Four Morrow County wrestlers will be competing in this weekend’s state wrestling meets.
Two Northmor athletes and one from Mount Gilead will take part in the Division III meet hosted by Marion Harding High School this Saturday and Sunday, while one from Highland will participate in the Division II state meet, which will be hosted by the Scots on the same two days.
Northmor’s Niko Christo took third place at 152 pounds at Coshocton High School, while teammate Marcus Cortez was fourth at 132. Mount Gilead’s Andy Williamson was third at 182 pounds to highlight his team’s performance. In Division II, Cody Matthews took third for Highland at 152 pounds, while competing in the district hosted by Wilmington High School.
Christo (24-7) picked up four wins in five matches to place third for the Golden Knights. He claimed a pin over Nathan Brown of Bidwell River Valley in his first match and followed that up with a 2-0 decision over Devon Watkins of Sandy Valley. After losing in the semis, he went to the consolation bracket and took a 12-3 major decision over Ethan Waggoner of Richmond Edison. In the battle for third, he won his rematch with Watkins by a 4-2 score.
Christo will open the state meet with a match against senior Nick Skye of Mogadore (26-5).
In finishing fourth, Cortez (29-9) opened his tournament with a pair of wins. The junior pinned Dawson Vich of Harrison Central in 3:44 and then put the shoulders of Mavrick Smith of Huntington to the mat in 41 seconds. He would fall in the semifinals, though, but recovered to punch his ticket to the state meet by edging Skylar Wolf of Pleasant in overtime by a 9-7 count. Cortez was then pinned in the second period in the third-place match.
In the first round of the state meet, Cortez will face junior Camron Lacure (31-2) of Troy Christian.
C.J. Stoney (23-13) finished sixth for the Golden Knights at 120 pounds. The sophomore won his first match by decision over Tommy Russell of Sandy Valley, but would lose by major decision in the quarterfinals. He clinched a place by winning his first two consolation matches. However, he would fall by pin in the go-to-state bout and then suffered another loss in the battle for fifth place to see his season end.
Northmor freshman Cohan Hurst (8-23) competed at 106 pounds as a district alternate. He fell by pinfall in both of his matches at Coshocton. Junior Gavin Whited (25-13) competed at 220 pounds, but couldn’t get into the win column in his two matches.
Williamson’s (48-1) third-place finish highlighted the Mount Gilead effort. After pinning Clayton Downs of Garaway in 45 seconds to open the tournament, the senior suffered his first loss of the season by a 7-3 count to Jack Hillyer of Alexander. He’d recover to win four straight matches in the consolation bracket to advance to the state meet. Three of those wins were by pin, including a fall in 2:28 over Gene Fitzpatrick of Fredericktown in the consolation finals.
In his first-round match at the state meet, Williamson will go up against fellow senior Lane Mefford (32-3) of Indian Lake.
Senior Jesus Rubio (35-15) placed sixth as a senior for MG. He won his first match by 12-4 major decision against Logan Postlethwait of Tuscarawas Valley, but lost by pin in the quarterfinals. Rubio earned a pair of pins in the consolation bracket to clinch a place, but a loss via pin and a 6-4 defeat to Chase Goff of Martins Ferry resulted in him finishing sixth.
Sophomore Garrett George (24-19) came one match away from placing. After losing his first match, he won a pair of consolation matches, both by pin. However he couldn’t make it three in a row, as Jordan Sanders of Newcomerstown by a 5-2 count.
Junior Isaiah Fisher (31-15) split his four matches at districts to finish one match shy of placing. After pinning Axle Saling of Shenandoah in the first round, he lost by pin in the quarterfinals. While he’d recover to earn a pinfall in his first consolation match, he fell in his second.
Indian senior Josh Sullivan (28-18) lost his two district bouts, both by decision. He fell 9-6 in the opening round and then suffered a 6-2 loss in his consolation match.
In placing third at 152 pounds, Matthews (44-4) earned four pins. After topping Jacob Graf in 1:41, he lost in the quarterfinals. However, he went 4-0 in the consolation bracket, claiming three pins and a decision. In his third-place match, he pinned Nathan Bryan of Wyoming in 1:14.
In the state meet, the junior grappler will open his tournament by facing senior Anthony Trivisonno (37-3) of Lake Catholic.
Junior Kaden Miller (37-13) split four matches at 132 pounds. He lost his first-round match, but picked up a 6-3 decision over Ryan Foster of Ross and a win by default against Drake Battista to come one match away from placing. Unfortunately, he couldn’t get that third win, as he lost by decision to Crae Muzykoski.
Caleb Wetzel (33-14) won one match at 126 as a sophomore. After losing in the first round, he claimed a pin in 4:01 over Andrew Collins of Milton-Union, but lost in his next match to be eliminated.
Junior Eli Grandstaff (39-10) picked up one win at 170 pounds. After losing via decision in the first round, he earned a pin over Taevin Alldred in his first consolation match. However, his season would end after losing a decision to his next opponent.
Also winning one match was senior Triston Hinkle (31-9) at 182 pounds. Hinkle earned a 2-1 decision over Sage Bowman of Eaton in the opening round, but then lost a pair of matches to end his season.
Rob Hamilton can be reached at 419-946-3010, ext. 1807. Connect with him on Twitter at @SportsMCS