Thanks in large part to having six individual champions, the Highland wrestling team was able to break Northmor’s hold over the KMAC crown at Saturday’s league wrestling meet.
In the event, which was hosted by Cardington, the Scots finished with 268.5 points. Northmor had four champions and finished second with 234.5. Mount Gilead was third with 111 points and added one champion, while Cardington scored four points on the day in placing ninth. The KMAC championships included the eight KMAC schools, as well as Elgin.
“They wrestled well,” said Highland coach Adam Gilmore of his team. “We had some good match-ups with really good kids.”
The meet was held with a round-robin format, with five rounds of competition at most weight classes. The one exception was 195 pounds, where there were three round-robin rounds followed by a double-elimination tournament for the two top finishers in each of two pools. The day’s final round proved to be particularly lucrative for Highland, as the Scots won nearly all of their matches and were able to turn a tiny deficit into their 34-point win.
“We had some big ones early that last round,” said Gilmore. “They got it done.”
Among those big-match winners for Highland was sophomore Kaden Miller at 126 pounds, who earned a hard-fought 3-1 overtime decision over Northmor’s Marcus Cortez. Being able to claim a league trophy was the perfect cap to his day, which included two wins in as many matches.
“It’s what we worked on all season,” said Miller. “It’s the best feeling there is. We haven’t won one in years. Northmor’s beat us the last seven years, so it’s an amazing feeling.”
The Scots dominated the lower weights, as Matthew Scarbury won at 106 pounds, Caleb Wetzel was first at 113, Gavin DeAngelo claimed the 120-pound title and Miller won at 126. Also, Cody Matthews took first at 160 and Triston Hinkle won at 195. To claim his championship, Hinkle had to win in the finals of the four-man tournament over Dyer Williams of East Knox, who had beaten him in the round-robin portion.
Bryce Schott claimed second place at 132 pounds for the Scots, as did Johnny Stevens at 145, Christian Miller at 152 and Eli Grandstaff at 170. Andy Baker came in third place at 138, while Landon Pedigo was third at 220. Damien Daniel took fourth at 145 and Chandler Stevens had that same placement at 182 pounds.
Northmor won four weight classes. Gavin Ramos took first place at 132 pounds, as did Austin Amens at 145, Niko Christo at 152 and Conor Becker at 182.
Dale Brocwell finished second at 113 pounds, as did Cortez at 126, Trenton Ramos at 138, Brandon Planey at 220 and Hunter Brookover at 285.. Gavin Whited placed third at 195. At 160, Dylan Amens was fifth and Bohdi Workman claimed sixth.
For Mount Gilead, Andy Williamson picked up first place at 170 pounds to highlight his team’s effort.
Cory Fricke came in second place at 120 pounds, Finishing third were Tyler Marriott (113), Jesus Rubio (152), Owen Blanton (160) and Garrett George (182). Ben Whitt was fourth at 132. Carter Goodrich finished fifth at 145. Justin Dendinger competed at 195 pounds.
Cardington had a pair of athletes compete in the meet. Ryan Drury finished fourth at 138 pounds, while Kaden Burton participated at 195 pounds.
Rob Hamilton can be reached at 419-946-3010, ext. 1807. Connect with him on Twitter at @SportsMCS