopeston Area’s Angel Zamora in the semifinals. A state qualifier for the third time, Watkins went 32-8 a year ago but fell one win shy of a medal at 160 and two years before that when he was a freshman, he competed in the IWCOA Finals. Watkins won four other tournament titles this season,  the Lyle King Princeton Invitational, the Illinois Central Eight Conference, the Wilmington Regional and the Chicago Hope Academy Sectional. 

“My confidence has always been high,” Watkins said. “I knew most of these kids and I knew that I could beat them. I’m going to ONU (Olivet Nazarene University) on a scholarship so the only thing that I’m doing that has to do with wrestling now is going back to the high school next year and helping the little kids. This is like a weight lifted off of my shoulders and it’s something that I’m going to think about for the rest of my life.”

Lena-Winslow/Stockton sophomore Eli Larson (44-6) took a similar path to the 175 finals as did Watkins, winning by fall in his opener before claiming close decisions in his next two matches. Making his first appearance at state, Larson won by fall in 3:52 over Auburn senior Joey Barrow (31-13) in his first match and then captured a 6-3 victory over Unity senior Thayden Root (45-11) in the quarterfinals. Larson earned his spot on the 175 title mat after capturing a 7-5 decision over Red Bud/Valmeyer’s Ty Carter in the semifinals. That win assured that he would win a state medal and he was the only to do that for the PantherHawks, who are coached by 2020 IWCOA Hall of Fame inductee Kevin Milder. De La Salle Institute senior Josue Hernandez (32-7) was one of two third-place finishers and three medalists for coach Jason Davidson’s Meteors, won 4-2 on a tiebreaker over Hoopeston Area/Milford junior Angel Zamora (51-4), one of his team’s two medal winners, with Ayden Larkin, who finished sixth at 157, being the other. The last time that the Cornjerkers had more than one medalist was in 2012. 

“I train hard every day in practice and I do what I have to do and I know that I can compete with anybody,” Hernandez said. “It’s my last year and my last match so I was hoping to leave it all out there, and I wasn’t holding anything back. Our coaches are always pushing us to be our best since they know what we’re capable of and they know what we can do.”  

Saturday was also a big day for Red Bud/Valmeyer senior Ty Carter (47-5), who became the first individual from Red Bud to place at state. He took fifth place after claiming a 4-2 decision over Oakwood/Salt Fork senior Dalton Brown (44-8), who was one of three medalists for the Comets, who lost to Roxana on Tuesday to miss making a second-straight trip to the IHSA Dual Team Finals after taking fourth in 2023. Falling one win shy of state medals were Seneca senior Asher Hamby (50-8) and the High School of Saint Thomas More senior August Christhilf (40-7). 

“I could have done better, but it feels good nonetheless,” Carter said. “It’s good to finish it off with a win, I’d rather end up as an odd number than an even number. I was just focused every day in practice and I worked every day. It was the only thing on my mind the last three months. It’s not easier down there, that’s a misconception. We’re smaller and less concentrated but it’s tough throughout the whole state.”

190 – Hunter Eastin, Unity

After Nick Nosler won the 195 championship last year at the IHSA Finals to cap a 52-2 senior season, the hope among those who support coach Logan Patton’s Unity Rockets was that the program might follow up on its first state title since 1991 with another first-place finisher this season. After junior Kaden Inman fell just short of a title at 144 with an 8-7 defeat to Illini Bluffs’ Jackson Carroll, junior Hunter Eastin got his chance to win the 190 title match and made the most of it by capturing a 5-2 decision over The High School of Saint Thomas More senior Brody Cuppernell, who coincidentally was Nosler’s opponent when he won his state title a year ago. So for the first time since 1991, the Rockets have had champions in consecutive seasons, a feat that the program accomplished from 1989 to 1991 when Terry Bagwell (1989), Travis Smith (1990) and Juan Molina (1991) won Class A titles each year. Eastin can now add his name to those four as well as Unity’s first title winner, Bill Brandon (1986), as the only individuals from the Tolono school who have captured state championships. Eastin (47-6), Inman and their teammates also got to compete in the IHSA Dual Team Finals in Bloomington. He opened with a fall in 1:22 over Frankfort Community junior Conner Henson (39-12) and followed that with a pin in 5:45 over Lena-Winslow/Stockton sophomore Jeremiah Luke (43-8) in the quarterfinals. He earned his trip to the 195 title mat with an 8-3 decision over Vandalia’s Kaden Tidwell. A year ago, Eastin went 48-7 and fell one win shy of placing at 182, which gave the Rockets two medalists, with Kyus Root the other after taking fourth at 170. Unity exceeded that total by one this year since another junior, Ryan Rink, took fifth at 165. Eastin won three other tournaments this season, with two at his own school, the first in the Unity Invite and the second the Unity Regional and he also took first at the Olympia Sectional. In the regional finals, he captured a 6-2 decision over Cuppernell and in the sectional finals, he won a 7-4 decision over Cuppernell.

“It was tough getting here,” Eastin said. “It feels really good, that’s really the only way that I can describe it right now. We have really big hopes for the team duals. We’ve been trending in the right direction these last couple of weekends.”

The High School of Saint Thomas More senior Brody Cuppernell, who finished with a 35-4 record after his second-straight second-place state finish, became the second two-time placewinner for the Sabers, who are coached by Kurt Sexton, with the other two-time medalist being Nathan Santhanam (2009-2010). Cuppernell, who went 42-6 last season, won his opener by fall in 0:53 over Oakwood/Salt Fork freshman Jamison Chambliss (24-7) before defeating Coal City’s Cade Poyner (42-9) by technical fall in 5:40. He earned his spot in the 195 title match with a 6-1 decision over King College Prep’s Calvin Savage. In the third-place match, Orion junior Maddux Anderson (49-3) won a 7-6 decision over Vandalia junior Kaden Tidwell (37-11) as both individuals became state medalists for the first time and Tidwell got to help his team take fourth place in the Dual Team Finals. And for fifth place, Canton senior Danny Murphy (47-4) won a 3-1 decision over King College Prep senior Calvin Savage (36-6). It was the first state medal for both competitors with Murphy being the Little Giants’ lone medalist and coach Zach Crawford’s program has had an all-stater each year since 2020, which counting the 2021 IWCOA Finals, gives it 11 during that time, which is three more than it had before 2020. Savage became the second individual from his school to earn all-state honors, with the other being Lavontay Cobb, who took fourth place in 2A in 2013. Falling one win shy of state medals were Clifton Central senior Hunter Hull (26-9) and Coal City sophomore Cade Poyner (42-9), who also got to compete in the IHSA Dual Team Finals, where the Coalers claimed second place.

215 – Noah Wenzel, Dakota

Although Noah Wenzel might not have been able to reach the rare standard that three others from Dakota have achieved, four-time champions Phoenix Blakely, Josh Alber and Seth Milks, since he took fourth place as the lone freshman medalist at 195 at the 2021 IWCOA Finals, the senior will have to settle to be in the same company along with Jayden Colon, Ben Davino, Dillan Johnson, Seth Mendoza and Joey Ruzic as the only individuals who have won IHSA titles in each of the past three seasons, with Wenzel being one of the five seniors from that group who had no IHSA Tournament to take part in during their freshman seasons. In addition, he’s one of 14 competitors who took part in each of the last three Grand Marches at the IHSA Finals. Wenzel’s also one of six individuals from his school who have won three IHSA championships. Wenzel capped a 36-0 season and finished with a 126-9 career record by capturing the title at 215 with a 7-4 decision over East Alton-Wood River’s Drake Champlin. In 2022, he went 41-4 and won the 195 title over Unity’s Nick Nosler and last season posted a 42-3 record and defeated Nazareth Academy’s Gabe Kaminski to win the 220 championship. In the weight classes that he competed in, there have been very few repeat champions in the state’s smallest division, making his three-peat even that much more impressive. He opened his final tournament run with a fall in 3:38 over Carmi-White County senior Nelson Rider (42-9) and then recorded a pin in 2:26 over Olympia’s Nolen Yeary in the quarterfinals. He earned his third appearance in the Grand March after capturing a 7-2 decision over Johnston City’s Jude Beers in the semifinals. Wenzel was one of three qualifiers and the lone placewinner for coach Matt Jacobs’ Indians. He won five other tournaments, Harlem’s Al Dvorak, Lyle King Princeton Invitational, Oak Park and River Forest, the Stillman Valley Regional and the Byron Sectional.

“I’ve said this before, that has always been so surreal,” Wenzel said. “I used to be sitting right there in the crowd and watching people do this, so it’s so weird being the guy down here now. I’ll remember the people that I’ve met.”

East Alton-Wood River junior Drake Champlin (51-4) became just the fifth individual from his school to reach the title mat and was the first to advance there since 2021 when Jason Shaw took second at 126 in 1A in the IWCOA Finals while Zac Blasioli competed for state titles in both 2016 and 2017 and won a Class 1A title in 2017. Champlin recorded a fall in 5:40 over Lena-Winslow/Stockton senior Michael Haas (34-10) in his opener and then won 3-1 in sudden victory over LeRoy/Tri-Valley senior Jacob Bischoff (43-4) in the quarterfinals. Then he had another tight match in the semifinals, winning 7-5 by sudden victory over Seneca’s Chris Peura. Champlin was the lone state qualifier for coach Tim Donohoo’s Oilers. Johnston City senior Jude Beers (44-3) became just the second medal winner for his program and equalled Jamie Hubbard’s finish from 1998, which was the first time that someone from that school placed. Beers won the third-place match by recording a fall in 1:59 over Seneca senior Chris Peura (47-6), who suffered a tough semifinal loss to Champlin. Peura placed sixth last year at 195, making him one of the four Fighting Irish who have been two-time medalists. In the fifth-place match, Kewanee junior Alejandro Duarte (41-6) won by fall in 3:37 over Olympia senior Nolen Yeary (39-9) with both claiming their first state medals. Falling one victory shy of being a medalist were Orion junior Aiden Fisher (40-13) and Quincy Notre Dame junior Taylin Scott (45-6).

“This is a second-year program and last season we barely even had a season since our football team went to the semis so we started late,” Beers said. “I worked hard in the offseason and my coaches worked with me hard and I have great teammates who’ve worked with me the whole time. There were a lot of big boys here and they’re all good.”  

285 – Jason Dowell, Althoff Catholic

After going 42-10 and falling to the eventual champion, IC Catholic Prep’s Isaiah Gonzalez, in the 285 semifinals at the IHSA Finals before settling for third place last year while competing for Cahokia, Jason Dowell was hopeful that a different setting this season would prevent another close call and instead result in him winning  a state title and that’s just what happened for the junior at Althoff Catholic who capped a 32-2 season by winning the 285 state title thanks to his third-straight 2-1 decision in the finals over St. Francis sophomore Jaylen Torres. As a result, Dowell became the fourth individual to win an IHSA championship at the Belleville school and the first to accomplish that feat since 1997, when Mike Weber claimed first place in Class A at 171. Dowell, who’s also a Division I prospect in football who has numerous scholarship offers from top programs, began his title run with a fall in 5:03 over Byron junior Jared Claunch (29-9) and then won 2-1 over De La Salle Institute’s David McCarthy in the quarterfinals. He edged Princeton’s Cade Odell 2-1 in the semifinals to become the first finalist for the Crusaders since 2005, when Aaron Winning took second place at 130 in Class A. But there was also some  disappointment for coach EJ Brooks’ team as junior Brenden Rayl finished 35-4 but fell one win shy of a medal at 126 to prevent Althoff Catholic from having two medal winners for the first time since Kameron and Michael Harris took third and sixth place, respectively, in 1A in 2012. Dowell won five other tournament titles, with three of those taking place in Missouri. He took firsts at Cumberland’s Skull and Crossbones and the Carlyle Regional in Illinois. He lost in the Vandalia Sectional finals to Roxana’s James Herring 10-9 by ultimate tiebreaker and his other defeat was by 4-0 score in the title match of Carbondale’s Murdale Tournament to Centennial senior Jack Barnhart, who capped a 44-0 season by winning the 2A 285 championship in his hometown.

“He believed in me,” Dowell said of coach EJ Brooks. “Of course God is one, but him being the big brother that he is to me, telling me, ‘no you cannot do that yet, no, you should work on this, you should change up and do this’. With him being right there in the room, pushing me and pushing me. There were many times when I was like ‘why is he so nit picky when it comes to a certain moves that I do. So I tried to model my wrestling like how he wrestled. Working with him 24-7 in that stupid wrestling room, that was a blessing. I can’t thank him enough. I was cocky going to sectionals and a friend of mine named James Herring humbled me, I was thinking that I was more than I was. Sometimes, you need that. To come here with confidence and not cockiness was an absolute blessing and I’m very happy that I’m here. Deny myself every single day, picking up my cross and following God in everything I do, whether it’s the wrestling room or the football field, baseball diamond or my class. And hold up His name as high as I can.”

St. Francis sophomore Jaylen Torres, who went 19-2 after playing football on a 10-3 Spartans team that lost to eventual Class 5A champion Nazareth Academy in the semifinals. He opened his run to the finals with a fall in 3:13 over Lawrenceville/Red Hill junior Dylan Camden (39-14) and then won with a pin in 1:36 over Chicago Hope Academy’s Roy Phelps in the quarterfinals. Torres earned his spot on the 285 title match with a 7-4 decision over Roxana’s James Herring. He is only the fifth individual from his program who has placed at state, and the first since 1984. Only one other Spartan, 1980 Class A heavyweight champion Bob Hudetz, placed higher than him in Champaign. Torres, who’s coached by Eric Kirkman, was the lone state qualifier for the Wheaton school. For third place, Roxana senior James Herring (46-4) edged Princeton junior Cade Odell (32-4) by a 3-2 score as both earned their first state medals. Odell was one of three medalists for coach Steve Amy’s Tigers while Herring was one of the three medal winners for coach Rob Milazzo’s Shells, who claimed third place in the IHSA Dual Team Finals one week later. It was the school’s first state appearance since 2014 and also its second-best finish there, with only a second-place finish in 2004 in Class A being superior to this season’s showing.

“I probably should be in the finals, but stuff happens since it’s the state tournament, nothing’s guaranteed,” Herring said. “Our team has been really good this year and we’re getting ready for the team tourney. We’ve had a heck of a season and it’s been a great senior season for me with my senior brothers.”

In the fifth-place match, two juniors from Chicago schools who won their first state medals met and De La Salle Institute’s David McCarthy (31-7) won by fall in 1:15 over Chicago Hope Academy’s Roy Phelps (46-10). McCarthy’s Meteors had three medalists while the Eagles had two in the top six. Falling one victory shy of medals were Canton sophomore Connor Williams (43-4) and Leo junior Nicholas Armour (35-7).

106 – Eric Bush, Johnsburg

When you’re trying to achieve something special, like becoming the first individual from your school to win a state championship, and you have a large and vocal group of students from your school on hand to support you, it might provide just enough of a boost to help you get the job done. Johnsburg freshman Eric Bush certainly had those extras going for him when he took on another freshman with plenty of motivation behind him, Vandalia’s Max Philpot, in the 106 championship match. He led 2-1 heading into the third period and added one more point and made that stand to capture a 3-1 victory and conclude a 34-4 season. Bush’s ability to win close matches was evidenced by him recording three two-point decisions in his final three matches to become the Skyhawks’ first IHSA champion. Bush ended the quest for an initial champion that dates back 36 years to 1988, when the school’s first two-time medalist, Sean Kegel, was the runner-up at 98 in the Class AA Finals. In 2000, Jerad Karlen took second in AA and in 2020, the Skyhawks’ other two-time medal winner, Justin Peake, settled for second place in 1A. Bush kicked off his debut at the State Finals with a fall in 2:46 over Murphysboro freshman Kanton Richards (33-19) and then got past De La Salle Institute sophomore Jeremiah Lawrence 2-0 in the quarterfinals. Then he recorded his first 3-1 victory when he edged Marian Central Catholic sophomore Austin Hagevold in the semifinals. Bush, the lone qualifier for Johnsburg, which is coached by James Sylvanus, was down on the list of favorites for the 106 championship but the winner of four tournament titles was determined that he could be a state champion in his initial attempt. Bush captured titles in three early competitions, Vernon Hills, Richmond-Burton and Stillman Valley, before starting his postseason run with a title at the Johnsburg Regional. He lost 7-5 in the Byron Sectional title match to Princeton’s Augustus Swanson, who came in as the favorite at 106, but Bush used that loss as motivation and the result was his school’s first title.

“My coach has always told me the exact same thing over and over, that it’s just a match and I believed in that,” Bush said. “I trained every single day and every single night and got it done. It definitely helped that big crowd up there. It’s amazing to be the first state champion at Johnsburg ever. They’ve had second places, but to be the first-ever state champ and the first freshman to win is big, too. After sectionals when I lost that 7-5 match, I just got it in my head that I was going to win state. That day it hurt, but it motivated me even more. Now this motivates me to win next year, that’s for sure.”

Vandalia freshman Max Philpot (48-3), who went past the 50-win mark in his debut season while helping his team take fourth place at the IHSA Dual Team Finals, also had plenty of motivation to reach the top of the awards stand at 106. His program captured its 1000th dual meet win this season and also advanced to the dual team finals for a 23rd time, which ranks second only to Montini Catholic, where it finished fourth. But despite all of that team success, the Vandals have only had four individual champions, with the last of those being Jarek Wehrle, who won 1A at 106 in the 2021 IWCOA Finals while Joe-E Smith was the school’s last IHSA champion in 2007 when he took first at 152 in Class A. Philpot opened with a fall in 1:48 over Dakota sophomore Brandon White (38-11) and then won by technical fall in 2:42 over Seneca freshman Raiden Terry (41-10). One of six qualifiers, three medalists and two finalists for coach Jason Clay’s Vandals, who have been ranked among the state’s best all season, Philpot earned his spot in the 106 finals by claiming a 14-10 decision over Princeton’s Augustus Swanson in the semifinals. De La Salle Institute sophomore Jeremiah Lawrence (27-5). one of three medal winners for the Meteors, took third place with a 12-4 major decision over Marian Central Catholic sophomore Austin Hagevold (37-18), who was of the six medalists for the Hurricanes, who went on to win the Class 1A Dual Team championship. For fifth place, Princeton sophomore Augustus Swanson (35-3), one of three Tigers who won medals, claimed a 6-4 decision over Coal City freshman Owen Petersen (45-7), who was one of five medal winners for coach Mark Masters’ Coalers, who took second place in the Dual Team Finals. Falling one win shy of state medals were LeRoy/Tri-Valley junior Brady Mouser (44-4) and Pontiac senior Aidan Scholwin (31-17).

113 – Preston Waughtel, Carlyle

While Carlyle freshman Preston Waughtel had every reason to be thrilled about capping a 50-0 season by beating a pair of two-time state finalists, including one who was a returning IHSA champion, along the way to winning the title at 113, it’s understandable that he was disappointed seeing his brother Tyson lose 7-5 in sudden victory to Marian Central Catholic’s Brayden Teunissen in the next championship match at 120 to deny the junior of a third-straight title and prevent him from also having a perfect season. Despite that, it was obviously a special weekend for coach Ben Wademan’s Indians, who had two finalists and medalists for the first and the Waughtel brothers won the same number of medals in the Finals as the school had claimed before Tyson started his impressive run of success in 2021-22. Opening with a win by technical fall in 1:33 over Sandwich freshman Colten Stone (30-19), Preston won a 15-2 major decision over Illini Bluffs senior Hunter Robbins (47-4), who placed second at 106 in both 2022 and 2023. He earned his spot in the 113 title match with a 5-2 decision over Marian Central Catholic senior Anthony Alanis, who won the Class 2A 106 title for Grayslake Central a year ago after placing second at 106 in 2022. In the title match, Preston met Peoria Notre Dame’s Ian Akers, who placed fourth at 106 a year ago, and won a 7-0 decision. He joined Benton senior Mason Tieffel (55-0 at 138) and Dakota senior Noah Wenzel (36-0 at 215) as unbeaten champions in Class 1A and also was one of three freshmen title winners in 1A along with Johnburg’s Eric Bush (106) and Marian Central Catholic’s Jimmy Mastny (157). Preston won six other tournament titles, Civic Memorial’s Bradley, Cumberland’s Skull and Crossbones, Carbondale’s Murdale, Goreville/Vienna’s Blackcat Brawl, the Carlyle Regional and the Vandalia Sectional. 

“I’m very excited about how I performed,” Waughtel said. “It shows that I’ve been working the hardest in my weight class and that I haven’t been taking days off. Four titles is always the goal and then being undefeated is another goal. Anyone can get beaten at any time, so I just have to train harder. With it being his senior year next year, hopefully we can both go undefeated and win another state title.”

Peoria Notre Dame junior Ian Akers (41-6) became just the third individual from his program to compete for a title and the fourth to win two or more state medals. He won by fall in 1:47 over Nazareth Academy sophomore Charlie Dvorak in his first match and then captured an 8-4 decision over Oregon freshman Nelson Benesh (38-9). Akers earned his spot on the 113 title mat by capturing a 7-0 decision over Benton freshman Cohen Sweely (41-10). Akers won five tournament titles, Glenwood’s Cox, Metamora, Prairie Central, Litchfield’s Lovellette and the Knoxville Regional and he also helped coach Danny Burk’s Irish win their first regional title.

“I’m proud of where I’ve gotten to, but obviously, I’d like to be one step above that and the state champ, but I’m right there,” Akers said. “In my freshman year we were really close, but didn’t get it (a regional title), so that was kind of a goal of ours as a team. And it’s nice to be surrounded by guys who want to work hard and want to be good, that’s awesome.”

Marian Central Catholic senior Anthony Alanis (40-5) took third place after winning an 8-0 major decision over Olympia junior Dylan Eimer (33-5). The two also met in the quarterfinals with Alanis, one of six medal winners for the Hurricanes, winning that matchup by an 8-1 score. While competing for Grayslake Central, Alanis won the Class 2A title at 106 last year, took second at that weight in 2022 and finished sixth at 106 in 2021 at the IWCOA Finals. Alanis concluded his season and career on a high note as Marian Central Catholic captured its first IHSA Dual Team title when it defeated defending champion Coal City 34-27 in Bloomington. Eimer, who placed fourth at 106 in 2022, was one of three medalists for coach Josh Collins’ Spartans. In a matchup of freshmen for fifth place, Coal City’s Cooper Morris (42-9) won a 5-2 decision over Benton’s Cohen Sweely (41-10). They also met up in the quarterfinals with Sweely capturing a 7-2 win in that match. Falling one win shy of state medals  were Illini Bluffs senior Hunter Robbins (47-4), who had finished in second place at 106 in both 2023 and 2022. as well as Vandalia freshman Elijah Mabry (36-14), who capped his debut season on a good note when the Vandals finished in fourth place at the IHSA Dual Team Finals in Bloomington.

120 – Brayden Teunissen, Marian Central Catholic

After capturing the title at the Byron Sectional, Brayden Teunissen felt that the tough schedule that he faced and having coaches Jordan Blanton and Ryan Prater in his corner might be good enough to help him capture the title at 120, and that confidence seemed to be justified after he defeated two unbeaten competitors, including a two-time defending IHSA champion on the title match to achieve his goal. The Marian Central Catholic junior followed two wins by technical fall and a major decision with a 7-5 win by sudden victory over Carlyle’s two-time title winner Tyson Waughtel in the 120 finals. Waughtel led 5-3 in the final period before Teunissen used a late takedown to force overtime and then scored again in sudden victory. Teunissen (40-5), who was one of two champions, three finalists and six medal winners for the Hurricanes, helped his team win the IHSA Class 1A Dual Team Finals in Bloomington for its first title to secure the win. He advanced to the state finals for the second year in a row. Last season, he took second place at 106 in Class 3A to St. Charles East’s Dom Munaretto while competing for the Belvidere co-op. Teunissen opened with a win by technical fall in 4:32 over LeRoy/Tri-Valley freshman EJ Chaon (30-13) and then won a 17-7 major decision in the quarterfinals over Anna-Jonesboro’s Drew Sadler, who placed third the last two years at state. Teunissen advanced to the 120 title match with another win by technical fall, this time in 4:19 over Unity Christian’s Clinton VerHeecke, who lost for the first time in that match. Teunissen won three other tournament titles this season, the Chicagoland Christian Conference, the Johnsburg Regional and the Byron Sectional.

“I felt really confident,” Teunissen said. “I knew that I was better prepared than him. Our schedule is the toughest competition that you can possibly have and I knew that he hadn’t seen anything like my wrestling style. Our team wrestled amazing.”

Carlyle junior Tyson Waughtel (50-1) was hoping to join six others who have won three-straight IHSA championships but saw those hopes dashed in heartbreaking fashion to Marian Central Catholic junior Brayden Teunissen to suffer his first defeat in 51 matches this season and second loss in 154 matches during his career. He hoped to follow his freshman brother Preston, who capped a perfect 50-0 season with the championship at 113 when he won a 7-0 decision over Peoria Notre Dame’s Ian Akers. A year ago, Tyson beat Farmington’s Keygan Jennings in the 113 title match to complete a 50-1 season and in 2022, he concluded a perfect 50-0 debut season with a victory over Illini Bluffs’ Hunter Robbins in the 106 title match. Tyson opened his quest for a third title with a fall in 1:10 over Bishop McNamara sophomore Blake Arseneau (21-9) and then won by technical fall in 4:25 over Riverdale’s Dean Wainwright in a matchup of defending Class 1A champions. He reached the 120 title match with another win by technical fall, this time in 2:36 over Warrensburg-Latham’s Logan Roberts. Like his brother Preston, he won six other tournament titles, Civic Memorial’s Bradley, Cumberland’s Skull and Crossbones, Cardbondale’s Murdale, Goreville/Vienna’s Blackcat Brawl, the Carlyle Regional and the Vandalia Sectional. In the third-place match, Riverdale sophomore Dean Wainwright (47-3) won by fall in 1:42 over Oblong senior Ian Rosborough (39-7). Wainwright, who fell to Waughtel in the quarterfinals, recorded four falls in the consolation bracket in order to capture third place. A year ago, he finished 50-1 and defeated Illini Bluffs’ Hunter Robbins to win the 106 IHSA championship. He got the opportunity to compete with his team at the IHSA Dual Team Finals, which Riverdale advanced to for the first time since 2007. And Rosborough also made history in his state finals debut by becoming the first individual from Oblong to win a state medal. 

“Yesterday was a tough day,” Wainwright said after he took third. “I took a pretty bad loss to Tyson Waughtel and he’s a pretty good kid, but I absolutely could have wrestled better and I know that in my heart, but things happen and I came back and wrestled for third. I want to thank my coaches and my teammates over at Big Game Wrestling Club and at the school. The season’s not over yet.”    

“It feels pretty good, but I wish that I got third and not fourth, since I put in a lot of work,” Rosborough said. “I’m a senior and I’d never qualified before. It was a lot of pressure at first but I just wrestled like it was a normal tournament and all of the pressure went away and I just wrestled hard and did what I know I can do.”

For fifth place, Unity Christian sophomore Clinton VerHeecke (42-2) won an 11-1 major decision over Warrensburg-Latham junior Logan Roberts (44-7). VerHeecke took third at 113 a year ago representing Lutheran Schools Association – Decatur while Roberts won his first state medal. Falling one win shy of medals were Anna-Jonesboro junior Drew Sadler (49-5), who took third place at 106 in both 2023 and 2022, as well as Coal City junior Culan Lindemuth (33-16).

126 – Joey Ruzic, Auburn

Joey Ruzic put the finishing touches of one of the best careers that any individual from the Springfield area has enjoyed when he captured his third-straight IHSA championship after taking top honors at 126 with a 6-1 decision over Coal City’s Brody Widlowski in the 126 finals to cap a 46-1 season and finish his four-year career with an impressive 158-6 record. The Auburn senior only lost one match this season, to Harrisburg’s Tony Keene in the Vandalia Sectional finals, but he closed things out in impressive fashion by defeating the state’s other three sectional champions, with two of those victories by major decision. Ruzic, who went 32-3 and placed third at the IWCOA Finals in 2021, won his first IHSA title at 113 in 2022 over Richmond-Burton’s Emmitt Nelson to cap a perfect 26-0 season. A year ago, he beat Yorkville Christian’s Ty Edwards for the 120 title to complete a 53-2 campaign. As a result, he joins St. Charles East seniors Ben Davino and Jayden Colon, Joliet Catholic Academy senior Dillan Johnson, Dakota senior Noah Wenzel and Mount Carmel junior Seth Mendoza as the six individuals who have won three-straight IHSA championships, with him and four others not getting the opportunity to compete in an IHSA Finals as freshmen in 2021 due to the pandemic. He was one of the 14 individuals who made three finals appearances in the last three seasons. Ruzic opened with a fall in 0:51 over Walther Christian Academy’s Caleb Peterson and then claimed a 13-5 major decision over Wheaton Academy’s Lincoln Hoger. He earned his third appearance in the Grand Match with a 12-1 major decision over Unity Christian’s Garrett VerHeecke and concluded the Class 1A championships by winning his third title on the campus of the University of Illinois, where he will continue his education and as his career competing for coach Mike Poeta’s Fighting Illini. He won six other tournaments, PORTA Avery, Springfield Bee, Lyle King Princeton Invitational, LeRoy Bowman, Litchfield Lovellete and the Auburn Regional in his final home competition. He was one of two qualifiers and the lone medalist for coach Matt Grimm’s Trojans and is the only individual from his school that has won a state title.

“My offseason training definitely helped me and that’s what made the difference,” Ruzic said. “It’s awesome, but I knew that I’d get it done, I knew that it would happen. I worked hard for it, so I knew that it would come. (The sectional loss) I definitely had a chip on my shoulder because of that, but I didn’t let it affect me and I just came out and did what I did, and you see the result. I kind of underestimated my opponent and didn’t give the respect he deserved, and it happens, so I just couldn’t let that affect me. Anything can happen in the state tournament and what happened before does not matter. I’m looking forward to it. I can’t wait to be in the orange and blue and represent my home state. It feels good to finally get it done. Without my coaches and my teammates, none of this would have been possible, so I’m very thankful for that. Now it’s time for the real fun part.”

“They do not come around too often, and when they do, you have to take advantage and cherish every moment that you have with those kids,” Auburn coach Matt Grimm said. “He’s a very humble kid, a down to earth kid, and he puts the work in and he gets the results because of the work that he put in. It was a bump in the road is what we called it and we hit the restart button on Sunday morning and got back after it. It wasn’t a big deal since we knew we had to put four matches in a row to get a state title, and that’s what we focused on. We try to emulate what he does and the hard work that he puts in and we talk about it in the room all the time. If you want the results, you’ve got to put the work in to get the results, and he’s the epitome of that.”

Coal City sophomore Brody Widlowski (26-4) was one of the two finalists and five medal winners for IWCOA Hall of Fame coach Mark Masters’ Coalers, who reached the IHSA Dual Team Finals title match for the eighth time but were unable to repeat as champions after falling  34-27 to Marian Central Catholic. Widlowski, who went 42-3 last year and placed fourth at 113, pinned Roxana sophomore Logan Riggs (41-11) in 3:40 in his opener and then won a 6-3 decision over Unity sophomore Hunter Shike (39-8) in the quarterfinals. The champion of the Chicago Hope Academy Sectional earned his spot in the Grand March by claiming a 7-3 decision over Keene in the semifinals. Unity Christian sophomore Garrett VerHeecke (44-1), the sectional champion at Olympia, was unbeaten heading to state and lost for the only time to Ruzic in the semifinals and bounced back with two wins to take third with a fall in 1:30 over Harrisburg senior Tony Keene (44-4). VerHeecke placed sixth last year at 120 while Keene, one of two medalists from his school and the only one to win more than one medal, finished in fourth place for the third year in a row. Wheaton Academy sophomore Lincoln Hoger (42-7), the Byron Sectional champion, took fifth place following a 4-0 decision over North Boone junior Gavin Ekberg (39-9). Hoger is the third medal winner and the first since 2019 for Wheaton Academy while Ekberg became the fourth medalist for North Boone and its first since four-time finalist and two-champion Brandon Briggs in 2015. Falling one victory shy of medals were Warrensburg-Latham junior Kaden Roberts (44-10) and Althoff Catholic junior Brenden Rayl (35-4).

Class 1A Championship Matches

1A 106 – Eric Bush (Johnsburg) 34-4, Fr. over Max Philpot (Vandalia) 48-3, Fr. (Dec 3-1)
1A 113 – Preston Waughtel (Carlyle) 50-0, Fr. over Ian Akers (Peoria Notre Dame) 41-6, Jr. (Dec 7-0)
1A 120 – Brayden Teunissen (Marian Central Catholic) 40-5, Jr. over Tyson Waughtel (Carlyle) 50-1, Jr. (SV-1 7-5)
1A 126 – Joey Ruzic (Auburn) 46-1, Sr. over Brody Widlowski (Coal City) 26-4, So. (Dec 6-1)
1A 132 – Jude Finch (Rockridge) 43-6, Jr. over Vance Williams (Marian Central Catholic) 44-9, Jr. (Dec 7-4)
1A 138 – Mason Tieffel (Benton) 55-0, Sr. over Dillon Hinton (Vandalia) 46-4, So. (MD 18-6)
1A 144 – Jackson Carroll (Illini Bluffs) 51-2, Jr. over Kaden Inman (Unity) 44-8, Jr. (Dec 8-7)
1A 150 – Bentley Wise (Olympia) 44-8, Sr. over Blue Bishop (Herrin) 46-2, Sr. (Dec 5-3)
1A 157 – Jimmy Mastny (Marian Central Catholic) 28-1, Fr. over Bryson Capansky (Oakwood/Salt Fork) 43-7, Sr. (Fall 3:23)
1A 165 – Landin Benson (Coal City) 26-2, Jr. over Bowden Delaney (Tremont) 45-2, Jr. (Dec 3-1)
1A 175 – Carter Watkins (Manteno) 37-2, Sr. over Eli Larson (Lena-Winslow/Stockton) 44-6, So. (Dec 7-2)
1A 190 – Hunter Eastin (Unity) 47-6, Jr. over Brody Cuppernell (The High School of Saint Thomas More) 35-4, Sr. (Dec 5-2)
1A 215 – Noah Wenzel (Dakota) 36-0, Sr. over Drake Champlin (East Alton-Wood River) 51-4, Jr. (Dec 7-4)
1A 285 – Jason Dowell (Althoff Catholic) 32-2, Jr. over Jaylen Torres (St. Francis) 19-2, So. (Dec 2-1)

Class 1A Third Place Matches

1A 106 – Jeremiah Lawrence (De La Salle Institute) 27-5, So. over Austin Hagevold (Marian Central Catholic) 37-18, So. (MD 12-4)
1A 113 – Anthony Alanis (Marian Central Catholic) 40-5, Sr. over Dylan Eimer (Olympia) 33-5, Jr. (MD 8-0)
1A 120 – Dean Wainwright (Riverdale) 47-3, So. over Ian Rosborough (Oblong) 39-7, Sr. (Fall 1:42)
1A 126 – Garrett VerHeecke (Unity Christian) 44-1, So. over Tony Keene (Harrisburg) 44-4, Sr. (Fall 1:30)
1A 132 – Brady Grennan (Newman Central Catholic) 46-5, Sr. over Carson Bissey (Richland County) 48-3, Jr. (Dec 5-1)
1A 138 – Ace Christiansen (Princeton) 39-7, Jr. over Cooper Corder (Sandwich) 35-5, Fr. (UTB 5-4)
1A 144 – Santiago Chaparro (Chicago Hope Academy) 50-3, Sr. over Bryce Edwards (Murphysboro) 46-9, Jr. (Dec 7-1)
1A 150 – Blake Smith (Riverdale) 50-3, Jr. over Carson Maxey (Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley/Fisher) 40-10, Sr. (Dec 9-2)
1A 157 – Liam Fox (Murphysboro) 51-1, Sr. over Lyndon Thies (Roxana) 47-7, So. (MD 10-2)
1A 165 – Brady Brewick (Genoa-Kingston) 42-4, Sr. over Ryan Lower (Rockridge) 46-5, So. (Dec 4-1)
1A 175 – Josue Hernandez (De La Salle Institute) 32-7, Sr. over Angel Zamora (Hoopeston Area) 51-4, Jr. (TB-1 4-2)
1A 190 – Maddux Anderson (Orion) 49-3, Jr. over Kaden Tidwell (Vandalia) 37-11, Jr. (Dec 7-6)
1A 215 – Jude Beers (Johnston City) 44-3, Sr. over Chris Peura (Seneca) 47-6, Sr. (Fall 1:59)
1A 285 – James Herring (Roxana) 46-4, Sr. over Cade Odell (Princeton) 32-4, Jr. (Dec 3-2)

Class 1A Fifth Place Matches

1A 106 – Augustus Swanson (Princeton) 35-3, So. over Owen Petersen (Coal City) 45-7, Fr. (Dec 6-4)
1A 113 – Cooper Morris (Coal City) 42-9, Fr. over Cohen Sweely (Benton) 41-10, Fr. (Dec 5-2)
1A 120 – Clinton VerHeecke (Unity Christian) 42-2, So. over Logan Roberts (Warrensburg-Latham) 44-7, Jr. (MD 11-1)
1A 126 – Lincoln Hoger (Wheaton Academy) 42-7, So. over Gavin Ekberg (North Boone) 39-9, Jr. (Dec 4-0)
1A 132 – Brandon Green Jr. (Roxana) 46-6, So. over Keygan Jennings (Farmington) 42-7, Sr. (SV-1 7-5)
1A 138 – Dylan Crouch (Dwight) 49-3, Jr. over Ian O`Connor (Illini Bluffs) 48-10, Sr. (Dec 5-3)
1A 144 – Carter Rude (Newman Central Catholic) 45-3, Sr. over Emmett Nelson (Richmond-Burton) 48-3, Jr. (M. For.)
1A 150 – Brant Widlowski (Coal City) 47-5, Sr. over Grant Brewer (Oakwood/Salt Fork) 41-6, Sr. (Fall 5:37)
1A 157 – Daniel Kelly (Newman Central Catholic) 45-6, Jr. over Ayden Larkin (Hoopeston Area) 42-14, Jr. (Dec 13-7)
1A 165 – Ryan Rink (Unity) 43-12, Jr. over Max Astacio (Marian Central Catholic) 39-8, Sr. (M. For.)
1A 175 – Ty Carter (Red Bud) 47-5, Sr. over Dalton Brown (Oakwood/Salt Fork) 44-8, Sr. (Dec 4-2)
1A 190 – Danny Murphy (Canton) 47-4, Sr. over Calvin Savage (King College Prep) 36-6, Sr. (Dec 3-1)
1A 215 – Alejandro Duarte (Kewanee) 41-6, Jr. over Nolen Yeary (Olympia) 39-9, Sr. (Fall 3:37)
1A 285 – David McCarthy (De La Salle Institute) 31-7, Jr. over Roy Phelps (Chicago Hope Academy) 46-10, Jr. (Fall 1:15)

Washington tops Montini in 2A dual team championship match

By Patrick Z. McGavin

In a sport shaped by technique, form and style, the heavyweights exist in their own world. The life of the 285-pounder is often defined by math and science.

Force plus mass creates its own internal dynamic.

Washington sophomore Sean Thornton discovered his own rhythm and tempo, with his own peculiar sense of timing and opportunity.

“I knew if I took him the distance, he wasn’t going with me,” Thornton said. “I’m good with my underhooks, and I like being in that position. He happened to go there, and I don’t think he knew I was good there. I was very comfortable.”

His takedown with :38 seconds remaining gave him the 6-4 decision over Montini’s Mick Ranquist in the Panthers’ enthralling 30-28 comeback victory in the Class 2A team dual state championship at Grossinger Motor Arena Saturday night.

“I was just grateful for all of my teammates and coaches who believed in me,” Thornton said.

Thornton (42-15) won all three of his matches in the state finals, including two by fall in the preliminaries. He finished with 30 falls.

The heavyweight match mirrored the larger narrative of the state championship colored by sharp momentum swings and twists that yielded its own sense of great theater and showmanship.

Ranquist registered the first period takedown for the opening advantage. Thornton countered with a reversal.

“I knew that was coming,” Thornton said. “He’d been hitting that all day.”

Ranquist countered with his own reversal for the 4-2 leads. Thornton created the escape to pull within 4-3 at the end of the second period.

The defining action proved to be the second stalling call against Ranquist that forged the 4-4 deadlock. “I was looking for some more stall calls at the end,” Thornton said. “He was running a little bit. I still got it done in the end.”

On the edge of the mat, Ranquist went for the throw, and Thornton was quicker to the body and pulled off the takedown.

Ranquist nearly pulled off the reversal in the closing seconds. Time ran out.

The defending state champions captured four of the final five matches to stun the Broncos, who were seeking their state-record 17th state championship.

In the showdown between the two historically-great programs, they exchanged haymakers. The two teams each won seven matches. In the end, Washington had the slight advantage in bonus points, with its three falls overcoming the one fall and two technical falls of the Broncos.

The Panthers’ dynamic finish nullified the Broncos’ fast start. Montini won six of the first nine matches, and had leads of 15-3 and 25-15.

Washington captured its sixth state dual championship in the last eight years of competition.

The clash with Montini proved the opposite of their victory over favored Joliet Catholic last year as the Panthers built the early lead and then held off a late charge by the Hilltoppers.

“We also did this last year of taking them out to lunch just to get them away from the tournament, and enjoy each other a little bit, get away from wrestling and do the social things together,” Washington coach Nick Miller said.

“I told them in last year’s dual, we were climbing and got off to a great start, and won some big matches early and they had to weather that. This one is going to be up and down, and you guys have to figure out how to stay even-keeled, be right there at the same level.”

Jaxon Lane defeated Washington’s Wyatt Leman 4-1 at 215 pounds that put the Broncos up 28-27 leading into the heavyweight bout.

After winning eight state championships between 1999 and 2010 at Montini, Mike Bukovsky returned to direct the program. 

“You have to give credit to Washington,” Bukovsky said. “They’re a great program, and they really wrestled hard and very well.

“Our kids really wrestled hard, and they had a great attitude the whole season. There were times tonight where we needed to be more disciplined. Washington was the more disciplined team.”

Montini beat Rochelle 56-22 in the quarterfinal and then beat Glenwood 46-22 in the semifinal round.

The Broncos had 12 individual state qualifiers and two state champions with freshman Allen Woo at 106 pounds and senior David Mayora at 150 pounds.

Montini’s stacked lineup featured six all-state performers with Woo, Mayora, Mikey Malizzio (third at 113 pounds), Josh Vazquez (runner-up 126 pounds), Kameron Luif (third at 132 pounds) and Harrison Konder (third at 157 pounds).

Mayora (42-1) closed out his remarkable career with a technical fall victory over the Panthers’ Tyler Brown.

The individual state champion showed dazzling technique and explosive athleticism, and provided a jolt of high-end leadership, toughness and skill.

“I have nothing else to say except that I’m very proud of this team,” David Mayora said. “It’s a little bittersweet, and I’m tearing up right now because I just wish that I had one more year.

”My little brother Isaac, and the other freshmen, sophomores and juniors are going to be able to hold themselves up. I’ll come back as a spectator, even when I’m in college, no matter, and I want to see each and every one of them get their hands raised.”

The most remarkable story of the Broncos’ path downstate came at the conclusion of their sectional final against IC Catholic Prep.

The match was tied heading into the final bout at 126 pounds.

Josh Vazquez saw a familiar face, his best friend and former high school teammate, the 120-pound state champion Deven Casey. The two wrestled together the previous two seasons at Aurora Christian.

Casey had back-to-back third-place state finishes at Aurora Christian. Vazquez lost the 120-pound state championship match. The top wrestlers at Aurora Christian like Casey followed coach Danny Alcocer after he took over the program at IC Catholic Prep.

Vazquez (48-5) elected to start over at Montini. His older brother, Nain Vazquez, was a former standout for the Broncos.

Casey defeated two-time defending state champion Drew Davis of Glenwood in the 120-pound state championship. 

“I found out at the weigh-in that he was bumping up,” Vazquez said. “That felt very bittersweet and strange to beat my teammate and former coach.”

Vazquez’s 3-2 decision was the difference in the 32-29 Montini dual victory. His 1-0 victory over Drew Davis was a highlight of the Montini semifinal victory.

In the fluid and constantly changing landscape, Montini was a force of nature.

“Whether there’s a better program out there or not, I think we’re one of the best,” Mayora said. “Maybe we lost tonight, but we still have one of the best rooms in Illinois. There’s nothing like it.

“We’re a family, and we love each other, and I don’t think anybody could have come into this room, and not love it.”

The state championship started at the top with the 106 pound match, where Woo (25-3) pushed the Broncos out to the fast start with the 0:54 fall of Zed Hulet.

Malizzio’s 10-3 decision over Logan Makiney provided the 9-0 advantage. 

The most controversial and significant development came at 120 pounds, where Isaac Mayora built the 3-1 advantage late in the second period with a takedown over Noah Woods.

Down 3-2 in the closing moments, Woods staged a furious rally and was able to get tight on Isaac Mayora in the closing seconds. As the time ran out, he caught the younger Mayora.

After conferring with the second official, they ruled in Woods’ favor for the dramatic 4-3 decision. Bukovsky disagreed with the call.

Washington earned a reprieve, and a change in fortunes.

Woods finished the season 44-16. His final win was the most consequential.

“I obviously couldn’t believe that myself,” Woods said. “I just dug deep. I did whatever I could to score there.My mentality going into that match was doing whatever I could to win, and fight for my family.

“We knew we’d find a way to get back in.”

Nick Miller immediately recognized the consequences.

“We snagged a big win late in the match,” he said. “I saw him swing around and catch the ankle, but I don’t know if it was enough. It was a close call that went our way.”

Vazquez’s 3-1 overtime victory over Eli Gonzalez was followed by Luif’s 7-4 decision over Timmy Smith for the 15-3 Montini lead.

Washington knew the heart of its order was waiting on deck. The Panthers featured eight state qualifiers, and six all-state wrestlers, marked at the top by sophomore state champion Wyatt Medlin at 138 pounds, and state runner-up Peyton Cox at 144 pounds.

Medlin (49-4) and Cox (29-2) offset the Broncos’ fast start with back to back falls that knotted the team score at 15-15.

Everything was starting over again.

“Peyton Cox and I played a huge role, but everybody really played a huge role tonight,” Medlin said. “It’s a team tournament. There are not two people on one team who are going to change it, and make a team win.

“Washington, Illinois beat this team. Wyatt Medlin and Peyton Cox did not beat this team. I had a great individual year, but I was our only state champion. It felt great winning an individual title, but seeing all of my brothers not reach their goal was tough and disappointing, so it’s great that we could all win this together and be a team again.”

Cox suffered his third consecutive state championship loss against St. Rita’s Sean Larkin. Just like last season, he got his redemption with a crucial victory that helped sway the team title.

“We trained all season for this moment,” Cox said. “We made our schedule as hard as possible to get ready for this. We’re battle tested.

We compete in some of the hardest tournaments in the country, dual and individual. 

“I had faith in us, and I knew we were ready for it. Losing three times in the state championship is really tough, but I wouldn’t trade it for the world. I’d rather win two team titles than any individual championships.”

David Mayora and Konder (20-3) answered with consecutive technical falls that pushed Montini to its largest lead at 25-15.

The Panthers’ skilled upper weights showcase three elite high-end talents in Cael Miller (fifth at 165 pounds), Zane Hulet (third at 175 pounds), and Josh Hoffer (fourth at 190 pounds).

In one of the best matches, Miller (44-12) secured the 3-1 overtime victory over Santino Tenuta (35-10). Zane Hulet’s second period fall of Alexander Tack and Hoffer’s 7-2 decision over Alex Marre gave the Panthers their first lead at 27-25.

“Our coaches are amazing,” Cox said. “They push us, and they know how to work us. They make us better, and we’re about as tight as a team can get. We have each other’s backs.”

Like Montini, Washington cruised into the championship with one-sided victories over Wauconda and Brother Rice. 

This was a true white-knuckler with an impossible to predict outcome.

With all the other matches having finished, wrestlers from the other classes and teams stood about four abreast in watching the dramatic conclusion.

An instant classic had a tie and three lead changes. 

“You have to think that last year’s experience really helped,” Nick Miller said.

Glenwood (25-6) also earned a historic moment with its first state trophy in program history. 

The Titans lost all three of its previous state appearances in the quarterfinal round, including in consecutive seasons in 2018 and 2019. Glenwood broke through with a dominant 58-12 victory over Riverside-Brookfield in the quarterfinals.

The Titans punctuated their 57-17 third-place dual victory over Brother Rice with five falls.

Glenwood featured eight state qualifiers, and three place winners with Davis, John Ben Maduena (fourth at 138 pounds) and Maximus Wiezorek (fifth at 175 pounds).

John Ben Madeuna won all three of his state matches to finish 41-9. Wiezorek (56-9) pushed up to 190 pounds and posted the third period fall of state qualifier James Crane.

“Our team has had a bunch of really good people come through, and we never had a placement before today,” Madeira said. “It was just a really good thing. We came together as a team, and worked really hard in the room.

“We showed everyone what we were made of. We showed how much work we’ve been doing in the wrestling room.”

Brother Rice (22-7) also made history with its first state trophy. The Crusaders overcame a hard series of injuries, including an ACL knee injury that knocked out defending state champion Bobby Conway.

Falls by Dan Costello and Crane powered a stunning 12-0 final run in the breakthrough 36-27 victory over Mahomet-Seymour in the quarterfinal round.

Despite the horrible luck with injuries, the Crusaders had eight qualifiers, led by the sixth-place finish by Costello (39-9) at 175 pounds.

“This means a lot,” said senior 132-pounder James Bennett. “When I was a sophomore, we lost to Mahomet-Seymour and my older brother was on that team. It was his last match, and we ended it in a rough way. 

“Even with those injuries, this makes it even better. When you get over the hard stuff, that makes it even easier.”

The weight class results of the Class 2A team dual state championship

Washington 30, Montini 28

2A dual team state title match results:

106 – Allen Woo (Montini) F ) 0:54 Zed Hulet (Washington) 

113 – Mikey Malizzio (Montini) D 10-3 Logan Makiney (Washington)

120 – Noah Woods (Washington) D 4-3 Isaac Mayora (Montini)

126 – Josh Vazquez (Montini) SV-1 3-1 Eli Gonzalez (Washington)

132 – Kameron Luif (Montini) D 7-4 Timmy Smith (Washington)

138 – Wyatt Medlin (Washington) F 2:55 David Hernandez (Montini)

144 – Peyton Cox (Washington) F 1:37 Jeremy Huf (Montini)

150 – David Mayora (Montini) TF 26-11 Tyler Brown (Washington)

157 – Harrison Konder (Montini) TF 15-0 Cruise Brolley (Washington)

165 – Cael Miller (Washington) SV-1 3-1 Santino Tenuta (Montini)

175 – Zane Hulet (Washington) F 3:04 Alexander Tack (Montini)

190 – Josh Hoffer (Washington) D 7-2 Alex Marre (Montini)

215 – Jaxon Lane (Montini) D 4-1 Wyatt Leman (Washington)

285 – Sean Thornton (Washington) D 6-4 Michael Ranquist (Montini) 

IWCOA Frosh-Soph Regional results for Granite City, Heyworth, Sterling, Lake Zurich Sectionals

By Gary Larsen for the IWCOA

IWCOA regionals at Althoff Catholic and Springfield Southeast, feeding the Granite City Sectional on March 2

Althoff Catholic Regional

Edwardsville led all schools with eight sectional qualifiers, led by regional champions KJ Jamison (132) and Braylon Hill-Lomax (215), while two other schools also had two regional champions apiece, in Belleville East’s Jackson Schadegg (101) and Eliot Dahm (157), and Murphysboro’s Paxton Pyatt (113) and Julien Tanner (285).

Also winning regional titles were Cahokia’s Ja’Marcus Agnew (106), Waterloo’s Konnor Stephens (120), Mascoutah’s Desi Wade (126), Sparta’s Gavin Watson (138), Alton’s Brayden Drew (144), East St. Louis’ Pierre Walton (150), Civic Memorial’s Luke McCoy (165), Trico’s Johnny Ramaker (175), and Freeburg’s Dane Olmstead (190).

Championship match results:

101 – Jackson Schadegg (Belleville East) over Braxton Tittle (Benton) (D 4-2)

106 – Ja`Marcus Agnew (Cahokia) over Zane Stanley (Benton) (MD 14-2)

113 – Paxton Pyatt (Murphysboro) over Corbin Zeisset (Belleville East) (D 1-0)

120 – Konnor Stephens (Waterloo) over Colin Waddington (Edwardsville) (D 8-4

126 – Desi Wade (Mascoutah) over Ian Trauernicht (Edwardsville) (SV-1 4-2)

132 – KJ Jamison (Edwardsville) over Braxton Tolley (Granite City) (D 5-3)

138 – Gavin Watson (Sparta) over Jordan Sonon-Hale (Mascoutah) (D 4-2)

144 – Brayden Drew (Alton Sr) over Braxton Kieffer (Litchfield) (D 7-1)

150 – Pierre Walton (East St. Louis) over George Ostrom (Edwardsville) (TF 19-4)

157 – Eliot Dahm (Belleville East) over Owen Hicks (Edwardsville) (D 5-0)

165 – Luke Mccoy (Civic Memorial) over Corey Robinson (East St. Louis Sr) (F 2:13)

175 – Johnny Ramaker (Trico) over Tristian Ward (Civic Memorial) (D 6-0)

190 – Dane Olmstead (Freeburg) over Evan Francis (Marion) (F 0:45)

215 -Braylon Hill-Lomax (Edwardsville) over Jack Amann (Freeburg) (F 1:16)

285 – Julien Tanner (Murphysboro) over Lucas Kunz (Edwardsville) (D 10-5)

Third-place match results:

101 – Nathan Fisher (Cahokia) over Juelz Elliott (Marion) (F 2:17)

106 – Jkwon Williamson (Marion) over Carter Marshall (Waterloo) (F 2:21)

113 – Shane Seip (Triad) over Ayden Swan (Carbondale) (D 9-7)

120 – Glen Henry (Triad) over Brock Becker (Freeburg) (F 0:24)

126 – Kaden Blades (Benton) over Macguire Leck (Mascoutah) (FF)

132 – Donovin Moore (Alton Sr) over Joshua Harkey (Civic Memorial) (D 10-3)

138 – Xander Goodwin (Belleville West) over Lonnez Smith (East St. Louis Sr) (FF)

144 – Sean Murphy (Mascoutah) over Trevor Tucker (Jersey) (F 2:29)

150 – Nicholas Hartley (Jersey) over Matt Walsh (Breese Central) (F 3:40)

157 – Carter Jones (Carterville) over Michael Minor (Benton) (TF 16-1

165 – Graham Taylor (Edwardsville) over Charles Jacquez (Trico) (F 1:59

175 – Kevahn Flannigan (Civic Memorial) over Martez Williams (Cahokia) (F 2:13)

190 – Julian Kadel (Freeburg) over Jeremiyah Barkley (East St. Louis Sr) (D 7-0

215 – Alex Bradley (O`Fon) over Josh Roby (Althoff Catholic) (F 1:36)

285 – Drake Spears (Benton) over Kelvin Howard (Cahokia) (F 3:50)

Springfield Southeast Regional

Quincy’s eight sectional qualifiers were led by regional champions Wyatt Boeing (120), Cale Mixer (138), Rennie Lilo (150), and Jayden Wilson (165).

Auburn had seven sectional qualifiers and got regional titles from Randall Hart (215) and Cash Thomas (285), while Warrensburg-Latham’s six qualifiers were led by regional champs Taygan Gossard (101) and Charles Wittmer (132). Sacred Heart-Griffin qualified five wrestlers to the sectional, led by regional champion Casen Lyons (175).

Other regional champions at Springfield Southeast were Riverton’s Harrison Lott (106), Jacksonville’s Hunter Hayes (113), Rochester’s Nicholas Mrozowski (126), Springfield’s Bryce Bryant (144), Pittsfield’s Jake Oitker (157), and Southeast’s Christopher Hull (190).

Championship match results:

101 – Taygan Gossard (Warrensburg-Latham) over George Piazza (Auburn) (F 4:37)

106 – Harrison Lott (Riverton) over Jayce Evans (Jacksonville) (D 10-4)

113 – Hunter Hayes (Jacksonville) over Steven Easley (Jacksonville) (F 1:51)

120 – Wyatt Boeing (Quincy) over Karson Beenenga (Southeast) (D 12-5)

126 – Nicholas Mrozowski (Rochester) over Noah Duncan (Auburn) (D 5-0)

132 – Charles Wittmer (Warrensburg-Latham) over Cale Hilbing (Quincy Notre Dame) (MD 17-3)

138 – Cale Mixer (Quincy) over Matthew Miller (Williamsville) (MD 15-5)

144 – Bryce Bryant (Springfield) over Maddox Medrano (Beardstown) (MD 14-4)

150 – Rennie Lilo (Quincy) over James Escobar (Rochester) (F 2:52)

157 – Jake Oitker (Pittsfield) over Jamarion Thomas (PORTA) (F 4:12)

165 – Jayden Wilson (Quincy) over Alcantar Medrano (Beardstown) (D 5-0)

175 – Casen Lyons (Sacred Heart-Griffin) over Shamar Brownlee (Springfield) (D 8-6)

190 – Christopher Hull (Southeast) over Brody Dukes (Warrensburg-Latham) (F 1:00)

215 – Randall Hart (Auburn) over Elias Banks (Riverton) (F 2:33)

285 – Cash Thomas (Auburn) over King Johnson (Quincy) (F 1:40)

Third place match results:

101 – Charlie Welch (Camp Point Central) received a bye

106 – Case Hughes (Camp Point Central) over Alejandro Armenta (Beardstown) (F 2:28)

113 – Eli Taylor (Springfield) over Blaise Rogers (Taylorville) (D 11-10)

120 – Drayven Hamm (Auburn) over Joel Noble (Pittsfield) (F 2:03)

126 – Porter Dennis (Sacred Heart-Griffin) over Leandre Huggins (Lanphier) (F 0:55)

132 – Cooper Kamm (Quincy) over Stan Vacek (Sacred Heart-Griffin) (TF 19-4)

138 – John Harper III (Jacksonville) over Cooper Balen (Sacred Heart-Griffin) (F 1:51)

144 – Jayden Brown (Auburn) over Jaedon Rhone (Jacksonville) (F 2:22)

150 – Noah Beckmann (Jacksonville) over Anthony Steskal (Lanphier) (SV-1 14-12)

157 – Owen Evans (Auburn) over Josef Hamell (Taylorville) (F 3:45)

165 – Tez Williams (Springfield) over Kamden Gaither (Warrensburg-Latham) (F 2:02)

175 – Alex Wells (Quincy) over Kavone Brown (Southeast) (SV-1 6-4)

190 – Anthony Beckman (Williamsville) over Robert Meacham (Lanphier) (F 0:46)

215 – Jack Kerley (Warrensburg-Latham) over John Martinez (Jacksonville) (F 2:52)

285 – Brycen Stock (Warrensburg-Latham) over Lucas Oseland (Sacred Heart-Griffin) (F 3:21)

IWCOA regionals at Clinton and Normal, feeding the Heyworth sectional on March 3

Clinton Regional

Five teams in Clinton, Hoopeston Area, Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley/Fisher, Lawrenceville/Red Hill and Mt. Zion each had two champions to lead the way at the IWCOA Clinton Regional. Mt. Zion had the most sectional qualifiers with seven.

Regional champions were Clinton’s Briley Carter (101) and Russell Stamp (157), Lawrenceville/Red Hill’s Drew Seitzinger (106) and Hudson Meek (138), Hoopeston Area’s 

Charlie Flores (113) and Aiden Bell (132), Mt. Zion’s Jackson Heckel (144) and Carson Thornton (190) and Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley/Fisher’s Sam Manson (165) and Jaxon Wright (175). Other title winners were Oakwood/Salt Fork’s Tyler Huchel (120), Shelbyville’s Bodee Fathauer (126), Robinson’s Benjamin Mullins (150), Mattoon’s  Mitchell Clapp (215) and Pontiac’s Hunter McCullough (285).

Championship match results:

101 – Briley Carter (Clinton) over Haley Richter (Heyworth) F 0:55

106 – Drew Seitzinger (Lawrenceville/Red Hill) received a bye

113 – Charlie Flores (Hoopeston Area) over Colin Wells (Shelbyville) TF 15-0

120 – Tyler Huchel (Oakwood/Salt Fork) over Kaeden Davis (Lawrenceville/Red Hill) F 1:33

126 – Bodee Fathauer (Shelbyville) over Tristan Porter (Mattoon) F 2:11

132 – Aiden Bell (Hoopeston Area) over Brody Goonan (Mattoon) D 7-2

138 – Hudson Meek (Lawrenceville/Red Hill) over Jonathon Moore (St. Joseph-Ogden) F 4:03

144 – Jackson Heckel (Mt. Zion) over Jonah Fonner (Urbana) D 2-2

150 – Benjamin Mullins (Robinson) over Josiah Williams (Danville) MD 9-0

157 – Russell Stamp (Clinton) over Devan Swisher (St. Joseph-Ogden) MD 13-4

165 – Sam Manson (Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley/Fisher) over Kalvin Becker (Mt. Zion) F 3:31

175 – Jaxon Wright (Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley/Fisher) over Sergio Baity (Centennial) F 1:37

190 – Carson Thornton (Mt. Zion) over Ethan Miller (Westville/Georgetown-Ridge Farm) F 2:39

215 – Mitchell Clapp (Mattoon) over Landynn Balla (Bismarck-Henning-Rossville-Alvin/Armstrong) F 4:45

285 – Hunter McCullough (Pontiac) over Evan Ashmore (Mt. Zion) F 3:46

Third Place match results:

113 – Noah Davis (Pontiac) over Matt Hutchinson (Westville/Georgetown-Ridge Farm) F 2:08

120 – Jaxtyn Chansler (Lawrenceville/Red Hill) over Braylon Damery (Mt. Zion) F 3:54

126 – Drayden Ramsey (Pontiac) over Caleb Hamilton (Bismarck-Henning-Rossville-Alvin/Armstrong) F 2:37

132 – Malachi Hutchison (Urbana) over Cale Seitzinger (Lawrenceville/Red Hill) MD 15-5

138 – Nathan Daly (St. Joseph-Ogden) over Ty McMasters (Westville/Georgetown-Ridge Farm) F 0:43

144 – Justin Droke Jr. (Clinton) over Caleb Berg (Unity Christian) D 5-0

150 – Trevor Soice (Heyworth) over Colton Shubert (Monticello) F 2:14

157 – William Mullins (Robinson) over Oliver Reed (Clinton) F 1:02

165 – Edwin Villagomez (Urbana) over Earl Kelnhofer (Hoopeston Area) D 11-10

175 – Rylyn Owens (Mt. Zion) over Ethan Evans (Charleston) F 0:19

190 – Jarrod Fulcher (Heyworth) over Zander Schrader (Lawrenceville/Red Hill) F 4:21

215 – Taven Agney (Shelbyville) over Jacob Jones (Westville/Georgetown-Ridge Farm) F 0:56

285 – Kendall Newell (Westville/Georgetown-Ridge Farm) over Jack Rogers (Mt. Zion) F 0:20

Normal Community Regional

Normal Community led all schools with nine sectional qualifiers, led by regional champions Jackson Soney (101), Ethan Cavallo (120), and Carter Mayes (144).

Morton had a pair of regional champs among its five sectional qualifiers, in Harrison Dea (113) and Benjamin Chaffer (215). Marquette Academy also had a pair of regional champs in Beau Thompson (126) and Reily Leifheit (157), as did Deer Creek-Mackinaw in regional champs Wyatt Otto (165) and Ryker Gemberling (175).

Other regional champions on the day were Canton’s Jake Hardesty (106), Normal West’s Mason Wood (132), Metamora’s Connor Graham (138), Illinois Valley Central’s Antonio Toliver (150), Olympia’s Darian Holloway (190), and Bloomington’s David Williams (285).

Championship matches:

101 – Jackson Soney (Normal Community) over Joshua Stedwill (Peoria Notre Dame) F 0:58

106 – Jake Hardesty (Canton) over Elijah Conda (Normal Community) D 6-4

113 – Harrison Dea (Morton) over Cash Hill (Morton) F 2:02

120 – Ethan Cavallo (Normal Community) over Devon Swope (Dunlap) MD 15-4

126 – Beau Thompson (Marquette Academy) over Nolan Lowe (University High) SV 6-4

132 – Mason Wood (Normal West) over Cameron Bell (Lincoln) MD 21-8

138 – Connor Graham (Metamora) over Ethan Lowe (University High) F 4:51

144 – Carter Mayes (Normal Community) over Jackson Painter (Normal Community) F 0:59

150 – Antonio Toliver (Illinois Valley Central) over Mason Taylor (Galesburg) D 11-5

157 – Reily Leifheit (Marquette Academy) over Jayden Schmick (Dunlap) F 1:43

165 – Wyatt Otto (Deer Creek-Mackinaw) over Colton Mckee (Morton) F 4:56

175 – Ryker Gemberling (Deer Creek-Mackinaw) over Connor Karnes Pekin) F 1:16

190 – Darian Holloway (Olympia) over Miles Chaffer (Morton) F 1:28

215 – Benjamin Chaffer (Morton) over Caleb Zirkelbach (Lincoln) F 2:23

285 – David Williams (Bloomington) over Keegan Barnes (East Peoria) F 1:26

Third Place matches:

101 – Christian Johnson (Limestone) over Donovan Lowery (Normal West) F 4:38

106 – Johnny Thomas (Normal Community) over Jacob Payne (Normal West) F 3:27

113 – Dakoda Hentz (Limestone) over Carter Knobloch (Olympia) F 3:42

120 – Ruben Rivera (University High) over Austin Kisner (Olympia) D 13-9

126 – Hunter Toliver (Illinois Valley Central) over Chad Rickey (ROWVA) D 7-4

132 – Cole Brooks (East Peoria) over Orlando Castellano (Galesburg) MD 10-1

138 – Christopher Rose (Bloomington) over Colton Mosack (Dunlap) D 3-0

144 – Drew Williams (Richwoods) over Quinton Davis (East Peoria) F 1:20

150 – Ryne Metelko (Lincoln) over Braylon Harris (Bloomington) D 11-4

157 – Anthony Makwala (Galesburg) over Victor Reyes (Normal Community) MD 16-5

165 – Dalton Oakman (East Peoria) over Cole Kretsinger (Normal Community) D 12-8

175 – Zacharia Fry (Olympia) over Benjamin Buis (El Paso-Gridley) D 9-7

190 – Austin Webb (Richwoods) over Thomas Baker (Peoria Notre Dame) F 0:36

215 – Alec Deltoro (East Peoria) over Adrian Ramirez (Normal Community) TF 18-3

285 – Hayden Ralph (Richwoods) over Israel Lukoji (Bloomington) F 2:28

IWCOA regionals at DeKalb and Morrison, feeding the Sterling Sectional on March 3

DeKalb Regional

Sycamore had seven sectional qualifiers on the day, led by regional champs Michael Olson (113) and Tyler Lockhart (120), and Hampshire matched it with seven qualifiers of its own plus two champions in Deegan Kirschke (101) and Michael Brannigan (157).

Harlem had six sectional qualifiers, led by a pair of regional champs in Izayah Olejniczak (126) and Chandler Jack (215), and DeKalb also qualified six, led by regional champion Cam Matthews (144).

Burlington Central had a pair of regional champs in Jackson Marlett (106) and Michael Junitz (165), and other wrestlers winning regional titles were Guilford’s Ayden Macklin (132), Oregon’s Jayden Berry (138), Belvidere North’s Andrew Bucci (150), Marengo’s Frankie Solis (175), Harvard’s Blake Livdahl (190), and Dakota’s Randy McPeek (285)

Championship match results:

101 – Deegan Kirschke (Hampshire) over Jaden Bradley (DeKalb) (F 1:39)

106 – Jackson Marlett (Burlington Central) over over Nathan Corder (Harlem) (TF 17-1)

113 – Michael Olson (Sycamore) over Landon Ege (Oregon) (MD 12-1)

120 – Tyler Lockhart (Sycamore) over Andrew Salmieri (Hampshire) (F 3:28)

126 – Izayah Olejniczak (Harlem) over Taqiuldin Baker (Woodstock) (D 3-2)

132 – Ayden Macklin (Guilford) over Cael Ohoro (Byron) (D 6-3)

138 – Jayden Berry (Oregon) over Jack Gruber (Kaneland) (F 2:03)

144 – Cam Matthews (DeKalb) over Xzavier Lindhe (Guilford) (D 5-0)

150 – Andrew Bucci (Belvidere North) over Giovanni Marino (Hampshire) (F 1:23

157 – Michael Brannigan (Hampshire) over Doug Gemberling (Sycamore) (F 1:18)

165 – Michael Junitz (Burlington Central) over Adam Carrick (Sycamore) (D 6-2)

175 – Frankie Solis (Marengo) over Albion Alili (Hampshire) (D 7-3)

190 – Blake Livdahl (Harvard) over over David RanDker (Woodstock North) (TF 18-2

215 – Chandler Jack (Harlem) over Logan Gibson (Burlington Central) (F 4:07)

285 – Randy McPeek (Dakota) received a bye () (Bye)

Third-place match results:

101 – Dominic Angileri (Guilford) over Charlie Olson (Sycamore) (MD 13-2)

106 – Jonathon Sebring (Marengo) over Dominic Osinski (Woodstock) (F 0:54)

113 – Lou Jensen (Hampshire) over Jaydee Doke (Harlem) (D 6-5)

120 – Eduardo Vences (Burlington Central) over over Kennison Sims (DeKalb) (TF 17-1)

126 – Ayden Shuey (DeKalb) over Owen Vail (Harvard) (MD 9-0)

132 – Geren Stapleton (Belvidere North) over Noah Carlson (Sycamore) (F 0:58)

138 – Jordan Reed (Polo) over Owen Hollingsworth (Harlem) (F 4:24)

144 – Ethan Waugh (Stillman Valley) over draven zier (Polo) (F 2:31)

150 – Logan Wisner (Woodstock) over kaenyn McCarren (Polo) (F 4:09)

157 – Landon VanAcker (Belvidere North) over Eden Varner (Stillman Valley) (F 0:31)

165 – Gavin Baros (Marengo) over Charlie Faulkner (Harlem) (D 5-3)

175 – Dermot Dolan (Durand) over John Turner (Sycamore) (MD 12-1)

190 – Carter Hintz (Hampshire) over Elvis Mora (DeKalb) (F 1:55)

215 – Terrion Davis (Guilford) over Alex Reubin (DeKalb) (D 16-10)

285 – BYE

Morrison Regional

All six of Moline’s sectional qualifiers were regional champions at Morrison, in Housseyn Ndiaye (120), Dominick Diaz (126), Hassan Ndiaye (144), Jaxson Soliz (150), Deanthony Simpson (157), and Jude Ossian (165).

Rock Island led all schools with 10 sectional qualifiers, led by regional champion Mason Frye (215), and Dixon had a trio of regional champs among its four qualifiers, in Riley Paredes (106), Kye Dieterle (113) and Dylan Bopes (285).

Also winning regional titles were LaSalle-Peru’s Austin Herron (101), Rock Falls’ Adan Oquendo (132), Geneseo’s Grady Hull (138), Lena Winslow’s Duncan Nevel (175), and Stockton’s Oliver McPeek (190).

Championship match results:

101 – Austin Herron (LaSalle Peru) over Tyler Olson (Orion) (F 2:31)

106 – Riley Paredes (Dixon) over Tyquez Hudson (Rock Island) (D 2-1)

113 – Kye Dieterle (Dixon) over Cael Lyons (Sterling) (D 13-8)

120 – Housseyn Ndiaye (Moline) over Josiah Tarbill (Rock Fs) (F 2:10)

126 – Dominick Diaz (Moline) over Xavier Marolf (United) (D 7-0)

132 – Adan Oquendo (Rock Falls) over Lincoln Barnett (Geneseo) (D 8-5)

138 – Grady Hull (Geneseo) over Clayton Blumenstein (Rockridge) (F 2:43)

144 – Hassan Ndiaye (Moline) over Andrew Knox (Sherrard) (MD 10-2)

150 – Jaxson Soliz (Moline) over Neyo Holloway (Dixon) (F 1:56)

157 – Deanthony Simpson (Moline) over Trail Stonitsch (Rock Fs) (F 0:51)

165 – Jude Ossian (Moline) over Benjamin Geske (Newman Central Catholic) (F 1:56)

175 – Duncan Nevel (Lena Winslow) over Dameon Poulton (Galena High School) (D 8-6)

190 – Oliver Mcpeek (Stockton) over Kylan Mitchell (Rock Island) (TF 15-0)

215 – Mason Fry (Rock Island) over Jonathan Weakley (Sherrard) (F 2:18)

285 – Dylan Bopes (Dixon) over Emilio Guzman (Rock Island) (D 3-2)

Third-place match results:

101 – Gideon Richards (Kewanee) over Scottie Hampton Jr (Rock Fs) (D 6-5)

106 – Evan Jones (Sterling) over Mason Teague (Rock Island) (F 0:42)

113 – Thomas Olson (Freeport) over Maricio Parker (Rock Island) (F 0:49)

120 – Ayden Shaw (Sterling) over Kie Smith (Geneseo) (MD 10-2)

126 – Temar Hudson (Rock Island) over Logan Thome (Rock Fs) (Inj. 0:00)

132 – Caiden Heath (Amboy) over Emmanuel Arreola (Sterling) (D 11-4)

138 – Mauricio Glass (Stockton) over George Tate (Rock Island) (F 2:15)

144 – Caleb Plut (LaSalle-Peru) over Ian McGowan (Rock Island) (F 4:33)

150 – Jonner Smith (West Carroll) over Brayden Johnson (Kewanee) (F 2:01)

157 – Sajjad Abdulrazzaq (Freeport) over Preston Brunat (Rockridge) (D 3-2)

165 – John Mensendike (Lena Winslow) over Josias Dokambire (United) (MD 12-0)

175 – Landon Montroy (Monmouth) over Wyatt Neumann (Geneseo) (D 5-4)

190 – Zach Scace (Lena Winslow) over Rowan Stockwell (Rock Island) (F 0:23)

215 -Evan Flanagan (Amboy) over Sailas Cung (Monmouth) (F 2:12)

285 – Jahkei Jones (Rock Fs) over Airies Simmons (Kewanee) (F 2:45)

IWCOA regionals at Lake Zurich and Lakes feeding the Lake Zurich Sectional March 3

Lake Zurich Regional

Barrington had a trio of regional champs among its five sectional qualifiers in Brennan O’Donnell (126), Daniel Blanke (138), and Clarence Jackson (285)

Hersey’s Frank Tagoe (150) was a regional champion leading a pack of six Huskies to the weekend’s sectional at Lake Zurich; Crystal Lake Central’s four qualifiers were led by a pair of regional champs in Dylan Ramsey (113) and Tyler Porter (165); and Dundee-Crown’s three qualifiers featured a pair of regional champs in Aiden Healey (101) and Teigen Moreno (215).

Jacobs advanced five wrestlers to the sectional, led by regional champions Ben Arbotante (120) and Johnny Strauss (175).

Also winning regional titles were Schaumburg’s Austin Phelps (106), Huntley’s Gavin Nischke (132), Prospect’s Bennett Westfallen (144), Fremd’s Lucas Nance (157), and McHenry’s Ariel Montes (190).

Championship match results:

101 – Aiden Healey (Dundee-Crown) over Charlie Melo (Conant) (F 0:50)

106 – Austin Phelps (Schaumburg) over Kristian Dlercq (Jacobs) (D 4-3)

113 – Dylan Ramsey (Crystal Lake Central) over Trentin Odachowski (Fremd) (D 11-5)

120 – Ben Arbotante (Jacobs) over Aibar Aitkaliuly (Hersey) (D 7-3)

126 – Brennan O`Donnell (Barrington) over Joseph Caputo (Bartlett) (F 3:51)

132 – Gavin Nischke (Huntley) over Mohammed El-Zein (Palatine) (D 5-0)

138 – Daniel Blanke (Barrington) over Nick Zuehlke (Crystal Lake Central) (MD 10-0)

144 – Bennett WestFen (Prospect) over Ryan Johnston (McHenry) (F 1:28)

150 – Frank Tagoe (Hersey) over Joe Quirk (Prospect) (D 7-0)

157 – Lucas Nance (Fremd) over Waylon Theobald (Huntley) (SV-1 6-4)

165 – Tyler Porter (Crystal Lake Central) over Owen Hurd (Huntley) (F 4:53)

175 – Johnny Strauss (Jacobs) over Caden Schladt (Carry Grove) (Inj. 0:00)

190 – Ariel Montes (McHenry) over Brody Lidbury (McHenry) (F 2:04)

215 – Teigen Moreno (Dundee-Crown) over Diego Arceo (Hersey) (D 6-0)

285 – Clarence Jackson (Barrington) over Bernard Erhabor (Hersey) (F 1:30)

Third-place match results:

101 – Cj Talbert (Crystal Lake South) over Willem Anderson (Barrington) (F 2:18)

106 – Michael Goolish (Conant) over Anthony Martinez (Jacobs) (F 2:05)

113 – Saul Ramirez (Barrington) over Colin Abordo (Huntley) (TF 15-0)

120 – Robert Suvi (Lake Zurich) over Kellen Oxborrow (Lake Zurich) (D 8-3)

126 – Daniel Derevlyak (Palatine) over Brody Hinkle (Schaumburg) (D 6-5)

132 – Aiden Quevedo (Schaumburg) over Cameron Engels (Bartlett) (D 6-5)

138 – Matt Keaty (Huntley) over Michael Marcello (Fremd) (F 2:37)

144 – Grant Moga (Hersey) over Anthony Marcello (Fremd) (F 3:45)

150 – Dmytro Patykovskyi (Hoffman Estates) over Kaden Abrantes (Lake Zurich) (D 12-9)

157 – Gavin Payne (Prospect) over Drew Frank (Hersey) (D 5-2)

165 – Owen Dewey (Prospect) over Joshua Benson (Schaumburg) (F 2:10)

175 – Joseph Reiswig (Palatine) over Antonin Svoboda (Lake Park) (D 5-0)

190 – Zachary Anderson (Dundee-Crown) over Anthony Basso (Carry Grove) (SV-1 7-5)

215 – Lucas Retzler (Jacobs) over James Brouilette (Prospect) (D 5-1)

285 – Owen Jakubczak (Fremd) over Logan Gough (Crystal Lake Central) (D 6-5)

IWCOA Frosh-Soph Regional results for Evanston, Naperville C, Thornton, Shepard Sectionals

By Gary Larsen for the IWCOA

Sixteen regionals throughout Illinois took place Saturday and Sunday, kicking off this year’s 28th Annual IWCOA Freshman/Sophomore and Girls state championships, which will take place March 9-10 at the Bank of Springfield Center in Springfield.

Eight girls sectional tournaments will take place March 2-3. 

Here are the weekend’s results from eight boys regionals that feed sectionals to be held March 3 at Evanston, Naperville Central, Thornton, and Shepard.

The top four regional finishers in each weight class advance to sectional competition.

IWCOA regionals at Glenbrook South, Notre Dame feeding the Evanston Sectional

Notre Dame Regional

Host Notre Dame led all schools with 11 wrestlers advancing to Saturday’s Evanston Sectional, led by regional champions John Greifelt (120) and Sean Cook (215). Fenton was next with nine sectional qualifiers, led by regional champs Rene Reyna (126), Omar Diaz (150), and Robert Solideo (285). St. Patrick advanced eight wrestlers, led by regional champion Dean Angelo (113).

IC Catholic Prep led all schools with four regional champions among its five sectional qualifiers, in Dominic Pasquale (101), Benjamin Czarnowski (138), Martin Noth (175), and Anthony Sebastian (190).

Other regional champions at Notre Dame were Proviso West’s Andrew Rice (106), Fenwick’s Burke Burns (132), York’s Jackson Hanselman (144), Intrinsic Charter’s Santori Knight (157), and Addison Trail’s Alen Bautista (165).

Championship match results:

101 – Dominic Pasquale (IC Catholic) over Jack Koenig (St. Patrick) (D 7-1)

106 – Andre Rice (Proviso W) over Gabriel Hernandez (Fenton) (F 2:59)

113 – Dean Angelo (St. Patrick) over Roberto Ortiz (St. Patrick) (D 7-6)

120 – John Greifelt (Notre Dame) over Gio Irizarry (St. Patrick) (F 3:43)

126 – Rene Reyna (Fenton) over Jaden Rodriguez (Morton) (F 1:35)

132 – Burke Burns (Fenwick) over Kelvyn West (Proviso W) (D 6-0)

138 – Benjamin Czarnowski (IC Catholic) over Sebastian Bruno (St. Patrick) (F 1:54)

144 – Jackson Hanselman (York) over Andrew Rieger (St. Patrick) (F 2:43)

150 – Omar Diaz (Fenton) over Jeramy Hamm (Notre Dame) (D 9-4)

157 – Santori Knight (Intrinsic Charter) over Jose Honorato (Fenton) (F 4:51)

165 – Alen Bautista (Addison Trail) over Robert Arroyo (Fenwick) (D 4-3)

175 – Martin Noth (IC Catholic) over Timothy Golden (St. Patrick) (F 0:34)

190 – Anthony Sebastian (IC Catholic) over Gio Sandoval (Morton) (D 2-0)

215 – Sean Cook (Notre Dame) over Zach Jaffray (Leyden) (D 6-1)

285 – Robert Solideo (Fenton) over Josh Zuniga (Fenton) (Inj. 0:00)

Third-place match results:

101 – Ray Long (Notre Dame) won by tech F over Tommy Conners (York) (TF 18-3)

106 – Jabari Taylor (Proviso W) over Shay Boyle (Notre Dame) (D 7-2)

113 – Johnniel Otero (Proviso E) over Isaiah Cordero (Niles W) (D 10-3)

120 – Anthony Brown (Proviso W) over Mohammad Khater (Ridgewood) (MD 9-1)

126 – Patrick Hulne (St. Patrick) over Alex Singto (Notre Dame) (F 2:10)

132 – Joseph Pontrelli (IC Catholic) over Angel De La Cruz (Fenton) (F 3:00)

138 – Carson Colbenson (Notre Dame) over Solanus Daley (Fenwick) (D 6-1)

144 – George McShane (Northridge Prep) over John Carr (Notre Dame) (F 0:53)

150 – Francisco Saez (Morton) over Giovanni Dorado (Fenton) (F 1:19)

157 – Ricardo Garcia-Chavez (Fenwick) over Nikolas Mestousis (Niles W) (F 0:46)

165 – Devin Aviles (Fenton) over Nick Centracchio (Notre Dame) (F 4:23)

175 – Ryan Henrichs (Fenwick) over Dylan Crump (Proviso E) (F 1:46)

190 – Santiago Luis Moya (Morton) over Jonathan Wilson (Intrinsic charter) (F 1:23)

215 – Zikomo Mbewe (Fenwick) over Peter Escamilla (Notre Dame) (F 2:15)

285 – Connor Moynihan (Notre Dame) over Marquis Camacho-Hernandez (Morton) (F 0:32)

Glenbrook South Regional

Maine South led all teams with five regional champions in advancing 12 wrestlers to the Evanston Sectional. Winning regional titles for the Hawks were George Georgiev (101), Brett Harman (113), Jake Colleran (132), Caden Ljubenko (138), and Marty Greif (165).

Host Glenbrook South got individual titles from Ermuun Urtnasan (106), Dominic Marino (157), Jacob Shamoon (190), and Louis Luna (215) among its 11 sectional qualifiers, and Deerfield’s seven qualifiers were led by regional champs Noah Palzet (120) and Adrian Cohen (126).

Also winning regional crowns were Glenbrook North’s Isaac Johnson (144), Evanston’s Rodrigo Salinas (150) and Ian Sims (285), and Lane Tech’s Maddox Bartoli (175).

Championship match results:

101 – George Georgiev (Maine S) over Quentin Williams (Loyola) (D 3-2)

106 – Ermuun Urtnasan (Glenbrook S) over Alex Gudgeon (Highland Pk) (F 3:55)

113 – Brett Harman (Maine S) over Christopher Tranas (Glenbrook S) (F 2:15)

120 – Noah Palzet (Deerfield) over Angel Santana (Lane Tech) (D 6-0)

126 – Adrian Cohen (Deerfield) over Matthew Miralles (New Trier) (F 2:04)

132 – Jake Colleran (Maine S) over Kael Schrauth (Glenbrook S) (F 4:55)

138 – Caden Ljubenko (Maine S) over Jack Burton (Glenbrook S) (F 0:35)

144 – Isaac Johnson (Glenbrook N) over Aidan Minihane (Glenbrook S) (F 0:47)

150 – Rodrigo Salinas (Evanston) over Yassin Aitzemkour (New Trier) (D 6-3)

157 – Dominic Marino (Glenbrook S) over Henry Hafner (Glenbrook N) (D 7-6)

165 – Marty Greif (Maine S) over Amjad Babidi (Maine W) (D 11-4)

175 – Maddox Bartoli (Lane Tech) over Lucas Paich (Glenbrook N) (F 2:16)

190 – Jacob Shamoon (Glenbrook S) over Sainjargal Urabold (Glenbrook S) (D 5-4)

215 – Louis Luna (Glenbrook S) over Daniel Derbedyenyev (Highland Pk) (F 3:35)

285 – Ian Sims (Evanston) over Jeremy Marshall (Evanston) (TB-1 2-1)

Third-place match results

101 – Jorey Becker (Deerfield) over Erle Rosete (Maine S) (MD 8-0)

106 – Colin Bosak (DePaul Prep) over Gabriel Pearlman (Deerfield) (F 1:32)

113 – Connor Maschek (DePaul Prep) over Jackson Hirsch (Glenbrook N) (F 2:45)

120 – Emmett Mazukelli (Maine S) over Sean Gaertner (Maine S) (F 2:59)

126 – Daniel Malan (Loyola) over Michael Crawford (Loyola) (F 1:42)

132 – Jordan Mokhtarian (Glenbrook N) over Jayden Palzet (Deerfield) (F 3:48)

138 – John Palmer (Glenbrook S) over Joe Siprut (Lane Tech) (F 0:56)

144 – Cole Calace (Lane Tech) over Louis Avalos (Maine W) (F 0:23)

150 – Colton Pacholski (Loyola) over Jonathan Weissmueller (Deerfield) (F 2:27)

157 – Aleksander Knapik of (Loyola) over Dan Egan (Maine S) (D 6-4)

165 – Diego Lopez (Evanston) over Stefan Ivosevic (Maine S) (F 4:30)

175 – Zach Willis (Glenbrook N) over Andy Ciriaco (Evanston) (D 5-4)

190 – Josiah Saris (Evanston) over Alex Jacobson (New Trier) (Inj. 0:00)

215 – Tommy Leach (Maine S) over Finn McCann (Highland Pk) (F 1:15)

285 – Alexander Berry (Deerfield) over Brendan Gomez (Glenbrook S) (F 4:00)

IWCOA regionals at Richards, Sarah Goode feeding the Shepard Sectional

Richards Regional

Marist led all teams with 18 sectional qualifiers, led by a stable of seven regional champions in Dylan Weber (101), Elio Gil (106), Joseph Bronske (120), Ronin Haran (144), Kyle Herzog (175), Tommy O’Brien (215) and Daniel Mahoney (285).

Carl Sandburg had three champs in Oscar Kalman (113), Ahmad Abu (150) and Adnan Askar (157) to lead eight sectional qualifiers. Oak Forest advanced five to the sectional, led by regional champs Jason Janke (165) and Nathan Pinski-Izguerra (190).

Others winning regional titles were Bremen’s Izaiah Gonzalez (126), Stagg’s Samer Suleiman (132), and Shepard’s Joey Massey (138).

Championship match results:

101 – Dylan Weber (Marist) over Zayne Salah (Carl Sandburg) (F 3:54)

106 – Elio Gil (Marist) over Roberto Rangel (Marist) (F 0:43)

113 – Oscar Kalman (Carl Sandburg) over Jake Crawford (Marist) (D 4-1)

120 – Joseph Bronske (Marist) over Eddie Astorga Ii (Marist) (D 4-2)

126 – Izaiah Gonzalez (Bremen) over Adrian Cervantes (Evergreen Park) (D 10-6)

132 – Samer Suleiman (Stagg) over Harrison Stroobooscher (Shepard) (TF 16-1)

138 – Joey Massey (Shepard) over Jack Lorenz (Marist) (F 1:51)

144 – Ronin Haran (Marist) over Obaida Hasan (Carl Sandburg) (D 5-2)

150 – Ahmad Abu (Carl Sandburg) over Owen Brady (Evergreen Park) (D 6-5)

157 – Adnan Askar (Carl Sandburg) over Aiden Hill (Shepard) (D 3-2)

165 – Jason Janke (Oak Forest) over Huthaifa Issa (Richards) (F 0:52)

175 – Kyle Herzog (Marist) over Anthony Edelen (Carl Sandburg) (F 0:57)

190 – Nathan Pinski-Izguerra (Oak Forest) over Michael Town (Marist) (F 2:12)

215 – Tommy OBrien (Marist) over Jack Watson (Marist) (F 1:49)

285 – Daniel Mahoney (Marist) over Josh Valenzuela (Richards) (F 4:56)

Third-place match results:

101 – Henry Eckardt (Shepard) over Miles Rutkoski (Stagg) (D 7-4)

106 – Javier Corral (Stagg) over Damian Perez (Evergreen Park) (F 5:00)

113 – Dylan Mcbride (Oak Forest) over Amir Alkilani (Richards) (F 4:00)

120 – Henry Manning (St Laurence) over Jayden Cervantes (Evergreen Park) (D 12-7)

126 – Sean Loughney (Marist) over Augustas Leskauskas (Richards) (D 12-11)

132 – Henry Beeson (Marist) over Tyrese Howard (Shepard) (F 1:00)

138 – Romeo Gonzalez (Oak Lawn) over Alex Accardi (Carl Sandburg) (D 7-3)

144 – Derek Rodríguez (Oak Forest) over Giacomo Lawton (Marist) (F 3:40)

150 – Charlie Shane (Oak Lawn) over Isiah Martinez (Shepard) (SV-1 7-5)

157 – Travis Ellis (Shepard) over Jayden Contreras (Shepard) (D 14-7)

165 – Wyatt Hochgraber (Carl Sandburg) over Jihad Suleiman (Stagg) (F 0:40)

175 – Maciej Zalinski (St Laurence) over David Wolski (Marist) (F 2:36)

190 – Rayshawn Doles (Eisenhower) over Justin Xique (Tinley Park) (MD 12-3)

215 – Andrius Vasilevskas (Oak Forest) over Christopher Korduplewski (Tinley Park) (D 5-1)

285 – Danzel Newell (Marist) over Christian Avelar (Argo) (F 2:24)

Sarah Goode Regional

St. Rita qualified eight to the sectional, led by regional champions Luke Pappalas (113), James Bansley (175) and Mark Kelleher (285). Hope Academy also advanced eight wrestlers, led by regional champions Jorge Rios (126) and Tyran Pritchett (190), and Horizon Southwest’s six qualifiers were led by regional champs Felipe Aguilar (150), Inake Mata (165), and Samel Marerro (215).

Chicago School for Agricultural Sciences had three regional champions in Elijah Sawyers (106), Kingston Sawyers (120), and Maurice Bush (138) to lead a pack of six sectional qualifiers at Sarah Goode.

Other regional champions at Sarah Goode were Golder’s Joksan Ramos (101), John Hancock College Prep’s Adrian Rodriguez (132), Morgan Park’s Lloyd Johnson (144), and Kennedy’s Christian Vega (157).

Championship match results:

101 – Joksan Ramos (Golder) over RaSean Fenner (Hope Academy) (F 0:57)

106 – Elijah Sawyers (Ag Science) over Joel Samano (Sarah Goode) (F 2:28)

113 – Luke Pappalas (St Rita) won by Dision over Vincent Arvetis (De La Salle) (D 8-4)

120 – Kingston Sawyers (Ag Science) over Alontae Lorek (Horizon Southwest) (F 0:36)

126 – Jorge Rios (Hope Academy) over Michael Garcia (Hope Academy) (F 1:25)

132 – Adrian Rodriguez (John Hancock) over Trevon Strickland (Westinghouse) (F 3:27)

138 – Maurice Bush (Ag Science) over Dylan Galvez (Hope Academy) (F 1:59)

144 – Lloyd Johnson (Morgan Park) over Ivan Alcantar (Solorio) (F 4:56)

150 – Felipe Aguilar (Horizon Southwest) over Derrick Nash (Corliss) (F 2:03)

157 – Christian Vega (Kennedy) over Marcell Thompson (Hope Academy) (F 3:48)

165 – Inake Mata (Horizon Southwest) won by Dision over Grant Smith (Corliss) (D 13-9)

175 – James Bansley (St Rita) over Matas Pivoris (De La Salle) (F 2:44)

190 – Tyran Pritchett (Hope Academy) over Juan Zavala (Solorio) (F 1:50)

215 – Samel Marerro (Horizon Southwest) over Thomas Davis (Sarah Goode) (F 1:34)

285 – Mark Kelleher (St Rita) over Eli Erkapic (St Rita) (D 5-2)

Third-place match results:

101 – None

106 – Marcos Buitron-Keilman (St Rita) over Nicholas Bubacz (St Rita) (F 0:48)

113 – Amarie Franklin (Hyde Park) won by Dision over Vincent Daniels (Corliss) (D 11-5)

120 – Daniel Garcia (Hubbard) over Angel Ceballos (Solorio) (F 2:28)

126 – Damian Gomez (De La Salle) won by Dision over Isaiah Poole (Sarah Goode) (D 11-4)

132 – Raul Hernandez (Hope Academy) BYE

138 – Joshua Thornton (De La Salle) won by Dision over Deangelo Alvarado (Hubbard) (D 10-7)

144 -Amir Carruthers (Horizon Southwest) over Syzmon Cwiokowski (Hope Academy) (F 1:50)

150 – Jose Barajas (Horizon Southwest) BYE

157 – Christian Cabral (Sarah Goode) over Darius Williams (Golder) (F 0:55)

165 – Jacob Flemming (St Rita) over Daniel Cuevas (Curie) (F 1:23)

175 – Malik Allen (Nobel/UIC) over Joseph J (Morgan Park) (F 1:55)

190 – Michael Mendoza (Ag Science) over Daniel Palomino (De La Salle) (F 0:09)

215 – Mitchell Street (St Rita) over Cody Steele (Bronzeville) (F 2:45)

285 – Justin Powell (Hyde Park) over Armando Martinez (Ag Science) (F 0:23)

IWCOA regionals at Joliet West, Joliet Central Regionals feeding the Thornton Sectional

Joliet Central Regional

Lincoln-Way East advanced 19 wrestlers to next week’s sectional meet, led by six regional champions in Max Mularz (144), Dlan Dircks (157), Colton Zvonar (165), Brody Gish (175), Brenden Rempert (215), and Ryan Stingily (285).

Lincoln-Way West advanced 10 to the sectional, led by regional champs Jack Strezo (120), Haden Anderson (126), and James Talley (190). Andrew had a pair of regional champs in Gerald Donnelly (101) and Nicholas Rociola (138), and other regional champions included Bourbonanais’ Zachary Hoffner (106), Rich Township’s Kyrin King (113), Homewood-Flossmoor’s Robye Williams (132), and Hillcrest’s Trevon Williams (150).

Championship match results:

101 – Gerald Donnelly (Andrew) over Leyton Bartley (LW West) (F 2:21)

106 – Zachary Hoffner (Bourbonnais) over Gabriel Matariyeh (LW East) (F 1:38)

113 – Kyrin King (Rich) over Razi Perez (Bourbonnais) (D 3-2)

120 – Jack Strezo (LW West) over Carter DiBenedetto (LW West) (SV-1 7-5)

126 – Haden Anderson (LW West) over Henry Finley (LW West) (D 4-0)

132 – Robye Williams (Homewood Flossmoor) over Zachary Ankarlo (LW East) (TF 18-3)

138 – Nicholas Rociola (Andrew) over Thomas Esposito (LW East) (MD 9-0)

144 – Max Mularz (LW East) over Carter Hoyt V (Manteno) (TF 16-0)

150 – Trevon Williams (Hillcrest) over Ryne Pearson (LW East) (F 3:00)

157 – Dlan Dircks (LW East) over Charles Hill (Kankakee) (TF 16-1)

165 – Colton Zvonar (LW East) over Thomas Leyden (LW East) (D 9-2)

175 -Brody Gish (LW East) over Kelcey Span (Rich) (MD 9-1)

190 – James Talley Jr (LW West) over Jacob Vinardi (Kankakee) (D 9-2)

215 – Brenden Rempert (LW East) over Sire Bennet (Kankakee) (F 1:00)

285 – Ryan Stingily (LW East) over Paulie Cortez (LW East) (F 3:00)

Third-place match results:

101 – Cullen Parks (Bourbonnais) over Keyshawn Pittman (Rich) (D 6-5)

106 – Brady Glynn (LW West) over Adrian Valadez (Thornton) (FF)

113 – Max Munn (LW West) over Nick Williams (LW East) (D 5-2)

120 – Robert Williams (Homewood Flossmoor) over Enzo Basso (LW East) (MD 9-0)

126 – Mark Kozeluh (LW East) over Jowel Maldonado (Joliet Central) (F 4:09)

132 – Caiden Selof (LW West) over Jayden Cooper (Bourbonnais) (MD 13-0)

138 – James Tverdek (LW East) over Kayden Budimir (Manteno) (F 2:57)

144 – Jaiden Corral (Kankakee) over Omer Farhan (LW East) (F 0:21)

150 – Evan Gutierrez (LW West) over Lonnie McMullen (Rich) (F 2:25)

157 – Logan Yerkey (LW East) over Brandon Dumas (Thornton) (FF)

165 – Titus Woodring (T. F. South) over Quenton Mingo (Thornton) (MD 12-3)

175 – Justin Powers (LW East) over Maxwell Johnson (Joliet Central) (F 1:58)

190 – Reggie Miller (T. F. South) over D`Andre Cotton (Bloom) (F 3:32)

215 – Vincent Marshall (Thornton) over Ahmah Brown (Rich) (D 5-0)

285 – Taofeeq Amuda (Thornton) over Gavin Robles (Bloom) (F 1:44)

Joliet West Regional

Lockport led all schools with 15 wrestlers advancing to the Thornton Sectional, led by five regional champions in Jonathan Lopez (101), Evan Curry (120), Isaac Zimmerman (126), Christian Czerwinski (138), and Nuh Abukhudair (190).

Lincoln-Way Central advanced 11 wrestlers to the sectional, led by regional champs Jalen Byrd (144), Justin Cobbs (165), and Aiden Hennings (215).

Plainfield North had two regional champions among its six sectional qualifiers, in Jack Nowicki (175) and Liam Co (285).

Joliet West had a pair of regional champs among its five sectional qualifiers in Jakob Crandall (106) and Aiden Brown (150), and Morris also had two champs among its five qualifiers in Brock Claypool (113) and Carter Skoff (132).

Kaden Meyer (157) also won a regional title to lead Minooka’s three sectional qualifiers.

Championship match results:

101 – Jonathan Lopez (Lockport) over jay hughes (Morris) (TF 18-1)

106 – Jakob Crandall (Joliet W) over Jacob Santos (Lockport) (F 2:54)

113 – Brock Claypool (Morris) over Tyler Lachenberg (LW Central) (D 4-2)

120 – Evan Curry (Lockport) over Damin Hudson (Bolingbrook) (D 5-2)

126 – Isaac Zimmerman (Lockport) over Brody Rangel (Plainfield C) (F 2:41)

132 – Carter Skoff (Morris) over Adam Jaber (Lockport) (F 4:10)

138 – Christian Czerwinski (Lockport) over Ethan Harvey (LW Central) (D 5-3)

144 – Jalen Byrd (LW Central) over Jaedon Calderon (Lockport) (D 5-2)

150 – Aiden Brown (Joliet W) over Ben Cyrkiel (Minooka) (D 5-1)

157 – Kaden Meyer (Minooka) over Justin Langford (LW Central) (D 9-6)

165 – Justin Cobbs (LW Central) over Zachary Cronk (Joliet W) (F 0:59)

175 – Jack Nowicki (Plainfield N) over Mason Russell (Lockport) (SV-1 2-0)

190 – Nuh Abukhudair (Lockport) over Hector Villagrana (Romeoville) (D 11-10

215 – Aiden Hennings (LW Central) over Santino Capodice (Minooka) (F 3:46)

285 – Liam Co (Plainfield N) over Xavier Casey (Plainfield E) (F 3:24)

Third-place match results:

101 – Waleed Shaar (Lockport) over Casey Koerner (Joliet W) (F 2:03)

106 – Isaiah Wade (Joliet W)

113 – Anthony Sutton (Lockport) over Justin Godina (Lockport) (D 5-1)

120 – Aidan DuRell (Plainfield N) over Eric Hoselton (LW Central) (D 2-1)

126 – Michael Heimberg (LW Central) over Nicholas Polzin (Plainfield E) (D 2-0)

132 – Jadon Zimmer (LW Central) over Camden Mccloskey (Plainfield E) (D 5-1)

138 – Evan Cox (Central (Clifton)) over Christian Lany (Plainfield N) (F 4:01)

144 – Naseem Jaber (Lockport) over Andrew Peterson (Morris) (F 2:36)

150 – Anthony Diorio (Lockport) over Abraham Ruiz (Romeoville) (F 2:50)

157 – Chase Pierceall (Plainfield S) over Raphael Tovar (Plainfield N) (D 5-1)

165 – Drew Silzer (Lockport) over Robert Vogel (Plainfield E) (TF 16-0)

175 – Will Wilson (Wilmington) over Austin Welsh (LW Central) (D 2-1)

190 – Logan Wooten (LW Central) over landon kupiec (Morris) (F 4:18)

215 – Andre De Leon (Joliet W) over Colin Dominiak (Plainfield E) (F 3:00)

285 – Noah Telitz (Lemont) over Vinny Gonzalez (Plainfield N) (F 0:32)

IWCOA regionals at Glenbard South, Oswego East feeding the Naperville C Sectional

Glenbard South Regional

Glenbard West advanced 13 wrestlers to the Naperville C Sectional, led by regional champions in Andres Saucedo (144) and Vince Tortoriello (157).

Batavia, West Aurora, and Marmion also each had two regional champs. Batavia advanced five wrestlers, led by champions Kyle Pasco (120) and Colin Peyton (165); West Aurora advanced four qualifiers were led by regional champs Jermiah Haynes (113) and Jack Platt (132); and Marmion’s four regional qualifiers were led by champions Preston Morrison (101) and Vincenzo Testa (175).

The other regional champions at Glenbard South were St. Charles North’s Dian Sons (106), Glenbard North’s Trey Thompson (126), Sandwich’s Ian Hawkins (136), Geneva’s David Rueth (150), Yorkville Christian’s Hayden Wheeler (190), Wheaton Warrenville South’s Alec Worobec (215), and Waubonsie Valley’s Leonidas Hobson (285).

Championship match results:

101 – Preston Morrison (Marmion) over Colton Wyller (Marmion) (D 3-1)

106 – Dlan Sons (St. Charles North) over George Driesbach (Geneva) (MD 9-0)

113 – Jermiah Haynes (West Aurora) over Brady Podracky (Neuqua Valley) (D 6-5)

120 – Kyle Pasco (Batavia) over S Garcia (Larkin) (TF 24-2)

126 – Trey Thompson (Glenbard North) over Daniel Risa (Glenbard North) (MD 13-5)

132 – Jack Platt (West Aurora) over Max Mulhearn (Harvest Christian Academy) (D 3-0)

138 – Ian Hawkins (Sandwich) over Tallis Taylor (Glenbard West) (D 3-1)

144 – Andres Saucedo (Glenbard West) over Dylan Wells (Batavia) (TB-1 4-2)

150 – David Rueth (Geneva) over Jack Brown (Batavia) (F 1:17)

157 – Vince Tortoriello (Glenbard West) over Xavier Smiley (Glenbard North) (D 7-2)

165 – Colin Peyton (Batavia) over Finn Mulcahy (St. Charles North) (F 2:26)

175 – Vincenzo Testa (Marmion) over Fernando Anaya (West Aurora) (F 2:17)

190 – Hayden Wheeler (Yorkville Christian) over Luke Boermsa (Marmion) (D 2-1)

215 – Alec Worobec (Wheaton Warrenville South) over Alejandro Facio (South Elgin) (D 7-2)

285 – Leonidas Hobson (Waubonsie Valley) over Evan Vliek (Wheaton Warrenville South) (D 5-1)

Third-place match results:

101 – Aidan Ortega (Glenbard West) over Emanuel Rangel (West Chicago) (D 5-4)

106 – Jacob Ross (Sandwich) over Gio Ambris (Glenbard West) (D 6-0)

113 – M Rodriguez (Glenbard West) over Ryan Makhlouf (Glenbard North) (D 7-6)

120 – Julian Guerra (Glenbard North) over Nathan Duffield (Waubonsie Valley) (D 5-2)

126 – Vince Schoettle (Glenbard West) over Nick Tellez (St. Charles North) (F 0:40)

132 – Alejandro Aranda (Glenbard West) over Ben Schoettle (Glenbard West) (F 0:00)

138 – Jin Tai (Glenbard South) over Brennen Myra (Glenbard West) (D 6-2)

144 – Maddox Hale (St Francis Wheaton) over Daniel Dimaria (Glenbard North) (F 2:17)

150 – Jondelle Malunay (Glenbard West) over Chris Salinas (Glenbard North) (F 0:32)

157 – Cesar Muno (West Chicago) over Erick Esquivel (Glenbard North) (F 3:33)

165 – Tyler Gleason (Yorkville Christian) over Adan Osorio (Glenbard West) (D 6-2)

175 – Jackson Allen (Yorkville Christian) over Kaden Clevenger (Sandwich) (F 3:07)

190 – David Weber (West Chicago) over Alexander Lopez (West Aurora) (SV-1 4-2)

215 – Sebatian Mitchell (Batavia) over Ezra Mezidi (Glenbard West) (F 0:56)

285 – Hezekiah Garcia (South Elgin) over Aj Forst (Waubonsie Valley) (F 3:03)

Oswego East Regional

Wheaton North’s 10 sectional qualifiers featured a trio of regional champions in Danny Hyde (101), Jay Doherty (126), and David Hyde (132), and Downers Grove South’s 10 qualifiers featured a pair of champions in Noah Greene (157) and Daniel Mensah (175).

Downers Grove North had three regional champs in Alex Hengels (113), Caden Chiarelli (138), and Justin Davis (215), Naperville North had two champions in Ryan Beedon (106) and Tavfik Ibragimov (190), and other wrestlers winning regional titles were Glenbard East’s Ismael Chaidez (120), Oswego’s Dillon Griffin (144), Wheaton Academy’s Tyler Jones (150), Oswego East’s Garrett Patnoudes (165), and Lyons Township’s James Hillman (285).

Championship match results:

101 – Danny Hyde (Wheaton N) over Buckley Kazmierczak (Wheaton Academy) (F 3:34

106 – Ryan Beedon (Naperville N) over Igor De Castro (Naperville C) (MD 9-0)

113 – Alex Hengels (DG North) over Daniel Koziol (Lyons) (TF 16-1)

120 – Ismael Chaidez (Glenbard E) over Aiden Ortiz (Oswego) (D 4-0)

126 – Jay Doherty (Wheaton N) over Cole Fitzenreider (Wheaton N) (D 4-2)

132 – David Hyde (Wheaton N) over Zion Young (DG South) (MD 16-7)

138 – Caden Chiarelli (DG North) over Brady Miller (Hinsdale S) (MD 13-1)

144 – Dillon Griffin (Oswego) over Al Amir Almannai (Hinsdale S) (F 0:52)

150 – Tyler Jones (Wheaton Academy) over Eduardo Sanchez (DG South) (F 2:54)

157 – Noah Greene (DG South) over Andre Auernhamer (DG South) (D 7-4)

165 – Garrett Patnoudes (Oswego E) over Jah Harris (DG South) (MD 11-3)

175 – Daniel Mensah (DG South) over Luke Vasquez (Lyons) (F 1:52)

190 – Tavfik Ibragimov (Naperville N) over Christian Paige (Oswego east) (F 0:44)

215 – Justin Davis (DG North) over Nick Tortoriello (Wheaton N) (TF 16-1)

285 – James Hillmann (Lyons) over Jake Johnson (Naperville N) (F 4:21)

Third-place match results:

101 – Nolan OGrady (Oswego) over Dyln Le (Wheaton N) (D 8-5)

106 – Trevor DiNaso (DG South) over Lorenz Rios (Glenbard East) (MD 8-0)

113 – Adam Beedon (Naperville N) over Joseph Rossie (Lyons) (F 1:59)

120 – Joey Petruczenko (Wheaton N) over Jadon Dinwiddie (DG South) (D 6-3)

126 – Rami Aljubor (Glenbard East) over Jason Jude 3rd (Hinsdale S) (D 11-7)

132 – Andrew Langas (Wheaton N) over Henry Quntar (Oswego) (D 9-6)

138 – Adam Drake (Lisle) over Jacob Veltri (Wheaton N) (D 5-1)

144 – Travis Jones (Willowbrook) over Austin Schiltz (Naperville C) (F 4:29)

150 – Joel Galarza (Glenbard East) over Andrew Segura (Wheaton N) (D 4-0)

157 – Benjamin Miller (Hinsdale S) over Grant Ellison (Naperville N) (F 0:42)

165 – Orlando Hoye (Glenbard East) over Brandon Torres (DG North) (F 1:46)

175 – Vincent Willkommen (Westmont) over Juan De Haro (Glenbard East) (D 3-2)

190 – Ky Lawson (DG South) over Jadon Sander (Lyons) (D 4-2)

215 – Corbin Camp (Hinsdale C) over Gorazd Grozdanoski (Lyons) (UTB 3-2)

285 – Tamer El-Dars (Hinsdale C) over Jose Cruz (DG South) (F 2:57)

Naperville Central gets back to state, Mount Carmel-JCA matchup set 

By Curt Herron – for the IWCOA

Normally when three of the top teams in the state are involved in a competition or six ranked teams are competing against each other, there should be some amount of drama taking place

But there was no late suspense in the Class 3A Downers Grove South Dual Team Sectional where Mount Carmel and Marmion Academy met up in one dual and Naperville Central faced Downers Grove South in the other. And as a bonus, Joliet Catholic Academy and Lincoln-Way East came in from another sectional to compete on a third mat. And all three of the dual meets were already pretty much settled about midway through the competition.

Third-ranked Mount Carmel only lost one match to fifth-ranked Marmion Academy and led 60-0 with three matches left before capturing a 70-5 victory. Second-ranked Joliet Catholic Academy trailed Lincoln-Way East 9-3 in the early going but then rattled off 30-straight points to claim a 46-18 win and No. 15 Naperville Central built up a 24-6 advantage through the first eight matches over the No. 25 host Mustangs as it secured a 40-21 triumph.

All three winners advance to Friday’s quarterfinals of the IHSA Class 3A Dual Team Finals, which take place at Grossinger Motors Arena in Bloomington. 

In an interesting twist, the Caravan and Hilltoppers got an early preview of each other since they were on adjacent mats. The two will meet up at 5 p.m. in one of the quarterfinals while Hononegah and St. Charles East also will be competing at that time.

Naperville Central faces Yorkville in a 7 p.m. quarterfinal meet while Libertyville goes up against Oak Park and River Forest in the other quarterfinals dual meet. Semifinals are Saturday at 9 a.m. for the first quarterfinal winners and at 11 a.m. for the latter quarterfinal winners. The state championship and third-place duals meets are set for 6 p.m.

Naperville Central is back at state for the first time since 2012, when coach Rob Porter’s team lost to Barrington in the quarterfinals. That was the school’s second trip in four years with the program making its first state dual team appearance in 2009. That team was also led by Porter, who was on hand on Tuesday to assist RedHawks coach Noah Fitzenreider, who was a Naperville Central assistant coach on the 2012 state team.

“That was right when I first got to Central,” Fitzenreider said. “Rob was the head coach and that’s when we got a team to state, so it’s nice to be able to do it again, especially with him around here, too. What we talked about this year is the last two times we won, we faced Mount Carmel and we wrestled them as tough as we could. And I said that one day we were going to get another opportunity and it happened quicker than we thought, so I said that we have to take advantage of this one.

“We qualified four but all of the other guys worked really hard last week and they kept working and kept putting a lot of time in. They’ve been focused and dedicated, DG South is a great program so it was nice to be able to come here and compete with them. We have a very close-knit team and these guys are best friends and they stick together. And my coaching staff has been awesome by putting in extra time for those guys. It was a full-program effort. We had kids that aren’t here that still came to practice, so that was nice.” 

On Tuesday, the RedHawks received falls from William Erbeck (285), CJ Bierman (138) and Hagan Taylor (144), a win by technical fall from Ty Martin (120), major decisions from Mitchell Kaszuba (126) and Christopher Bern (157) and narrow decisions from Henry Rydwelski (175), Nicolas Besteiro (215) and Jake Moore (106). Besteiro claimed sixth place at 215 at state to earn all-state honors while Bern, Erbeck and Taylor were other state qualifiers.

“It feels great,” Taylor said. “We worked really hard as a team just to get here. Throughout the years I’ve seen our team grow and it’s all paying off now. It’s always tough for us, but if you get a good team and get people together and if they all work hard, then we could make it. After our first dual, I saw how hard everyone was working and how much effort and passion was in everybody, so that’s how I could tell that everyone was going to do great this year. We had a great state-qualifying team this year.”

“We’re really improving every single year and it’s been just a straight line forward ever since I was a freshman,” Kaszuba said. “I’m really proud of how much our team has grown this year. We have really good chemistry with our coaches. Coach Porter has seen us grow all these years and Fitz has built us up the entire time. We were shooting for state and that has been our main goal and Fitz has been great at keeping us on that path, no matter what happened during the individual state series. We have a really well-rounded team and are pretty good at every weight class. We have a good lineup all across the board and I think that’s what helped us to get downstate.”

Coach Sean Lovelace’s Downers Grove South Mustangs, who won their third-straight regional title this season, were seeking their first trip to dual team state. The Mustangs got falls from TJ Johnson (150) and Connor Kelly (165) and decisions from Matt Lapacek (190), Miguel Castaneda (113) and Drew Woolsey (132). Lapacek earned all-state honors this year by placing fourth at 190 and RJ Samuels also was a state qualifier.

Mount Carmel is making its fourth-straight state appearance and its 15th trip to state overall. Coach Alex Tsirtsis’ Caravan beat DeKalb to take first place in 2022 after placing second to Montini Catholic in 2020. They lost 32-30 to St. Charles East a year ago in the quarterfinals.

The program hopes to win a trophy for the tenth time and also capture its fifth championship, with the other three titles won under Hall of Fame coach Bill Weick from 1992-1994.

“It’s a quick turnaround from the individual tournament so we want to make sure that everyones’ weight is under control and make sure they’re healthy and the kids did a pretty good job of doing that,” Tsirtsis said. “It kept our team together down in Champaign and their conditioning and weight under control so they’d be dialed in for this week.”

Collecting falls for the Caravan were Colin Kelly (175), Rylan Breen (190), Alex Poholik (285), Justin Williamson (113), Jaxon Jorgensen (120), Seth Mendoza (126) and Edmund Enright (157) while Jairo Acuna (144) got a win by technical fall.

“It feels awesome and it’s important to enjoy this victory but also it’s important for us to get back to work because the job is not finished,” Colin Kelly said. “The hard work has been put in so now it’s time to lock in and finish off the season strong. I like the coaches, good teammates and the school. And everybody’s energy toward the sport.”

Kavel Moore (106) and Kevin Kalchbrenner (165) captured major decisions, Damian Resendez (138) won a decision and William Jacobson (215) and Evan Stanley (132) got wins by forfeit. 

Mendoza captured his third IHSA championship, Kelly won his second IHSA title and is a three-time finalist, Enright claimed second place at state for the second time, three-time placewinner Breen took third, Stanley finished fourth and three-time medalist Resendez took sixth, as did Willamson. Other Caravan state qualifiers were Acuna, Jacobson, Kalchbrenner, Liam Kelly, Moore and Poholik.

“It’s pretty good to have everyone on my team compete at a high level,” Williamson said. “I took sixth at state and there are just so many better kids that are out there.”

The lone victor for the Cadets was Ashton Hobson (150), who placed sixth at state at 144 and got a win by technical fall in the dual. State qualifiers who suffered losses were Logan Conover (106), Donny Pigoni (126) and Mateusz Nycz (285). IHSA champions Nicholas Garcia (113) and Zach Stewart (138) and state runner-up Joseph Favia (215) did not compete in the dual meet.

In many of the other sectionals in the state, the Cadets, who finished second to St. Charles East in Class 3A last season and are coached by Nathan Fitzenreider and Anthony Cirrincione, would have likely qualified again for the state finals, but the same could be said about some of the other quality teams that didn’t win regional titles who also competed in this tough sectional.

Joliet Catholic Academy is back at the state finals for the third year in a row. Coach Ryan Cumbee’s Hilltoppers beat Deerfield to win the Class 2A title in 2022 and took second place in Class 2A to Washington a year ago. Before Cumbee arrived in 2020, the program hadn’t even won a regional championship.

“We needed to perform well in order to get the job done and I felt like we did that,” Cumbee said. “But it’s going to take a little more on Friday against Mount Carmel, though. So tonight, we’re going to go home and turn the page to Mount Carmel.”

The Hilltoppers received falls from Nico Ronchetti (190), Dillan Johnson (285), Lukas Foster (106), Max Cumbee (113) and Jason Hampton (120), a major decision from Max Corral (165) and decisions from Adante Washington (126), Damien Flores (132), Connor Cumbee (150) and Luke Hamiti (157). 

“It’s been a lot of fun, especially with the new transfers,” Ronchetti said. “We’re a family. We all love each other, even the guys that came in. And that’s mainly due to the coaches.”

Johnson is a four-time state champion, two-time medalist Hampton took second at state, Max Cumbee and Luke Hamiti placed fifth and Corral and two-time medalist Ronchetti finished sixth. Other JCA state qualifiers were 2023 medalist Connor Cumbee, Flores, Foster, Elias Gonzalez and Washington.

“Usually I was done after last weekend, but this is a great opportunity to have another weekend to wrestle, especially with this being my senior year,” Corral said. “It’s nice to have good drill partners, too, helping you out every day.”

Lincoln-Way East, who’s coached by Kevin Rockett, got pins from Caden O`Rourke (215) and Kevin Byrne (144) and decisions from Jackson Zaeske (175) and Brayden Mortell (138).  State qualifiers for the Griffins were Domanic Abeja, Rory Moran, Kaidge Richardson and Tyson Zvonar.

Class 3A Downers Grove South Dual Team Sectional matches

Naperville Central 40, Downers Grove South 21

175 – Henry Rydwelski (Naperville Central) over RJ Samuels (Downers Grove South) Dec 3-2
190 – Matt Lapacek (Downers Grove South) over Jacob Smetters (Naperville Central) Dec 8-4
215 – Nicolas Besteiro (Naperville Central) over Mack Piehl (Downers Grove South) Dec 7-5
285 – William Erbeck (Naperville Central) over Jacobi Spraggins (Downers Grove South) Fall 2:57
106 – Jake Moore (Naperville Central) over Trevor Dinaso (Downers Grove South) Dec 2-0
113 – Miguel Castaneda (Downers Grove South) over Jacob Cochran (Naperville Central) Dec 10-6
120 – Ty Martin (Naperville Central) over Harris Kelliher (Downers Grove South) TF 19-3
126 – Mitchell Kaszuba (Naperville Central) over Jadon Dinwiddie (Downers Grove South) Maj 9-0
132 – Drew Woolsey (Downers Grove South) over Vince Bern (Naperville Central) Dec 11-4
138 – CJ Bierman (Naperville Central) over Jordan Christin-Holley (Downers Grove South) Fall 3:12
144 – Hagan Taylor (Naperville Central) over Nick Spirek (Downers Grove South) Fall 1:45
150 – TJ Johnson (Downers Grove South) over Yusuf Sikander (Naperville Central) Fall 1:13
157 – Christopher Bern (Naperville Central) over Hugo Contreras-Lozano (Downers Grove (South) Maj 15-6
165 – Connor Kelly (Downers Grove South) over Nicolas Olvera (Naperville Central) Fall 1:08

Mount Carmel 70, Marmion Academy 5

175 – Colin Kelly (Mount Carmel) over Vincenzo Testa (Marmion Academy) Fall 3:42
190 – Rylan Breen (Mount Carmel) over Luke Boersma (Marmion Academy) Fall 4:32
215 – William Jacobson (Mount Carmel) over Unknown (Unattached) FFT
285 – Alex Poholik (Mount Carmel) over Mateusz Nycz (Marmion Academy) Fall 5:17
106 – Kavel Moore (Mount Carmel) over Colton Wyller (Marmion Academy) Maj 11-3
113 – Justin Williamson (Mount Carmel) over Preston Morrison (Marmion Academy) Fall 3:56
120 – Jaxon Jorgensen (Mount Carmel) over Logan Conover (Marmion Academy) Fall 1:24
126 – Seth Mendoza (Mount Carmel) over Adam Kopcio (Marmion Academy) Fall 1:56
132 – Evan Stanley (Mount Carmel) over Unknown (Unattached) FFT
138 – Damian Resendez (Mount Carmel) over Donny Pigoni (Marmion Academy) Dec 6-2
144 – Jairo Acuna (Mount Carmel) over Grayson Garcia (Marmion Academy) TF 20-5
150 – Ashton Hobson (Marmion Academy) over Daniel Lynch (Mount Carmel) TF 17-1
157 – Edmund Enright (Mount Carmel) over Christian Favia (Marmion Academy) Fall 0:51
165 – Kevin Kalchbrenner (Mount Carmel) over Anthony Haddad (Marmion Academy) Maj 12-2

Class 3A TBA Dual Team Sectional matches held at Downers Grove South

Joliet Catholic Academy 46, Lincoln-Way East 18

175 – Jackson Zaeske (Lincoln-Way East) over Issac Clauson (Joliet Catholic Academy) Dec 5-2
190 – Nico Ronchetti (Joliet Catholic Academy) over Isaiah Williams (Lincoln-Way East) Fall 3:10
215 – Caden O`Rourke (Lincoln-Way East) over Max Hrvatin (Joliet Catholic Academy) Fall 2:00
285 – Dillan Johnson (Joliet Catholic Academy) over Gage LaDere (Lincoln-Way East) Fall 1:44
106 – Lukas Foster (Joliet Catholic Academy) over Gabe Matariyeh (Lincoln-Way East) Fall 1:33
113 – Max Cumbee (Joliet Catholic Academy) over JT Theis (Lincoln-Way East) Fall 3:41
120 – Jason Hampton (Joliet Catholic Academy) over Zach Miller (Lincoln-Way East) Fall 4:48
126 – Adante Washington (Joliet Catholic Academy) over Kaidge Richardson (Lincoln-Way East) Dec 6-4
132 – Damien Flores (Joliet Catholic Academy) over Tyson Zvonar (Lincoln-Way East) Dec 6-3
138 – Brayden Mortell (Lincoln-Way East) over Elias Gonzalez (Joliet Catholic Academy) Dec 7-3
144 – Kevin Byrne (Lincoln-Way East) over Aurelio Munoz (Joliet Catholic Academy) Fall 1:24
150 – Connor Cumbee (Joliet Catholic Academy) over Domanic Abeja (Lincoln-Way East) Dec 3-2
157 – Luke Hamiti (Joliet Catholic Academy) over Alexander Lizak (Lincoln-Way East) Dec 12-8
165 – Max Corral (Joliet Catholic Academy) over Rory Moran (Lincoln-Way East) Maj 17-7

Class 1A Dual Team Sectional Roundup

By Curt Herron – for the IWCOA

Class 1A LeRoy Dual Team Sectional

LeRoy/Tri-Valley 43, Canton 22

For the first time since it made a four-run of appearances at the IHSA Dual Team Finals from 2011-2014, LeRoy/Tri-Valley will make consecutive visits to state with the hopes of placing for the first time since 2012, when Doug DeWald led the Panthers to the Class 1A championship after beating Canton 43-22 at its own dual meet sectional in LeRoy.

Coach Brady Sant Amour’s Panthers won nine of the 14 matches to deny coach Zach Crawford’s Little Giants of making their second-straight trip to the dual team finals. LeRoy/Tri-Valley faces top-ranked Marian Central Catholic on Friday in a 7 p.m. quarterfinal dual meet at Grossinger Motors Arena in Bloomington.

LeRoy/Tri-Valley, which is making its seventh appearance in the IHSA Dual Team Finals and also took second in 2009 and third in 2011, has been boosted by the return of Kobe Brent and Jimmy Chaon, who have both missed out on the individual series due to injuries. 

They each recorded pins, as did Brock Owens and Bo Zeleznik, while Connor McLaughlin got a win by technical fall, Colton Prosser and Connor Lyons both won major decisions and Brady Mouser and Jacob Bischoff captured one-point decisions.

“This group has stayed together and battled all year,” Sant Amour said. “The team received a big lift from Kobe Brent, who fractured his clavicle and has been out since December, Freshman Jimmy Chaon missed the last month of the season with a shoulder injury. From start to finish we wrestled tough, only giving up one fall in the dual.”

Canton, which made its dual team state debut a year ago, received a pin from Danny Murphy, a major decision from Gus Lidwell and decisions from Connor Williams and Maddux Steele while Jacob Hardesty got a forfeit win.

LeRoy/Tri-Valley 43, Canton 22

285 – Connor Williams (Canton) over Tate Sigler (LeRoy/Tri-Valley) UTB 3-2
106 – Jacob Hardesty (Canton) over Unknown (Unattached) FFT
113 – Brady Mouser (LeRoy/Tri-Valley) over Dyllan Steele (Canton) Dec 2-1
120 – Maddux Steele (Canton) over EJ Chaon (LeRoy/Tri-Valley) Dec 6-0
126 – Jimmy Chaon (LeRoy/Tri-Valley) over Austin Brewer (Canton) Fall 0:00
132 – Kobe Brent (LeRoy/Tri-Valley) over Jireh Hedges (Canton) Fall 3:20
138 – Colton Prosser (LeRoy/Tri-Valley) over Alex Carrier (Canton) Maj 10-0
144 – Connor McLaughlin (LeRoy/Tri-Valley) over Grady Smith (Canton) TF 15-0
150 – Brock Owens (LeRoy/Tri-Valley) over Daniel Kees (Canton) Fall 1:17
157 – Connor Lyons (LeRoy/Tri-Valley) over Aden Greene (Canton) Maj 17-3
165 – Bo Zeleznik (LeRoy/Tri-Valley) over Jacob Latimer (Canton) Fall 0:44
175 – Gus Lidwell (Canton) over Gannon Pinkerton (LeRoy/Tri-Valley) Maj 12-4
190 – Danny Murphy (Canton) over Adam Moore (LeRoy/Tri-Valley) Fall 0:17 
215 – Jacob Bischoff (LeRoy/Tri-Valley) over Grant Kessler (Canton) Dec 1-0

Unity 43, Peoria Notre Dame 33

Unity closed strong to gain an 8-6 advantage in matches won and recorded six falls to help it claim a 43-33 victory over Peoria Notre Dame in the LeRoy Dual Team Sectional. 

As a result, coach Logan Patton’s Rockets will be making their third state appearance since 2020, when they finished third, and two years ago they again took third place. This will be the program’s fifth state appearance and their best finish was in their first visit to state in 1989 when they lost to Mahomet-Seymour in the finals to take second place for coach Bill Billman.

Unity meets up with Roxana on Friday at 7 p.m. in a quarterfinal dual at Grossinger Motors Arena in Bloomington with the winner advancing to an 11 a.m. semifinal on Saturday.

Recording falls for the Rockets were Taylor Finley, Keegan Germano, 144 state runner-up Kaden Inman, Ryan Rink, Thayden Root and 190 state champion Hunter Eastin while Josh Heath won a major decision and Travis McCarter added a decision.

Coach Danny Burk’s Irish, who won their first regional championship this season, received falls from Michael McLaughlin, Josh Stedwill, Remi Joesting and 113 state runner-up Ian Akers while Chase Daugherty won a decision and Ben Mullens got a forfeit win.

Unity 43, Peoria Notre Dame 33

285 – Michael McLaughlin (Peoria Notre Dame) over Jaden Dene (Unity) Fall 0:23
106 – Josh Stedwill (Peoria Notre Dame) over Andrew Weller (Unity) Fall 3:30
113 – Travis McCarter (Unity) over Freddie Couri (Peoria (Notre Dame) Dec 9-5
120 – Remi Joesting (Peoria Notre Dame) over Bryce Martin (Unity) Fall 0:47
126 – Ian Akers (Peoria Notre Dame) over Symon Griffin (Unity) Fall 0:47
132 – Taylor Finley (Unity) over Noah Corrales (Peoria Notre Dame) Fall 2:36
138 – Keegan Germano (Unity) over Andrew Elward (Peoria Notre Dame) Fall 3:33
144 – Kaden Inman (Unity) over Jack Bartaletta (Peoria Notre Dame) Fall 1:34
150 – Josh Heath (Unity) over John Couri (Peoria (Notre Dame) Maj 12-2
157 – Chase Daugherty (Peoria Notre Dame) over Abram Davidson (Unity) Dec 8-4
165 – Ryan Rink (Unity) over Michael Kimbrough (Peoria (Notre Dame) Fall 1:24
175 – Thayden Root (Unity) over Sie Couri (Peoria Notre Dame) Fall 0:22
190 – Hunter Eastin (Unity) over Joe Culp (Peoria Notre Dame) Fall 0:32
215 – Ben Mullens (Peoria (Notre Dame) over Unknown (Unattached) FFT

Class 1A Benton Dual Team Sectional

Roxana 33, Oakwood/Salt Fork 30

Roxana earned a spot in the IHSA Dual Team Finals for the first time since 2014 when it captured a 33-30 victory over Oakwood/Salt Fork at the Class 1A Benton Dual Team Sectional.

Coach Rob Milazzo’s Shells meet Unity in the Class 1A quarterfinals on Friday at 7 p.m. at Grossinger Motors Arena in Bloomington.

Both teams split the 14 matches but Roxana recorded four falls and got a major decision to help it get past coach Mike Glosser’s Comets, who were trying to make a return trip to the dual team finals in Bloomington after taking fourth place there a year ago in their state debut.

Recording falls for the Shells were Lyndon Thies, Zebediah Katzmarek, Donald Battles and James Herring while Brandon Green Jr. won a major decision and Logan Riggs and Robert Watt captured decisions. They were deducted one team point to give them a three-point edge.

Oakwood/Salt Fork got pins from Brayden Edwards and Grant Brewer, a win by technical fall from Dalton Brown, a major decision from Steven Uden and decisions from Tyler Huchel, Jack Ajster and Carter Chambliss. Bryson Capansky, the 157 state runner-up, got pinned by Thies.

Milazzo was also coach of the Shells when they last went to state 10 years ago but they lost to Plano in the quarterfinals. Roxana, which is making its sixth appearance at state, placed twice within a three-year span when Michael Kurth was the coach and he led the program to a fourth-place finish in 2002 and to the title meet in 2004, where it fell to Montini Catholic.

Roxana 33, Oakwood/Salt Fork 30

106 – Steven Uden (Oakwood/Salt Fork) over Savion Hall (Roxana) Maj 12-1
113 – Brayden Edwards (Oakwood/Salt Fork) over Ari Walker (Roxana) Fall 2:56
120 – Tyler Huchel (Oakwood/Salt Fork) over Lleyton Cobine (Roxana) Dec 4-0
126 – Logan Riggs (Roxana) over Thomas Wells (Oakwood/Salt Fork) Dec 6-4
132 – Brandon Green Jr. (Roxana) over Pedro Rangel (Oakwood/Salt Fork) Maj 12-4
138 – Jack Ajster (Oakwood/Salt Fork) over Kaden Carilsle (Roxana) Dec 6-0
144 – Carter Chambliss (Oakwood/Salt Fork) over Trevor Gihring (Roxana) Dec 6-2
150 – Grant Brewer (Oakwood/Salt Fork) over Braden Johnson (Roxana) Fall 2:36
157 – Lyndon Thies (Roxana) over Bryson Capansky (Oakwood/Salt Fork) Fall 3:33
165 – Zebediah Katzmarek (Roxana) over Kyler Johnson (Oakwood/Salt Fork) Fall 2:38
175 – Dalton Brown (Fithian (Oakwood/Salt Fork) over Elias Thies (Roxana) TF 16-1
190 – Robert Watt (Roxana) over Jamison Chambliss (Oakwood/Salt Fork) Dec 0-0
215 – Donald Battles (Roxana) over Ezekiel Smith (Oakwood/Salt Fork) Fall 1:55
285 – James Herring (Roxana) over Kade Fleming (Oakwood/Salt Fork) Fall 1:13

Vandalia 49, Benton 24

Vandalia returns to the Dual Team Finals for the 23rd time and seeks its tenth trophy after capturing a 49-24 victory over Benton in the Class 1A Benton Dual Team Sectional. The Vandals’ 23 state appearances is one behind Montini Catholic, which got past IC Catholic Prep to advance in Class 2A.

The Vandals (30-2) meet Rickover Naval Academy in Friday’s 5:00 p.m. quarterfinals at the IHSA  Class 1A Dual Team Finals at Grossinger Motors Arena in Bloomington.

Coach Jason Clay’s Vandals won nine of the 14 matches against the host Rangers, recording falls in seven of those victories. Getting pins for Vandalia were 106 state runner-up Max Philpot, Elijah Mabry, Deon Moore, 138 state runner-up Dillon Hinton, Kaden Tidwell, Dominic Swyers and Jayden Rosetto. Ross Miller won a major decision and Cole Yarbrough added a decision.

Coach Aaron Robinson’s Rangers were led by two-time 138 state champion, three-time finalist and four-time medalist Mason Tieffel, who recorded a fall in his final match to finish a perfect 56-0 season and a 188-8 record. Derek Wilkey and Anthony Hernandez added falls while Cohen Sweely and Tiffin Kouzoukas won decisions for Benton.

Vandalia won its lone title in 1996 and has two seconds, two thirds and four fourths since it made its first state appearance in 1995 under coach Glenn Exton. 

Clay, who is 462-106 in 18 seasons leading the program which won its 1,000th dual meet earlier this season, is bringing his 13th team to the state finals. His first state team in 2007 lost the Class A title to Wilmington 30-29. The Vandals have also won trophies in three of their last four appearances, taking second to Aurora Christian in 2018, placing fourth in 2016 and taking third in the last trip to state, in 2019. 

“We are excited to be back at Dual Team state for the 23rd time,” Clay said. “The dual team tournament paired with the girls state tournament was truly a great idea that has created a fun weekend of wrestling.”

Vandalia 49, Benton 24

106 – Max Philpot (Vandalia) over Braxton Tittle (Benton) Fall
113 – Elijah Mabry (Vandalia) over Zane Stanley (Benton) Fall
120 – Cohen Sweely (Benton) over Brody Matthews (Vandalia) Dec
126 – Deon Moore (Vandalia) over Kingston Palmer (Benton) Fall
132 – Cole Yarbrough (Vandalia) over Kaden Blades (Benton) Dec
138 – Derek Wilkey (Benton) over Nic Jackson (Vandalia) Fall
144 – Dillon Hinton (Vandalia) over Aaden Webb (Benton) Fall
150 – Anthony Hernandez (Benton) over Artan Mustafa (Vandalia) Fall
157 – Mason Tieffel (Benton) over Corbin Meyers (Vandalia) Fall
165 – Ross Miller (Vandalia) over Connor Dean (Benton) Maj Dec
175 – Tiffin Kouzoukas (Benton) over Noah Langston (Vandalia) Dec
190 – Kaden Tidwell (Vandalia) over Peyton Robinson (Benton) Fall
215 – Dominic Swyers (Vandalia) over Izaiah Dalton (Benton) Fall
285 – Jayden Rosetto (Vandalia) over Drake Spears (Benton) Fall

Class 1A Newman Central Catholic Dual Team Sectional

Riverdale 38, Sandwich 36

Riverdale assured itself of its first appearance in the IHSA Dual Team Finals since 2007 when it edged Sandwich 38-36 in the Class 1A Newman Central Catholic Dual Team Sectional.

Both teams won seven matches. The Rams had five pins, a win by technical fall and a decision while the Indians recorded four falls, received a forfeit win and had two decisions.

Coach Aron Kindelsperger’s Rams received falls from Iyezayha Hill, Jacob Schredeya, Jacob Baustian, Dean Wainwright and Blake Smith while Tharren Jacobs got a win by technical fall and Zachary Bradley added a decision.

Coach Derek Jones’ Indians got pins from Ian Hawkins, Sy Smith, Jacob Ross and Jakob Gruca while Colten Stone and Miles Corder both captured decisions and Cooper Corder received a win by forfeit.

Myron Keppy led Riverdale to five state appearances from 1996 to 2007 but the last time the Rams got a win at state was in 1993 when James Boyd led the program to its second-straight third-place finish. This is the Rams’ ninth state appearance and they’ve won two trophies.

Riverdale meets the defending Class 1A champions, Coal City, in Friday’s 5 p.m. quarterfinals at Grossinger Motors Arena in Bloomington.

Riverdale 38, Sandwich 36

157 – Ian Hawkins (Sandwich) over Brennan Huggins (Riverdale) Fall 0:26
165 – Sy Smith (Sandwich) over Aaron John Scranton (Riverdale) Fall 1:12
175 – Zachary Bradley (Riverdale) over Kai Kern (Sandwich) Dec 16-9
190 – Iyezayha Hill (Riverdale) over Tristen King (Sandwich) Fall 5:56
215 – Jacob Schredeya (Riverdale) over Brandon Moore (Sandwich) Fall 1:07
285 – Jacob Baustian (Riverdale) over Eddie Hernandez (Sandwich) Fall 2:48
106 – Jacob Ross (Sandwich) over Ben Porter (Riverdale) Fall 1:59
113 – Colten Stone (Sandwich) over Triton Pulfrey (Riverdale) Dec 6-2
120 – Tharren Jacobs (Riverdale) over Ashlyn Strenz (Sandwich) TF 22-7
126 – Jakob Gruca (Sandwich) over Elijah Newton (Riverdale) Fall 6:00
132 – Dean Wainwright (Riverdale) over Jack Forth (Sandwich) Fall 3:34
138 – Cooper Corder (Sandwich) over Unknown (Unattached) FFT
144 – Miles Corder (Sandwich) over Kolton Kruse (Riverdale) Dec 9-7
150 – Blake Smith (Riverdale) over Alton Spears (Sandwich) Fall 0:56

Marian Central Catholic 48, Byron 28

Top-ranked Marian Central Catholic had an 8-6 edge in wins over Byron but recorded four falls and received four forfeit wins to help it capture a 48-28 victory at the Class 1A Newman Central Catholic Sectional that advances it to the IHSA Dual Team Finals for the first time since 2020.

Co-coaches Jordan Blandon and Ryan Prater received falls from 157 state champion Jimmy Mastny, Nicolas Astacio, Anthony Alanis and Andrew Alvarado to go along with their forfeit wins, with one of those going to 120 state champion Brayden Teunissen and another to 132 state runner-up Vance Williams and the other two to Max Astacio and Chandler Gardner.

Recording pins for coach Mike Elbury’s Tigers were Jarett Ross, Jared Claunch and Will Julian while Brody Stien added a major decision and Kyle Jones and Jackson Norris won decisions. 

This will be the Hurricanes’ fourth state appearance with the other three from 2018-2020 under coach David Silva with the highlight being a third-place finish in 2019.

Marian Central Catholic faces LeRoy/Tri-Valley in the quarterfinals on Friday at 7 p.m. at Grossinger Motors Arena in Bloomington. The winner of that dual advances to Saturday’s 11 a.m. semifinal against Roxana or Triad with the first- and third-place dual meets set for 6.p.m. 

Marian Central Catholic 48, Byron 28

157 – Jimmy Mastny (Marian Central Catholic) over Jacob Ross (Byron) Fall 1:30
165 – Max Astacio (Marian Central Catholic) over Unknown (Unattached) FFT
175 – Nicolas Astacio (Marian Central Catholic) over Carsen Behn (Byron) Fall 1:54
190 – Kyle Jones (Byron) over Dan French (Marian Central Catholic) Dec 10-5
215 – Jarett Ross (Byron) over Owen Neuzil (Marian Central Catholic) Fall 1:02
285 – Jared Claunch (Byron) over Kaleb Eckman (Marian Central Catholic) Fall 1:32
106 – Chandler Gardner (Marian Central Catholic) over Unknown (Unattached) FFT
113 – Anthony Alanis (Marian Central Catholic) over Damien Palacios (Byron) Fall 5:20
120 – Jackson Norris (Byron) over Josiah Perez (Marian Central Catholic) Dec 9-4
126 – Brayden Teunissen (Marian Central Catholic) over Unknown (Unattached) FFT
132 – Andrew Alvarado (Marian Central Catholic) over Hunter King (Byron) Fall 0:52
138 – Vance Williams (Marian Central Catholic) over Unknown (Unattached) FFT
144 – Will Julian (Byron) over Josh Gawronski (Marian Central Catholic) Fall 5:11
150 – Brody Stien (Byron) over Connor Cassels (Marian Central Catholic) Maj 19-5

Class 1A Coal City Dual Team Sectional

Coal City 60, De La Salle Institute 15

Coach Mark Masters’ defending Class 1A Coal City Coalers won all but three matches to capture a 60-15 victory over De La Salle Institute in its own dual team sectional.

Coal City will be making its 13th state appearance and going after its 11th trophy for top-four finishes. The Coalers won their first state championship last season, have finished second six times and have two third-place finishes and one fourth-place showing.

Masters, a 2022 IWCOA Hall of Fame inductee who is 470-155 in 21 seasons, is taking his seventh team to state since 2015. They won a state title last year, placed second in 2016, 2019 and 2020 and took third place in 2015 and 2018,

Collecting falls for the Coalers (36-5) were Brant Widlowski, Cade Poyner, Cooper Morris, Luke Munsterman, 126 state runner-up Brody Widlowski, Aidan Kenney, Mason Garner and Brock Finch while 165 state champion Landin Benson and Alec Waliczek both won decisions and Landon Bomba won by forfeit. 

The Meteors got a pin from David McCarthy, a decision from Malik Warren and Anthony Trendle won by injury default.

Coal City meets Riverdale in the quarterfinals of the IHSA Class 1A Dual Team Finals on Friday at 5 p.m. at Grossinger Motors Arena in Bloomington with the winner advancing to Saturday’s 9 a.m. semifinals. The championship and third-place dual meets will be at 6 p.m.

Coal City 60, De La Salle Institute 15

157 – Brant Widlowski (Coal City) over Nicholas Arvetis (De La Salle) Fall 2:45
165 – Malik Warren (De La Salle) over John Keigher (Coal City) Dec 3-2
175 – Landin Benson (Coal City) over Josue Hernandez (De La Salle) Dec 9-4
190 – Cade Poyner (Coal City) over Terrelle Jackson (De La Salle) Fall 5:31
215 – Alec Waliczek (Coal City) over Marquis Mays (De La Salle) Dec 4-3
285 – David McCarthy (Chicago (De La Salle) over Payton Vigna (Coal City) Fall 3:42
106 – Landon Bomba (Coal City) over Unknown (Unattached) FFT
113 – Cooper Morris (Coal City) over Darrel Oman (De La Salle) Fall 1:44
120 – Anthony Trendle (De La Salle) over Culan Lindemuth (Coal City) Inj 0:43
126 – Luke Munsterman (Coal City) over Damian Gomez (De La Salle) Fall 3:49
132 – Brody Widlowski (Coal City) over Mario Perez (De La Salle) Fall 0:46
138 – Aidan Kenney (Coal City) over Connor Parker (De La Salle) Fall 1:05
144 – Mason Garner (Coal City) over Melvin Cannon (De La Salle) Fall 2:48
150 – Brock Finch (Coal City) over Patrick Young (De La Salle) Fall 2:37

Rickover Naval Academy 45, Chicago Military Academy at Bronzeville 36

Rickover Naval Academy defeated Chicago Military Academy at Bronzeville 45-36 in the Coal City Dual Team Sectional to earn its first appearance in the IHSA Dual Team Finals.

The victorious Sea Dragons, who are coached by Andrew Holden, got a pin from Chris Uzhca and a decision from Justin Hernandez while Mohammed Al-Tabaqchali, Christopher Chogllo, Justin Chogllo, Jonathan Pawlowski, Breyon Wallace and Jonny Velez got forfeit wins. 

Coach Francisco Reyes’ Chicago Military Academy at Bronzeville Eagles received falls from Caleb Gordon, Denzel Adjei, DaLauren Edwards, Justin Soria and Jemel Obrien.

Rickover Naval Academy meets Vandalia (30-2) on Friday at 5 p.m. in the quarterfinals at Grossinger Motors Arena in Bloomington

Rickover Naval Academy 45, Chicago Military Academy at Bronzeville 36

157 – Mohammed Al-Tabaqchali (Rickover Naval Academy) over Unknown (Unattached) FFT
165 – Caleb Gordon (Chicago Military Academy at Bronzeville) over Evan Grabowski (Rickover Naval Academy) Fall 0:51
175 – Denzel Adjei (Chicago Military Academy at Bronzeville) over Naruto Martinez (Rickover Naval Academy) Fall 4:44
190 – Christopher Chogllo (Rickover Naval Academy) over Unknown (Unattached) FFT
215 – Sean Brown (Chicago Military Academy at Bronzeville) over Unknown (Unattached) FFT
285 – DaLauren Edwards (Chicago Military Academy-Bronzeville) over Juan Vega Hernandez (Rickover Naval Academy) Fall 4:38
106 – Justin Chogllo (Rickover Naval Academy) over Unknown (Unattached) FFT
113 – Jonathan Pawlowski (Rickover Naval Academy) over Unknown (Unattached) FFT
120 – Breyon Wallace (Rickover Naval Academy) over Unknown (Unattached) FFT
126 – Chris Uzhca (Rickover Naval Academy) over Gustavo Benitez-Mendez (Chicago Military Academy at Bronzeville) Fall 3:23
132 – Justin Soria (Chicago Military Academy at Bronzeville) over Jacob Pizarro (Rickover Naval Academy) Fall 3:41
138 – Jonny Velez (Rickover Naval Academy) over Unknown (Unattached) FFT
144 – Justin Hernandez (Rickover Naval Academy) over Ryan Singleton (Chicago Military Academy at Bronzeville) Dec 7-1
150 – Jemel Obrien (Chicago Military Academy at Bronzeville) over Brandon Valbuena (Rickover Naval Academy) Fall 1:50

2A dual sectional results from Brother Rice, Rochelle, Taylorville

By Gary Larsen for the IWCOA

All rankings courtesy of Rokfin’s Illinois Matmen rankings, as compiled by Rob Sherrill.

2A Brother Rice Team Dual Sectional

Riverside-Brookfield 42, Hinsdale South 33

Riverside-Brookfield (18-6) went 8-6 in matches won against No. 20 Hinsdale South (8-4) to advance downstate for the third time for coach Nick Curby, who also led the Bulldogs downstate in 2020 and 2022. Riverside-Brookfield placed third in 1981 under coach Otto Zeman.

Twelve of the 14 matches were decided with bonus points on Tuesday. Hinsdale South led 22-6 but Brother Rice won seven of the next nine matches to secure the win, ultimately posting six pins and two straight decision wins. Hinsdale South coach Steve Matozzi got bonus points from all six of his winning wrestlers on the day.

Riverside-Brookfield takes on No. 5 Glenwood (23-5) in their state quarterfinal dual, with the winner advancing to a state semifinal against the winner between No. 1 Montini (23-2) and No. 6 Rochelle (23-7).

Riverside-Brookfield (RB) 42, Hinsdale South (HS) 33

165 – Cade Tomkins (RB) over Jonathan Mansker (HS) F 0:39

175 – Jovani Piazza (HS) over Max Strong (RB) MD 10-1

190 – Alec Miller (HS) over Matthew Elzy (RB) F 3:48

215 – Andrew Miller (HS) over Anthony Esposito (RB) F 1:27

285 – Gavin Slaughter (HS) over Avery Siemplinski (RB) F 3:25

106 – Mateo Gonzalez (RB) over Jamarion Moffett (HS) F 5:37

113 – Edgar Mosquera (RB) over Mikey Wallace (Darien (HS) F 5:08

120 – Jayden Tulian (RB) over Alec Schuetz (Darien (HS) F 4:58

126 – Nathan Stanard (RB) over Toqir Mir (HS) D 6-0

132 – Jacob Godoy (RB) over Apollo Cobb (HS) F 3:36

138 – Al Amir Almannai (HS) over Ricky Gutierrez-Blanco (RB) TF 20-5

144 – Josh Gonzalez (RB) over Noah Ririe (HS) F 0:39

150 – Jacob Noe (RB) over Andrew Musil (HS) D 6-2

157 – Ben Miller (HS) over Ethan Rivas (RB) Fall 3:02

Brother Rice 44, Oak Forest 27

No. 7-ranked Brother Rice (15-5) went 8-6 head-to-head against Oak Forest (11-11) and got bonus points in all eight of its wins, including five pins, two tech falls, and one major decision. Coach Jan Murzyn’s Crusaders trailed 21-12 mid-way through the dual before winning the next six matches from 120-150 in dominant fashion. Brother Rice is making its third consecutive team state finals appearance.

The Crusaders take on No. 8 Mahomet-Seymour (17-4) Friday in a state quarterfinal dual, with the winner advancing to a state semifinal against the quarterfinal winner between No. 3 Washington (20-6) and No. 4 Wauconda (9-1).

Brother Rice (BR) 44, Oak Forest (OF) 27

165 – Jackson Castaneda (OF) over C. Goggin (BR) D 3-1

175 – D. Costello (BR) over Blake Bussie (OF) Fall 1:27

190 – J. Crane (BR) over Jason Janke (OF) Fall 1:44

215 – Andrius Vasilevskas (OF) over C Stec (BR) F 4:38

285 – Jose Montesino (OF) over L. Gilbert (BR) F 1:56

106 – Jacob Sebek (OF) over J. Lotito (BR) D 6-0

113 – Hunter Kroll (OF) over D. Tait (BR) D 9-3

120 – L. Conners (BR) over James Mair (OF) F 5:32

126 – J. Harris (BR) over Dylan McBride (OF) TF 18-1

132 – J. Bennett (BR) over Josh Schickel (OF) F 1:17

138 – O. Davis (BR) over Austin Perez (OF) MD 14-6

144 – J. O`Conner (BR) over Ethan Copher (OF) F 0:36

150 – F. Micelli (BR) over Derek Rodriguez (OF) TF 16-1

157 – Hunter Daniel (OF) over P. Gilhooley (BR) F 2:47

2A Rochelle Team Dual Sectional

Rochelle 39, Yorkville Christian 30

No. 6 Rochelle (23-7) topped No. 10 Yorkville Christian (20-10) to send coach Alphonso Vruno’s Hubs to a state quarterfinal Friday against No. 1 Montini (23-2), with the winner advancing to a state semifinal against the quarterfinal winner between Riverside-Brookfield (18-6) and No. 5 Glenwood (23-5).

Rochelle advanced downstate for Vruno for the second time in program history; the Hubs finished fourth in state in 2018 under coach Richard Harvey.

Rochelle posted three pins and a straight decision, and won one match by medical forfeit and two more by straight forfeit against Yorkville Christian. Yorkville Christian won three matches by fall and four by straight decision in the loss.

Rochelle (R) 39, Yorkville Christian (YC) 30

190 – Brock Metzger (R) over Hayden Wheeler (Yorkville (YC) F 4:34

215 – Kaiden Morris (R) over Xander Oliver (Yorkville (YC) F 3:50

285 – Garrett Tunnell (YC) over Frank Decena (R) F 0:33

106 – Freddie Hernandez (R) FF

113 – Colten Manning (R) FF

120 – Eli Foster (YC) over Tony Milburn (R) D 12-6

126 – Xavier Villalobos (R) over Jackson Witt (YC) F 0:51

132 – Ty Edwards (YC) over Frank Nasca (R) F 0:44

138 – Deegan Schabacker (R) over Grason Johnson (YC) Med. fft.

144 – Tiras Lombardo (YC) over Josh Lassiter (R) D 8-3

150 – John `Isaac` Gray (Yorkville (YC) over Brenden Voight (R) D 7-5

157 – Tyler Gleason (YC) over Matt Lynn (R) F 1:41

165 – Robby Nelson (YC) over Grant Gensler (R) SV-1 2-0

175 – Roman Villalobos (R) over Jackson Allen (YC) D 8-6

Washington 45, Geneseo 22

No. 3 Washington (20-6) won 8 of 14 matches against No. 12 Geneseo (12-5), including five pins, to win 45-22 for coach Nick Miller’s defending state champion Panthers.

Washington moves on to a state quarterfinal dual Friday against No. 4 Wauconda (9-1), with the winner advancing to a state semifinal dual against the winner between No. 8 Mahomet-Seymour (17-4) and No. 7 Brother Rice (15-5).

Washington is chasing its eighth dual team state trophy, having won the team state title five times – three times under Miller and twice under former coach Bryan Medlin. Miller and Medlin have also produced one state runner-up team apiece.

Washington (W) 45, Geneseo (G) 22

190 – Zane Hulet (W) over Colten Mooney (G) MD 10-2

215 – Josh Hoffer (W) over Logan Palmer (G) F 5:19

285 – Sean Thornton (W) over Brayden Franzen (G) F 3:00

106 – Zed Hulet (W) over TJ Kennedy (G) F 1:20

113 – Tim Sebastian (G) over Logan Makiney (W) MD 12-1

120 – Noah Woods (W) over Kie Smith (G) TF 16-1

126 – Eli Gonzalez (W) over Devan Hornback (G) D 6-0

132 – Timmy Smith (W) over Grady Hull (G) D 7-2

138 – Wyatt Medlin (W) over Izaac Gaines (G) F 1:35

144 – Malaki Jackson (G) over Jackson Sonderman (W) D 10-2

150 – Josh Hock (G) over Jonathon Rokey (W) F 1:55

157 – Zachary Montez (G) over Tyler Brown (W) TF 23-8

165 – Kye Weinzierl (G) over Cruise Brolley (W) D 9-3 

175 – Cael Miller (W) over Wyatt Neumann (G) F 1:18

2A Taylorville Team Dual Sectional

Glenwood 46, Mt. Vernon 28

No. 5 Glenwood (23-5) is chasing its first state finals trophy after it advanced to the team dual state finals for the fifth time on Tuesday, courtesy of a 46-28 win over Mt. Vernon (8-6) at Taylorville.

The Titans advanced downstate twice under former coach Jeremy Mosier and once under current coach Jerod Bruner.

Bruner’s Titans led 34-10 when the final five matches were forfeited by both teams – two by Mt. Vernon and three by Glenwood. Next up for Glenwood is a state quarterfinal dual against Riverside-Brookfield (18-6), with the winner advancing to a state semifinal against the winner between No. 1 Montini (23-2) and No. 6 Rochelle (23-7).

Glenwood (G) 46, Mt. Vernon (MV) 28

157 – Sean Harrington (MV) over Braxton Warren (G) MD 19-8

165 – Elijah Smith (G) over Kyle Prince (MV) F 4:00

175 – Maddux Randall (MV) over Justin Hay (G) D 6-3

190 – Mason Randall (MV) over Maximus Wiezorek (G) D 6-5

215 – Omar Alkhayyat (Chatham (G) over Jhymear Smith Henson (MV) DQ

285 – Cody Moss (Chatham (G) over Jesse Mills (MV) F 1:37

106 – Kadi Wilbern (G) FFT

113 – Tyler Clarke (G) over Jack Clark (MV) MD 15-2

120 – Owen Ottino (G) over Jason Jackson (MV) F 1:14

126 – Drew Moffit (G) FFT

132 – Drew Davis (G) FFT

138 – Gavin Pedigo (MV) FFT

144 – Gavin Gilliams (MV) FFT

150 – Dillon White (MV) FFT

Mahomet-Seymour 50, Lincoln 18

No. 8 Mahomet-Seymour (17-4) went 10-4 in matches won to advance past Lincoln (18-9) 50-18 for coach Rob Ledin’s Bulldogs. Mahomet-Seymour posted six pins and two major decision wins for bonus points in the victory. Ledin led the program to a third-place state finish in 2022.

Mahomet-Seymour is chasing the 16th team state trophy in its storied history. The Bulldogs won five state titles for coach Marty Williams between 1982-89, plus a second- and a third-place finish; placed third four times for coach Rob Porter between 1990-2001; and placed third in 1980 and ’81 for coach Bob Handlin.

The Bulldogs take on No. 7 Brother Rice (15-5) in a state quarterfinal dual on Friday, with the winner advancing to a state semifinal against the winner between No. 3 Washington (20-6) and No. 4 Wauconda (9-1).

Mahomet-Seymour (MS) 50, Lincoln (L) 18

157 – Gage Decker (MS) over Aiden Frye (L) Fall 3:36

165 – Dawson McConnell (L) over AJ Demos (MS) Fall 1:19

175 – Cale Hillard ((MS) over Soren Aukamp (L) Fall 5:08

190 – Brock VanDeveer (MS) over Paytan Bunner (L) Maj 9-1

215 – Noah Daniels (MS) over Caleb Zirklebach (L) Maj 8-0

285 – Logan Wachendorf (L) over Austin Crull (MS) Fall 3:41

106 – Gideon Hayter (MS) over Zack Eckhardt (L) Fall 4:40

113 – Lukas Altstetter (MS) over Ethan Maynard (L) Fall 4:56

120 – Colton McClure (MS) over Cort Pentecost (L) Fall 3:25

126 – Justus Vrona (MS) over Karter Hild (L) Dec 6-1

132 – Cam Bell (L) over Corey Bell (MS) SV-1 11-9

138 – Talon Decker (MS) over Lakin Adams (L) Dec 5-2

144 – Jacob Lawrence (L) over Kaleb Collins (Mahomet (MS) Dec 4-1

150 – DeAndre Hughey (MS) over Ryne Metelko (L) Fall 3:25

3A dual team sectional roundup from Hononegah, Addison Trail, Taylorville

By Gary Larsen for the IWCOA

3A Taylorville Dual Team Sectional

Yorkville 37, Edwardsville 17

No. 6 Yorkville (18-4) is chasing its 12th team state trophy and its second under coach Jake Oster in his eighth year at the helm. Oster led Yorkville to a fourth-place finish last year.

Yorkville has won three team state titles (1976, ’93, ’94) and been state runner-up five times.

Yorkville takes on No. 15 Naperville Central (20-6) in a state quarterfinal dual on Friday, with the winner advancing to Saturday’s semifinal against the winner between No. 16 Libertyville (12-1) and No. 21 Oak Park and River Forest (15-2).

Oster’s squad won 10 of 14 matches Tuesday in winning 37-17 over No. 23 Edwardsville, (11-5), winning seven matches in straight decisions to go with one win by fall, one by tech fall, and one by major decision. 

Yorkville 37, Edwardsville 17

157 – Ryder Janeczko (Yorkville) over Aiden Stamp (Edwardsville) MD 16-8

165 – Brendan Landau (Edwardsville) over Caleb Viscogliosi (Yorkville) D 3-1

175 – Luke Zook (Yorkville) over Max Miller (Edwardsville) D 11-4

190 – Luke Chrisse (Yorkville) over Simon Schulte (Edwardsville) D 6-0

215 – Roman Janek (Edwardsville) over Ryan Stockl (Yorkville) D 4-0

285 – Ben Alvarez (Yorkville) over Riley Steinkuhler (Edwardsville) F 1:18

106 – Bryson Nuttall (Edwardsville) over Ramsey Barton (Yorkville) TF 24-6

113 – Liam Fenoglio (Yorkville) over Tyler Perry (Edwardsville) D 6-2

120 – Daniel Martino (Yorkville) over Colin Waddington (Edwardsville) D 9-4

126 – Nathan Craft (Yorkville) over Levi Wilkinson (Edwardsville) D 7-4

132 – Dominic Recchia (Yorkville) over Ian Trauernicht (Edwardsville) MD 16-7

138 – Donovan Rosauer (Yorkville) over Logan Hiller (Edwardsville) SV-1 7-5

144 – Blake Mink (Edwardsville) over Owen Middleton (Yorkville) F 3:44

150 – Jack Ferguson (Yorkville) over KJ Jamison (Edwardsville) TF 19-3

3A Hononegah Dual Team Sectional

Libertyville 45, Prospect 19

No. 16 Libertyville (12-1) went 9-5 in matches won against Prospect (12-9), including five pins, to advance to a state quarterfinal dual on Friday against No. 21 Oak Park and River Forest (15-2). Friday’s winner advances to a Saturday semifinal against the quarterfinal winner between No. 15 Naperville Central (20-6) and No. 6 Yorkville (18-4).

Coaching at one of the smallest 3A public schools in Illinois (enrollment 1,784), coach Dale Eggert has carved out a 38-year hall-of-fame career at Libertyville, with a current dual-meet record of 662-173-2. Eggert has taken Libertyville downstate seven times and led the Wildcats to a fourth-place state finish in 2008. 

Libertyville 45, Prospect 19

106 – Jake Shafer (Libertyville) over Thomas Fidler (Prospect) F 3:25

113 – Tyler Wuh (Libertyville) over Evan DeNardis (Prospect) F 3:19

120 – Louis Monroig (Prospect) over Brayden Liu (Libertyville) MD 13-1

126 – Luke Berktold (Libertyville) over Karol Kosciarz (Prospect) F 3:45

132 – Orion Moran (Libertyville) over Ryan Brannigan (Prospect) D 6-2

138 – Anthony Kelly (Libertyville) over Kacper Kosciarz (Prospect) F 2:00

144 – Giorgio DiFalco (Prospect) over Will Carney (Libertyville) D 1-0

150 – Bennett WestFen (Prospect) over Jacob Whisenand (Libertyville) D 7-1

157 – James Scanio (Libertyville) over Joseph Quirk (Prospect) D 7-4

165 – Connor Munn (Prospect) over Charlie Clark (Libertyville) MD 12-3

175 – Matt Kubas (Libertyville) over Michael Matuszak (Prospect) F 2:11

190 – Jaxon Penovich (Prospect) over Erich Walldorf (Libertyville) TF 18-3

215 – Caleb Baczek (Libertyville) over Brock Clay (Prospect) D 11-5

285 – Owen McGrory (Libertyville) over James Brouilette (Prospect) F 1:44

Hononegah 39, Hersey 25

No. 9 Hononegah (11-1) won eight of 14 matches and got bonus points in six of them to win 39-25 over No. 8 Hersey (12-6). 

Coach Tyler DeMoss’ program is seeking its fourth team state trophy, having placed fourth twice for coach Marty Kaiser (2005 and 2007), and also placed fourth in 2014 for coach Jason Glodowski.

Hononegah squares off with No. 1 St. Charles East (19-0) in a state quarterfinal on Friday, with the winner advancing to Saturday’s semi-final round against the quarterfinal winner between No. 2 Joliet Catholic (14-4) and No. 3 Mount Carmel (9-2).

Hononegah 39, Hersey 25

106 – Rocco Cassioppi (Hononegah) over Cole Anselmi (Hersey) F 0:35

113 – Bruno Cassioppi (Hononegah) over Danny Lehman (Hersey) TF 16-1

120 – Anthony Orozco-Diaz (Hersey) over Jackson Olson (Hononegah) F 4:59

126 – Elijah Garza (Hersey) over Evan Musil (Hononegah) MD 12-3

132 – Abdullokh Khakimov (Hersey) over Robert Darling (Hononegah) D 7-4

138 – Thomas Silva (Hononegah) over Maksim Mukhamedaliyev (Hersey) D 10-3

144 – Jake Hanson (Hersey) over Max Aranki (Hononegah) D 9-2

150 – Frank Tagoe (Hersey) over Max Haskins (Hononegah) D 5-1

157 – Brody Sendele (Hononegah) over Tim Boldt (Hersey) MD 18-6

165 – Connor Diemel (Hononegah) over Alex Garza (Hersey) F 1:17

175 – Kurt Smith (Hononegah) over Nolan Saccone (Hersey) F 2:46

190 – Greyson Cotone (Hononegah) over Leo Delgado (Hersey) F 1:38

215 – Anthony Cambria (Hersey) over Ethan Ballard (Hononegah) F 1:52

285 – Isaak Smith (Hononegah) over Gus Dammann (Hersey) D 10-5

3A Addison Trail Dual Team Sectional

St. Charles East 49, Maine South 21

St. Charles East (19-0) posted seven pins among its nine wins in ousting Maine South (20-12), 49-21 at Addison Trail. The top-ranked Saints are chasing their second consecutive 3A state title and coach Jason Potter’s boys open Friday’s quarterfinal round against No. 9 Hononegah (11-1), with the winner advancing to a state semifinal Saturday against the quarterfinal winner between No. 2 Joliet Catholic (14-4) and No. 3 Mount Carmel (9-2).

St. Charles East is chasing its third overall team state trophy, having also placed third in 1997 under former head coach, current assistant coach, and IWCOA and Illinois Wrestling hall-of-famer Mick Ruettiger.

St. Charles East 49, Maine South 21

144 – Gavin Hoerr (Maine South) over Logan Tatar (St. Charles E) D 3-0

150 – Jayden Colon (St. Charles E) over Gavin Hoerr (Maine South) F

157 – Gavin Connolly (St. Charles E) over Dlan Ide (Maine South)) F

165 – Anthony Gutierrez (St. Charles E) over Aidan Swenson (Maine South) F

175 – Brody Murray (St. Charles E) over Evan Rioch (Maine South) F

190 – Cooper Murray (St. Charles E) over Tommy Behzad (Maine South) F

215 – Brandon Swartz (St. Charles E) over Leo McDonald (Maine South) F

285 – Tyler Fortis (Maine South) over Matt Medina (St. Charles E) D 7-1

106 – Kaden Potter (St. Charles E) over George Georgiev (Maine South) D 7-0

113 – Christos Vaselopulos (Maine South) over Andrew Han (St. Charles E) F 3:46

120 – Brett Harman (Maine South) over Liam Aye (St. Charles E) F 0:31

126 – Gavin Woodmancy (St. Charles E) over Jack Handley (Maine South) MD 11-2

132 – Luke Morrison (Maine South) over Payton Lee (St. Charles E) D 7-5

138 – Ben Davino (St. Charles E) over Jake Colleran (Maine South) F 1:22

Oak Park and River Forest 41, Schaumburg 24

No. 21 OPRF (15-2) won nine of 14 matches for coach Paul Collins in winning 41-24 over Schaumburg (19-7). The Huskies posted three falls and five wins by major decision among its nine victories.

OPRF is seeking a state trophy for the ninth time in program history. The Huskies placed second in state in 1988 under coach Norm Parker, and won two team state titles in 2009 and 2014 under coach Mike Powell. OPRF also finished second in Illinois in 2012 under Powell.

Collins led the Huskies to team state titles in 2015 and 2016, and second-place finishes in 2018 and 2019.

OPRF takes on No. 16 Libertyville (12-1) in a state quarterfinal dual Friday and the winner advances to a Saturday semifinal against the quarterfinal winner between No. 15 Naperville Central (20-6) and No. 6 Yorkville (18-4).

OPRF 41, Schaumburg 24

144 – Jeremiah Hernandez (OPRF) over Rocco Fontela (Schaumburg) D 4-3

150 – David Ogunsanya (OPRF) over Callen Kirchner (Schaumburg) MD 13-5

157 – Gavin Hinkle (Schaumburg) over Isaac Davies (OPRF) F 4:49

165 – Kolin Little (Schaumburg) over Emmett Baker (OPRF) D 1-0

175 – Hugh Vanek (OPRF) over Keegan Creighton (Schaumburg) MD 10-2

190 – Carey Robinson (OPRF) over James Zinchuk (Schaumburg) MD 13-4

215 – Eric Harris (OPRF) over Karl Makinano (Schaumburg) F 5:53

285 – Cesar Alvarez-Cuatepitzi (Schaumburg) over Terrence Garner (OPRF) F 2:59

106 – Michael Rundell (OPRF) over Austin Phelps (Schaumburg) MD 18-5

113 – Gabriel Rojas (OPRF) over Bryan Sanchez (Schaumburg) F 5:34

120 – Brady Phelps (Schaumburg) over Ruben Acevedo (OPRF) F 5:55

126 – Zev Koransky (OPRF) over Adrian Quevedo (Schaumburg) MD 16-6

132 – Aiden Quevedo (Schaumburg) over Aiden Noyes (OPRF) D 3-1

138 – Joseph Knackstedt (OPRF) over Aidan Ploski (Schaumburg) F 2:37

3A Individual finals full of spills, chills

By Mike Garofola for the IWCOA

It was a state tournament that had a little something for everyone.

On the 3A side, fans were treated to a rarity of sorts when they watched both Ben Davino and Dillan Johnson win for their fourth time each, joining 14 others in the long history of the IHSA boys state tournament to win four individual state titles.

The 87th annual state tournament provided plenty of thrills, spills, and chills for a raucous crowd, which did battle with frigid temperatures in order to quench their thirst for the favorite sport and its outstanding young men.

Watch enough state finals inside State Farm Center and you find it can be a cruel sport, one that will test even the most sturdy of the mentally strong during a rollercoaster ride that — for six wrestlers per weight class — takes them on a long journey to a prized state medal.

Ultimately, the Hinsdale Central sectional produced six state champs, Barrington produced four, followed by Conant (3) and Quincy (1).

Here is a detailed look at each weight class when the final whistle ended things in Champaign:

106- Caleb Noble, Warren

In one of the best divisions in Champaign, dominated by freshmen, it would be a pair of rookie sensations that met in the 106-pound final with Caleb Noble (42-3) from Warren and Rocco Cassioppi (43-4) of Hononegah facing off for the second straight weekend.

The thunderous first period throw, and acrobatic back-flip from Noble after the final whistle easily told the big crowd who was crowned state champion after a thrilling 6-5 decision by Noble.

“The two of us know each other really well,” Noble said. “This was our third time we’ve met this season so we were both really very cautious of the other. Even though we had a plan on how to wrestle Rocco, sometimes those plans get thrown out the window and you just let it fly.” 

Noble beat Cassioppi for a Barrington sectional title one week earlier.

Nobles’ early throw brought the crowd alive. His hopes for victory increased when he built a 4-0 advantage after the first period.

It was 4-1 after two periods before Cassioppi closed to within 4-3, but seconds later Noble responded to make it 6-3.

With 30 seconds from time it became 6-4 on an escape, and a late stalling call on Noble gave the Hononegah faithful some life, but Noble was able to fend off any late attempts from his opponent.

“This is a great way to finish my first year of high school wrestling, and on the same night that Aaron (Stewart) won his first state title also,” said Noble.

Noble, Cassioppi, and third place Rocco Hayes (Sandburg, 49-2) can all be found in the top ten of national polls.

Fourth place went to Proviso West freshmen Jamiel Castleberry (33-3), the 18th medal-winner  in program history, and first since 2013 when Jameer Thurman was third at 195.

Normal Community junior Caden Correll (39-7) was fifth after his defeat of Barrington freshman Kaleb Pratt (36-14), who enjoyed a fantastic season under first year head coach Dan Keller.

Correll is now twice a fifth-place medal winner, giving his program its 13th state medal.

113- Nicholas Garcia, Marmion Academy

The path to an unlikely championship began weeks ago for Marmion’s Nicholas Garcia, after he suffered his second defeat at the hands of No. 1 Dom Munaretto of St. Charles East. Munaretto beat the Marmion Academy star at both the Ironman (3-2) and the Flavin (5-3) just before the new year.

“Nicholas came to me right away after DeKalb and said if he sees Munaretto again, he wants to beat him,” said Cadets head coach Nathan Fitzenreider, who along with Garcia, and his staff began to hatch a plan designed to defeat 2023 state champion Munaretto, the No. 5-ranked high school wrestler in the nation.

“We watched a ton of film, worked on cleaning some things up, and just kind of broke things down for him,” Fitzenreider said. “As we got closer to state, we were confident that if they met again, the result would be different.

“Munaretto is a great wrestler, but Nicholas is a real special young man, so he never lost his focus against any of his opponents during the postseason. He always had a great plan in place.”

Munaretto (47-3) leveled his three opponents to advance into the Grand March, including a dominating performance in his semifinal with No. 4 Bruno Cassioppi (Hononegah, 38-5) that ended in a 18-2 tech-fall victory at 5:44.

Garcia would major his first two opponents of the tournament, then recorded a hard fought 3-0 decision against No. 5 Maddox Garbis (Plainfield North, 44-5) yet another superb rival that made up this marvelous 16-man bracket.

It was clear from the start of the 113-pound final that Garcia (45-7) was well-prepared to face Munaretto. Despite Munaretto’s strength, power, and ability to strike at a moment’s notice, Garcia found a way to stymie the Saints super-sophomore.

Garcia would register the second of his two neatly played reversals midway through the second period to double his advantage to 4-2, and that’s the way this pulsating final would end.

Munaretto would start down for the third period, but Garcia rode his rival hard for the next 90 seconds – brushing off a stall warning ten seconds before time – and then triumphantly raised both arms at the final whistle, much to the delight of the Cadets faithful.

“There was some talk about going 120 at some point, I was at 117, but I feel so good in this weight class, and the belief in myself, my teammates, and coaching staff went a long way towards this state title,” said Garcia.

Cassioppi would later go to claim third place over Garbis with a 10-0 major decision victory, while the Joliet Catholic Academy freshman Max Cumbee (33-16) – ranked No. 7 at the start of the weekend – grabbed fifth place after his 6-4 sudden victory over Justin Williamson (32-12) of Mt. Carmel.

120- Teddy Flores, Maine South

1968 was an eventful year in world and national news. Locally, it was also the last time Maine South celebrated an individual state champion, when Tom Neuses won the state crown at 133 pounds.

Jon Halverson came this close in 2019 at 182 pounds, but it would be Teddy Flores who would break the long title drought on Saturday, with his 6-5 victory over Jason Hampton (33-16) from Joliet Catholic Academy.

“This win and state title proves that hard work, dedication, and a total commitment to the sport eventually pays off,” said a proud Flores, who placed fourth in Champaign a year ago.

Flores and the Hawks coaching staff felt better things would soon come his way.

“I think all of us felt that Teddy could have been in the final last year, but I know that finish is what inspired him to achieve his ultimate goal of being a state champion,” Hawks coach Kevin Hansen said. “You can imagine how proud we all are of him right now.”

Flores adjusted after last year’s downstate experience.

“I had to change my ways after last year,” Flores said. “It meant doing all of the right things from training to watching my diet, what type of food I put into my body, lifting, fitness – every little thing that needed to be better if I wanted to be the best this season.”

Flores, who recently committed to the University of Michigan, was cool, calm and composed during his 3-0 quarterfinal win over Cole Gentsch (Normal Community, 42-7). Flores then topped Kalani Khiev (Glenbard North, 37-8), when a second-period escape and a third-period ride gave the Hawks senior a 1-0 decision.

Flores appeared to be in control over Hampton in the finals when he escaped and then recorded a take-down to go up 5-0, before the Hilltoppers sophomore made a valiant run at the eventual champion before falling just short.

“Jordan had a great tournament, and his championship match showed the identity of JCA wrestling. He was never out of the match,” JCA coach Ryan Cumbee said.

“He is one of the hardest workers I’ve ever coached, and as a sophomore, you’re only beginning to see just how good he can become.”

The superb career of Batavia senior Ino Garcia (28-6) came to an end when the Bulldogs star claimed his third state medal following his 12-6 defeat over Brady Phelps (25-4) in the third place match. Garcia was sixth a year ago, and fourth in 2022.

Brady Phelps, who was No. 2 in the preseason polls behind Flores, is now a three-time state medal winner in a season when the Schaumburg junior battled meningitis which forced him out of action for over a third of his season.

“There was always a chance that I wouldn’t come back this season, or maybe ever, depending on how severe my case was,” Phelps said. “Even though I wasn’t able to reach my goal of being a state champion, there’s plenty to be thankful for.”

Khiev would later defeat Libertyville senior Luke Berktold (36-9) for fifth place.

126- Seth Mendoza, Mt. Carmel

No. 1 Seth Mendoza has no fear of flying. But you can bet his 126-pound opponents fear the-now three-time state champion.

The Mt. Carmel junior produced yet another sparkling three days of work – culminating in a 13-5 decision over No. 2 Michael Esteban (36-8) from Marist to join former Caravan star Sergio Lemley as a three-time champion, while giving his storied program its 47th state champion.

If Mendoza can repeat next season, he will find himself alongside famed brothers Joe and TJ Williams as four-time state champions.

“It’s always nice to win a state title, it’s obviously one of the goals I’ve set for myself, but it all happens because of my teammates and coaching staff,” Mendoza said. “

Mendoza is proud of his father, Michael Mendoza, a Purple Heart and Navy Cross recipient, which is the second highest award for valor given.

Michael Mendoza was a U.S. Marine Corps sergeant in 2004 during Operation Iraqi Freedom in the Al Anbar Province when he was involved in a firefight which saw him lead his team and injured commander to safety.

One year later he was injured by flying shrapnel while in Afghanistan.

“My dad has been a great inspiration to me, and together we’ve been making several recruiting trips, which has helped me gather the type of information needed to help me make an important decision,” adds Seth.

Mendoza aspires to be a pilot, and is now able to fly solo in a Cessna 172.

“Since fourth grade I’ve been interested in flying, and my dad encouraged me to do so,” Mendoza said. “It’s cool, and something that I’ve really come to enjoy.”

Abdulloh Khakimov (Hersey, 34-7), Christian Chavez (Glenbard North, 39-6), Grant Madl (Elk Grove, 37-5) and Max Siegel (Andrew, 43-9) are all seniors, and are now all well-deserving first time state medal-winners after their third-to-sixth place finish here on Saturday.

Madl, who earlier in the year became the first Elk Grove program history to win 100 matches, also gave the Grens their first state medal since Jeff Shapiro did so in 1984 with his second-place finish.

132- Ben Davino, St. Charles East

Ben Davino has been the heartbeat of St. Charles East wrestling ever since stepping foot inside the Saints room, and a crucial piece in the machine that Jason Potter and his coaching staff have built.

Davino has been at or near the top of the national polls from the moment he put on the Saints singlet, racking up over 170 career victories against just one loss.

With his scorching pace and dynamic acceleration, lethal finishing ability, and an insatiable taste for winning, Davino (50-0) would claim his fourth state title here in Champaign. He opened the final session with an impressive 20-5 tech-fall victory over a tremendous opponent in TJ Silva (28-5) from Hononegah, himself a returning 1A state champion.

“I’ve had to pinch myself at times because four years, and over 1000 days here at St. Charles East have gone by so much quicker than I’ve wanted them to,” said Davino, who will wrestle next fall at the Ohio State University.

“Being in our room is even better than I ever expected, and to have the coaching staff that we have, and especially coach Potter, they’ve made me a better person and wrestler. I love our room and teammates, which are really my second family, and to be a part of the success this team has had is just amazing.”

Davino tech-falled his way to the 126-pound crown to give him 18 on the season, to go along with (23) pins. Silva, who came over from 1A power Dakota, earned his spot in the final after his tech-fall of Damian Valdez (Addison Trail, 34-13) who lost to Davino in the Conant sectional final.

Hersey junior Maksim Mukhamedaliyev (36-4) was a well-deserving third overall after his major decision (13-4) victory over Mt. Carmel freshman Evan Stanley (37-7).

Zack Parisi (York, 50-5) who will wrestle in the fall at the University of Chicago, grabbed his first state medal after his pin of Valdez gave him fifth-place honors. Parisi gave the Dukes program its 27th state medal, while Valdez’s medal was his program’s 19th, the last coming in 2002.

138- Zach Stewart, Marmion Academy

When St. Charles East’s No. 1 Tyler Guerra went down with an injury just under two minutes into his quarterfinal contest, it opened things up wide to the rest of the 138-pound competition 

Marmion Academy sophomore Zach Stewart – who dealt with his own share of nagging injuries during his rookie season – seized the opportunity with both hands by defeating No. 4 Justin Wardlow of Lockport to claim the state title at 138, and second state title of the day for the Cadets.

“Injuries are a part of the sport,” Stewart said.  “I went through it a year ago so I know. But after cutting a ton of weight last year, I felt really good going at (138) this year and it showed in my results.” 

Stewart won 6-3 over Wardlow (42-7), who was unable to wrestle Massey Odiotti (Loyola Academy) in the 120-pound final last year due to an injury.

The first period resembled more of a chess match with each teasing and testing the other. Stewart knew after two previous wins over Wardlow that he’d have extra motivation to beat him in the final.

“We had two barnburners before (6-5, 6-3) so I wanted to get out to a fast start with the first takedown to help set the tone,” Stewart said. Stewart was ranked third prior to the weekend, just behind No. 2 Donavon Allen (35-7) from Marist.

Allen beat Stewart in a 5-3 sudden victory decision at the Hinsdale Central sectional final.

Off the second period whistle, Stewart executed a wonderful reversal for two against Wardlow, and doubled his advantage to 4-2 with 44 seconds in the period.

Wardlow started down for the third period and quickly made it 4-3 with an escape, but was unable to pry open Stewart down the stretch. Stewart sealed his victory with a take-down just seconds before time.

“I’ve got a great room and some great teammates to go with every day, which has really helped me get this state title,” said Stewart, who fell one win short of earning a state medal at 120 pounds last year.

Allen would go on to claim third place after his overtime (5-4) victory over Ryan Hinger (Sandburg, 44-6) while Lincoln-Way West junior Luke Siwinski went home with fifth place following his pin of Damian Resendez (23-16) from Mt. Carmel.

144- Jayden Colon, St. Charles East

By the time the dust had cleared from the three-round clearance of their opponents, it was abundantly clear that St. Charles East’s Jayden Colon and Fremd’s Evan Gosz both belonged in the 144-pound final.

No. 2 Colon (41-5) would dispatch No. 1 Carson Weber (42-2) to avenge an earlier loss to the Joliet West junior in the Dvorak semifinals, to advance into his third straight championship bout. On the other side of the bracket, Gosz systematically built a big lead to send off No. 5 Aidan Huck (43-7) from Batavia to secure his spot against Colon.

Gosz (37-1), twice a third-place state medal winner, struck first with a first period take-down of the returning state champion. But a strong second period and an even better final period saw Colon record a pair of three-point near falls that led to an impressive 14-5 major decision victory.

“(Colon) is so tough on the mat – it was something that we had hoped to stay away from tonight,” Fremd coach Jeff Keske said. “But Evan had a great season and made some really important strides in his game, so we all know he’ll be back next year with the chance of winning a state title.” 

Colon is grateful for what the Saints’ program has given him.

“I’m very fortunate to be in a great room with some great partners on either side of me to work out with,” Colon said. “To have the chance of winning another state title for our program and coaching staff is something that I’m proud of.”

The Saints star, a key figure in the St. Charles East run last year to its first 3A dual-team state title, won at 145 last year and at  129 the year before when he won at 145 while wrestling at Montini Catholic.

Saturday’s victory gave him four major tournament titles on the season, plus a third-place finish at the Dvorak.

Gosz said after winning his third sectional title he had the better of the downstate draw, with both Colon and Weber on the other side of the bracket. However, he was quick to say he would not take Batavia’s Huck lightly should they meet once again after an earlier match that saw Gosz prevail 5-3. 

Gosz will enter his final season at Fremd with a sparkling 122-8 overall record. 

Huck lost to Weber for third place but broke through for the first time in three tries, leaving Champaign with a state place-medal. Pekin senior RaMez Watson (38-6) earned fifth place honors after his 4-2 victory over Marmion Academy sophomore Ashton Hobson (39-11).

150- Will Denny, Marist

A pin- and tech-fall-happy Will Denny never was given a stern test during this post-season, including his three days of play here in Champaign, where the Marist junior left little doubt as to why he was anointed the No. 1 spot all year long at 150 pounds.

Denny (42-4) pinned his way into the semifinals where he cruised past Gavin Connolly (St. Charles East, 41-11) before doing the same to Barrington senior Rhenzo Augusto (41-6) to claim the first state title of his career, the 12th in program history, and first since 2015 when Marist heavyweight Jake Ford climbed to the top of the podium.

“I wasn’t happy at all with that fourth-place finish here a year ago, so I went back and did a lot of work on my technique, and upped my workout to three times per day, seven days a week in order to go after a state title,” said Denny.

“I’ve really enjoyed being the one guy everyone is chasing this year, and even I know that God has a plan for all of us, so I’ll trust in knowing that, and just continue to work as hard as I can.”

The sudden rise of Augusto, a state qualifier a year ago, comes as no surprise to Barrington coach Dan Keller, who came over to take charge of a young program from Prospect.

“We’re all very proud of Rhenzo,” Keller said. “He’s a ‘yes sir, no sir’ type of person who takes great pride in his training, his teammates, and of just being a part of a team. When you consider how short of a time he’s been serious in this sport after coming over from jiu-jitsu, his success is nothing short of amazing.”

Dominic Serio (West Aurora, 33-4) came all the way back through wrestle-backs to earn a spot against Connolly, who outlasted Serio for third place after his 3-1 decision. Connolly, a state qualifier in 2022, was injured last year but still managed to advance to the sectional blood round and has enjoyed a marvelous final year under coach Jason Potter

Jack Ferguson (Yorkville, 44-12) was fifth, and OPRF sophomore David Ogunsanya (37-11) sixth overall.

157- Aaron Stewart, Warren

If there were any sure things in Champaign this year in 3A, Ben Davino, Seth Mendoza, Dillan Johnson and Aaron Stewart were just that. The quartet was unbeatable, unstoppable, and undeniably the best in their weight class both in Illinois and at the national level.

It would have taken a gargantuan effort to unseat any of these four from their lofty status, but they still had to wrestle in order to claim the top prizes in their respective divisions.

Aaron Stewart (43-2) would kickstart his season with one impressive win after another before overwhelming his competition in the postseason which culminated in three easy victories leading up to his state final match with Edmund Enright (Mt. Carmel) that ended with Stewart claiming his first state crown of his young career.

“Winning here is a goal for all of us, but to be honest, I won at Fargo, and that’s a lot bigger than winning state,” said Stewart, now 43-2 after his 5-2 decision over Enright, whose record moved to 39-4.

Stewart, 12th nationally, took an early lead with a takedown just 30 seconds into this contest, then conceded a pair of escapes to allow Enright, No. 20 in the national polls to get back even with the Warren sophomore.

Stewart would need some quick help from the medical staff when Enright had a firm hold of his left ankle near the edge just after the third period began. After given the all-clear to go, Stewart recorded an escape and would put Enright away for good with one last take-down just six seconds from time.

“I kept my attacks up and always felt in control, even though the (close) score didn’t really reflect how confident I was,” offered Stewart, who was third here a year ago, and was a key figure in the Blue Devils first trip ever to the 3A dual-team state tournament.

Stewart and teammate Caleb Noble would give their program its fifth state championship in history after Russ Schneider (1964) Craig Murphy (1966), and Joel Vandervere (2020) got themselves up on the board in the Warren room.

Hononegah’s terrific freshman Brody Sendele (47-3) who lost to Enright in the semifinals 5-0 finished third overall after his 9-2 victory over Noah Quintana (31-8) from West Aurora.

Luke Hamiti (Joliet Catholic Academy, 35-19), who lost his state opener to Sendele, and again in his wrestle-back semifinal, persevered through a trio of matches on Saturday to eventually earn fifth place after his 8-1 win over Ryder Janeczko (23-12) from Yorkville.

165 – Collin Carrigan, Glenbard West

Many would call this weight class the deepest, thanks in part to No. 1 Owen Uppinghouse (Quincy) and his 50-plus victories, followed closely by Collin Carrigan (Glenbard West) and Gunnar Garelli (Lyons).

Garelli and Carrigan have battled each other all season long, most recently the last two weekends prior to this one.

There was plenty more quality all throughout this 16-man bracket. Garelli sent Uppinghouse (56-1) out of the front draw with a 5-1 quarterfinal victory, and Carrigan mowed down his rivals as it became clear late Friday night that these two long-time friends would meet to decide the title at 165.

“Gunnar and I have been friends since fourth grade when we were in club together, so there was little about each other we didn’t know,” said Carrigan, who during the offseason transferred from Marmion Academy to be back in Glen Ellyn, and within minutes walking distance from his home to Glenbard West.

In setting up the finals drama between the two: Garelli earned a 4-3 victory in the regional championship before the Glenbard West home fans, then it was Carrigan who came back to level things with a 5-3 decision to capture the sectional crown at nearby Hinsdale Central.

“When I looked at the brackets, I knew we could meet one last time, and when Gunnar got that big win over Uppinghouse, then (AJ) Gutierrez (St. Charles East) on the top half of the bracket, it all came together for both of us,” said Carrigan. Both he and Garelli are three-time state qualifiers.

The highly-anticipated final did not disappoint, and after Carrigan grabbed an early lead with a take-down, then doubled his advantage seconds into the second period, it appeared as though the North Carolina-bound Carrigan (45-10) was on his way to an easy victory.

However, Garelli (46-3) did not go away, and a pair of escapes halved the lead of Carrigan to 4-2.

When it became 4-3, Garelli uncorked a well executed take-down near the edge to give him his first lead of the match (5-4) only to see Carrigan (46-1) draw back even with 45 seconds remaining to send this into extra time to decide the eventual champion.

Overtime set up one of the wildest scramble sequences, with both having chances to score, much to the delight of the crowd that was fully invested on their side of the stadium, raising the noise level a decibel or two with each move from these two in their attempt to win before time.

Neither wrestler scored in the first overtime, sending things to an additional extra session. When Carrigan escaped, it was a 6-5 tie-breaker victory that give Glenbard West its first state champion since 1966 when Fred Beilfuss did so.

“I got the start I wanted with that first period take-down, and was able to add more points to make it 4-0,” Carrigan said. “But it was a final between two seniors who wanted to go out on top, so I knew it wouldn’t be easy.

“My move back closer to home to finish up at Glenbard West has been even better than I expected. Our room is great, and coach (Pat) McCluskey and our staff have made me feel right at home from the very beginning, so I’m thrilled to give something  back to everyone associated with the program.”

Uppinghouse would conclude a remarkable career at Quincy with a second third-place finish after his 45-2 record from a year ago. Gutierrez was fourth overall, DeKalb senior Jacob Luce (44-4) fifth after his 11-2 major decision victory over Max Corral (33-180 the senior from Joliet Catholic.

175- Colin Kelly, Mt. Carmel

Colin Kelly’s sensational postseason effort ended with the Mt. Carmel senior lifting the 175-pound trophy, the second time he’s done so in his career after just missing out last season to-then No. 1 Chris Moore (McHenry) in a tense, hard fought 160-pound final that ended in favor of Moore, 3-2, now a 165-pounder here at Illinois.

“It was a disappointment of sorts losing in my final last year to Chris, but it’s the sport, and life, and you just move on,” said Kelly, whose faith is deep-seeded in the way he lives his life.

“I feel like I am blessed with each and every day from the time that I wake up, to the end of my day,” continued Kelly, who was involved in a car crash earlier in the season, which had a profound effect on the way he lives.

“You kind of have your eyes opened when you have an experience like that so now I don’t let the little things bother me,” Kelly said. “And I’ve done my best to get closer to God to help me with each day.”

On the wrestling mats, few have gotten closer to the Wisconsin-bound Kelly, No. 1 all season long in his high profile weight class, and currently No. 3 in the national polls.

Since regionals, Kelly (42-1) has recorded a pair of majors, three falls, and four tech-falls, including his second of the tournament against Ricky Ericksen (Marist) 31-11) at 2:41 during a 16-1 triumph.

Kelly would defeat No. 3 Brody Murray (St. Charles East, 43-9) in his semifinal, and could likely meet again on Saturday in a 3A dual-team state semifinal should both clubs advance on Friday from their quarterfinal.

Murray would later defeat No. 2 Matt Kubas (Libertyville, 39-5) for third place.

Kubas, with another state medal to add to his resume, is now the first ever in the acclaimed Libertyville program history to be a three-time all-stater.

“This weight class, and 165 had to be two of the toughest of all 3A classes (so) even though the hope was to be wrestling for a state title on Saturday night, I am still proud of what I accomplished down here,” said Kubas, who also broke the record for career pins set by Mark Friend in 2004 (74) who later went on to star at Penn State.

No. 4 Luke Zook (Yorkville, 48-6) was fifth after his 5-4 decision over AJ Mancilla (44-8) from Bradley-Bourbonnais.

190- Jaxon Penovich, Prospect

Jaxon Penovich decided to change his story after his expectations of glory during his rookie season came apart inside the State Farm Center.

The then-freshman would enjoy a magnificent year leading up to the Barrington sectional, where eventual state champion Cole Matulenko (Libertyville) dominated during a 9-3 decision.

Undaunted, and still brimming with confidence, Penovich won his state opener over Matt Janiak (Plainfield South ) with a major decision, before Marist star Pete Marinopoulos won a tight encounter 3-2 to send Penovich into wrestle-backs.

“I really felt last year that I would be in the state final,” admits Penovich, “but this sport really teaches you a lot about the way life can be, and that loss to Thebeau (Dominic, Belleville East) in my wrestle-back semifinal was kind of the wake up call that I needed.”

Penovich would still finish fifth overall — not bad at a big mans’ weight filled with upperclassmen.

The Knights super-soph made more of a commitment to his fitness, diet, and training, which saw him up the ante by spending more time at the Relentless Training Center, where Matty Jens, who won his second 2A state title for head coach Matt Joseph at Grayslake Central gave him this advice.

“Train hard, have more fun, and just open things  up, and let it go when you’re out there competing,” said Penovich, who took the advice, and has found it to be just what the doctor ordered.

Penovich would start fast on Thursday with his 18th tech-fall of the season, and finish strong with a 13-5 major decision victory over Quinn Herbert (Loyola Academy, 32-9) whom he beat in the Barrington sectional final.

Herbert would enjoy an impressive senior year, despite three straight defeats at the hands of Penovich, the other in a regional final at Glenbrook South. 

Penovich surrendered just one take-down on the season to an Illinois opponent, finished with 22 pins, and would tech-fall, or pin all of his Illinois opponents leading up the state tournament.

The Penovich title is just the third in Prospect program history after Matt Wroblewski did so in 2017 before heading here to Illinois after his perfect 35-0 season in 220 pounds.

Wroblewski was preceded by Matt Boggess (2009) whom Penovich works out with on occasion.

Ryan Breen (Mt. Carmel, 31-9) fifth here in 2023, was third overall after his tech-fall victory over Matt Lapacek (Downers Grove South, 29-6).

Yorkville junior Luke Chrisse (36-17) was fifth following his 3-1 triumph against Joliet Catholic Academy junior Nico Ronchetti (34-12) who came in as the No. 2 man at this weight, but was stunned by Herbert in the semifinals, 7-2.

215- Kai Calcutt, Loyola Academy

Kai Calcutt appears to have a flair for the dramatic – much to the agony of the Loyola Academy faithful, and in particular head coach Matt Collum.

The Ramblers sophomore, for the second consecutive year, found himself embroiled in a state championship contest which needed extra time to decide the winner. But unlike a year ago when Calcutt lost an overtime thriller to Ben Alvarez (Yorkville), the No. 1 man in the state needed little time to secure a 3-1 victory over Marmion’s Joseph Favia.

“It certainly was exciting for the fans to watch, but not for me,” admitted Collum, who in 2004 beat Khris Argue (Mt. Carmel) in the 145-pound state final with a 5-2 decision.

Collum, who was also twice a third-place medal winner at Neuqua Valley, finished with a 182-16 overall record.

Since taking over the Ramblers program in 2019, Collum has sent the first six ever atop the podium, including the first ever state champion a year ago with Massey Odiotti, and now Calcutt (31-4), also a star lineman for the 8A undefeated state champion Ramblers football team.

“I wasn’t totally happy with the way I wrestled in that final – Favia is tough, and defensive minded – but I could have been better. I’m still very happy with my victory,” said Calcutt, who did a flip of his own after the final whistle, a la Caleb Noble, but with a few more pounds to elevate into the air than the 106-pound champion.

“We would have liked to see Kai push the pace more, and to open things up, but Favia knew he couldn’t allow him to do that. So his tactical approach was sound, and he did a good job of keeping Kai at bay,” Collum said.

“During the offseason, Kai, who is super athletic, worked on his movement from left-to-right, angles, and just using his speed and footwork to his advantage, and we’ve seen just how far he’s come from last season.”

Alvarez was not able to repeat this season, he did however pick up a third place medal after his 8-4 decision over No. 3 Owen McGrory (Libertyville, 45-5) who lost a 3-2 heart-breaker to Favia in the semifinals.

Cooper Caraway (Normal Community, 46-5) was fifth overall following his 3-1 victory over Naperville Central senior Nicholas Besteiro (29-8) who pushed Favia to the brink during his 3-2 defeat in their semifinal on Friday night.

285- Dillan Johnson, Joliet Catholic Academy

Big men rule and Dillan Johnson proved it to be true, with one last sensational state tournament that saw the Joliet Catholic Academy senior collect his fourth state title on Saturday night when he recorded his fourth pin of the weekend.

“I have not really given much thought about the legacy that I’ll be leaving behind, but I can say all of the hard work, and dedication to excellence is something that I am most proud of,” Johnson said. “And I have been very fortunate to be in a room with such a great staff and teammates during my four years.”

Johnson has a remarkable 143-1 overall record.

“Dillan is a quiet and humble young man, who leads by example, and has the respect of all his teammates,” said head coach, Ryan Cumbee. “Coaching Dillan is a once in a lifetime opportunity. There will never be another like him, and I feel blessed to have been his coach.”

As most know, Johnson had committed to Northwestern until the university sent football coach Pat Fitzgerald on his way last July, forcing Johnson to change his mailing address to the University of Wisconsin, where he will decide if it’s back to the two-sport grind of football and wrestling.

At the start of February, Johnson was No. 1 in the latest national poll, which he further validated with his four-pin effort, all of which took just a tick of 4 1/2 minutes in total.

“I can tell you with confidence (Dillan) has had one of the most dominating careers ever with over ninety percent of his victories coming by pin,” said Cumbee. “Our program will always be remembered as the team that Dillan Johnson wrestled for, and I think that is just awesome.”

Hinsdale Central senior Marko Ivanisevic (41-3) twice a fifth place state medal winner would earn a well deserved second place trophy after going past No. 4 Wyatt Schmitt (Joliet West) then 2023 runner-up Jonathan Rulo (Belleville East) to advance into his final with Johnson.

Ivanisevic joins the Allen brothers (Brian and Jack), Juwann Edmonds, and Cody Tavoso as three-time state medal winners after collecting the 36th state medal in program history.

Tavoso, fourth here a year ago, is now wrestling at Princeton University.

William Cole (Round Lake, 45-3, fourth) earned his first state medal ever, as 

did Tyler Fortis (Maine South, 44-6) who beat Asai Hernandez (40-10) for fifth place. All three will be back next season.

Class 3A Championship matches

3A 106 – Caleb Noble (Warren Township) 42-3, Fr. over Rocco Cassioppi (Hononegah) 43-4, Fr. (Dec 6-5)

3A 113 – Nicholas Garcia (Marmion Academy) 45-7, So. over Dom Munaretto (St. Charles East) 47-3, So. (Dec 4-2)

3A 120 – Teddy Flores (Maine South) 48-1, Sr. over Jason Hampton (Joliet Catholic Academy) 33-16, So. (Dec 6-5)

3A 126 – Seth Mendoza (Mount Carmel) 42-2, Jr. over Michael Esteban (Marist) 35-9, Jr. (MD 13-5)

3A 132 – Ben Davino (St. Charles East) 50-0, Sr. over Thomas Silva (Hononegah) 28-5, Jr. (TF 3:35 20-5)

3A 138 – Zach Stewart (Marmion Academy) 30-8, So. over Justin Wardlow (Lockport Township) 42-7, So. (Dec 6-3)

3A 144 – Jayden Colon (St. Charles East) 41-5, Sr. over Evan Gosz (Fremd) 37-1, Jr. (MD 14-5)

3A 150 – Will Denny (Marist) 42-4, Jr. over Rhenzo Augusto (Barrington) 41-6, Sr. (MD 15-7)

3A 157 – Aaron Stewart (Warren Township) 43-2, So. over Edmund Enright (Mount Carmel) 39-4, Sr. (Dec 5-2)

3A 165 – Collin Carrigan (Glenbard West) 46-1, Sr. over Gunnar Garelli (Lyons Township) 47-3, Sr. (TB-1 6-5)

3A 175 – Colin Kelly (Mount Carmel) 43-1, Sr. over Ricky Ericksen (Marist) 31-11, Jr. (TF 2:41 16-1)

3A 190 – Jaxon Penovich (Prospect) 46-3, So. over Quinn Herbert (Loyola Academy) 32-9, Sr. (MD 13-5)

3A 215 – Kai Calcutt (Loyola Academy) 31-4, So. over Joseph Favia (Marmion Academy) 37-7, So. (SV 3-1)

3A 285 – Dillan Johnson (Joliet Catholic Academy) 39-1, Sr. over Marko Ivanisevic (Hinsdale Central) 40-3, Sr. (Fall 1:58)

Class 3A Third Place matches

3A 106 – Rocco Hayes (Carl Sandburg) 49-2, Jr. over Jamiel Castleberry (Proviso West) 33-3, Fr. (Dec 3-1)

3A 113 – Bruno Cassioppi (Hononegah) 38-5, Fr. over Maddox Garbis (Plainfield North) 44-5, Jr. (MD 10-0)

3A 120 – Ino Garcia (Batavia) 28-6, Sr. over Brady Phelps (Schaumburg) 25-4, Jr. (Dec 12-6)

3A 126 – Abdullokh Khakimov (Hersey) 34-7, Sr. over Christian Chavez (Glenbard North) 39-6, Sr. (Dec 3-2)

3A 132 – Maksim Mukhamedaliyev (Hersey) 36-4, Jr. over Evan Stanley (Mount Carmel) 37-7, Fr. (MD 13-4)

3A 138 – Donavon Allen (Marist) 35-7, Jr. over Ryan Hinger (Carl Sandburg) 44-6, Jr. (TB-1 5-4)

3A 144 – Carson Weber (Joliet West) 42-2, Jr. over Aidan Huck (Batavia) 43-7, Sr. (MD 10-2)

3A 150 – Gavin Connolly (St. Charles East) 41-11, Sr. over Dominic Serio (West Aurora) 33-4, Jr. (Dec 3-1)

3A 157 – Brody Sendele (Hononegah) 47-3, Fr. over Noah Quintana (West Aurora) 31-8, Sr. (Dec 9-2)

3A 165 – Owen Uppinghouse (Quincy Senior) 56-1, Sr. over Anthony Gutierrez (St. Charles East) 38-12, Jr. (Dec 7-4)

3A 175 – Brody Murray (St. Charles East) 43-9, Sr. over Matt Kubas (Libertyville) 39-5, Sr. (Fall 5:47)

3A 190 – Rylan Breen (Mount Carmel) 31-9, Sr. over Matt Lapacek (Downers Grove South) 29-6, Sr. (TF 6:00 17-1)

3A 215 – Ben Alvarez (Yorkville) 47-6, Sr. over Owen McGrory (Libertyville) 45-5, Sr. (Dec 8-4)

3A 285 – Jonathan Rulo (Belleville East) 36-1, So. over William Cole (Round Lake) 45-3, Jr. (Fall 2:00)

Class 3A Fifth Place matches

3A 106 – Caden Correll (Normal Community) 39-7, Jr. over Kaleb Pratt (Barrington) 36-14, Fr. (MD 21-7)

3A 113 – Max Cumbee (Joliet Catholic Academy) 33-16, Fr. over Justin Williamson (Mount Carmel) 32-12, Fr. (SV-1 6-4)

3A 120 – Kalani Khiev (Glenbard North) 37-8, Jr. over Luke Berktold (Libertyville) 36-9, Sr. (Dec 8-2)

3A 126 – Grant Madl (Elk Grove) 37-5, Sr. over Max Siegel (Andrew) 43-9, Sr. (Dec 4-0)

3A 132 – Zack Parisi (York) 50-5, Sr. over Damian Valdez (Addison Trail) 34-13, Sr. (Fall 3:30)

3A 138 – Luke Siwinski (Lincoln-Way West) 32-15, Jr. over Damian Resendez (Mount Carmel) 23-16, Sr. (Fall 1:25)

3A 144 – RaMez Watson (Pekin) 38-6, Sr. over Ashton Hobson (Marmion Academy) 39-11, So. (Dec 4-2)

3A 150 – Jack Ferguson (Yorkville) 44-12, Jr. over David Ogunsanya (Oak Park and River Forest) 37-11, So. (Dec 3-1)

3A 157 – Luke Hamiti (Joliet Catholic Academy) 35-19, So. over Ryder Janeczko (Yorkville) 23-12, Jr. (Dec 8-1)

3A 165 – Jacob Luce (DeKalb) 44-4, Sr. over Max Corral (Joliet Catholic Academy) 33-18, Sr. (MD 11-2)

3A 175 – Luke Zook (Yorkville) 48-6, Jr. over AJ Mancilla (Bradley-Bourbonnais) 44-8, Sr. (Dec 5-4)

3A 190 – Luke Chrisse (Yorkville) 36-17, Jr. over Nico Ronchetti (Joliet Catholic Academy) 34-12, Jr. (Dec 3-1)

3A 215 – Cooper Caraway (Normal Community) 46-5, Sr. over Nicolas Besteiro (Naperville Central) 29-8, Sr. (Dec 3-1)

3A 285 – Tyler Fortis (Maine South) 44-6, Jr. over Abisai Hernandez (Mundelein) 40-10, Jr. (Dec 10-3)

Revenge rules at Class 2A individual state finals

By Patrick Z. McGavin for the IWCOA

Thirteen was the operative and magic number for the Class 2A Individual State Championships here at State Farm Arena.

Out of the 28 wrestlers who made up the championship bracket, 13 had the fortune of being there at least once previously. That figure was far from unlucky.

Several were making a double encore.

Winning four consecutive state matches requires a bit of everything—skill, luck, timing, opportunity and momentum. The past is never entirely a prelude. Former results provide a context but never a clear window of how events are going to play out.

With Joliet Catholic moving up to Class 3A, that also opened up the field, especially at heavyweight, where three-time defending state champion Dillan Johnson was no longer a wrecking ball.

In the end, the 14 state championships were divided among 11 schools: Montini and IC Catholic Prep, who will wrestle in the team dual sectional Tuesday, had three finalists and two individual state champions.

Rock Island matched their total with three finalists, and two state champions. Washington, the defending dual state team champions, was the only other program that had multiple finalists with two.

Past success did not always translate. The season is likely to be remembered as the revenge campaign as multiple second-place finishers from a year ago made the leap to the top of the podium.

For a deeper analysis, please read the following.

Here are the Class 2A state champions in the order of the random draw

132 – Ty Edwards, Yorkville Christian

The Mustangs’ senior upended the expected order with a stunning 11-4 decision over previously undefeated and defending state champion Gauge Shipp of Galesburg in the championship match.

He also proved the past is not always an accurate predictor.

In a rematch from the sectional, Edwards knew he could not go down the same path after losing by a 13-4 major decision.

“I never let him come after me, and dictate the pace the way he did last week,” he said.

Edwards (47-3) was a two-time state finalist in Class 1A. Last year he lost a heartbreaking final in sudden victory against Auburn’s three-time state champion Anthony Ruzic in the 120-pound state championship.

From the start Edwards was the quicker, more explosive and dynamic wrestler who posted two first-period takedowns for the crucial 4-1 advantage.

Getting the first takedown made me realize that I was in a great position, and I just had to keep going and keep pushing it and try to break him,” he said.

Down 7-1 at the start of the third period, Shipp (44-1) made one last gasp with a reversal. It proved short-lived as Edwards quickly countered with his own reversal.

“I didn’t really think about it too much,” Edwards said. “I knew I had to keep wrestling my match no matter what. I couldn’t let anything get to my head. I had to keep pushing.”

After winning at 138 pounds last season, Shipp was overwhelmed, and suffered an apparent lower body injury toward the end.

After posting a technical fall and two major decisions in reaching the final, Shipp met his equal.

“It means a lot,” Edwards said. “You train hard, and it brought me a title, and I’m grateful for that.”

In the third-place match, Montini’s Kameron Luif defeated Rockford East’s Donald Cannon 7-2, and IC Catholic Prep’s Omar Samayoa posted the 10-2 major over Antioch’s Edgar Albino for fifth place.

138 – Wyatt Medlin, Washington

The Panthers’ sophomore emerged as the newest star with his convincing 10-3 decision over Mount Vernon’s Dillon White in the championship match.

Medlin (45-4) had a fantastic state series with victories by technical fall, major decision, and a fall in the semifinal round. He finished third at 126 pounds last season.

Medlin had two first-period takedowns against White for the 4-1 advantage. His reversal at the start of the second period pushed his advantage out to 6-1.

White (40-4) never seriously challenged him.

“I wrestled him earlier in the season, and maybe showcased my skills a little better,” Medlin said. “I was glad I could get the job done.”

His burst combined with his physical and dynamic style proved too difficult and demanding.

“I like to wrestle super aggressive, super high paced,” Medlin said. “I like to call it controlled chaos.”

He creates his own havoc and breakdown. White was the final recipient of that punishing style.

“Everyone can say they can handle pressure until there’s about thousands of people sitting up here,” Medlin said. “Pushing the pace throughout the whole match, it makes your mindset feel super confident.”

For third place, IC Catholic Prep’s Bryson Spaulding posted the 2-0 decision over Glenwood’s John Ben Maduena, and Deerfield’s Jordan Rasof posted the fall over Oak Forest’s Austin Perez on the fifth-place mat.

144 – Sean Larkin, St. Rita

The Mustangs’ Sean Larkin trailed 6-1 after one period but pulled off the improbable comeback, with the 9-7 victory over Washington’s Peyton Cox on a takedown with :24 seconds remaining.

“I dreamed of this every day, and I just wanted it,” Larkin (22-2)  said. “The dedication I’ve been going through, going to double practices every day, and always in the wrestling room.”

Cox (26-2) suffered his second consecutive finals defeat after he finished second at 126 pounds last season.

Cox appeared to be in control early with two takedowns and back points for the 6-1 lead. Everything changed during an incident-packed second period with a Larkin escape, takedown and two-point near fall.

“Last year after losing in the blood round, I talked to my coaches, and I said I’d do whatever it takes to get on the podium,” Larkin said.

Tied at 6-6 heading into the third period, Cox was issued an escape at the start.

Larkin’s pressure finally wore him down. He created the final tie in the closing moments after Cox was given his second caution warning.

His comeback mirrored his entire season.

“In the second match of the season, I sprained my MCL in my left knee,” Larkin said. “I was out until about Christmas, and I came back slowly. I lost two of my matches right away because I didn’t have the gas tank. Now I’m back to normal.”

For third place, IC Catholic Prep’s Patrick Mullen captured the decision over Deerfield’s Mark Martinez, and St. Patrick’s Nikolas Karamaniolas had the sudden victory decision over Mattoon’s Korbin Bateman on the fifth-place mat.

150 – David Mayora, Montini

Broncos senior David Mayora stormed through the lower bracket and prevailed over IC Catholic Prep’s Brody Kelly 3-2 in the championship match.

Mayora (38-1) vanquished the bittersweet moments of his 1-0 loss against Aurora Christian’s Taythan Silva in last year’s 152-pound state championship match.

“It means the world to me, not just winning state, but to be able to do it for my family,” Mayora said. 

Mayora scored the only offensive points with a takedown in the first period.

“I felt like if I pushed the pace, nobody would be able to stop me,” he said. “Being able to go out there, and get that first takedown, I knew that nobody was going to be able to stop me or take the match away.”

A transfer from Marmion, Kelly (33-8) took out top-seeded Zachary Montez of Geneseo in the quarterfinal round.

Kelly trailed 3-1 at the start of the third period, and engineered his own escape with 1:12 remaining.

Mayora kept him off his body and out of vulnerable moments to secure the victory. The two are likely to match up again in the team dual sectional.

Mayora’s only loss this season was against Class 3A state champion Will Denny of Marist.

In the third-place match, Montez registered the decision over Highland’s Ryson Rakers, and Lemont’s Noah O’Connor earned the decision over Wauconda’s Cole Porter on the fifth-place mat. 

157 – Bryce Griffin, Civic Memorial

Eagles senior Bryce Griffin enjoyed his moment with the 5-1 victory over Lake Forest’s Seth Digby in the championship match.

“I felt like I had it from the start,” he said.

Griffin (49-2) finished second at 145 pounds last season. Up 2-0 with his first period takedown, he took control with an escape and another takedown during the pivotal second period.

Griffin put together an imposing tournament run with a fall, 9-2 decision, and a major decision during the semifinal.

Despite the loss, Digby (41-3) was superb with two first period falls and a major decision in reaching his first final.

Montini’s Harrison Konder posted the decision over Normal West’s Evan Willock for third place, and Wauconda’s Nicholas Cheshier earned the manor over St. Patrick’s Van Grasser on the fifth-place mat.

165 – Nick Mueller, Dunlap

Eagles senior Nicke Mueller got defensive for his 2-1 victory over Vernon Hills’ Ilia Dvoriannikov in the championship match.

After finishing second at 160 pounds last season, Mueller (43-3) earned his victory lap. He engineered a reversal with 1:44 remaining in the third period for the difference maker.

Mueller rode out the tenacious and skilled Dvoriannikov (32-7) for his crowning achievement.

His 6-4 decision over IC Catholic Prep’s top-seeded Joe Gliatta in the quarterfinal round paved the way for his victory.

Dvoriannikov also pulled out some surprises, knocking out the higher seeded Maddox Kirts of Bloomington in the semifinal round.

For third place, Gliatta posted the decision over Lincoln’s Dawson McConnell, and Washington’s Cael Miller earned the sudden victory over Kirts on the fifth-place mat.

175 – Matty Jens, Grayslake Central

The Rams’ superstar confirmed his standing as a generational talent with his commanding 16-1 technical fall victory over Rock Island’s Amare Overton in the championship match.

Jens (41-1) had three technical falls and a major decision in smashing the opposition. He was also the only Class 2A defending champion to win consecutive titles.

Jens won the 182-pound state championship last season, and finished state runner-up as a sophomore two years ago.

“It’s awesome,” Jens said. “I love it. The atmosphere is the best ever. I was walking in the room today, the last two years I kept my headphones on, and I made a point of taking them off this year. 

“This really is the coolest thing I’ve ever done.”

Up 4-0 to start the second period, Jens utilized a takedown and two separate three-point near falls for the dominating 12-1 lead.

The taller Overton (42-3) had the reach advantage. It hardly mattered.

“I don’t think it was a matter of countering him,” Jens said. “It was more about going out there, and wrestling how I like to wrestle, like pulling and snapping. With that, people can’t really wrestle very long. I wore him out.”

Washington’s Zane Hulet secured the decision over Danville’s Phillip Shaw IV for third place, and Woodstock North’s Kaden Combs had the fall over Brother Rice’s Dan Costello on the fifth-place mat.

190 – Andrew Marquez, Rock Island

Rocks senior Andrew Marquez reached the pinnacle with the 9-2 victory over Crystal Lake Central’s Cayden Parks in the championship match.

Marquez (43-2) finished second at 195 pounds last season.

He took charge with two first period takedowns and expanded his advantage to 7-2 in the second period with a takedown and back points.

“I just knew I had to come at him,” Marquez said. “I knew he was a thrower, and I tried to make sure I kept my elbows in, and stayed attached.”

His training partner, Amare Overton, was the finalist at 175 pounds.

“We train hard every single day, and make sure that we get better. He beats me up some days, and I beat him up some days.”

Parks (41-7) finished fourth at 170 pounds last season.

He defeated the higher-seeded Foley Calcagno of IC Catholic Prep in the quarterfinals.

For third place, Foley Calcagno earned the decision over Washington’s Josh Hoffer, and Glenwood’s Max Wiezorek posted the decision over Notre Dame’s Jim Amatore on the fifth-place mat.

215 – Michael Calcagno, IC Catholic Prep

The Knights’ senior pinned his way to the championship with his dominant victory over Rochelle’s Kaiden Morris in the championship match.

Up 2-0 to start the second period, Calcagno (51-4) reversed Morris and caught him in a cradle for the devastating move at the 2:12 mark.

“I just really like that move,” he said. “I feel like it’s always there. I was looking for it.”

Calcagno was the most dominant wrestler in the class with three first period falls en route to the championship match.

“I don’t know how to describe my style,” he said. “I just think it’s my own style, and I don’t think anybody else does it.”

With two first period falls through the state preliminary rounds, Morris (41-4) was seemingly up the challenge.

But Calcagno was at a different level in earning his second career state championship. He won two years ago before sitting out his entire junior year due to an injury.

“It’s almost as good as the first time,” he said. 

For third place, Jacksonville’s Oliver Cooley had the decision over Prairie Ridge’s John Fallaw, and Sycamore’s Gable Carrick secured the major over Highland’s Ashton Zobrist on the fifth-place mat.

285 – Jack Barnhart, Centennial

Chargers senior Jack Barnhart crowned an undefeated season with the 4-1 victory over previously unbeaten Andy Burburija of Crystal Lake South in the championship match.

After finishing sixth at 220 pounds last year, Barnhart (44-0) secured the victory with a takedown in the closing seconds.

“I try to be more of a mobile heavyweight,” he said. “It was tougher at the beginning because he had some weight on me.

“I knew I had to get him moving, and get him tired. I got a shot on him in the first period, and almost got him.”

An earlier stalling warning swung the tide of the match.

Burburija (35-1) finished fourth at heavyweight last year. He took the second-period 1-0 lead, but late in the period he was issued his second stalling call, tying the match at 1-1.

“I knew he had the earlier stalling, and I just wanted to push the pace,” Barnhart said.

Barnhart took his first lead with his own escape at the 1:52 mark of the third period.

“I knew I could get up from the bottom,” he said. “I didn’t want to waste energy trying to tire him out.”

For third place, Rockford East’s Lee Smith posted the major over East Peoria’s Jose Del Toro, and Lemont’s Alex Pasquale had the fall over Notre Dame’s Scott Cook on the fifth-place mat. 

106 – Allen Woo, Montini

Broncos’ first-year standout Allen Woo took the top honors with his 7-4 decision over Wauconda’s Gavin Rockey in the championship match.

Up 3-1 to start the third period, Woo (21-3) fought off a Rockey reversal with an escape and his second takedown of the match.

“I train working on the single leg everyday, and that’s my go to move,” Woo said. “He was definitely getting tired. I took advantage of that, and I was ready.”

Woo credited his older brother Paul, who wrestles at Ohio University, for his influence.

“He taught me everything,” he said. “He taught me how to wrestle. He got me into the sport.”

Rockey (41-10) suffered his second consecutive state finals lost.

For third place, St. Rita’s Jack Hogan posted the decision over Grayslake Central’s Vince DeMarco, and St. Patrick’s Daniel Goodwin earned the decision over Streator’s Nicholas Pollett on the fifth-place mat.

113 – Truth Vesey, Rock Island

Rock Island senior Truth Vesey earned the Rocks’ second individual state title with the commanding 11-3 major decision over Riverside-Brookfield’s Edgar Mosquera.

After finishing fifth at 113 pounds last year, Vesey went into attack mode with two takedowns and a near fall for the 7-1 first period lead.

“With my style and how I wrestle, I have to give a lot of credit to my coaches,” he said. “This is how we train every single day. The sole formula, this is how we’ve done it. We’ve had past champions do the same thing. I followed that formula.”

Mosquera (41-7) was one of the bright surprises, a relatively unheralded performer who impressed with his ability to stake out tight decisions through the first three rounds.

Vesey finished with a fall, technical fall and a decision en route to the title match. He was also the third of the Rocks’ three state finalists to perform. 

“It’s crazy,” he said. “It just shows that you’re home grown. We all come from the same place, and the same struggles. It just feels awesome.”

Montini’s Mikey Malizzio earned the decision over Notre Dame’s John Sheehy for third place, and Cary-Grove’s Hunter Lenz won by medical forfeit over Yorkville Christian’s Aiden Larsen on the fifth-place mat.

120 – Deven Casey, IC Catholic Prep

Two-time state placer Deven Casey stunned two-time defending state champion Drew Davis of Glenwood 3-0 in the championship match.

A transfer from Aurora Christian who had two third-place state finishes, Casey (34-4) took to heart his previous results against the previously unbeaten Davis (42-1).

“I’ve lost to him three times, so I knew what I was getting myself into,” Casey said. “Those other matches were in the past. I had to go out there, and put everything on the mat.”

After a scoreless opening frame, Casey rode out Davis the entirety of the second period. Casey secured the early third period escape, and closed out the match with a stunning late takedown.

“I train so hard that I know if I’m tired, the other guy I’m going against is even more exhausted,” Casey said. “I had a lot of confidence. I knew I had to keep on pushing.”

Antioch’s Gavin Hanrahan earned the decision over Galesburg’s Rocky Almendarez for third place, and Kaneland’s Kamron Scholl captured the decision over Washignton’s Noah Woods for fifth place.

126 – Colby Crouch, Triad

Three-time finalist Colby Crouch went out in grand style with an exhilarating 5-3 decision over Montini’s Josh Vazquez in the championship.

Crouch (40-1) knew how hard it is to defend a state championship; after winning the 120-pound state championship two years ago, he lost the 126-pound championship last season.

“I’ve been on the other side of the scoreboard coming off an injury and losing in the finals,” he said. “It just put that much more into me to win it this year.”

A transfer from Aurora Christian, Vazquez (42-5) finished second at 120 pounds last year.

The back and forth dance between the two was a thing of beauty. After a scoreless first period, Casey held the 1-0 lead heading into the final frame.

After knotting the score at 1-1, Crouch made his move late in the match with a dazzling four-point takedown and near fall.

“Honestly I was waiting for the clock to go down even further, assuming I was going to take him down, to give him less time,” Crouch said. 

Vazquez pulled off the reversal but ran out of time trying to turn Crouch.

Civic Memorial’s Caleb Scott earned the fall over Rock Island’s Daniel McGhee for third place, and Rochelle’s Xavier Villalobos secured the decision over Providence’s Tommy Banas on the fifth-place mat.

Class 2A Championship matches

2A 106 – Allen Woo (Montini Catholic) 21-3, Fr. over Gavin Rockey (Wauconda) 41-10, Jr. (Dec 7-4)
2A 113 – Truth Vesey (Rock Island) 37-4, Sr. over Edgar Mosquera (Riverside-Brookfield) 41-7, Jr. (MD 11-3)
2A 120 – Deven Casey (IC Catholic Prep) 34-4, Jr. over Drew Davis (Glenwood) 42-1, Sr. (Dec 3-0)
2A 126 – Colby Crouch (Triad) 40-1, Sr. over Josh Vazquez (Montini Catholic) 42-5, Jr. (Dec 5-3)
2A 132  – Ty Edwards (Yorkville Christian) 47-2, Sr. over Gauge Shipp (Galesburg) 44-1, Sr. (Dec 11-4)
2A 138 – Wyatt Medlin (Washington) 45-4, So. over Dillon White (Mt. Vernon) 40-4, Jr. (Dec 10-3)
2A 144 – Sean Larkin (St. Rita) 22-2, Sr. over Peyton Cox (Washington) 26-2, Jr. (Dec 9-7)
2A 150 – David Mayora (Montini Catholic) 38-1, Sr. over Brody Kelly (IC Catholic Prep) 33-8, So. (Dec 3-2)
2A 157 – Bryce Griffin (Civic Memorial) 49-2, Sr. over Seth Digby (Lake Forest) 41-3, Sr. (Dec 5-1)
2A 165 – Nick Mueller (Dunlap) 43-3, Sr. over Ilia Dvoriannikov (Vernon Hills) 32-7, So. (Dec 4-2)
2A 175 – Matty Jens (Grayslake Central) 41-1, Sr. over Amare Overton (Rock Island) 42-3, Sr. (TF 4:17 16-1)
2A 190 – Andrew Marquez (Rock Island) 43-2, Sr. over Cayden Parks (Crystal Lake Central) 41-7, Jr. (Dec 9-2)
2A 215 – Michael Calcagno (IC Catholic Prep) 51-4, Sr. over Kaiden Morris (Rochelle) 41-4, Jr. (Fall 2:12)
2A 285 – Jack Barnhart (Centennial) 44-0, Sr. over Andy Burburija (Crystal Lake South) 35-1, Sr. (Dec 4-1)

Class 2A Third Place matches

2A 106 – Jack Hogan (St. Rita) 38-6, So. over Vince DeMarco (Grayslake Central) 45-9, Fr. (Dec 10-4)
2A 113 – Mikey Malizzio (Montini Catholic) 34-6, Fr. over John Sheehy (Niles Notre Dame) 42-12, Jr. (Dec 4-2)
2A 120 – Gavin Hanrahan (Antioch) 41-8, Jr. over Rocky Almendarez (Galesburg) 42-3, Sr. (Dec 6-2)
2A 126 – Caleb Scott (Civic Memorial) 32-8, Sr. over Daniel McGhee (Rock Island) 43-4, Sr. (Fall 3:33)
2A 132 – Kam Luif (Montini Catholic) 38-8, So. over Donald Cannon (Rockford East) 37-3, Jr. (Dec 7-2)
2A 138 – Bryson Spaulding (IC Catholic Prep) 35-11, Sr. over John Ben Maduena (Glenwood) 34-7, Sr. (Dec 2-0)
2A 144 – Pat Mullen (IC Catholic Prep) 27-9, Sr. over Mark Martinez (Deerfield) 32-5, Sr. (Dec 8-4)
2A 150 – Zachary Montez (Geneseo) 42-3, Jr. over Tyson Rakers (Highland) 44-6, Jr. (Dec 5-3)
2A 157 – Harrison Konder (Montini Catholic) 16-3, Sr. over Evan Willock (Normal West) 39-4, Sr. (Dec 5-0)

2A 165 – Joe Gliatta (IC Catholic Prep) 42-7, Sr. over Dawson McConnell (Lincoln) 44-8, Jr. (Dec 10-3)
2A 175 – Zane Hulet (Washington) 36-8, Sr. over Phillip Shaw IV (Danville) 36-3, Sr. (Dec 12-7)
2A 190 – Foley Calcagno (IC Catholic Prep) 37-7, So. over Josh Hoffer (Washington) 35-12, So. (Dec 3-2)
2A 215 – Oliver Cooley (Jacksonville) 47-5, Sr. over John Fallaw (Prairie Ridge) 31-13, Sr. (Dec 4-1)
2A 285 – Lee Smith (Rockford East) 42-6, Sr. over Jose Del Toro (East Peoria) 30-9, Jr. (MD 11-0)

Class 2A Fifth Place matches

2A 106 – Daniel Goodwin (St. Patrick) 40-11, So. over Nicholas Pollett (Streator Township) 43-7, Sr. (Dec 5-4)
2A 113 – Hunter Lenz (Cary-Grove) 18-6, So. over Aiden Larsen (Yorkville Christian) 38-5, Jr. (M. For.)
2A 120 – Kamron Scholl (Kaneland) 48-3, Sr. over Noah Woods (Washington) 40-16, Jr. (Dec 3-2)
2A 126 – Xavier Villalobos (Rochelle) 43-3, Jr. over Tommy Banas (Providence Catholic) 43-10, Fr. (Dec 6-2)
2A 132 – Omar Samayoa (IC Catholic Prep) 29-17, Sr. over Edgar Albino (Antioch) 40-7, Sr. (MD 10-2)
2A 138 – Jordan Rasof (Deerfield) 40-9, Jr. over Austin Perez (Oak Forest) 41-6, So. (Fall 5:19)
2A 144 – Nikolas Karamaniolas (St. Patrick) 34-7, Sr. over Korbin Bateman (Mattoon) 44-3, Sr. (SV-1 4-2)
2A 150 – Noah O`Connor (Lemont) 44-6, Sr. over Cole Porten (Wauconda) 42-11, Sr. (Dec 4-0)
2A 157 – Nicholas Cheshier (Wauconda) 30-7, Sr. over Van Grasser (St. Patrick) 39-17, So. (MD 11-3)
2A 165 – Cael Miller (Washington) 40-12, Sr. over Maddox Kirts (Bloomington) 38-10, Sr. (SV-1 7-5)
2A 175 – Kaden Combs (Woodstock North) 41-5, Sr. over Dan Costello (Brother Rice) 38-10, Fr. (Fall 3:14)
2A 190 – Max Wiezorek (Glenwood)) 50-6, Jr. over Jim Amatore (Niles Notre Dame) 36-10, Sr. (Dec 9-6)
2A 215 – Gable Carrick (Sycamore) 35-13, Sr. over Ashton Zobrist (Highland) 41-13, Jr. (MD 12-2)
2A 285 – Alex Pasquale (Lemont) 33-5, Sr. over Scott Cook (Niles Notre Dame) 39-11, Jr. (Fall 3:14)