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      1075 1

      Tallinn is beautiful in August

      More people from Indiana have Googled Estonia over the past few days than ever before and with good reason. After this weekend Indiana will have four representatives at the Junior World Championships in Tallinn, Estonia. For those of you that want a little geography lesson, Tallinn is the largest city and capital of Estonia. Estonia is a country that has about 1.3 million people and is about half the size of Indiana. It is a very historical city and sits on the Baltic Sea.  Wikipedia has a lot of great information Tallinn and Estonia, just click here for that info.
      Now onto the wrestling part, which is why you’re here. Last week Alara Boyd was dominant in her quest to make her first Junior World Team at Women’s Nationals in Texas. After medaling twice as a cadet she is looking for her third world medal in as many tries this year.
      The men duked it out this weekend in Raleigh this past weekend looking to join Boyd in Tallinn. Lucas Davison had an immense advantage sitting out until the second day already in the best of three finals. Brayton Lee was the top seed in the challenge tournament in an extremely deep weight class. Lastly, Mason Parris decided a couple weeks ago to start training for the event and with his Fargo placement last year was given the three seed. The tournament brackets were small due to a limited number of qualifiers. Most brackets were 8 man or less with a couple that had around 10 competitors.
      Parris’ path to Estonia was quite unique to say the least. Not only was entering the trials a late decision, the top two wrestlers from the Junior Open did not come to the trials. That left the weight wide open as Anthony Cassioppi was considered a big favorite to win the weight.
      Parris had one match on Saturday where he defeated Virginia Tech’s John Borst 7-4. That put him in the best of three finals against Wiconsin’s Trent Hillger with whom he defeated during the NCAA season. In the first match of the best of three series Hillger topped Parris 7-6 after a late flurry of action that almost gave Parris the win. The second an third matches were quite different as Mason go after it early with a tech fall in the second match and a pin in about a minute in the last match.
      Lucas Davison saw North Carolina’s Brandon Whitman in the finals. Whitman was an NCAA qualifier last year for the Tar Heels as a true freshman. Davison dominated the first match 9-0 with a big 8 point first period. In the second match he wrestled a little more conservatively and won 5-0. Not only will Davison have Indiana friends on the Junior World Team, his Wildcat teammate Yahya Thomas is also on the team.
      Brayton Lee had quite the weekend to say the least. Brayton employed quite a unique strategy all weekend long and while it took a few more hairs off his dad Brett’s head it worked out well in the end. He started Friday out with a late tech fall of Justin McCoy who wrestles for Virginia. After that match the drama began. In the challenge bracket semi-finals he faced off with rival Jacori Teemer. They have wrestled three times before and every match was pure pandemonium. This match would be no different. Teemer raced out to a 7-0 lead in the first period on a couple snatch singles and pushout. At the start of the second period something changed…that being Lee broke the ice. He scored 12 straight points to take the lead and ended up winning 12-9.
      In the bracket finals Lee had Peyton Robb who was a redshirt for Nebraska last year. This time Robb raced out to an 8-2 lead late in the first period before rattling of four late points to close the gap to 8-6 at the break. The second period once again was all Lee as he racked up 11 more points to win 17-6.
      Next up for Lee would be Ohio State’s Sammy Sasso who made quick work of him in Vegas. Lee was prepared to not give up a leg lace, but early on may have forgotten about leg defense. Sasso came out hungry and was up 6-0 after the first period. Another early score in the second period it looked like the match would be cut early due to a tech fall. However, Mr. Lee had other plans. He kept the pressure on and started to crack the ice with constant pressure and heavy hands. Lee started with one takedown, then another with a turn, then a pushout and for good measure two more takedowns to eventually break Sasso. The final score was 11-8 after 11 straight points by Lee.
      The final match had a little less drama as you could tell Sasso was still tired both mentally and physically from the first one. Sasso got an early push-out, but Lee rattled off another 8 points to win convincingly 8-1 and earn his trip to Tallinn. On the weekend Lee scored 47 points in the second period while only allowing 7(3 to McCoy and 2 each to Teemer and Sasso).
      This year is the third time we have had multiple representatives in the same age group and style at a World Championships. The two other times were when Angel Escobedo and Reece Humphrey both represented the USA at the University Championships in 2010 and the Senior Championships in 2013. Before this weekend Indiana has had six others qualify for the Junior World Championships: Leroy Vega(1999), Matt Coughlin(2006), Angel Escobedo(2007), Andrew Howe(2009), Jason Tsirtsis(2013), and Stevan Micic(2015). Micic and Howe both brought home bronze medals.
      On the senior side of things three Indiana natives had solid days on the mat. Kayla Miracle fresh off claiming her third straight spot on a U23 team made quick work of Desiree Zavala spending less than two minutes on the mat total in two matches. She pinned Zavala in 1:10 in the first match and almost broke a sweat in a 34 second tech in the second. She clinched a spot in Final X where she will face Mallory Velte in the best of three series for a spot on the senior world team. Last year Velte won the series in three matches and went on to win a bronze medal at the World Championships.
      On the men’s side of things Riley Lefever and Ben Harvey came into the challenge bracket as a 5 and 7 seed respectively. Both exceeded seed expectations and placed 3rd and 4th. For Lefever he lost to Ohio State’s Kollin Moore in his first bout. He beat three-time All-American Tim Dudley in his first consolation match then avenged his loss to Moore for 3rd place.
      Harvey faced Mark Hall first round and dropped that match. He defeated Stacey Davis and Geno Morelli in the consolations before falling to Nick Becker in the 3rd place bout.
      Overall Indiana had a great few days on the mat and will be well represented at the world level. Currently we have five representatives on teams with the cadet teams determined in a couple weeks and both Hildebrandt and Miracle two wins from earning their spots at Final X. Both girls will be at Final X in Lincoln on June 15th.

      3160 17

      History of the State Tournament

      This information was compiled by Dave Holman in his book "Ready Wrestle" and Dick Neal better known as The Ancient Elder.
      “The first Indiana state high school wrestling tournament was held by Indiana University in 1922 under the auspices of the IHSAA. There were 19 wrestlers from 7 schools participating in this first state tournament. The individual champions in each weight class were awarded gold medals and the championship team was awarded a plaque.
      It is interesting to note that from 1922-1935 a regulation high school wrestling match consisted of one eight-minute period with both wrestlers starting in the neutral position on their feet. There was no point system and the winner was determined solely on riding time or by a fall. If a wrestler could gain a takedown, ride his opponent and accumulate the majority of riding time, or if he could pin his opponent, he would be the winner. In the 1935-36 season, a point system and periods were added to make the matches more interesting for spectators.
      From 1922 to 1951, the only IHSAA rules that governed Indiana high school wrestling were the general IHSAA rules that applied to all sports in Indiana, such as eligibility and age requirements. The rules used for the state tournament and for meets during the regular season were the National Intercollegiate Wrestling coaches and enforced as rules by the tournament officials. As the sport of wrestling grew, and as more teams and coaches began to participate in the state tournament, it became harder to enforce these rules. Beginning with the 1951-52 wrestling season, a new set of rules was adopted by the IHSAA for the governing of Indiana high school wrestling. The rules were written jointly by coaches Chauncey McDaniel of Southport High School and Clifford Myers of Bloomington High School. These rules remained in effect until the 1957-58 wrestling season when certain modifications were made. One of these modifications resulted from a controversy over weight loss. Prior to 1957, the so-called "50 percent rule" was in effect. This rule stated that in order to be eligible for the sectional tournament a wrestler must merely wrestle at a certain weight for 50 percent of his matches. At a tournament a boy could wrestle several times and each of his matches would count toward the 50 percent. There 'was basically no restriction on how much weight a wrestler could lose during the season. There was nothing to prevent him from weighing-in at a weight for 50 percent of his matches, then going up to any other weight for the rest of the season, and then dropping back down for the sectional. It was decided that all of this was a misinterpretation of the purpose of the rule, which was to prevent excessive weight loss during the season. The new rules stated that a wrestler must be certified at a certain weight by mid-season. The wrestler could not go down in weight after that date and must weigh-in at that weight at a minimum number of meets during the regular season in order to be eligible for the sectional tournament. The modified rules remained in effect until 1973 when the National Wrestling Federation Rules were written, for which the Indiana rules served as a model.
      From 1922 to 1932 the IHSAA bought the awards and paid for lodging; however, Indiana University actually hosted the tournament. The state tournament created great interest in wrestling and a rapid growth followed. By 1930 there were about 20 teams throughout Indiana. Due to the rapid growth of wrestling in the state, the IHSAA took over the complete sponsorship of the state tournament from 1933 to 1943). During these years the tournament was still hosted by Indiana University. Sadly, during the years of the "Great Depression" and the early years of World War II, many schools dropped their wrestling programs and a steady decline followed.
      From 1944 to 1949, Indiana high school wrestling was at its lowest point and the IHSAA was forced to drop sponsorship of the state tournament. During these years a few of the schools throughout the state still continued to compete. These schools kept the state tournament alive by hosting an invitational tournament each year. The main schools which participated and the years these various schools hosted the tournaments were: Southport in 1944 Crawfordsville in 1945 and 1946; Bloomington in 1947 and 1949; and Lafayette Jeff in 1948.In 1950 the IHSAA once again took over sponsorship of the state tournament, and it continues to do so today. From 1950 to 1959, the tournament was hosted on alternate years-by Bloomington and Lafayette Jeff. From 1960 to 1980 the tournament was hosted by Southport, who at that time had one of the largest high school field houses in Indiana with 7,200 seats. The state tournament finally outgrew even this facility and from 1981 through 1999 the tournament was moved to Market Square Arena in Indianapolis. Again size became an issue and in 2000 the tournament was shifted to Conseco Field house in Indianapolis. 
      From 1922 to 1949, the tournament was held over one weekend. During these early years of the state tournament, a school could enter an entire team or just a few individuals. All of the wrestlers entered in a certain weight class were paired up by a "blind draw". Since it was possible for the two best wrestlers to meet in the first round, it was made a double elimination tournament with full wrestle-backs. Wrestle-backs were actually used from 1922 to 1949, long before the modern state tournament used them between 1981 and 1984.
      Growing from 7 teams in 1922 to approximately 20 in 1949, the day finally came when it could no longer be held in just two days. Beginning in 95O the tournament format consisted of various sectionals throughout the State serving as a preliminary to reduce the number of wrestlers competing at the state finals. The following sections of this chapter will outline the growth and changes that have occurred in the tournament format from 1950 to the present. 
      In 1950, the state tournament began at two sectional sites around the state with ten teams in each sectional. The two sectional sites were located at Bloomington and East Chicago. There were 20 schools and 240 wrestlers participating in the 1950 state tournament. Both the champion and runner-up in each weight class from each sectional advanced to the state finals held one week later. There were 48 wrestlers from 13 schools participating in the state finals. There were four finalists per weight class competing with the top four place finishers each awarded a medal. The finalists were paired up so that the champion and runner-up from the same sectional were in opposite brackets and the sectional champions would not meet until the final match. There were two semifinal matches. The two semifinal winners wrestled a championship match to determine first- and second-place finishers. The two semifinal losers wrestled a consolation match to determine third- and fourth-place finishers.
      From 1951 to 1953, the state tournament began at four sectional sites around the state with five or six teams in each sectional. The following were the four sectional sites from 1951 to 1953: Bloomington, Lafayette Jeff, Southport, and South Bend Central.
      There were 22 schools and 264 wrestlers participating in the 1951 state tournament. From 1951 to 1953 only the champion in each weight class from each sectional advanced to the state finals held one week later. There were 48 wrestlers from 12 schools participating in the state finals in 1951. There were four finalists per weight class competing with the top four place finishers each awarded a medal. The four sectional champions were paired by a blind draw. There were two semifinal matches. The two semifinal winners wrestled a championship match to determine first- and second-place finishers. The two semifinal losers wrestled a consolation match to determine third- and fourth-place finishers.
      From 1954 to 1957 the state tournament began at four sectional sites around the state with nine teams in each sectional. The following were the four sectional sites from 1954 to 1957: Bloomington, East Chicago Lafayette Jeff and Muncie Central. 
      There were 35 schools and 420 wrestlers participating in the tournament. From 1954 to 1957 both the champion and runner-up in each weight class from each sectional advanced to the state finals held one week later. There were 96 wrestlers from 27 schools participating in the state finals in 1954. There were eight finalists per weight class competing with the top four place finishers each awarded a medal. The finalists were paired up so that the champion and runner-up from the same sectional were in opposite brackets and the sectional champions would not meet until the semifinal and final matches. There were four quarterfinal matches and the winners advanced to the semifinals and the losers were eliminated. The two semifinal winners wrestled a championship match to determine first- and second-place finishers. The two semifinal losers wrestled a consolation match to determine third- and fourth-place finishers.
      Due to the rapid growth in interest in wrestling, the number of sectionals was doubled from four to eight and two regional meets were added between the sectional and state finals. From 1958 to 1962, the state tournament began at eight sectional sites around the state with six to ten teams in each sectional. The following were the eight sectional sites from 1958 to 1962: Bloomington, East Chicago, Indianapolis Broad Ripple, Indianapolis Manual, Kokomo, Muncie Central, New Albany, and South Bend Adams. There were 62 schools and 744 wrestlers participating in the 1958 state tournament. From 1958 to 1962, both the champion and runner-up in each weight class from each sectional advanced to one of two regionals, which were held one week later. Bloomington and Lafayette Jeff hosted the regional action from 1958 to 1962. Qualifiers from 4 of the eight sectionals went to a northern regional, usually held at Lafayette Jeff. Qualifiers from the other four sectionals went to a southern regional, usually held at Bloomington. There were eight wrestlers per weight class competing in the regional tournament and they were paired up so that the champion and runner-up from the same sectional were in opposite brackets. They would not wrestle each other again until the final match of the regional and two sectional champs would not meet until the second round. During the years from 1958 to 1962, the champion and runner-up in each weight class from each regional advanced to the state finals, which was held one week later. There were 48 wrestlers from 26 schools participating in the state finals in 1958. There were four finalists per weight class competing with the top four place finishers each awarded a medal. The finalists were paired up so that the champion and runner-up from the same regional were in opposite brackets and the two regional champions would not meet until the finals. There were two semifinal matches. The two semifinal winners wrestled a championship match to determine first- and second-place finishers. The two semifinal losers wrestled a consolation match to determine third- and fourth-place finishers.
      Once again due to the rapid growth in interest in wrestling, the number of sectionals was doubled from 8 to 16 and the number of regionals doubled from 2 to 4. From 1963 to 1971, the state tournament began at 16 sectional sites around the state with 12 to 14 teams in each sectional. The following were the 16 sectional sites from 1963 to 1971: Anderson, Crawfordsville, Crown Point, East Chicago, Elkhart, Evansville Mater Dei, Franklin Central, Gary Wirt, Hammond Tech, Indianapolis Broad Ripple, Indianapolis Washington, Kokomo, New Albany, New Castle, South Bend Adams, and Warren Central.
      There were 103 schools and 1,236 wrestlers participating in the 1963 state tournament. From 1963 to 1971, only the champion in each weight class from each sectional advanced. Qualifiers advanced to one of four regionals, which were held one week later. Regional sites from 1963 to 1971 were Bloomington, East Chicago, Indianapolis Arlington, and Lafayette Jeff. Qualifiers from 4 of the 16 sectionals went to each regional site. There were four wrestlers per weight class competing in the regional tournament and they were paired up by a blind draw. During the years from 1963 to 1971, only the champion in each weight class from each regional qualified for the state finals held one week later. There were 48 wrestlers from 26 schools participating in the state finals in 1963. There were four finalists per weight class competing with the top four place finishers each awarded a medal. The finalists were paired up by a blind draw. As in the regional tournaments there were two semifinal matches. The two semifinal winners wrestled a championship match to determine first- and second-place finishers. The two semifinal losers wrestled a consolation match to determine third- and fourth-place finishers. By the early 1970' s the various sectionals had grown to include as many as 16 to 18 teams in each sectional. Some sectionals had as many as 20 teams. In 1972, the tournament format would have to be expanded further.
      From 1963 to 1972, wrestling had, perhaps, its most rapid growth. Due to this growth, the tournament format was changed to include 32 sectionals and 8 regionals. From 1972 to 1975, the state tournament began at 32 sectional sites around the state with 8 to 10 teams in each sectional. The following were the 32 sectional sites from 1972 to 1975: Anderson, Bellmont, Bloomington, Brookville, Calumet, Crown Point, East Noble, Elkhart, Evansville Mater Dei, Franklin Central, Greencastle, Greenfield Central, Greenwood, Hobart, Jasper, Lafayette Jeff, Lawrence Central, Logansport, Mooresville, Muncie Southside, New Albany, New Castle, New Haven, Noblesville, Indianapolis Pike, Portage, Rensselaer, South Bend Adams, South Bend Washington, Taylor, Triton, and Wabash.    There were 265 schools and 3,100 wrestlers participating in the 1972 state tournament. From 1972 to 1975, both the champion and runner-up in each weight class from each sectional advanced to one of eight regionals, which were held one week later. The following were the eight regional sites from 1972 to 1975: Bloomington, Fort Wayne Northside, Gary Wirt, Indianapolis Arlington, Indianapolis Pike, New Castle, South Bend Adams, and Twin Lakes.
      There were eight wrestlers per weight class competing in the regional tournament and they were paired up so that the champion and runner-up from the same sectional were in opposite brackets. They would not wrestle each other again until the final match of the regional and two sectional champs would not meet until the second round. During the years from 1972 to 1975, only the regional champion in each weight class from each regional advanced to the state finals, which was held one week later. There were 96 wrestlers from 63 schools participating in the state finals in 1972. There were eight finalists per weight class competing with the top four place finishers each awarded a medal. The finalists were paired up by a blind draw. As in the regional tournaments there were four quarterfinal matches and the losers were eliminated. The winners advanced to the semifinal round. There were two semifinal matches. The two semifinal winners wrestled a championship match to determine first- and second-place finishers. The two semifinal losers wrestled a consolation match to determine third- and fourth-place finishers.
      Due to the continuing growth in wrestling, the state tournament format was changed once again in 1976. This was the last major change and included 64 sectionals and 16 regionals. Also added were four semistate tournaments held between the regional and state finals. From 1976 to 1980, the state tournament began at 64 sectional sites around the state with 4 to 6 teams in each sectional. The following were the sectional sites from 1976 to 1980 and most have continued to be sectional sites up to the present: Adams Central, Bloomington South, Brookville, Brownsburg, Calumet, Center Grove, Crawfordsville, Crown Point, Culver Military, Delphi, East Chicago Washington, East Noble, Jeffersonville, Jennings County, Knightstown, Lafayette Jeff, Lakeland, Lawrence Central, Lebanon, Logansport, Manchester, Marion, Mishawaka, Mooresville, Elkhart Memorial, Evansville Mater Dei, Evansville Reitz, Fort Wayne Carroll, Fort Wayne Northside, Fort Wayne Wayne, Fountain Central, Franklin Central, Gary Wirt, Goshen, Greencastle, Greenfield Central, Greensburg, Hagerstown, Hammond High, Highland, Huntington North, Indianapolis Chatard, Indianapolis Howe, Indianapolis Pike, Jay County, Mount Vernon, Muncie Northside, Muncie Southside, New Castle, New Haven, New Prairie, Noblesville, Pendleton Heights, Rensselaer, Shelbyville, South Bend Washington, Southport, Southridge, Taylor, Terre Haute North, Valparaiso, Warsaw, Washington, and Wes-Del.
      There were 305 schools and almost 4,000 wrestlers participating in the 1976 state tournament. From 1976 to 1980, both the champion and runner-up in each weight class from each sectional advanced to one of 16 regionals, which were held one week later. The following were the 16 regional sites from 1976 to 1980 and most have continued to be up to the present: Bloomington North, Calumet, Crown Point, Elkhart Central, Castle, Fort Wayne North, Fort Wayne Snider, Indian polis Arlington, Indianapolis Pike, Lebanon, Muncie Northside, New Castle, New Prairie, Seymour, Shelbyville, and Twin Lakes.    There were eight wrestlers per weight class competing in the regional tournament and they were paired up so that the champion and runner-up from the same sectional were in opposite brackets. They would not wrestle each other again until the final match of the regional and two sectional champs would not meet until the second round. From 1976 to 1980 both the champion and runner-up in each weight class from each regional advanced to one of four semi-state tournaments, which were held one week later. The following were the four semi-state sites from 1976 to 1980: Bloomington South, Fort Wayne Northside, Indianapolis North Central, and New Prairie.
      There were eight wrestlers per weight class competing in the semi-state tournament. The same format was followed that was used at the regional tournaments. From 1976 to 1980, both the champion and runner-up in each weight class from each semi-state advanced to the state finals, which were held one week later. There were 104 wrestlers from 74 schools participating in the state finals in 1976. There were eight finalists per weight class competing with the top four place finishers each awarded a medal. The same format was followed that was used at the regional and semi-state tournaments. There were four quarterfinal matches and the losers were eliminated. The winners advanced to the semifinal round. There were two semifinal matches. The two semifinal winners wrestled a championship match to determine first- and second-place finishers. The two semifinal losers wrestled a consolation match to determine third- and fourth-place finishers.
      From 1981 to 1983, the state tournament format remained basically the same but with the following minor changes. The top three placers in each weight class from each semi-state advanced to the state finals. There were 1 2 finalists per weight class competing which made it necessary to begin wrestling on Friday evening. During the first round, the second- and third-place finishers from different semi-states wrestled and the semi-state champions would wrestle the winners of these preliminary matches in the second round. The first round losers were eliminated. From 1981 to 1983, wrestle-backs were used. Wrestlers losing in the quarterfinals to an eventual semifinal winner would have an opportunity to qualify by wrestle-backs for the consolation match to determine third- and fourth-place finishers. From this point on, the format remained the same with the top four 'place finishers each awarded a medal. In 1981, there were 320 teams with 4,070 wrestlers competing in sectional action. The finals of 1981 saw 93 teams competing with 156 wrestlers. By 1983, there were 314 teams with 4,070 wrestlers competing in sectional action. The finals of 1983 saw 87 teams with 156 wrestlers in action.
      From 1984 to 1985, the state tournament format again remained basically the same except for some additional minor changes. The top four placers in each weight class from each semi-state advanced to the state finals. There were 16 finalists per weight class competing which made it necessary to continue the Friday evening first round session. The main difference was that everyone wrestled on Friday. This change was brought about because many felt it a disadvantage for the semi-state champions not to wrestle the first round, as had been the case during 1981 to 1983. The previous format also had prevented the semi-state champions from earning fall points during the opening round.  During the first round, the first- and fourth-place finishers from different semi-states wrestled and the second- and third-place finishers from different semi-states wrestled. The first round losers were eliminated and the winners advanced to the second round. Wrestle-backs were also used in 1984. In 1985, a snow storm delayed the tournament for one week, therefore the tournament site had to be moved from Market Square Arena to New Castle. Since the tournament had to be held on one day, wrestle-backs were eliminated because of the time factor. From this point on true wrestlebacks were excluded from the tournament. The format remained the same with the top four place finishers each awarded a medal. Participants in 1984 included 316 teams with 4,100 wrestlers at sectional sites and 113 teams with 208 wrestlers at the state finals. In 1985, participants included 312 teams with 4,050 wrestlers at sectional sites and 106 teams with 208 wrestlers at the state finals.
      From 1986 to 1991, the state tournament format still remained basically the same. Some additional changes finally resulted in the current format used today. The most recent changes were as follows. The top three placers in each weight class from each regional advanced to the semi-state. There were 12 wrestlers per weight class competing in the semi-state. This made it necessary to wrestle a preliminary round between the second- and third-place finishers from different regionals. The winners would wrestle the regional champions in the second round. From this point on, the format remained the same. The top four placers in each weight class from each semi-state advanced to the state finals. The format of the state finals remained unchanged except from 1986 to 1991 the top six place finishers were each awarded a medal. Wrestlers who lost in the Quarterfinals to the eventual finalists wrestled consolation matches to determine fifth- and sixth-place finishers. In 1986 there were 311 teams with 4,037 wrestlers involved in sectionals and 118\teams with 208 wrestlers involved in the state finals. The 1991 tournament had 306 teams with 3,775 wrestlers competing in sectional action and 112 teams with 208 wrestlers advancing to the state finals.
      The format of the state finals remained unchanged in 1992 except the top eight place finishers were each awarded a medal. The first round losers were eliminated and the winners advanced to the second round. Wrestlers who lost in the Quarterfinals to the eventual finalists wrestled consolation matches to determine fifth-and sixth-place finishers. Wrestlers who lost in the quarterfinals to the eventual semifinal losers wrestled consolation matches to determine seventh- and eighth- place finishers. The 1992 tournament had 307 teams with 3,724 wrestlers competing in sectional action and 123 teams with 208 wrestlers advancing to the state finals.”
      - Dave Holman
      "Ready, Wrestle" - 1992
      In 1995-1996 the IHSAA implemented a team state championship series to be ran parallel to the individual series.
      In 2002-2003 the number of sectionals were reduced from 64 to 32. And the third and fourth place finishers from each sectional were advanced to the regionals.
      In 2008-2009 the 4th place finishers from each regional were advanced to the semi-state.
      As mentioned in the last few sections of this chapter, the number of teams and individuals participating in the state tournament had increased dramatically until the mid-1970's. However, for the past 15 years the numbers have remained fairly constant. This does not mean that the interest in wrestling has declined. The main reasons are that almost all of the schools in Indiana had started wrestling programs by the mid-1970's, and that many of the smaller schools, which had wrestling by the 1960’s, were involved in consolidations. As a result, the increase in the number of teams during this period was offset by a decrease due to many school consolidations. Many changes have been made through the years to keep pace with the growth of the sport and no doubt further changes will be made in the future. For the benefit of the high school wrestlers in the state of Indiana and through the efforts of many dedicated individuals, wrestling will continue to be the great sport it has always been. 
      - Dick Neal aka The Ancient Elder


      2018 Dream Team Classic Information

      Date: April 14th
      Location: Brownsburg High School
      1000 S Odell St.
      Brownsburg, IN 46112
      Time: 6pm
      Tickets: Adults $10 
      Students(K-12) $5
      Under 5 Free
      Click here to purchase tickets and gear
      Indiana Lineup
      113: Jose Diaz- Wheeler
      120: Colin Poynter- Portage
      126: Ty Mills- Brownsburg
      132: Graham Rooks- Columbus East
      138: Kris Rumph- Portage
      145: Christian Hunt- Yorktown
      152: Brayton Lee- Brownsbur
      160: Jack Eiteljorge- Carmel
      170: Noah Warren- Perry Meridian
      182: Conner Graber- Northridge
      195: Lucas Davison- Chesterton
      220: Mason Parris- Lawrenceburg
      285: Brandon Streck- Merrillville
      Coaching Staff
      Darrick Snyder- Brownsburg
      Matt Schoettle- Perry Meridian
      Mark Kirchgassner- Lawrenceburg

      Honorary Head Coach
      Dick Neal aka The Ancient Elder
      USA Lineup
      113: Cevion Severado- Christian Brothers, Missouri
      120: Joey Melendez- Montini Catholic, Illinois
      126: Malik Johnson- Christian Brothers, Missouri
      132: Real Woods- Montini Catholic, Illinois
      138: Cole Matthews- Reynolds, Pennsylvania
      145: Alex Lloyd- Shakopee, Minnesota
      152: Jacori Teemer- Long Beach, New York
      160: Jared Franek- Fargo West, North Dakota
      170: Travis Wittlake- Marshfield, Oregon
      182: Jared Krattiger- Waterford, Wisconsin
      195: Tanner Sloan- Alburnett, Iowa
      220: Brandon Whitman- Dundee, Michigan
      285: Jake Levengood- Vacaville, California
      Team USA Coach
      Israel Martinez- Montini Catholic, Illinois

      Special thanks goes out to our sponsors
      Indiana State Wrestling Association
      KC Battlegear
      Invicta Wrestling Academy

      3920 2

      State #WAYL2

      We have 15 wrestlers that enter Friday without a loss on their record. However, the other 209 wrestlers have a combined 1040 losses between them. Most of the losses are to state level competitors. Here is a listing of all the losses for each wrestler at state this weekend.
      Note: If you know any of the missing or incorrect results please notify me.
      Random Stats
      Most losses to state qualifiers
      Joe Just and Joseph Walker- 11
      Ethan Hicks- 9
      Andrew Wilson, Malik Hoover, Andy Davidson- 8
      Most wins over state qualifiers
      Andres Moreno- 12
      Kysen Montgomery, Asa Garcia, Gleason Mappes- 9
      Brayden Curtis, Brayden Lowery, Colin Poynter, Conner Gimson, Jordan Slivka, Donnell Washington, Brayton Lee, Noah Warren, Zack Fattore- 8
      Undefeated Wrestlers
      113- Andres Moreno, Brayden Curtis, Brayden Lowery
      132- Graham Rooks, Manzona Bryant
      145- Christian Hunt, Tristan Sellmer
      152- Brayton Lee
      170- Zack Fattore
      182- Nathan Walton, Silas Allred
      195- Lucas Davison
      220- Mason Parris, Ryan Hammond
      285- Eli Pokorney
      *- State Qualifier
      106: Alex Cottey- Kysen Montgomery*, Logan Bailey(2)*
      106: Cole Ross- Alex Cottey*, Jacob Moran*, Kysen Montgomery*
      106: Colin Reagan- Giovanni Diaz*
      106: David Pierson- Alex Cottey(2)*, Ben Dalton, Jacob Simone(3), Logan Bailey(2)*
      106: Fernando Flores- Alex Petro*, Brendon Mark, Caleb Oliver*
      106: Gavinn Alstott- Cole Ross(2)*, Kysen Montgomery*
      106: Giovanni Diaz- Martin Cruz
      106: Harrison Hadley- Alex Cottey*, David Pierson*, Logan Bailey*
      106: Jace Alexander- Colin Reagan*, Fernando Flores*, Jacob Moran*, Preston Teusch
      106: Jacob Moran- Giovanni Diaz*, Jacob Decatur
      106: Kysen Montgomery- Brayden Lowery*, Carson Eldred*, Steven Garty
      106: Logan Bailey- Jacob Moran*, Martin Cruz
      106: Noah Gardner- Ben Dalton(2), Cole Ross*, Gavinn Alstott(2)*
      106: Trey Sturgill- Andrew Sinkovics, Antonio Jefferson, Brandon Mark, Devonte Henson, Fernando Flores*, Jett Boots, Wyatt Miller*, Zachary Todd*
      106: Wyatt Miller- Fernando Flores*
      106: Zachary Todd- Alex Cottey*, Devin Casebolt, Fernando Flores*, Logan Bailey*, Owen Chandler, Wyatt Miller*
      113: Alex Petro- Andres Moreno*, Brayden Lowery*, Devon Casebolt*, Jevian Ross, Kysen Montgomery*, Tyler Conley*
      113: Andrew Black- Brayden Curtis*, Brayden Lowery*, Grant Stapleton
      113: Blake Boarman- Devon Casebolt*
      113: Brayden Shearer- Andres Moreno*, Brayden Curtis*
      113: Caleb Oliver- Andrew Black*, Brayden Lowery*, Brayden Shearer*, Carson Eldred*, Evan Light, Jevian Ross, Karsten Harshbarger, Tyler Conley*
      113: Carson Eldred- Brayden Curtis*, Brayden Lowery*, Kysen Montgomery*
      113: Danny Tolin- Alex Petro*, Andres Moreno(2)*, Brayden Shearer*, Dane Durlacher , Ian Nelson, Jacob Moran*, Jose Diaz*, Ricky Hegedus*
      113: Devon Casebolt- Blake Boarman(3)*, Brayden Lowery*, Kysen Montgomery*
      113: Joe Just- Alex Petro*, Antonio Jefferson, Blake Boarman*, Brayden Curtis*, Brayden Lowery*, Brayden Shearer(3)*, Caleb Oliver*, Carson Eldred*, Danny Tolin*, Josh Smith-Goheen, Kade Zadylak*
      113: Jose Diaz- Andres Moreno(3)*
      113: Kade Zadylak- Andres Moreno*, Brayden Curtis*, Brayden Shearer(2)*, Seth Anderson
      113: Ricky Hegedus- Andres Moreno*, Andrew Perelka, Andrew Wilson*, Blake Boarman*, Caleb Oliver*, Danny Tolin*, Jacob Moon, Kysen Montgomery*, Raymond Rioux*
      113: Tyler Conley- Alex Petro*, Blake Boarman*, Brayden Lowery*, Carson Eldred*, Gavin Ritter, Jacob Moran*, Jevian Ross, Jimmy Balazy, Kysen Montgomery(2)*
      120: Alex Bautista- Andres Moreno*, Brock Peele*, Sam Fair*, Tylor Triana*
      120: Brendan Mattingly- Logan Wagner*, Lukasz Walendzak*
      120: Brock Peele- Andres Moreno*, Hassan Johnson, Jedidiah Marlow, Lukasz Walendzak*, Micah Desseau, Tylor Triana(2)*
      120: Drake Campbell- Benyamin Kamali, Brock Peele*, Logan Boe(2)*, Raymond Rioux*, Sam Fair(2)*
      120: Hunter Watts- Christian Mejia*
      120: Ian Heath- Brayden Curtis*, Chase Wilkerson, Hunter Watts*, Logan Mosser*, Zane Standridge*
      120: Logan Boe- Drake Campbell*, Evan Lawhead, Raymond Rioux*, Seth Johnson
      120: Logan Mosser- Brayden Curtis(2)*, Chris Schuller, Ian Heath*, Kyle Lawson*
      120: Logan Wagner- Asa Garcia*, Benyamin Kamali, Brendan Mattingly*, Lukasz Walendzak*, Nick Winland, Raymond Rioux*, Sam Fair*, Tylor Triana*
      120: Lukasz Walendzak- Gavin Rose(2), Sam Fair*, Tylor Triana*
      120: Raymond Rioux- Brock Peele*, Drake Campbell(2)*, Jedidiah Marlow, Logan Boe(3)*, Lukasz Walendzak*, Nolan Ray
      120: Sam Fair- Carson Willis
      120: Tyler Fuqua- Sam Fair*, Drake Campbell(2)*, Kane Egli, Raymond Rioux(2)*
      120: Tylor Triana- Andres Moreno*, Brock Peele*, Hunter Watts*
      120: Vince Sparrow- Alex Bautista(2)*, Andrew Wertman, Benyamin Kamali, Brock Peele*, Hunter Watts*, Hunter Whitman, Logan Hunt, Logan Wagner*, Malachi Walteres, Ryan Franco, Seth Anderson, Trevor Penrod, Zane Standridge*
      120: Zane Standridge- Gabriel Smith, Hunter Watts*, Logan Mosser*, Trevor Ragle
      126: Alec Viduya- Asa Garcia*, Bryer Hall*, Ethan Smiley*, Logan Wagner*
      126: Andrew Wilson- Alec Viduya(2)*, Asa Garcia*, Aundre Beatty, Colin Poynter*, Ethan Smiley*, Kaellin Kelly*, Kaleb Nickels, Kobey Bronaugh, Reece Luhmann, Skyler Gomez*, Tanner DeMien*, Tommy Oskina, Xayvier Curtis
      126: Asa Garcia- Cayden Rooks*, Jordan Decatur, Ty Mills(2)*
      126: Brycen Denny- Asa Garcia(2)*, Carson Willis, Ethan Smiley*, Ty Mills*
      126: Bryer Hall- Ethan Smiley*, Tylan Tucker
      126: Cayden Rooks- Asa Garcia*
      126: Christian Mejia- Cayden Rooks*
      126: Colin Poynter- Asa Garcia*, Clay Egli, David Massey, Gio Disabato, Mick Burnett
      126: Ethan Smiley- Alec Viduya(3)*
      126: Kaellin Kelly- Colin Poynter(4)*, Ethan Smiley*, Joel Vamdevere, Skyler Gomez*, Tylor Triana*
      126: Kyle Lawson- Adam Ledesma, Alex Mosconi*, Asa Garcia*, Braxton Alexander, Isaac Hegwood, Jarred Rowlett*, Josh Zahl, Ricky Haught*, Sam Richard, Scottie Saylor, Skyler Gomez*, Tanner Schoeff*
      126: Payne Blackburn- ???, Brycen Denny*, Christian Mejia*, Juron Franklin, Kyle Lawson(2)*, Scottie Saylor, Trevor Ragle
      126: Skyler Gomez- Braxton Alexander, Kaellin Kelly(3)*, Tanner DeMien(3)*
      126: Tanner DeMien- Austin Franco, Carson Willis, Cayden Rooks*, Christian Mejia*, Colin Poynter(2)*, Dominick Lomazzo, Hunter Watts*
      126: Tanner Schoeff- Blake Hoyer, Christian Mejia(2)*
      126: Ty Mills- Alec Viduya*, Asa Garcia*, Cayden Rooks*, Colin Poynter*, Michael Mars
      132: Alex Barr- Chris Wilkerson*
      132: Alex Mosconi- Deuce Brown, Graham Rooks*
      132: Carter Noehre- Alex Mosconi*
      132: Chris Wilkerson- ???(4), Carter Noehre(2)*, Reis Schrock, Ricky Haught*
      132: Cody Betourne- Geremia Brooks*, Logan Hill*
      132: Drew Kreitzer- Graham Rooks(2)*, Issac Lefler, Sam Glassco
      132: Eli Dickens- Drew Kreitzer*, Graham Rooks*, LJ Burdon*
      132: Geremia Brooks- Gabe Weeks, Manzona Bryant(3)*
      132: Hunter Cottingham- Jarred Rowlett*, Justin Sparks, Matt Gimson*
      132: Jarred Rowlett- Alex Mosconi(2)*, Carter Noehre(2)*, Chris Wilkerson*, Dalton Craig, Jaden Reynolds(2)
      132: LJ Burdon- Drew Kreitzer(2)*, Evan lawhead, Graham Rooks*, Jaden Reynolds(2), Nate West
      132: Logan Hill- Gabe Weeks(3), Geremia Brooks*, Manzona Bryant(2)*, Matt Gimson(2)*, Raul Martinez(2), Ricky Haught*, Stone Moscovic
      132: Matt Gimson- Alex Barr*, Alex Mosconi*
      132: Ricky Haught- Alex Barr*, Braxton Alexander, Elijah Bauer(2), Gavyn Warren, Hunter Cottingham(2)*, Stone Moscovic
      138: Adam Davis- Kris Rumph*, Preston Risner*
      138: Alexander Strueder- ???, Bailey Moore*, Blake Mulkey*, Brian Keeney, Dallas Pugsley, Hunter Cottingham*, Jacob Burford, Mason Miranda, Noah Robinson, Zach Melloh*
      138: Austin Moore- Bryton Goering*, Conner Gimson*, Joe Leazier
      138: Bailey Moore- Brailen Harrington*, Jack Servies, Jesus Mancera
      138: Blake Mulkey- Dawson Combest*, Kevon Davenport
      138: Brailen Harrington- Gary Kitko, Jordan Slivka*, Mason Miranda, Zach Melloh(3)*
      138: Bryton Goering- Austin Moore*, Conner Gimson(3)*, Jesus Mancera, Preton Risner
      138: Conner Gimson- Bryton Goering*, Jesus Mancera, Zach Melloh*
      138: Dawson Combest- Blake Mulkey*, Zach Melloh*
      138: Dylan Goudy-  Austin Moore*, Brailen Harrington*, Brice Coleman, Conner Gimson*, Donald Campbell, Drew Linder, Gary Kitko(2), Torion'ja Forrest, Tytus Morrisett
      138: Ian Dembowski- Bailey Moore*, Adam Davis*, Gary Kitko, Kris Rumph(2)*, Preston Risner*
      138: Kris Rumph- Blake Mulkey*, Hunter Yackee, Lamonte Chapman, Zach Melloh*
      138: Matt Lee- Blake Mulkey*, Dawson Combest*, Kris Rumph*, Saul ervin
      138: Noah Hunt- Dawson Combest*, Jesus Mancera, Matt Lee(2)*, Preston Risner*
      138: Preston Risner- Blaze Lowery(2), Bryton Goering*, Conner Gimson(3)*, Dawson Combest*, Kris Rumph*, Matt Kincaid
      138: Zach Melloh- Alex Isbrandt, Colt Rutter
      145: Antwaun Graves- Jordan Slivka*
      145: Brock Ellis- Jacob LaPlace(3)*, Jon Ruble*, Jorden Douglass*, Kasper McIntosh(2)*, Peyton Pruett(2), Tristan Ruhlman
      145: Dakota Ball- Antwaun Graves*
      145: Eliseus Young- Christian Hunt(2)*, Hayden Lohrey*, Jon ruble(2)*, Zach Mounsey
      145: Giran Kunkel- Christian Hunt*, Isaiah Levitz, Levi Miller, Logan Macklin
      145: Hayden Lohrey- Dakota Ball*, Jordan Slivka*
      145: Jacob LaPlace- Jake Schoenegge*, Jordan Slivka*, Kasper McIntosh(2)*
      145: Jake Schoenegge- Christopher Donathan, Joel Arney*, Jordan Slivka*, Tristan Sellmer(2)*
      145: Jon Ruble- Antwaun Graves*, Christian Hunt*, Cody Snook, Elliot Rodgers*, Giran Kunkel*, Jacob LaPlace*, Jordan Slivka*
      145: Jordan Slivka- Antwaun Graves*, Christian Hunt*, Christopher Donathan
      145: Jorden Douglass- Jarin Glass, Kasper McIntosh*
      145: Kasper McIntosh- Victor Voinovich
      145: Nathan Conley- Brayton Lee(3)*, Donnell Washington*, Nick South*, Sandro Ramirez, Tristan Sellmer*, William Schmidt
      145: Scott Fitts- ???, Garret Bass, Jack Servies, Jake Schoenegge(2)*, Kasper McIntosh*, Nathan Conley*
      152: Aiden Warren- Christian Hunt*, Brayton Lee(2)*, Dheontae Unseld, Donnell Washington*, Jake Schoenegge*, Jordan Slivka*, Kody Wagner*, Robert Deters*
      152: Corban Pollitt- Brayton Lee*, Derek Blubaugh*, Jacob Schrader, Joseph Walker*, Josh Foster, Macartney Parkinson, Robert Deters*, Xander Stroud*
      152: Derek Blubaugh- Brayton Lee*, Robert Deters*
      152: Donnell Washington- Connor Brady, Jordan Slivka*, Noah Lamore*, Oszkar Kasch*
      152: Elliot Rodgers- Dheontae Unseld, Jack Servies, Kody Wagner*, Nathan Conley*, Xander Stroud*
      152: Eric Hiestand- Clayton Fielden, Elliot Rodgers*, Konner Bender
      152: Graham Calhoun- Donnell Washington*
      152: Jackson Pettigrew- ???(5), Boston Dubuocq, Carlos Lopez, Garrett Hetzner, JD McNett, Joel Arney(3)*, Kade wagley, Noah Perez, Xander Stroud*
      152: Joel Arney- Derek Blubaugh*, Dheontae Unseld, Eric Hiestand*, Xander Stroud*
      152: Joseph Walker- Derek Blubaugh(2)*, Donnell Washington(2)*, Elliot Rodgers*, Graham Calhoun(3)*, Logan Macklin, Noah Lamore(2)*, Xander Stroud*
      152: Kody Wagner- Derek Blubaugh*, Elliot Rodgers*, Gleason Mappes*, Nathan Conley*
      152: Noah Lamore- Aaron Griggs, Donnell Washington*
      152: Robert Deters- Brayton Lee*, Christian Hunt(2)*, Corban Pollitt*
      152: Stevie Browning- ???, Aiden Warren*, Andrew Roberts, Elliot Rodgers*, Noah Lamore*
      152: Xander Stroud- Eric Hiestand*, Isiah Levitz, Joseph Walker*, Mason Winner*
      160: Anthony Mosconi- Brooks Davis*, Elijah Mahan*, James Despain, Kama Adewumi, Sam Hauke, Traveon Booker, Tucker Coffman*, Zack Fattore*
      160: Ben Kensinger- Colin Wilson, Dante Colza, David Sheley, Diego Lemley(2)*, Donya Harris, Johnny Parker, Kevin Hooley, Oszkar Kasch*, Zach Nugent
      160: Brooks Davis- Anthony Mosconi*, Jack Eiteljorge*, Kamal Adewumi, Lucas Carrillo, Nick South*
      160: Chandler Woenker- Brandon Kocks, Hunter Reed*, Mason Winner*
      160: Diego Lemley- Donnell Washington*, Gleason Mappes(2)*, Oszkar Kasch*
      160: Ethan Hicks- Bryton Goering*, Chandler Woenker(2)*, Dante Colza, Hunter Reed(2)*, Mason Winner*, Nick South(2)*, Xander Stroud*
      160: Gleason Mappes- Nick South*
      160: Hunter Reed- Mason Winner*
      160: Jack Eiteljorge- Gleason Mappes(2)*
      160: Malik Hoover- Ben Kensinger*, Brock Ellis*, Dante Colza(2), Diego Lemley*, Ethan Hicks*, Gleason Mappes*, Isaiah Watts, Joseph Houston, Kasper McIntosh*, Oszkar Kasch(2)*
      160: Mason Winner- Drake Baker, Jack Eiteljorge*
      160: Nick South- Gleason Mappes*
      160: Oszkar Kasch- Diego Lemley*, Donnell Washington*, Jack Eiteljorge*
      160: Tucker Coffman- Brad Lowe(2)*, Jack Eiteljorge*, Jalen Morgan*, Mason Winner*, Oszkar Kasch*
      160: Tucker Schank- Nick South(2)*
      160: Wade Presson- Ben Kensinger*, Brooks Davis*, Cameron Smith, Clay Singleton, David Sheley, Diego Lemely, Diego Lemley*, Gleason Mappes(2)*, Jacob Schrader, Josh Craig, Nolan Weidner, Tucker Schank(2)*
      170: Andy Davidson- Brad Lowe*, Brady Wyro*, Brigham Kleinhenz(2)*, Devon Stikes, Eric Vermillion, Evan Bates(2), Kameron Fuller(3)*, Noah Warren*, Samuel Osho, Zane Beineke(3)
      170: Brad Lowe- Eric Vermillion, Noah Warren(3)*
      170: Brady Wyro- Delton Moore*, Jake Lone*, Jordan Rader*
      170: Brigham Kleinhenz- Aaron Mosley*, Andy Davidson*, Caleb Owens, Carson Brewer*, Daniel Below*, Kameron Fuller*, Zane Beineke
      170: Carson Brewer- Ashton Eyler(2)
      170: Cody Crary- Jordan Rader, Zack Fattore(2)*
      170: Cody Klettheimer- KJ Roudebush, Noah Warren*
      170: Delton Moore- ???(2), Jake Lone*, Jordan Rader(3)*
      170: Drake Guerrero- Anthony Mosconi*, Cody Crary(2)*, Domenic DiPietro, Evan Bates, Mario Traficanti(2)*, Noah Perez, Paul Gliva, Sean-Michael James, Zack Fattore*
      170: Elijah Mahan- Brad Lowe*, Cody Klettheimer*, Nathan Walton*, Noah Warren(2)*, Silas Allred*
      170: Jake Lone- Delton Moore(2)*, Jordan Rader*, Zack Fattore(1)*
      170: Jordan Rader- Zack Fattore*
      170: Kameron Fuller- Carson Brewer*, Daniel Below*, Noah Warren*
      170: Mario Traficanti- Anthony Mosconi*, Brad Lowe*, Diego Lemley*, Drake Guerrero*, Evan Bates, Noah Perez, Trey Buehler(2), Zack Fattore(2)*
      170: Noah Warren- Nathan Walton(1)*
      182: Aaron Mosley- Nathan Walton*
      182: Brenden Moore- ???(6), Aaron Mosley*, Chase Taylor, Cole Calvert, Deacon Parker, Kiave Guerrier(2)*, Kyle Hagedorn, Luke McGennis, Tyler Tasa, Will Nunn
      182: Cade Girgenti- Alex Cramer
      182: Conner Graber- Noah Cressell*
      182: Daniel Below- Elijah Mahan*, Jalen Morgan(2)*, Nathan Walton*, Sam Gobeyn*, Will Nunn
      182: Jalen Morgan- ???(2), Jonyvan Johnson(2)*, KJ Roudebush, Silas Allred*
      182: Jamari Washington- ???(5), Jeremy Torres*, Tyjonn Lockett
      182: Jeremy Torres- Cade Girgenti*, Carson Brewer*, Daniel Below*, David McCullough, Ethan Potosky(2), Jacob Meek, Nathan Walton*, Tyjonn Lockett(2)
      182: Jonyvan Johnson- Conner Graber*, Noah Cressell*
      182: Kiave Guerrier- Nathan Walton*
      182: Kyler Funk- ???(3), Bryce Baker, Conner Graber*, Jaylen Moran, Jonyvan Johnson*, Noah Cressel, Sam Smith
      182: Max Chaffee- Cade Girgenti*, Jamari Washington*, Sam Gobeyn*
      182: Noah Cressell- Conner Graber*
      182: Sam Gobeyn- Cade Girgenti*, Elijah Mahan*, Kevin Mochen, Nathan Walton*, Silas Allred*
      195: Arthur Fowler- Bryson Ford*, Ewan Donovan, Jacob Bondon, Rockne Hurley*, Thomas Penola*
      195: Bryson Ford- Lucas Davison*, Sam Hansen*
      195: Dan Wickersham- ???(2), Alex Lucius, Brandon Powell, Damien Rodriguez(2), Draven Rasler(2)*, Isaac Walters, Jaxson Savieo*, Justin Samons, Victor Lee*
      195: Draven Rasler- Jaxson Savieo*, Levi Leffers*
      195: Grant Goforth- ???, Conner Graber*, Jaden Sonner*, Jonyvan Johnson*
      195: Jaden Sonner- Grant Goforth*
      195: Jaxson Savieo- Tremor Bynum*
      195: Luke Smith- Aaron Moseley(2), Chris Spiller, Grant Goforth*, Jaden Sonner(2)*, Will Rolley
      195: Michael Bohman- Grant Goforth*, Luke Utterback, Sam Hansen*, Thomas Penola*, Tremor Bynum*
      195: Rockne Hurley- Brendin Yatooma, Charlie Agnew, Lucas Davison*, Shane Stits*, Thomas Penola(1)*
      195: Sam Hansen- Thomas Penola(2)*
      195: Shane Stits- Andrwe Glaze, Arthur Fowler(2)*, Cameron Bacon, Dakari Kenny, Deon Pettiford, Grant Goforth*, Griffin Stine, Jaden Sonner*, Luke Smith*, Sam Hansen*, Thomas Penola*
      195: Thomas Penola- Lucas Davison(2)*
      195: Tremor Bynum- Charlie Agnew, David Garcia(2), Noah Lawson, Sam Hansen*
      195: Victor Lee- Aaron Sedwick, Blaine Pierce, Draven Rasler*, Noah Cressell*, Stewart Mossholder(2)
      220: Brandon Streck- Lucas Davison*
      220: Chandler Schumm- Isaiah Baumgartner*, Levi Leffers(2)*, Ty Stevenson
      220: Gaven Hare- Cameron Smith, Hunster Lester, Isaiah Baumgartner(2)*, Jacob McClaine*, Keegan Miller, Thomas Coleman
      220: Isaiah Baumgartner- Chandler Schumm(3)*, David Delph, Gaven Hare*, Levi Leffers*, Silas Allred*
      220: Jacob Bolte- Adam Berta, Caleb Thomas, Daniel Kimbell(2), Frank Hammond, Hubmerto Pulido, Hunter Gulden, Michael Boots*
      220: Jacob McClaine- Mason Parris*, Thomas Penola*
      220: Jacob Sisk- Jacob Bolte*, Macray Robinson(2), Ryan Hammond*, Will Stewart
      220: Joey Kidwell- Brandon Streck*, Braydon Erb, Dalton Clouse, Tristen Hoffman
      220: Kyle Cornwell- Jaxson Savieo*, Mason Parris*
      220: Kyle Simpkins- Caleb Thomas, Chester Swopes(2), Dennis Weston, Jacob Jeeninga, Jarron Gerwig, Joe Kuhl, Joey Kidwell*, Lucas Davison*, Michael Foster, Nate LaFree*, Tory Deetz, Will Crider
      220: Landan Burton- Jacob McClaine*, Kyle Cornwell*, Michael Boots*
      220: Levi Leffers- Cameron Smith, Gaven Hare*
      220: Michael Boots- Alex Lichliter, Ryan Hammond*
      220: Nate Lafree- Brandon Streck(2)*, Caleb Thomas, Draven Rasler*
      285: Dakota Ault- Holden Parsons*, Nick Conner*
      285: Donnie Crider- Eli Pokorney*, Nick Dlay, River Henry
      285: Elisha Tipping- Alex Cartwright(2), Chase Leeper, Donnie Crider*, Isaiah McWilliams(2)*
      285: Gabe Watkins- ???, Chase Leeper, Donnie Crider*, Elisha Tipping*, Holden Parsons*, Lane Eubank, Nate Dunn, Thomas Schwieterman
      285: Garrett Curtis- Jack Williams, Jalen Comer*, Manny Cheam(2), Riley McCubbins(2)*
      285: Harley Hillenburg- Aidian Rea, Alex Faulkner, Braiden Shaw, Garrett Curtis*, Wyatt Kramer
      285: Holden Parsons- Darrione Gregory, Jacob Obst*, Marcus Stone(2)*, Riley McCubbins*
      285: Isaiah McWilliams- Eli Pokorney*
      285: Jacob Obst- Alex Faulkner, Braiden Shaw, Tyler Majors*
      285: Jalen Comer- ???(2), Brian Fuller, Harley Hillenburg*, Holden Parsons*, Riley McCubbins(2)*
      285: Jamichael Watts- ???, Jacob Obst(3)*, Marcus Stone*, Tyler Majors*
      285: Marcus Stone- Manny Cheam, Bryce Adams, Jamichael Watts*, Logan Shaffer
      285: Nick Conner- Alex Faulkner, Eli Pokorney*, Gabe Watkins*, Isaiah McWilliams, Michael Conery, Vince Yoder, Yehzquel DeVault
      285: Riley McCubbins- Garrett Curtis*, Jalen Comer(3)*
      285: Tyler Majors- Alex Roberts, Brian Fuller, Darrion Gregory, Darrione Gregory, Harley Hillenburg*, Holden Parsons*, Jack Williams, Jacob Obst(2)*, Jamichael Watts*, Manny Cheam, Marcus Stone(2)*, Wyatt Kramer

      2245 5

      2018 State Finals By the Numbers

      Rankings are always a heated debate amongst wrestling fans. Over the years we have always locked our rankings before sectional and let them ride throughout the state series. Every year we lose kids due to unforseen circumstances and even the death draws at semi-state. However, they always prove to be quite accurate. This year we had the most ranked wrestlers in 179 or just under 80% in our final rankings. Here is a breakdown by weight and highlight matches to watch on Friday night.
      2018- 179
      2017- 169
      2016- 175
      2015- 172
      2014- 171
      2013- 171
      2012- 170
      2011- 157
      2010- 159
      2009- 143
      Number of Ranked Wrestlers Qualifying: 15
      Unranked qualifiers:
      Trey Sturgill - Peru
      First round match-ups of ranked wrestlers:
      #1 Jacob Moran- Portage vs. #7 Wyatt Miller- South Adams
      #10 Gavinn Alstott- Floyd Central vs. #5 Alex Cottey- Perry Meridian
      #13 Zachary Todd- Yorktown vs. #11 Colin Reagan- Frontier
      #17 David Pierson- Warren Central vs. #6 Cole Ross- Evansville Mater Dei
      #3 Logan Bailey- Indianapolis Cathedral vs. #16 Noah Gardner- Edgewood
      #4 Kysen Montgomery- Brownsburg vs. #18 Harrison Hadley- Lapel
      #9 Fernando Flores- Goshen vs. #20 Jace Alexander- Wawasee
      Number of Ranked Wrestlers Qualifying: 15
      Unranked qualifiers:
      Joe Just - Carroll (Fort Wayne)
      First round match-ups of ranked wrestlers:
      #1 Brayden Curtis- Yorktown vs. #13 Caleb Oliver- Indianapolis Cathedral
      #11 Tyler Conley- Avon vs. #2 Jose Diaz- Wheeler
      #15 Kade Zadylak- Norwell vs. #10 Carson Eldred- Westfield
      #16 Danny Tolin- Chesterton vs. #5 Blake Boarman- Evansville Mater Dei
      #4 Andrew Black- New Castle vs. #8 Brayden Shearer- Garrett
      #6 Andres Moreno- Lowell vs. #12 Alex Petro- Center Grove
      #9 Devon Casebolt- Castle vs. #14 Ricky Hegedus- Portage
      Number of Ranked Wrestlers Qualifying: 11
      Unranked qualifiers:
      Alex Bautista - Hanover Central
      Logan Mosser - Adams Central
      Logan Wagner - Zionsville
      Tyler Fuqua - Franklin Community
      Vince Sparrow - Penn
      First round match-ups of ranked wrestlers:
      #12 Logan Boe- Danville vs. #13 Zane Standridge- Carroll (Fort Wayne)
      #6 Brock Peele- Portage vs. #3 Brendan Mattingly- Carmel
      #9 Raymond Rioux- Avon vs. #19 Ian Heath- Leo
      Number of Ranked Wrestlers Qualifying: 12
      Unranked qualifiers:
      Andrew Wilson - Indianapolis Cathedral
      Kyle Lawson - Bellmont
      Payne Blackburn - Delta
      Skyler Gomez - LaPorte
      First round match-ups of ranked wrestlers:
      #2 Cayden Rooks- Columbus East vs. #19 Kaellin Kelly- Crown Point
      #3 Alec Viduya- Roncalli vs. #14 Tanner Schoeff- Central Noble
      #4 Colin Poynter- Portage vs. #12 Brycen Denny- Monrovia
      #6 Ty Mills- Brownsburg vs. #11 Tanner DeMien- Penn
      Number of Ranked Wrestlers Qualifying: 12
      Unranked qualifiers:
      Chris Wilkerson - Mount Vernon (Fortville)
      LJ Burdon - Plainfield
      Logan Hill - Penn
      Ricky Haught - Huntington North
      First round match-ups of ranked wrestlers:
      #1 Graham Rooks- Columbus East vs. #10 Cody Betourne- Harrison (wl)
      #12 Hunter Cottingham- Western vs. #7 Carter Noehre- Greenfield-Central
      #18 Alex Barr- Yorktown vs. #11 Jarred Rowlett- Warren Central
      #2 Manzona Bryant- Culver Academies vs. #5 Eli Dickens- Evansville Mater Dei
      Number of Ranked Wrestlers Qualifying: 15
      Unranked qualifiers:
      Dylan Goudy - Western
      First round match-ups of ranked wrestlers:
      #2 Blake Mulkey- Brownsburg vs. #11 Alexander Strueder- Fishers
      #4 Zach Melloh- Indianapolis Cathedral vs. #18 Noah Hunt- Bloomington South
      #6 Matt Lee- Evansville Mater Dei vs. #15 Brailen Harrington- North Central (Indianapolis)
      #7 Bailey Moore- Beech Grove vs. #3 Dawson Combest- Columbus East
      #8 Conner Gimson- Jimtown vs. #9 Ian Dembowski- Valparaiso
      #10 Austin Moore- Central Noble vs. #13 Adam Davis- Culver Academies
      #19 Preston Risner- Penn vs. #20 Bryton Goering- Elkhart Memorial
      Number of Ranked Wrestlers Qualifying: 15
      Unranked qualifiers:
      Jorden Douglass - Attica
      First round match-ups of ranked wrestlers:
      #1 Kasper McIntosh- Portage vs. #18 Scott Fitts- Evansville Mater Dei
      #10 Dakota Ball- Southmont vs. #15 Giran Kunkel- Central Noble
      #17 Jon Ruble- Bellmont vs. #3 Jordan Slivka- Indianapolis Cathedral
      #2 Christian Hunt- Yorktown vs. #8 Hayden Lohrey- Shenandoah
      #4 Tristan Sellmer- Floyd Central vs. #20 Brock Ellis- Chesterton
      #5 Antwaun Graves- Warren Central vs. #19 Eliseus Young- Muncie Central
      #7 Jacob LaPlace- Mishawaka vs. #11 Nathan Conley- Avon
      Number of Ranked Wrestlers Qualifying: 13
      Unranked qualifiers:
      Corban Pollitt - Columbus East
      Jackson Pettigrew - Columbia City
      Stevie Browning - Franklin County
      First round match-ups of ranked wrestlers:
      #12 Joel Arney- Carroll (Fort Wayne) vs. #4 Derek Blubaugh- Bloomington South
      #16 Robert Deters- Castle vs. #6 Xander Stroud- Elkhart Central
      #19 Aiden Warren- Perry Meridian vs. #3 Donnell Washington Jr.- Portage
      #2 Graham Calhoun- Plymouth vs. #5 Kody Wagner- Zionsville
      #7 Elliot Rodgers- Indianapolis Cathedral vs. #10 Joseph Walker- Mishawaka
      Number of Ranked Wrestlers Qualifying: 13
      Unranked qualifiers:
      Anthony Mosconi - Indianapolis Cathedral
      Ben Kensinger - Mishawaka
      Wade Presson - Bloomington South
      First round match-ups of ranked wrestlers:
      #15 Tucker Schank- Southridge vs. #16 Chandler Woenker- F.w. Bishop Luers
      #2 Jack Eiteljorge- Carmel vs. #20 Malik Hoover- Merrillville
      #3 Diego Lemley- Chesterton vs. #12 Brooks Davis- Perry Meridian
      #5 Nick South- Columbus East vs. #14 Ethan Hicks- Carroll (Fort Wayne)
      #6 Hunter Reed- Columbia City vs. #1 Gleason Mappes- Center Grove
      Number of Ranked Wrestlers Qualifying: 14
      Unranked qualifiers:
      Andy Davidson - Columbus East
      Drake Guerrero - Portage
      First round match-ups of ranked wrestlers:
      #1 Noah Warren- Perry Meridian vs. #14 Brigham Kleinhenz- Columbus North
      #15 Delton Moore- Manchester vs. #18 Cody Crary- Munster
      #2 Zack Fattore- Hobart vs. #12 Brady Wyro- Homestead
      #3 Carson Brewer- Avon vs. #11 Elijah Mahan- Roncalli
      #4 Jordan Rader- Peru vs. #19 Mario Traficanti- Crown Point
      #6 Cody Klettheimer- Frankton vs. #5 Kameron Fuller- Jeffersonville
      Number of Ranked Wrestlers Qualifying: 13
      Unranked qualifiers:
      Brenden Moore - South Spencer
      Jamari Washington - Hammond Gavit
      Kyler Funk - Mississinewa
      First round match-ups of ranked wrestlers:
      #1 Nathan Walton- Brownsburg vs. #16 Daniel Below- Perry Meridian
      #10 Sam Gobeyn- Zionsville vs. #5 Kiave Guerrier- Evansville Central
      #4 Conner Graber- Northridge vs. #11 Max Chaffee- Penn
      #6 Aaron Mosley- New Albany vs. #18 Jalen Morgan- Elwood
      #7 Jonyvan Johnson- New Haven vs. #17 Jeremy Torres- Portage
      Number of Ranked Wrestlers Qualifying: 12
      Unranked qualifiers:
      Dan Wickersham - Northridge
      Michael Bohman - Franklin County
      Shane Stits - Center Grove
      Victor Lee - Marion
      First round match-ups of ranked wrestlers:
      #15 Rockne Hurley- Penn vs. #6 Sam Hansen- Roncalli
      #19 Luke Smith- Jeffersonville vs. #4 Draven Rasler- West Noble
      #3 Thomas Penola- Zionsville vs. #11 Arthur Fowler- Calumet
      #9 Tremor Bynum- Pendleton Heights vs. #10 Bryson Ford- Benton Central
      Number of Ranked Wrestlers Qualifying: 9
      Unranked qualifiers:
      Chandler Schumm - Adams Central
      Isaiah Baumgartner - South Adams
      Jacob Bolte - Columbus East
      Jacob Sisk - Pike Central
      Joey Kidwell - West Lafayette
      Kyle Simpkins - LaPorte
      Nate LaFree - Plymouth
      Gabe Watkins - Marion
      First round match-ups of ranked wrestlers:
      #3 Jacob McClaine- Lebanon vs. #5 Michael Boots- Evansville Mater Dei
      #6 Ryan Hammond- Whiteland vs. #7 Landan Burton- New Palestine
      First round match-ups of unranked wrestlers:
      Chandler Schumm- Adams Central vs. Nate LaFree- Plymouth
      Number of Ranked Wrestlers Qualifying: 10
      Unranked qualifiers:
      Harley Hillenburg - Bloomington South
      Jamichael Watts - North Central (Indianapolis)
      Marcus Stone - Elwood
      Nick Conner - Elkhart Central
      Tyler Majors - Lawrence North
      First round match-ups of ranked wrestlers:
      #18 Holden Parsons- Yorktown vs. #16 Elisha Tipping- Wawasee
      #2 Eli Pokorney- Chesterton vs. #3 Dakota Ault- F.w. North Side
      #8 Jacob Obst- Indianapolis Cathedral vs. #6 Riley McCubbins- Monrovia
      First round match-ups of unranked wrestlers:
      Marcus Stone- Elwood vs. Harley Hillenburg- Bloomington South

      9472 10

      2018 State Finals Information Center

      State Finals Hashtag: #INStateFinals18
      IndianaMat with rankings
      Pick'em Contest
      State Finals Pick'em Top 8
      Mat Burns Pick the Champions
      Featured Articles
      State Finals by the Numbers
      State #WAYL2
      IHSAA State Preview with fast facts
      IHSAA State Finals Records Book
      Site: Bankers Life Fieldhouse, 125 S. Pennsylvania St., Indianapolis | Website
      Security: All people as well as their bags, purses, and coolers (athletes only) entering Bankers Life Fieldhouse will be subject to a security inspection. A full list of prohibited items can be found in the Fieldhouse Fan Guide at the following link: http://www.bankerslifefieldhouse.com/arena-information/fan-guide/ 
      Additionally, misconduct, mistreatment of Fieldhouse staff, or other prohibited behavior will be addressed promptly and violators are subject to ejection from the premises or arrest. The code of conduct is found in the Fan Guide again at the following link:http://www.bankerslifefieldhouse.com/arena-information/fan-guide/ 
      Admission: $8 per session or $20 both days. Children 24 months old and younger admitted free of charge. 
      Tickets may be purchased at Bankers Life Fieldhouse or you may order a single session mobile ticket via Tik-A-Tap below:
      Session 1 (Friday First Round)
      Session 2 (Saturday Quarterfinals, Semifinals)
      Session 3 (Saturday Championships, Consolations)
      Television: Saturday's state championship bouts in each weight class will air live on Fox Sports Indiana. Hosted by Mark Jaynes (play-by-play), Mike Goebel (analyst), Blake Maurer (analyst) and Greg Rakestraw (mat interviews).
      Link to TV providers covering the championship matches.
      Webstream: Friday's first round and Saturday's quarterfinals, semifinals and consolation matches may be viewed via live stream for a subscription fee at TrackWrestling.com. For Saturday night's championship round, viewers outside of the Fox Sports Indiana coverage area, a live stream will be available at IHSAAtv.org. For those within the FSI coverage area, the stream will be available only on delayed basis following the conclusion of the telecast.
      State Finals Pairings Show
      The brackets in each weight class will be announced exclusively via IHSAAtv.org beginning at 4 pm ET / 3 pm CT on Sunday, February 11, 2018. Greg Rakestraw and Hall of Fame coach Mike Goebel will serve as hosts.
      Friday, Feb. 16, 2018
      Parade of champions | 5:45 pm ET
      First Round | 6 pm ET (Gates open at 4:30 pm ET)
      Saturday, Feb. 17, 2018
      Quarterfinals | 9:30 am ET with semifinals to follow (Gates open at 8 am ET)
      Consolations | 5 pm ET (Gates open at 4 pm ET)
      Finals | 7:30 pm ET

      2534 22 2

      #WrestlingWednesday: Garcia has a new approach to his Junior year

      If Asa Garcia ever needed a nickname, perhaps The Fireman would be the most fitting.
      Sure, the Avon junior’s favorite wrestling move is the fireman’s carry - but that’s not the only reason for the nickname. Firemen are some of the bravest men on the planet. While most sane people run in the opposite direction of a fire, firefighters run towards it. Garcia is one of those that run toward the fire.
      A perfect example of this came a few weeks ago when Avon competed in the team state tournament. Garcia knew that he would have a gauntlet of top tier opponents in his path. He couldn’t wait for the challenge.
      Garcia, the top ranked wrestler in an absolutely stacked 126 pound class this year, beat two returning state champions and a fourth place finisher in team state. He dropped last year’s 120 pound champ, Cayden Rooks (now ranked No. 2 at 126 pounds) 3-1. He beat last year’s 113 pound champ Alec Viduya (ranked No. 3 at 126) 7-5 and he also knocked off fifth ranked Colin Poynter, who finished fourth at 120 last year, 3-2.
      “Asa was excited for the opportunity to get so many good matches at team state,” Avon coach Zach Errett said. “He was really looking at it as an opportunity more than anything. He knew he was going to get to wrestle and compete with some of the best kids in the state. That’s who he is. He looks to compete, always. I enjoy that about him. He wants to wrestle the best people.”
      Garcia said he approached team state with the mentality that it was going to make him a better wrestler, no matter what happened.
      “I knew the tournament would be tough,” Garcia said. “I’ve beaten those guys before, but I’ve also taken my lumps to some of them. You don’t know how well you’ll perform until you get out there and do it. Right now, wins and losses don’t matter anyway. If I took a loss or two, it wouldn’t have affected me. At the end of the day, the state tournament is when it really matters. Everything up until that point is practice.”
      Garcia won state as a freshman at 106 pounds. He came into that tournament with six losses, but emerged as the champ after pinning Warren Central senior Keyuan Murphy in just under two minutes.
      “Getting under the lights is an experience that’s tough to explain,” Garcia said. “You would think you’d be really nervous. But, everything just shuts down and you probably wrestle the best you’ve ever wrestled in your life.”
      This year Garcia is making great strides because his approach to practicing has changed. Instead of practicing to get down to weight, he’s practicing to get better.
      “Last year stung a little not winning (he placed third at 113),” Garcia said. “It was a tough season all around. I was cutting too much weight and it showed when things started to count. I was like 133 pounds during the week and I was cutting to 113. I wasn’t able to practice to get better, I was practicing to get the weight off. This year is much different. I’m able to maintain my weight and in practice I’m really able to focus on improving.”
      One of the keys to Garcia’s wrestling success is his ability to learn and expand his arsenal.
      “One of the things I really love about wrestling is when you get out of your comfort zone and do something you aren’t used to,” Garcia said. “It’s no secret my favorite move is the fireman’s carry - but I’ve been able to build a more elaborate offense because I worked on things I wasn’t comfortable doing. You have to work on them until you are comfortable with them.”
      Garcia’s top priority this year is to get back under the lights and to claim his second state title.
      “You think of getting under those lights all year long,” Garcia said. “You plan in your mind what your celebration would be like. You constantly think of how you want to wrestle and how you react when you win. But, all of that shuts down when you’re actually in the moment. You just have to let go and have fun.”
      As a team, Avon breaks down after every practice with a chant of “State Champs.” Garcia knows that after that, it’s his turn to run toward the fire.

      1781 1

      #MondayMatness: Donnie Crider has unique style

      It’s hard to miss Donnie Crider at a wrestling event.
      At 6-foot-7 and often wearing an orange T-shirt between bouts, the Harrison High School (West Lafayette) senior stands out from his opponents.
      But Crider is not just tall, he’s good enough that he went a combined 106-10 in his sophomore and junior seasons, qualifying for the IHSAA State Finals in 2016 and placing sixth in 2016 at 220 pounds.
      Crider, who weighed in at 238 at the Indiana High School Wrestling Coaches Association State Duals in Fort Wayne where Harrison placed 10th, is enjoying a strong final prep go-round as a heavyweight.
      While Crider is upbeat and bringing a smile to his teammates’ faces off the mat, he’s all business inside the circle.
      “He’s aggressive and not afraid to get out there and be physical and take his shot,” says Harrison head coach Johnny Henry. “He sticks to his game plan.”
      More of a unorthodox kind of counter wrestler early in his high school career, Crider has simplified his attack to his best couple moves on top and on bottom.
      “He doesn’t try to go into funky scrambles,” says Henry, a former Benton Central High School and University of Indianapolis wrestler who took over leadership of the program this season after four years as a Raiders assistant. “We’re not trying to do 20 moves out there. He’s just matured.”
      Crider has heard the talk about his style.
      “Freshman and sophomore year, they thought I was funky because I used to roll around all the time,” says Crider. “Now, I’m more skilled.
      “(Scrambling is) not really effective when you hit semistate,” says Crider. “They’ll catch you. I’d rather pin them fast if I can.”
      The past two summers, Crider has gained experience while competing in the Disney Duals — earning Gold and Silver All-American accolades.
      During the high school campaign, Crider has really emphasized using his speed and finishing what he’s started.
      “I’m faster than most of the heavyweights that are out there,” says Crider. “I try to do my moves all the way through instead of stopping midway. I just keep driving.”
      To give Crider different looks, a number of different coaches and wrestlers grapple with him in practice. 
      While he’s trying to hone his set-ups and his shots and trying to get up from the referee’s position, Donnie is working against a lot lot of muscle and different body types.
      He regularly mixes it up with Harrison assistants Andy Cline, Kevin Elliott and Dustin Kult as well as bigger wrestlers like juniors Willy Alvarez and William Kern and sophomores Cade Borders, Seth Chrisman and Will Crider (his little brother).
      Donnie comes from a large family. At 25, Jordan is the oldest. At 5, Clinton is the youngest. Besides Donnie and Harrison 220-pounder Will, there’s also Brian Jr., Justin and Megan. 
      Father Brian is 6-3 and mother Michelle 6-foot, so Donnie gets his height honestly.
      Donnie also knows that an opponent can use it against him since he can be a large target for those seeking double-let takedowns and such.
      Each day in practice, he works on getting low — something he also knows from being a defensive lineman on the football field.
      “I make sure that when I’m in my stance I’m at their chin with my forehead,” says Crider. “I make sure I’m lower than them.”
      Donnie looks to study business and likely wrestle in college after highs school.
      How high he goes as a Harrison Raider will play out in the coming weeks. Harrison competes in the Sectional in Jan. 27, regional Feb. 3, semistate Feb.10 and State Finals Feb. 16-17.


      #MondayMatness: Returning state placer Alexander helps resurgent Wawasee to 2A IHSWCA State Duals title

      “Warrior Tough” was on display in the Summit City.
      Years of effort were rewarded when Wawasee climbed to the peak that is the Class 2A championship at the Indiana High School Wrestling Coaches Team State Duals.
      The Warriors beat Franklin County 54-19, Bellmont 49-25, North Montgomery 31-28 and Garrett 37-33 for the right to hoist the trophy Saturday, Dec. 23 at Memorial Coliseum in Fort Wayne.
      “This has been a long time building,” says Frank Bumgardner, Wawasee’s third-year head coach of the program’s resurgence and his 2017-18 team’s qualifying for the annual IHSWCA event. “It’s a culmination of a lot of effort over a lot of years.
      “We’re all on same path. When you have that uniformity, it’s inevitable that good things are going to happen.”
      Bumgardner, who was the head coach at alma mater Whitko High School for five seasons before coming to Wawasee, and the other coaches (Jesse Espinoza, Jamie Salazar, Dillon Whitacre, Matt Elvidge, Darrell Carr at the high school level) in the program have the Warriors being physical while having fun.
      “We understand that different people come with different personalities,” says Bumgardner, who counts 80 to 100 kids in Grades K-12 that also compete in either the Wawasee Wrestling Club for beginners or Viper Wrestling Club for the advanced and elite. “Not everyone is going to embrace every style to the furthest degree. We do what the kid does best, we score points and have fun.”
      Fun is essential.
      “When you have fun, you look forward to coming back,” says Bumgardner, who is a seventh grade math teacher at Wawasee. “You look forward to getting better.
      “It’s like they say at Ohio State — Positivity Infinity. The better you can do that, the better life you’re going to have.”
      Last year, the Warriors were just seven points shy of automatic qualification for the State Duals without the coaches vote and “7” became the rally cry.
      “We knew we were capable of it,” says Bumgardner. “The kids have done wonderful job of doing that. The community is excited.
      “We’re looking to bring the momentum back to the program so we can continue to build well beyond this year.”
      Five Wawasee wrestlers — senior Elisha Tipping (285 pounds), juniors Braxton Alexander (126) and Geremia Brooks (132), sophomore Garrett Stuckman (138) and freshman Jace Alexander (106)— enjoyed 4-0 days at the 2017 State Duals.
      “A lot of us on the team now started when we were young,” says Braxton Alexander, who placed sixth at 120 at the 2017 IHSAA State Finals. “Just about all on the team wrestled for at least five years.
      “We put too much work into it to be bad.”
      Bumgardner has witnessed a change in Braxton — the older brother of Jace — that has made him an even better grappler.
      “He’s willing to take more risks,” says Bumgardner of Braxton. “He’s attempting to score more points and dictating were the action goes.
      “He would definitely look to score points before. He was such a good scrambler, he was consistently catching people in big moves. He is developing an offense that is consistent.”
      Braxton has grown about three inches since last season to 5-foot-7 and turned from a counter-offensive wrestler to an attacker.
      “Last year, I didn’t have a shot too often,” says Alexander of his 42-6 sophomore season. “I was defensive. Now, I’m pushing the pace and pulling the trigger more often.”
      He can hear Bumgardner’s words echo as he goes through a match.
      “‘As long as you’re moving and pushing the pace, no one can keep up with you,’” Alexander of his head coach’s message.
      Braxton is constantly pushing workout partner Stuckman and Garrett returns the favor.
      “We scramble more often,” says Braxton. “On the mat, we know what to do and how to capitalize on a mistake.”
      To stay in shape for wrestling, Braxton is a member of the Wawasee cross country and track and field teams. His best 5K cross country time is 17:10. He runs the open 800, 3200 relay and does the pole vault in the spring.
      Last summer, he sharpened his wrestling skills in folkstyle tournaments in New Jersey, Virginia, Michigan and Iowa.
      Braxton and Jace are the two oldest of four children in a single-parent household. Mother Jaclyn also has seventh grader Landen (who also wrestles in the spring and summer) and third grader Kenadee.
      A building trades student at Wawasee, Braxton would like to have his own construction business someday.
      Right now, he’s helping to build the Warriors back into wrestling power to be reckoned with.


      #WrestlingWednesday: North Posey goes from life support to Team State

      Four years ago North Posey wrestling was on life support and the school was considering pulling the plug. Now, with a new coach and a new attitude, the Vikings are about to compete for a team state title.
      North Posey had just four wrestlers five years ago. The community had grown accustomed to North Posey being a losing team, and the school was starting to question whether it was even worthwhile to keep the program alive.
      Then a former Mater Dei wrestler named Cody Moll stepped in and brought new life to the program. Now, in his fourth season at the helm of the Vikings, Moll has North Posey wrestling on the upswing.
      “The year before I got there, there were four wrestlers at the school,” Moll said. “During my interview they said that if I wasn’t hired, they were going to shut down the program.”
      Moll was asked what his goal for the team was.
      “I said I wanted to be better than we were the last year,” Moll said.
      In his first year Moll finished the year with 10 wrestlers, and 10 total victories. It wasn’t a good year, but it was a much improved season. One of the freshmen that year was Levi Miller, who qualified for the state tournament.
      “Levi came in and everyone knew he was supposed to be good,” Moll said. “But people saying you are good only gets you so far. He came in and proved it. We made him our captain as a freshman. We saw the drive he had and how hard he works.”
      One of the most difficult moments that first year, for Moll, was losing to Evansville Memorial 81-0. He had never experienced that side of a dominating performance before.
      “That was tough,” Moll said. “That was the first time I had ever been shut out on any team I was ever at. We won a lot at Mater Dei. I didn’t know what losing was like. But, this year we beat Memorial 46-21. It’s pretty amazing what we’ve been doing.”
      The Vikings won 21 matches in Moll’s second season, with 15 wrestlers. Last year the team won 23 matches and had 18 wrestlers. This year there are 25 kids on the wrestling team at the school of just under 500 students.
      “We talked about how we wanted to approach the team,” Moll said. “We knew we could make things fun and relatively easy and as a result get really good numbers. Or, we could treat every kid like they had state championship ability and go as hard as we could and really build good wrestlers. We chose the second option.”
      The North Posey practices are hard. They practice nearly three hours a day which includes a mix of running, drilling and live wrestling. The room is always hot and the coaches are always intense.
      “When Coach Moll came in, people were just used to laying down and getting beat,” Miller said. “I was very excited when he was hired. He told us early on that if we were just going to lay down for people, he didn’t want us on the team. That’s not his style. He doesn’t want you in the program unless you’re willing to work hard. This isn’t the old North Posey. Before the wrestlers were just about themselves, too. Now it’s all about the team.”
      Moll said changing the culture at North Posey was the biggest key to its recent success. He and assistant coach Sam Goebel (wrestled at Mater Dei and is legendary coach Mike Goebel's nephew), knew they had to change the culture before they’d ever have success.
      “Losing almost became OK,” Moll said. “We were in Mater Dei’s sectionals, in every sport. The culture just became that losing was the norm. But we came in and said we’re not going to just give up. We’re going to fight and battle. If we lose, we learn from it and do better the next time.
      “Many of our early losses was because we didn’t think we could win. The first couple of years kids were beat before the match because the singlet the opponents were wearing. We’re getting past that now. You have to look in the mirror and understand you’re working harder than these other schools. We are not pushovers. That environment is gone.”
      The Vikings placed fifth at team state last season, a finish they were not pleased with. With a deeper, more experienced team this year they are hoping to fare better.
      “We are going up there to win,” Moll said. “We wouldn’t go up for any other reason. We believe we belong and we believe we can compete with anyone.”
      Miller has that same mentality when talking about his goals. He said he won’t be satisfied with anything less than a state championship, individually. The coaches have instilled that drive in all of its wrestlers.
      North Posey will open pool play at team state against Frankton.

      3495 30

      2017/18 IHSWCA Team State Draws

      TrackWrestling link
      9:00 AM – Rounds 1 through 3 (4 mats)
      Pool Play – 4 pools with 3 teams in each pool – seeded
      Rd 1 Bye – Lower seeded team in each pool
      Rd 2 Bye – Higher seeded team in each pool
      Rd 3 Bye – Unseeded team in each pool
      2:00 PM(approx) – Round 4
      Bracketed event begins based on how teams finished in their pool (4 mats)
      Consolation Matches (2 mats – 2nd  – 8th Place teams)
      -Pool A 2nd Place vs Pool D 2nd Place
      -Pool B 2nd Place vs Pool C 2nd Place
      Consolation Matches (2 mats – 3rd Place teams)
      -Pool A 3rd Place vs Pool D 3rd Place (winner ties for 9th place/loser ties for 11th place)
      -Pool B 3rd Place vs Pool C 3rd Place (winner ties for 9th place/loser ties for 11th place)
      4:00 PM(approx) – Round 5
      Bracketed Consolation Matches (4 mats)
      Championship Bracket Semi-Finals (2 mats – 1st Place teams)
      -Pool A Winner vs Pool D Winner
      -Pool B Winner vs Pool C Winner
      5th/6th Place Dual and 7th/8th Place Dual (2 mats)
      6:00 PM(approx)– Round 6
      Finals for Places 1st – 4th (2 mats per class – 6 mats total for Event)
      3A Teams
      Pool 1
      #1 Brownsburg
      #8 Roncalli
      Center Grove
      Pool 2
      #2 Perry Merdian
      #7 Penn
      Pool 3
      #3 Evansville Mater Dei
      #6 Columbus East
      Pool 4
      #4 Portage
      #5 Avon
      Harrison (WL)
      2A Teams
      Pool 1
      #1 Yorktown
      #8 New Haven
      New Prairie
      Pool 2
      #2 Wawasee
      #7 Bellmont
      Franklin County
      Pool 3
      #3 North Montgomery
      #6 Edgewood

      Pool 4
      #4 Garrett
      #5 Jimtown
      Indian Creek
      1A Teams
      Pool 1
      #1 Prairie Heights
      #8 Milan

      Pool 2
      #2 Central Noble
      #7 Eastern (Greentown)
      Pool 3
      #3 Frankton
      #6 North Posey
      South Adams
      Pool 4
      #4 Adams Central
      #5 Knightstown

      2848 3 1

      #Mondaymatness: From Columbus to Culver, Bryant striving for success

      It didn’t take Manzona Bryant IV long to make an impact on Indiana high school wrestling.
      As a Culver Military Academy freshman, the grappler from Columbus, Ohio, placed sixth at 132 pounds at the 2016-17 IHSAA State Finals.
      Three weeks later, he took home the 145-pound title at the Indiana State Wrestling Association folkstyle tournament.
      Certified for at 132 but also competing at 138, he has been dominating opponents and dazzling mat audiences so far during the 2017-18 high school season.
      Bryant also continues to make his CMA teammates better with his infectious enthusiasm and athletic tenacity.
      “He’s charismatic,” says 10th-year Eagles head coach Matt Behling. “When he steps on that mat, he’s bringing it every single time. The best thing that’s happened for our team is that attitude is contagious. 
      “He’s helping to elevate the wrestling in our (practice) room. It’s been trickle-down effect. It’s been great.”
      The coaching staff, which also includes Andrew Basner, Josh Harper, Brandon James and Chris Prendergast, encourages Bryant to constantly push the pace and he takes that to heart.
      “They tell me to just be relentless on the mat and don’t stop,” says Bryant. “I always strive to get better. If I do something wrong, I always want to get back in the room and fix it.”
      Bryant produced the fastest pin of his high school career Saturday, Dec. 16 at Penn’s Henry Wilk Classic when he scored a fall in six seconds.
      “The clock said :06, I’d like to say it was :04 or :05,” says Bryant, who did achieve a four-second pin in junior high. “I usually use a ‘cowcatcher.’ I ‘bulldog’ and throw deep and go fast.”
      How deep is Bryant’s “bag of tricks”?
      “I usually stick to the basics,” says Bryant. “I hit the usual shots or a front headlock. But if I’m out there and I need to hit something, I’ve got it. I pull out the little sack.”
      Bryant, who carries the same name as his father, grandfather (who served in the U.S. Air Force) and great grandfather, began his competitive wrestling career at age 7.
      “I had a decent season and my mom accidentally signed me up for the Tournament of Champions in Columbus and I got sixth,” says Bryant. “My mom (Theresa) thought it was some local tournament at the convention center.”
      From there, Bryant enjoyed success at the local, state and national level. He won a title in Tulsa, Okla., as a sixth grader and was a two-time Ohio junior high state champion.
      Bryant is an only child.
      “Sometimes that’s a good thing,” says Bryant. “Other times, all your friends are gone and you’re at the house going ‘What do I do?’”
      As a wrestler, he gets the chance to be social and hang around with like-minded friends. 
      “I’m a people person,” says Bryant. “I like to hang out with people. That usually leads to doing more activities.”
      When those people are his wrestling teammates and coaches, they are often working on mat moves.
      But don’t be surprised to see the Hacky Sack make an appearance.
      “We find it interesting and fun. Our coaches like to get into it. Adam Davis is really good. It’s a good stress reliever. It calms you down and gets you ready.”
      Bryant’s regular workout partner is freshman Eli Pack, who also hails from Columbus, Ohio.
      “We’ve known each other for a long time,” says Manzona. “He was my workout partner in seventh and eighth grade. I told his parents about the wonderful opportunities (at Culver). We know each other so well. We know how to push each other. It’s kind of hard to describe.”
      Bryant describes what it was like at Bankers Life Fieldhouse for the State Finals last Feb. 17-18.
      “On Friday night, I just concentrated and went into that match strong and positive,” says Bryant. “I took care of business that night. Going into the state tournament this year, I’m going to try to zero in on every match and take it like it could be my last one.”
      Bryant says he would have attended a private school if he would have gone to high school in Ohio. He enjoys the lessons in self-discipline he is learning at Culver.
      “I like it because it gives me organization,” says Bryant. “It helps me do the little things like make my bed, wake up on-time and to know where to be places and when.”
      Culver Academies — Culver Military Academy for boys and Culver Girls Academy — is loaded with athletic students. There are nearly 30 interscholastic sports at the private school for Grades 9-12. Students who are not with a sports team must work out three times a week. Culver has a state-of-the-art fitness center for that.
      “A lot of people are competitive,” says Bryant. “When we have unit games, you know everyone is going to fight.”
      Contests get fierce when dodgeball, basketball or Eagle Ball (a game similar to ultimate frisbee played with a football and targets) is played between units.
      The school has three battalions — Artillery, Infantry and Squadron. Bryant is in Battery C of the Artillery. He chose that battalion because they get to drive trucks during the various parade seasons.
      “That’s a nice little break instead of marching all the time,” says Bryant. “Sophomores also get the privilege of firing the cannon at parades, Reveille and retreat.”
      As a private school, students must qualify academically to get admitted.
      “Our kids are very respectful,” says Behling, who is also a Culver counselor. “They’re in this leadership system so they understand what it means to be a leader. 
      “We don’t deal with some of the issues that maybe some of the public schools are dealing with in terms of academics. I don’t think I’ve ever had a kid who’s been sat because he couldn’t handle the academics.”
      The school day contains four 85-minute class blocks and goes from 8:30 to 3:15 p.m. with wrestling practice from 4:30 to 6 p.m.
      Bryant’s favorite subject?
      “Latin II,” says Bryant of the course taught in the Department of Modern and Classical Languages & Cultures. “It’s interesting. A lot of our words come from Latin. It’s nice to see those when I’m studying a new vocabulary list or something like that.”
      Culver Academies requires students to take three years of foreign language. Next year, Bryant will take Latin III. As a senior, he has the choice of Advanced Placement Latin or pursuing an Honors in Language.
      A four-year school with students from all over the globe, Culver wrestling does not have a feeder program such a junior high or a club. 
      Some — like Bryant — come to campus with wrestling experiences. Others are brand new to the sport.
      “It comes down to having a really good coaching staff,” says Behling. “I’m not talking about myself. I’m talking about surrounding myself with good people. 
      “Wrestlers’ first one or two years, they’re struggling. After that, they come in and make a significant impact in our program.
      “If we’re blessed enough to have a kid that has wrestling experience, that’s great, too, because we can run with it. Kids know that if they come to Culver and they want to wrestle, they can have a real good wrestling experience.”
      The Eagles have been strong enough to qualify a few times for the Indiana High School Wrestling Coaches Association State Duals (which happen this season Saturday, Dec. 23 at the Memorial Coliseum in Fort Wayne). 
      “Here’s where the frustration is: We were right in the vote for going to Team State for the third time,” says Behling. “We didn’t get the vote because the selection committee needed to know — and this is the only question they asked us — who are your eighth graders who are going to make a contribution to your team next year? I can’t answer that in the spring so I had no response.”
      CMA is the site of an ISWA/USA Wrestling Regional Training Center. Momentum for the sport really picked up after Daniel Young became the school’s first state wrestling champion in 2009. The Bloomoington, Ind., native went 48-0 as a Culver senior and then wrestled at West Point.
      “The school got excited about that,” says Behling. “An endowment was established for wrestling. That endowment has really helped us in the last eight years. Our wrestling room is up there as one of the tops in the state of Indiana.”
      That room is now occupied by the 2017-18 CMA Eagles.
      “When our lineup is set and we clear out a few injuries, we can be a pretty tough team,” says Behling. “We’re excited about the future.”
      That future includes a bundle of energy named Manzona Bryant.

      2796 4

      #WrestlingWednesday: Wrestling has opened many doors for Katie Kriebel

      In 1994 Indiana female wrestling was in its extreme infancy. So when Katie (Downing) Kriebel and her dad met with Pendleton coach Dave Cloud about joining the high school team – she was a little nervous.
      Coach Cloud told her dad that he had never had a female wrestler before.
      “Dad told him that he had never had a daughter that wanted to wrestle before, either,” Kriebel said. “So, he told him that they were in the same boat.”
      Cloud agreed to let her wrestle. That would be the start of many firsts for coach Cloud where Kreibel was involved.
      Kriebel was a good athlete. She played softball and trained in Judo. In fact, it was her love of Judo that got her curious about wrestling.
      “I trained with the boys in Judo,” Kriebel said. “It wasn’t a big deal in Judo. But, I noticed that a lot of boys that didn’t know any Judo at all, that were wrestlers, came over and were very good right off the bat. I decided I needed to learn wrestling, too.”
      She wasn’t quite prepared for the rigors of the sport as a high school freshman. In her very first practice she threw up during conditioning. She didn’t want to appear weak, so right after she vomited she started to run. She made it through the first practice, and won over some of the guys who were questioning her toughness.
      “That first week of wrestling was the first time in my life that I had tried something and didn’t know whether I could do it or not,” Kriebel said. “I was hooked. Once I made it through the first week and I knew I wasn’t going to die, I loved it. I loved the challenge of it.”
      Kriebel didn’t fare well early on – but she was battling more than just her opponent across the mat. Her first match was a junior varsity contest. When she walked out on the mat the opposing team and their parents were laughing noticeably at her.
      “I didn’t like that,” Kriebel said. “But I was too nervous to really care. I ended up catching the kid with a head and arm that came from Judo and winning that match. Then everyone was laughing at him. I remember it not being fun at all because of everyone else’s reactions.”
      Kreibel didn’t like that people made fun of her, but she also couldn’t stand the fact that the person she was wrestling would get ridiculed too.
      “I came from a time when you had to pick your battles,” Kriebel said. “I definitely had every sort of response you could imagine. Some moms and dads were concerned for my safety. Some were concerned because they didn’t teach their boys to hurt girls. They were worried about touching and that sort of thing, too. But most of those issues really got resolved on their own once they started seeing me as a wrestler.”
      Kreibel said that by her senior year, some of her biggest critics had become her biggest fans.
      “I never intended to be a pioneer,” Kriebel said. “I didn’t have a mission for equality or rights or girl power or anything like that. I just loved wrestling. Even if it was my mission – I figured out that actions speak a lot louder than words. I could talk about why I deserved to wrestle, or I could just go out and double leg a kid and show them.”
      Kriebel finished with a .500 record in high school. She made varsity as a senior and placed third in sectional in a time when only the top two went on to regional.
      “Katie just had this toughness about her,” coach Cloud said. “At first I was concerned about her safety, but she quickly dispelled that. She was really, really tough. She got smashed a few times, but she always got back up.”
      In fact, Kriebel was so tough she didn’t care who she wrestled or how good they were. She would face anyone.
      “Katie had grit and determination,” Cloud said. “We had a wrestler win state, Donny Sands, and when we had challenges she challenged him. Nobody else dared challenge Donny. But she had a lot of courage and heart. He beat her, but she didn’t back down.”
      Kriebel’s senior year was the first year girls had a National tournament – and she won it.
      She went on to qualify for the junior world team her freshman year of college and placed second. That was the first year the US took a full women’s team with a coach and paid for everything. Kriebel later won the first Women’s World Cup.
      She took bronze in 2005 and 2007 at the World Championships and was eventually an alternate for the 2008 Olympics.
      “Wrestling gave me the opportunity to see 22 different countries,” Kriebel said. “It was pretty great to see how big the world actually is, but some things in the wrestling room is the same no matter where you’re at.”
      Kriebel never dreamed she would return to her roots in Pendleton. She coached a year at Oklahoma City University and then moved to California without any plans to return to this side of the Mississippi river. Then, Eric Kriebel, a longtime assistant coach at Pendleton passed away unexpectedly. She returned home and ended up starting a summer wrestling club in Pendleton in his name. She wanted to keep his legacy alive.
      She married Jay Kriebel, Eric’s nephew and the two have two girls, Camryn, 3 and Clara, eight months old.
      Kriebel is the varsity assistant coach at Pendleton now. She sits beside the very coach who doubted whether she could make it as a wrestler back in 1994 when Katie and her dad approached him.
      “Katie has had a lot of firsts for me,” Cloud said. “She was my first assistant coach to start dating another coach. She was my first assistant coach to marry another coach. She was my first coach to go into labor during a match.”
      Cloud said that Kreibel was coaching a match three years ago when she started having back spasms. That night he got a text that just said “I’m going to have a baby now.”
      Kriebel has juggled the life of a coach and a parent for three years now. She demonstrated moves to the team while she was pregnant, and even carried Camryn in a baby sling while coaching at the New Castle semistate.
      “Wrestling is all Camyrn has known,” Kriebel said. “I coached while I was pregnant with her. I showed front headlocks when she was in my belly, and she was literally on top of kids’ heads. She has never not known wrestling. She even calls the guys on the team ‘her guys’. “
      Kriebel is going to let her kids decide for themselves if they want to wrestle or not. She loves the sport, but she also wants what’s best for them.
      “I could really talk about wrestling for hours,” Kriebel said. “It’s honest. It’s very honest. You can’t b.s. very much in wrestling. If you have grit and perseverance, integrity and pride and you are willing to put a lot of work in without getting a lot back, then eventually you will be rewarded. It takes so much. You earn your spot. You earn everything.”
      Her passion for the sport is infectious. Pendleton now has nine girls on the team and is hoping to have 15 next season.
      “That’s sure a big change from where I started,” Cloud said. “But that’s great. I believe wrestling is the greatest sport in the world, so why wouldn’t you want girls doing it too?”

      1705 1

      #MondayMatness: Plymouth's Calhoun getting better everyday

      There’s only so much time to prepare.
      That is one of many lessons sophomore Graham Calhoun has learned while competing for veteran head coach Bob Read and his staff as part of the Plymouth High School wrestling program.
      After going 44-5 and placing seventh at the IHSAA State Finals as a freshman 138-pounder in 2016-17, Calhoun is off to a strong start to the 2017-18 season.
      “We don’t want to waste a second of practice,” says Read, an Indiana High School Wrestling Coaches Association Hall of Famer and Billy Thom Award winner who has produced 33 state qualifiers. He was hired at his alma mater in 1978 as a science teacher and wrestling assistant. He took over the Rockies matmen in 1981 and has been in that post ever since.
      Calhoun is the most recent of Read’s 14 state meet placers and an athlete driven to improve.
      “Graham is the kind of kid who looks to get better,” says Reed. “If he wants to stand on the top of the podium, he’s got to get better than what he is right now. Senior Gavin Banks (Graham’s drill partner) knows the same thing.”
      Tim Roahrig (1987), Josh Hutchens (1993 and 1994) have won state titles with Read in their corners. Hutchens was also third in 1992.
      Other state placers on Read’s watch include David Shook (second in 1983), Gabe Lopez (fourth in 1983), Jason Rudd (sixth in 1992), Kyle Condon (eighth in 1994),  Matt Arvesen (fifth in 1999 and second in 2000), Dan Denaut (second in 1998), Damon Howe (fifth in 2010 and second in 2011) followed by Graham Calhoun in 2017.
      Says Graham of his daily workouts this season with Banks, “We go pretty hard in the room. We make each other better.”
      Graham has gotten bigger since last season and is certified at 152. 
      “I’ve filled out and grew a couple inches to 5-foot-9 1/2,” says Graham, who is focused this season on “trusting the process.” That means listening to his coaches as they push all Plymouth wrestlers toward constant improvement.
      “If it’s a Thursday or a Friday and I’m four or five pounds over, I can’t just use that practice to cut weight. I’ve got to get better.”
      Read, who was a state qualifier in his senior year at Plymouth (1973) and grappled four years at Western Michigan University, sees in Graham Calhoun a young man who is learning to operate with controlled intensity. 
      “He’s a pretty even-keeled kid — win or lose,” says Read. “He doesn’t like to lose. But the last two years when he gets a chance to face someone who beat him before he usually turns the tide.”
      Graham did just that against Munster’s Cody Crary last season. He lost to Crary at the Plymouth Super Dual then bested him in the East Chicago Semistate “ticket” round.
      “He’s a competitor,” says Read. “Sometimes it’s difficult to teach that to somebody. He doesn’t fear the fact that the kid has beaten him. He absorbs that challenge. It’s fun to watch him. He can get pretty intense in the midst of a match.”
      Curbing his emotions is something Graham has been working on.
      “I’ve been working on keeping composure the mat,” says Calhoun, who carries a 3.6 grade-point average on a 4.0 scale. “That’s helped a lot. I watch these college guys and no matter what the score is, no matter what the position is they’re always composed and in-control.
      “In wrestling, there’s a lot to get prepared for mentally and physically. Before a match, I put headphones on and clear everything out. I stay calm. I don’t get too fired up. I want to stay ready and mentally prepared. Sometimes I find myself getting too pumped up for a match. I look to find a good balance.”
      Graham has been in the sport since age 4.
      “My dad tried to get me to quit when I first started I was so bad,” says Graham, the youngest of Jim and Cammie Calhoun’s four sons (Kyle, Josh and Micah are older). “I got pinned every time I went on the mat. But I didn’t quit and I still liked it. 
      So Graham just stayed with it and kept getting better and did let the fact he was born with one kidney stop him.
      “It doesn’t really bother me,” says Graham. “I just can’t drink any dark pop or caffeine. I go for annual check-ups.”
      All his work helped Graham explode onto the high school wrestling scene a year ago and followed brother Micah’s lead all the way to the big stage in Indianapolis. Micah Calhoun was 43-4 and a state qualifier in 2017 as senior 160-pounder.
      “I’ve learned everything from him — spiritually, mentally, physically, wrestling-wise,” says Graham of Micah.
      The mat means a great deal to Graham. But it’s not the thing. There is his faith and his family.
      “Wrestling is a big part of my life, but Jesus is definitely the biggest part of my life,” says Graham. “I’m a Christian and I love Jesus with all my heart. I do everything to glorify Him.”
      Jim Calhoun,  a Rochester native, attended Central Bible College in Missouri and wrestled for the University of Missouri, is senior pastor at Word of Truth Plymouth.
      Read counts Jim and Micah Calhoun as volunteers on a coaching staff that features former Bremen High School head coach and former Bremen grappler Travis Meister.
      “I don’t even need to be in the room, I know the kids are going hard,” says Read. “Those guys have made it easy for me.
      “I seek that wise counsel that the Bible talks about. I try to surround myself with those guys and it’s paid off over the years.
      “I wish I could tell you every decision I’ve made wrestling-wise is a correct decision and that every kid I’ve coach I’ve treated fairly and uprightly. I’ve made mistakes all over the place. But I hope that in the years that I’ve coached I’ve poured into more people in a positive way.”
      In his decades of coaching, Read has had wrestlers live with him and his family, which includes wife Karen, daughters Lane and Cari and son Matt, a state qualifier wrestler for Plymouth in 2003. Read’s bailed wrestlers out of jail. He’s helped them deal with divorce and the loss of loved ones.
      “As a coach, it’s more than wrestling,” says Read. “For me and my staff, it’s a ministry. That’s why we get along so well.
      “My faith is really important to me.”
      Read keeps a list of people who have qualities or characteristics that he seeks when he needs help in life. 
      Using examples from the Bible, he looks for those who are like Paul (“somebody who is going to pour into you and teach you what it’s like to be the man of character”), Barnabas (“a guy who walks with people because they are in the same season in life”) and Timothy (“someone who you pour into”).
      His father James is one of those people on his list.
      “Not many men don’t have cracks some place,” says Read. “My dad is a man that doesn’t have cracks.”
      James Read, 89, are partners in a business — J.B. Fish. When Bob retired from the class room in 2014, he and his father started raising fish in a 14,000-gallon tank. At first, it was striped bass and now it’s tilapia.
      “We raise our own brood — from eggs to selling them live,” says Read. “They start out in aquariums, we move them along and they finish in larger tanks. We sell them at a pound 3/4 or bigger. It takes about 11 months to finish them out.”
      Read and his coaches show their wrestlers plenty of finishing moves and insist that everybody develops go-to maneuvers that they trust and can execute. 
      “When you’ve been at the sport as long as I have what happens is you see a go-to move for a bunch of kids,” says Read. “Then they develop counters and everybody is looking for that (move). They starred to fade away from that. That sits the archives for years then — all of a sudden — it starts coming back.
      “I’ll say ‘this is what we did years and years ago’ and bring out some old moves.”
      Why is it important to have a “bag of tricks”?
      “Not everybody has quick feet,” says Read. “I wrestled after college in a number of big tournaments and learned that I couldn’t move my feet fast enough to sprawl. But I could change levels and bump with my hips.”
      It’s a matter of identifying the wrestler’s capabilities.
      “I have a kid who’s extremely explosive so we’re going to give him stuff he can use,” says Read. “Most of are kids aren’t so we’ve got to come in tight and control things.
      “Our off-season and in-season weight program is important to us. We want to be strong enough that we can compete with people. We believe that if we’re not in great shape that we’re going to struggle so we work on being in great shape. Our kids know it and they work hard at it.”
      Like many teams are the state, Plymouth’s number are down a little bit.
      “I think it has something to do with where we’re at in society and it’s sad,” says Read. “It’s a great sport and there’s so many lessons to be learned.”
      Graham Calhoun continues to learn those learning those lessons.

      3315 1

      #WrestlingWednesday: Frankton = Family

      Frankton wrestling coach Courtney Duncan walked in on the first day of practice carrying something a little bit unusual. The Frankton wrestling coach wasn’t holding a whistle, or uniforms. He was holding index cards. He passed one out to each kid in the room and told them to write down why they came out for wrestling.
      When Duncan read the answers, he knew he had a pretty special team.
      “Almost every kid put that they wrestle because it builds family and relationships,” Duncan said. “I didn’t have the kids put their names on the card, but that told me right then and there that they get it. It’s not about wins and losses. It’s about trusting each other and being loyal to each other.”
      Frankton, a small school of 480 students just north of Anderson, had one of the best Class A teams in the state last year. Coach Duncan really thought that they could have fared well at the team state tournament, but they did not get an invite. This year, that has changed. Frankton will be one of the teams competing for the Class A title.
      “We are really excited about team state,” Duncan said. “This is where we wanted to get as a team. We thought we had a chance last year, but this year we’re going in hoping to prove we belong. We have more kids out than we’ve probably ever had. The kids are excited and they all really look forward to the tournament.”
      One of Frankton’s hammers is junior 170 pounder Cody Klettheimer. Last season Klettheimer was one of two Frankton grapplers to advance to the individual state tournament.
      “We are looking forward to team state,” Klettheimer said. “Our goal is to win it. But we also think we can win our sectional, regional and maybe even our semistate.”
      That isn’t out of the realm of possibilities for Frankton. The team has four returning wrestlers who advanced to at least the ticket round of semistate last year. Klettheimer and senior David Delph advanced to state. Senior Dru Berkebile lost in the ticket round at semistate as did junior Cole Baker.
      The Eagles have other wrestlers, like senior Grant Geisinger, that are hoping to do well in the tourney this year. Geisinger lost to Cathedral’s Elliott Rodgers on a last second takedown in the opening round of regional. Rodgers went on to place fourth in state.
      “Grant has really developed,” Duncan said. “He has had a taste of success now, and he’s ready to make a run.”
      Frankton has the luxury of depth this year, something the school hasn’t really ever had before. There were over 30 kids go out for the team.
      “I have options this year,” Duncan said. “We are able to move kids around. We are able to make strategic lineup decisions. We have backups at just about every spot in our lineup.”
      Another major team strength is the bond the wrestlers have.
      “We all love being around each other,” Klettheimer said. “We know what we want to get to, and we push each other to the limit in the room. Even drilling we are starting to go 100 percent on everything. And, when we’re not wrestling, we are all hanging out together. We’ve became very close.”
      Frankton has improved its strength of schedule over the last several years, hoping it will create better wresters.
      “Our kids believe,” Duncan said. “They believe in each other, and they believe in themselves. We have a tough schedule, but it doesn’t matter what size school you come from, you still put your wrestling shoes on the same way. We are realizing by facing these larger, stronger schools, we can compete with anyone.”
      Klettheimer said the team’s motto is “Take No Prisoners.” The Eagles are good, and they want to prove it. Team state can’t come fast enough for this tight knit group.
      “We’re ready to see what we can accomplish,” Duncan said. “I think we can do something pretty special.”

      2697 5

      2018 IHSWCA Team State Information

      Date: December 23, 2017
      Allen County Memorial Coliseum
      4000 Parnell Ave
      Fort Wayne, IN 46805
      TrackWrestling Link(Live Video included)
      9:00 AM – Rounds 1 through 3 (4 mats)
      Pool Play – 4 pools with 3 teams in each pool – seeded
      Rd 1 Bye – Lower seeded team in each pool
      Rd 2 Bye – Higher seeded team in each pool
      Rd 3 Bye – Unseeded team in each pool
      2:00 PM(approx) – Round 4 
      Bracketed event begins based on how teams finished in their pool (4 mats)
      Consolation Matches (2 mats – 2nd  – 8th Place teams)
      -Pool A 2nd Place vs Pool D 2nd Place
      -Pool B 2nd Place vs Pool C 2nd Place
      Consolation Matches (2 mats – 3rd Place teams)
      -Pool A 3rd Place vs Pool D 3rd Place (winner ties for 9th place/loser ties for 11th place)
      -Pool B 3rd Place vs Pool C 3rd Place (winner ties for 9th place/loser ties for 11th place)
      4:00 PM(approx) – Round 5 
      Bracketed Consolation Matches (4 mats)
      Championship Bracket Semi-Finals (2 mats – 1st Place teams)
      -Pool A Winner vs Pool D Winner
      -Pool B Winner vs Pool C Winner
      5th/6th Place Dual and 7th/8th Place Dual (2 mats)
      6:00 PM(approx)– Round 6 
      Finals for Places 1st – 4th (2 mats per class – 6 mats total for Event)
      3A Teams
      Center Grove
      Columbus East
      Evansville Mater Dei
      Harrison (WL)
      Perry Merdian
      2A Teams
      Franklin County
      Indian Creek
      New Haven
      New Prairie
      North Montgomery
      1A Teams
      Adams Central
      Central Noble
      Eastern (Greentown)
      North Posey
      Prairie Heights
      South Adams
      Team State Documents
      Team State Agenda.pdf


      #MondayMatness: Cartwright looking to punch his ticket to state

      Heavyweight wrestler Alex Cartwright was very close to representing LaVille High School at the IHSAA State Finals in 2016-17.
      An overtime loss in the East Chicago Semistate “ticket” round separated the big Lancer from appearing on the mats at Bankers Life Fieldhouse in Indianapolis.
      Cartwright took part in his first state tournament series as a sophomore and won the 285-pound title at the LaPorte Sectional, pinning his last two opponents. 
      He placed second at the Crown Point Regional, defaulting in the finals because of a neck injury.
      At East Chicago, he won his first match then lost in overtime to Merrillville’s Brandon Streck.
      “It was kind of a kick in the butt,” says Cartwright of the narrow defeat that denied him a trip to Indy. “I was wrestling kind of nervous. That’s when I learned you can’t let things get in your head. You’ve just got to go when it’s your time. It’s been kind of motivational. I’ve got my head right this year.”
      The best opponent he saw last season?
      Cartwright says it’s Chesterton’s Eli Pokorney, who he beat 7-5 at the Knox Super Dual. 
      Back for his junior season in 2017-18, Cartwright is ranked among Indiana’s top 285-pounders. He is currently No. 6.
      But he doesn’t dwell on it.
      “You never want to get ahead of yourself,” says Cartwright. “I just think of it as a number.”
      Alex is the “baby” in Clyde and Shirley’s family of eight. There are four boys and two girls. Alex’s brothers are Corian Correll, Chris Cartwright and Tom Cartwright. Their sisters are Lindsay Scott and Alison Cartwright.
      Alex first got interested in the sport by watching big bro Corian, participated as a sixth grader and then came back as a freshman heavyweight.
      Correll grappled at 195 for LaVille, graduating in 2016 and is now a part of the coaching staff.
      “He’s taught me a lot of about throwing and a lot about the basics, the necessities of wrestling,” says Alex of Corian.
      Learning throws from Corian and by attending a Greco-Roman camp at the U.S. Olympic Training Center on the Northern Michigan University campus in Marquette, Mich., last summer (one of his opponents was Colton Schultz, who recently became the first American to win a cadet Greco-Roman world title in 20 years), Cartwright has added to his arsenal.
       While Corian does spar some with Cartwright (who tipped the scales at the season-opening Jimtown Super Dual Saturday, Dec. 2 at 275 pounds), it’s 220-pound junior Anthony Hatter that serves as his workout partner.
      “We do a lot of drilling,” says Hatter. “I teach him things and he helps me work with my moves.
      “He’s been working on technique and speed. There’s some quick heavyweights and he’s one of them.”
      Cartwright is a mobile big man.
      “I shoot and not a lot of heavyweights do,” says Cartwright. “It’s a mixture of speed and strength. It takes a lot of strength to get your shot fully in.”
      Cartwright remembers the words of former assistant coach Ronnie McCollough.
      “He taught to be more aggressive,” says Cartwright. “Even when you’re on bottom, you don’t sit. You’ve got to move. Just simple things that stick in my mind as a wrestler.”
      For his post-high school future, Cartwright is considering two diverse career possibilities.
      “I’m looking at going to Seattle for schooling in under-water welding or going local for marketing and business.
      “I’ve been looking into (under-water welding). It looks really enjoyable.”
      Cartwright has done dry-land welding in his agriculture power class at LaVille.
      Current Lancers head coach Sean Webb talks about Cartwright’s improvement on the mat.
      “His work ethic has been a lot better,” says Webb, who had been working as a wrestling official and stepped in to run the program when Mike Bottorff had to back off because of health issues. “He’s working really hard and figuring out how to beat the buys he lost to last year this year. He’s trying to do that now rather than later.”
      “He knows what he needs to do. Now I’ve just got to push him harder and harder to make sure he doesn’t go out in overtime and he finishes that match.”
      Webb, who wrestled for LaVille for four seasons, bumping up in weight each year from 103 to 112 to 119 to 125 for his senior season in 2011, stresses being in proper position then helps tailor a style for each of his athletes.
      “The one thing about wrestling is when you keep your stance and keep your hips set and ready to go — in position, as we like to call it — we can ready think about what kind of moves we can do.”
      Bottorff was head coach for 26 years. This past year, he suffered a stroke. Three weeks after leaving the hospital he contracted endocarditis, a blood disease that causes inflammation of the heart’s inner lining. He went for daily treatments for two months and then had a heart check. 
      Having received a mechanical valve in 2007. The next day he was at a wrestling meet. Three times that year, he had to have his heart shocked back into rhythm. 
      Ten year later, Bottorff went in for another heart procedure.
      “Now, I have two mechanical valves and it’s hard for me to get my strength back,” says Bottorff, who was at the Jimtown Super Dual. “I can’t lift over 20 pounds right now. I kneel down on the mat with the kids and I can’t get back up from that.
      “I just had to give it up. My health and seeing my grandkids is more important.”
      A 1970 LaVille graduate, Bottorff went to college to play basketball. He came back home and joined the football coaching staff at his alma mater when a need popped up in the wrestling program. He was eventually convinced to take it over.
      “For three years in a row, I said “no. I know nothing about it,” says Bottoff, who left coaching 16 dual-meet wins shy of 400. “I’ve been here ever since.”
      Under the advisement of his heart doctor and his wife of 16 years — Nancy — he is not supposed to get excited or stressed. He had his heart shocked back into rhythm two weeks ago.
      “I told the kids I’ll be here to watch them and root them on,” says Bottorff. “My wife says I’m allowed to do that but if she hears me yelling and screaming and getting upset over anything, she won’t let me do it anymore.”
      Bottorff enjoyed coaching so much because of the relationship he built with kids. He is hoping for big things from Cartwright.
      “He’s a kid you want on your team because he says ‘yes sir’ and ‘no sir,’” says Bottorff. “If he does something wrong and you tell him about it, he says ‘OK.’ He never has an excuse. That goes for wrestling or anything. His mom and dad brought him up right. He’s a perfect kid.”
      Bottorff does wish Armstrong and Hatter would take to the gridiron.
      “I’ve twisted the arms of Armstrong and Hatter in attempt to get them to play football,” says Bottorff. “They’re two of the strongest kids in the school. 
      “LaVille is a small school and we need three-sport athletes. I do my best to try to talk them into it.”


      #WrestlingWednesday: Mappes Aiming for Gold

      Center Grove senior Gleason Mappes comes from a very tough family. His three brothers were all outstanding wrestlers and his dad was a state champion. But, his mom has taken more wrestlers to school then the rest of the family combined.
      “She is our team bus driver,” Center Grove coach Cale Hoover said. “She’s the toughest one in the family. She’s extremely competitive.”
      Gleason Mappes is the last in a long line of great wrestlers in his family. His dad, Donald, was a 1978 state champ at Roncalli. His brother Sean won state in 2012 for Center Grove. His oldest brother Shelby placed third in state and his brother Rhett is currently recovering from a knee injury, but is part of the University of Indianapolis wrestling team.
      “Gleason is the last of four very good wrestlers,” Center Grove coach Cale Hoover said. “I’ve coached them all. I’ve had at least one Mappes in the room for the 12 years I’ve been here.”
      Gleason has been able to learn from his family’s strengths. He’s a three-time state qualifier and a two time placer. He has finished fourth the past two seasons.
      “Coach tells me I have a little bit of the attributes of all my family,” Gleason said. “Sean was a very funky wrestler. I try to be funky like that. He also has naturally good hip position and I’ve tried to emulate that as well. Shelby was more of the type of wrestler that just wanted to go in and beat you up until you give in. He’s really good on his feet and good at riding. I’m working to be that good on my feet as well. All of them were mentally tough.”
      Mappes has worked on improving his takedown ability since last season.
      “My main goal is to make an offense that is dynamic and that can’t be stopped,” he said.
      Mappes says the biggest thing his family has taught him is that you move on, no matter what.
      “You don’t get hung up on things that happened,” Mappes said. “You keep moving on. You don’t dwell on those things because they will just hold you back. If you dwell on what you could have done, you aren’t going to go much further.”
      Coming from such a strong wrestling family, Gleason doesn’t remember a time when he didn’t wrestle. But, he hasn’t had the number of career matches that are normal for a wrestler of his caliber.
      “Gleason entered high school with less than 100 matches in his career,” Hoover said. “He wrestled three years in middle school and a handful of club matches. He was a short little fat kid, but you could tell he was gifted and that he had a lot of talent.”
      As a freshman Gleason had a rough season. He lost 20 matches that year. Gleason is the only wrestler in at least five years to lose 20 matches and make it to the state finals.
      Reaching state lit a fire under Gleason. He came out the next year with a 37-11 record and finished fourth at 160 pounds as a sophomore. Then, as a junior he was 41-3 and finished fourth at 160 pounds.
      “Gleason has a tremendous upward climb,” Hoover said. “I really have no idea where his ceiling is. He isn’t even close to it yet.”
      Mappes is hoping to be Center Grove’s first four-time state qualifier. Ultimately, he is wanting a chance to wrestle under the lights.
      “That’s my goal,” Mappes said. “I want to finish under the lights.”
      After high school Gleason is going to wrestle for the University of Indianapolis and he will study nursing. Losing him from the Center Grove room will be tough on the Trojan family, especially on coach Hoover.
      “I just feel so fortunate to coach him,” Hoover said. “When I first came here he was in first grade. I’ve known him most of his life. I know for sure I’ll be dominating their family for the wrestling Hall of Fame.”

      1970 2 1

      #MondayMatness: Stroud leading Elkhart Central back to the top

      A willingness to work toward constant improvement has helped raise Elkhart Central High School’s wrestling profile on the bigger stage.
      The 2016-17 Blue Blazers forged an 11-5 dual-meet record, beat crosstown rival Elkhart Memorial in a dual meet for the first time in many years then raised an Elkhart Sectional team trophy for the first time in 28.
      With Nick Conner (285 pounds), Tykease Baker (160) and Xander Stroud (145) winning their respective weight classes Blue Blazers edged Northridge by two points. It was the ECHS program’s first sectional team title since 1989.
      The Blazers won the sectional with a come-from-behind pin victory in a consolation match. 
      “It takes a lot of team effort,” says Central head coach Zach Whickcar, now in his sixth season of leading the wrestling program at his alma mater. He grappled for four seasons, graduating in 2006. “Everybody needs to pull their weight.
      “We won sectional with 14 guys, but it was the 14 behind them were every bit as important. They needed someone to practice with.”
      “It’s been a total buy-in. We took 11 kids to the Jeff Jordan’s State Champ Camp (during the high school off-season). The kids genuinely like being around each other.
      “It’s consistency and being present that gets you to where you want to be.”
      While they want to win during the regular, everything the Blazers do is focused toward the postseason.
      “I’m always telling them that we want to be peaking at sectionals,” says Whickcar. “We want to put out a product that’s competitive. But we want to do what is best for the kids. We want to win a sectional (team title) and we want to do well (as individuals) in the state tournament.”
      Since Whickcar took over as head coach for the 2012-13 season (the Blazers were 2-16 in duals that year), Central has produced five IHSAA State Finals qualifiers — Johnny Tredway (eighth place at 160 pounds in 2013), Eliseo Guerra (sixth at 220 in both 2014 and 2015), Stroud (eighth at 145 in 2017) and Chaz Boyd (did not place at 138 in 2017).
      Whickcar calls Stroud a “mat junkie.”
      “He’s always wrestling,” says Whickcar of a grappler who regularly attends Indiana State Wrestling Association Regional Training Center sessions at Jimtown High School and Midwest Extreme Wrestling Club events at Penn High School besides going to places like Virginia Beach and the Iowa Nationals during the summer. “He takes advantage of those opportunities.”
      Stroud said competing in big tournaments has one effect and practicing against good wrestlers has a another.
      “The wrestling is done in the RTC’s,” says Stroud. “The tournaments help you with your mindset. It’s about not being worried about who you are facing and just working on your stuff. You wrestle like how you want to wrestle.
      “It’s just you wrestling that other kid.”
      Plenty of time in the circle has led to acute mat awareness for Stroud.
      “He has a real feel for what he needs to do,” says Whickcar. “Like all of our wrestlers, he is able to find a couple of good things he is good at and uses them. He has pretty good leg attacks. But he definitely can get better.”
      The wrestler talks about what mat awareness means to him.
      “Where I’m at on the mat and the moves I chose to make depends on where I’m at,” says Stroud. “If I’m we’re the outer edge of the mat and I’m on the inside part of the mat and he’s closer to the line, I might shoot him out to get him out-of-bounds to re-set my position to the center.”
      “Or maybe he has my leg, I’ll watch my position and step out so we can re-set and go back to the center.”
      A rule change this season also allows wrestlers to get pins outside the circle. Before they could get “back” points but not falls.
      “You still have to have a supporting part (of your body) inbounds,” says Stroud. “Now you can go for a pin instead of just getting points.
      “You have to really watch your position more now since you can get pinned out-of-bounds.”
      The current Central lineup features Sean Johnson (106), Eric Garcia (113), Brad Felder (120), Jacob Hess (126), Tony Lopez (132), Raul Martinez (138), Peyton Anderson or Austin Garcia (145), Nathan Dibley (152), Xander Stroud (160), Carlos Fortoso (170), Peterson Ngo (182), Alex Lucias (195), Omar Perez (220) and Nick Conner (285).
      Stroud, Conner, Lucias, Martinez, Perez and Ngo (back after wrestling for Central as a sophomore) are seniors leading the 2017-18 Blazers.
      “Those six seniors have busted their butt,” says Whickcar. “They love the sport.”
      Stroud, who is planning to study biomedical engineering in college and may wrestle at the next level, says he prefers to lead by example.
      “Omar Perez and Alex Lucias — They are pretty vocal,” says Stroud. “I only yell when I have to. 
      “Our team is pretty good about doing what they are supposed to (be doing). During the season, we do larger things. At the end of the season, we fine-tune things. That’s when you want to peak — at the end of the season.”
      The Blazers opened the 2017-18 varsity season Saturday, Nov. 25 by placing second to Central Noble at the Elkhart Central Turkey Duals.
      Before the New Year, the Blazers have home dual meets slated against Northridge Dec. 5 and Mishawaka Dec. 7. 
      Then comes  the Jim Nicholson Charger Invitational at Elkhart Memorial Dec. 9 and dual meets at Elkhart Memorial Dec. 12 and South Bend Adams Dec. 14 followed by the 32-team Al Smith Classic at Mishawaka Dec. 29-30.
      Coming down the stretch of the regular season, there’s a dual at Penn Jan. 4, East Noble Invitational Jan. 6, Northern Indiana Conference meet Jan. 13 and dual at Jimtown Jan. 18.
      Besides Whickcar, ECHS wrestlers are pushed by a coaching staff with Central graduates Abe Que, Trevor Echartea and Zack Kurtz, Elkhart Memorial graduates Carson Sappington and Steven Vergonet and Concord graduate Brian Pfeil.


      Blake Mulkey to Head South

      The last of the big four seniors for Brownsburg has announced his college choice. Two-time state placer Blake Mulkey has decided to take his talents to Boiling Springs, North Carolina. He projects to be a 141lber for the Gardner-Webb Bulldogs. 
      Mulkey chose Gardner-Webb for a variety of reasons. The connection with the coaching staff and the current freshman class made him feel at home. It didn't hurt that he would be in warm North Carolina during the winter. The coaching staff is excited to land a recruit like Mulkey who is likely to make an immediate impact. 
      Congratulations to Blake on his decision.

      1240 1

      Brayton Lee Commits to Minnesota

      For a kid that has a motor that is full throttle 24 hours a day, Brayton Lee slowed down when it came to the recruiting process. Starting the list with six schools that included traditional powers Oklahoma State and Iowa State, Lee narrowed down it down to Nebraska and Minnesota. Many people thought it was a foregone conclusion that he'd land in Nebraska, however he ended up going with the Gophers. With his committment the Gophers have added to an already stellar incoming class. Region natives Kasper McIntosh and Gable Steveson, now in Minnesota, are two familiar faces that Lee will have when he gets to campus. On top of that Lee has become very close to another incoming freshman in Patrick McKee from his visit to Minnesota and Flo's Who's #1 event.
      Lee is slotted to fill in nicely at 157lbs and should be a force from the get go for the Gophers. He is the third Brownsburg wrestler to commit to wrestling in college following Ty Mills who is going to Duke and Nathan Walton who is headed to Cumberland University in Tennessee. 

      4049 2

      #WrestlingWednesday: Viduya Brings Glory Back to Roncalli

      Roncalli freshman Alec Viduya knew what it would take to become a wrestling state champion. There’s hard work, dedication and all that jazz – but most importantly, he needed a perm.
      “Alec decided it was time to bring the perm back before the sectional this year,” Roncalli coach Wade McClurg said. “He was 15-0 in the state series with the perm, so the secret is in the hair.”
      Viduya won the 113 pound weight class, beating Jimtown’s No. 6-ranked Hunter Watt 7-4 in the finale.
      “He earned the nickname Goku (Dragonball Z reference) last summer,” McClurg said. “Goku is known for his work ethic and constantly striving to be the greatest warrior to protect the universe. Alec has crazy hair like Goku and he is always striving to be the best wrestler to protect the Southside Rebellion.”
      Viduya become Roncalli’s fourth state champion, and the first in 32 years since Chris Maxwell won in 1985. He wants to follow in the footsteps of his former coach Lance Ellis and become a four-time champion.
      “He was my coach for a long time, and I’d love to follow what he did,” Viduya said.
      Viduya certainly doesn’t lack confidence. The freshman tried not one, but two standing cradles in the finals match.
      “I know what I’m capable of,” Viduya said. “I knew that if I could lock that up I was getting back points.”
      Coach McClurg learned from his mentor, Carmel coach Ed Pendoski, that communication is the key to having a successful program. So McClurg held a meeting with Alec and his family at their kitchen table in July and discussed Alec’s goals.
      “Without hesitation he told me that he wanted to be a state champion as a freshman like his mentor Lance Ellis,” McClurg said. “That dialogue began when he was a youth wrestler and continued into the kitchen table conversation in July, and it’s still communicated on a daily basis.”
      Viduya dismantled several ranked opponents during his tournament run. He beat Warren Central’s No. 3-ranked Skylour Turner in the New Castle semistate final 15-4. He then beat #17 Kane Egli, No. 8 Jose Diaz and No. 1-ranked, returning state champion Asa Garcia leading up to the final match.
      “My Friday night match was one of the hardest because I had to make weight and maintain my weight,” Viduya said. “I was pretty tired. On Monday I was 122 pounds.”
      As is the case with almost every state champion, Viduya strives for excellence in practice.
      “I’ve had the privilege to have coached Alec since he was 8 years old,” McClurg said. “Alec has always taken his training very seriously and is passionate about wrestling. He is motivated by his absolute hatred of losing and has been that way since he was very young. That’s just how he is programmed. Alec is the ultimate competitor. He is confident in his abilities and he stays mentally strong in tough situations.”
      To many, Viduya seems very straight-laced and serious at all times. He is hyper-focused during tournaments and dual meets. But coach McClurg says he’s not always that way.
      “There is a misconception with some people who are not real familiar with Alec,” McClurg said. “Because they think he never smiles or talks. The people that really know Alec and see him every day in the hallways at Roncalli know that is certainly not the case. If I had to describe Alec in one word it would be ‘cool.’ Alec is one cool customer.”
      This summer Viduya plans to wrestle at Fargo in freestyle. His work to stay on the top of the championship ladder in high school is far from over. But, he feels that as long as he puts in the work, and keeps the perm, he should be ready.

      2001 2

      State feature - Three juniors lead Brownsburg to first IHSAA state championship

      The Bulldogs have some “sweet rings” coming to them.
      That’s what fourth-year Brownsburg High School head wrestling coach Darrick Snyder said as his squad was wrapping up an IHSAA team state championship.
      Led by three juniors “under the lights,” the Bulldogs won it all on the IHSAA side for the first time Saturday, Feb. 18 — after taking a second straight Class 3A Indiana High School Wrestling Coaches Association State Duals crown Dec. 23.
      Brownsburg racked up 100 points and outdistancing runner-up Chesterton (80). A two-day record crowd of 33,844 packed Bankers Life Fieldhouse in downtown Indianapolis.
      Brayton Lee (50-0 at 145 pounds) rolled to the title in his weight class while Ty Mills (37-3 at 120) and Blake Mulkey (38-2 at 126) were runners-up for Brownsburg, which came into the meet ranked No. 1 as a team. Lee, Mills and Mulkey were all top-ranked as individuals.
      “He’s at a different level,” Snyder said of Lee, who moved to 130-1 in his prep career with two state titles (he reigned at 138 in 2016). “I think he’s going to wrestle big time (NCAA) D-I and there’s a very good chance he’ll be wrestling for a career after that. He’s that special.
      “He enjoys every second of being out there and the competition part of it. It’s an absolute joy to be his coach.”
      In the finals, Lee bested Munster senior Jason Crary by a 14-6 major decision, taking him down seven times and cutting him six.
      “I felt like that was my best opportunity to get the match rolling,” Lee said. “Scoring on my feet, that’s where I’m always comfortable.”
      Lee expressed his gratitude for others who got him to where he is in the mat world.
      “It’s a ton of coaches, my long-time club coach Chad Red, my high school coach, God, everybody,” Lee said. “There’s just so much support.”
      Lee, who is also a three-time second and Hendricks County tournament champion and two-time regional and semistate winner as well as an All-American at the national level, describes what it’s like inside the Brownsburg practice room.
      “We have fun, but it’s very competitive because we have so many good partners,” Lee said. “My teammates are crazy. They really stepped it up. Our guys wrestled amazing. It’s just a great family and we have a great time together.
      “Snyder is the biggest part. When he came to Brownsburg, he made us great. He’s the best.”
      A late takedown by Columbus East sophomore Cayden Rooks gave him a 5-4 finals win against Mills. The Brownsburg grappler took Rooks down midway through first period and led 2-0.
      Mills blocked reversal attempt near end of the first period and took a 2-0 lead into the second.
      Rooks escaped near the start of the second period to cut the lead to 2-1 and that was the score heading to the third period. Rooks yielded an escape to open the third period to make it 3-1.
      A Rooks takedown 30 seconds into the period knotted the score a 3-all. Mills went up 4-3 with an escape.
      “Hard work and determination, that’s how anybody gets here,” Mills said. “I’ve been staying focused, getting it done in the classroom and on the mat. I always have a thought about my last loss and it pushes me to go hard and be stronger.
      “I just stayed focus and do whatever Snyder tells me to do and don’t have a smile on my face. We get it done at Brownsburg. Nobody practices as hard as us. It’s an exciting atmosphere in that room.”
      Mills now has two state runners-up (106 in 2015 and 120 in 2017) and a third-place finish (106 in 2016) to his credit as well as three regional, two sectional, two conference and one county tournament title to his credit.
      He said the Bulldogs are all focused on one goal.
      “We always break at practice on ’State Champs!,” Mills said. “The team got it done in individual and Team State (in December in Fort Wayne) this year. Nothing can stop us. Nothing should decide that besides our selves.”
      Mulkey, who also wrestled at 132 this season and tends to spar with bigger teammates, also talked about the workouts that again made Brownsburg top dogs in Indiana wrestling.
      “We have fun sometimes,” Mulkey said. “We plays games at the end and before practice. From 3:20 to 5:20, it’s hard work. It’s all business.
      “We definitely push each other in practice. It gets a little feisty sometimes. But we love each other as a team. We just battle each other and make each other better everyday.”
      Mulkey quickly went up 2-0 in the finals against New Palestine senior Alec White before being pinned in 3:32.
      A year ago, Mulkey placed third at 120. He is a three-time conference and county tournament champion and two-time winner and the sectional and regional level.
      Five other Bulldogs — seniors Rickie Clark (fourth at 285), Isaac McCormick (seventh at 220) and Anthony Cicciciarelli (lost in the first round at 170), junior Nathan Walton (third at 182) and freshman Drake Campbell (fifth at 106) — were at the State Finals
      There will be a celebration in Brownsburg. Then it’s back to work.
      “It’s exciting,” Snyder said. “We return 10 starters and three guys who where under the lights. They get tomorrow and Monday off and we have open room on Tuesday to start our off-season.”

      1902 1

      Karl's Komments: Quarterfinal Clashes

      As we move to the 2nd round on Saturday morning, the following commentary is based purely on my opinions. Please feel free to use anything said as motivation. In this article, I will feature what I believe will be outstanding quarterfinal matches. It could be based on rankings, rivalries or just a hunch.
      Karl’s Quarterfinal Clashes
      Don’t stay out too late on Friday night as the lightweights will be rocking and rolling early Saturday morning. My top potential match up at 106 is a doozy:
      #7 Drake Campbell – Brownsburg vs. #4 AJ Black – Shenandoah
      Coach Snyder will have his flyweight ready as he will be firing up his troops in order to make a run at the state title. Campbell getting to the semi finals would be a huge bonus for the Bulldogs. To reach the semis Campbell will have to be the sophomore Black. Black is from little school Shenandoah but don’t sell him short. He as wrestled and beaten some of the best.
      The final quarterfinal clash in the 113 bracket is most definitely semi final or state final quality:
      #4 Kory Cavanaugh – Penn vs. #1 Asa Garcia – Avon
      Cavanaugh went into last weekends semi state as the prohibitive favorite. A little hiccup puts him in the same quarter bracket with the defending 106 champion Garcia. This match up has the makings of a classic. Penn kids are always able to execute a game plan and Garcia is wrestling with extreme confidence this post season.
      If you only look at the ranking, my pick for the outstanding second round match in the 120 pound class might not make much sense because it pits the 5th ranked wrestler versus the 18th ranked. If you dive deeper you see details that make this a great Saturday morning scrap.
      #18 Tyce Freije – Roncalli vs. #5 Colin Poynter – Portage
      Freije navigated a wicked 120 bracket at New Castle to come out as champion. In the preseason, he was one of the most highly touted freshman in the state. After a few hiccups during the season, Freije has turned it on in the post season. Striving to be his kryptonite is the talented junior from Portage, Colin Poynter.
      In the bottom half of the bracket looms a whale of a potential semifinal battle between #1 ranked Blake Mulkey of Brownsburg and #6 ranked, semi state champion from Cathedral, Jordan Slivka. Slivka avenged an earlier season loss to Alec White at New Castle and like several other Irish, appears to be peaking at the right time. Mulkey was on the same side of the semi state bracket as 2nd ranked Graham Rooks. He lost a narrow one point decision which put him in this quarter bracket. The entire bracket is awesome but this match up stands out.
      The top quarterfinal match up at 132 might be dubbed the “2018 State Finals”. The potential tilt pits the two top ranked juniors in the state. Yorktown’s 4th ranked Christian Hunt is the semi state champ from Fort Wayne. He has just two losses on the season, one of which was to 2nd ranked Breyden Bailey of Cathedral. 5th ranked Ethan Smiley of Beech Grove suffered his first loss of the season last weekend to Bailey. This should be a beauty of a match in order get to the semi finals.
      The unstoppable force versus the immovable object. Yes it is a cliché but it aptly describes the best potential quarterfinal match in the 138 pound class. From the region, it is the very offensive takedown artist, #3 ranked Kris Rumph of Portage. Rumph broke out last year with a fourth place medal at the state meet. His likely opponent from the deep south is Tristan Sellmer of Floyd Central. Sellmer sent notice to the state that he was a contender with an out standing effort at the Calumet Traicoff tournament where Rumph narrowly edged him 3-2. This should have the feel of a semi final.
      The bracket gods were unkind to Portage’s 2nd ranked Kasper McIntosh this year. After being upset by Jason Crary of Munster at the semi state, McIntosh got placed in the one quarter bracket he would have liked to have avoided. Brownsburg’s returning state champ, # 1 ranked Brayton Lee is likely to be waiting for McIntosh on Saturday morning. A matchup of a state champ and a state runner up on Saturday morning is just awesome for the fans.
      New Castle semi state winner Noah Warren of Perry Meridian is ranked 2nd in the state. He was a 7th place finisher at 160 last year and has come down a weight for the 2017 season. His likely Saturday morning foe should be Mount Vernon’s Austin Bethel. Bethel is a four time state finalist but has never wrestled on Saturday. A 4th ranked kid versus the second ranked kid is deserving of a semi final or even final match. Fans should be treated to an high energy, exciting tilt.
      Gleason Mappes of Center Grove might be the most under appreciated wrestlers in the state. A 39-1 record, an Al Smith title, and a fourth place medal from last year have only resulted in a sixth place ranking for the Trojan senior. Another trip to the semifinals might be on the line Saturday morning and his adversary should be Oszkar Kasch of Crown Point or it could be the one wrestler that has beaten Mappes this year, Matt Wertz of Zionsville. Kasch is a junior with a fine 33-3 record and is ranked just behind Mappes in 7th.
      Can you believe that we get to see another epic #1 vs. #2 showdown early Saturday morning. A narrow win by Eli Stock of Monrovia over the state’s top ranked Burk Van Horn, has put Van Horn in a quarter bracket with non other than the state’s second ranked wrestler, Tanner Webster of North Montgomery. Van Horn was a state runner up last year at 160 and Webster, a Purdue recruit, finished sixth at this weight class a year ago. Plan your potty breaks accordingly because this one is not to be missed.
      As we move to the 182 class, the bracket shows that the top four ranked kids in the state are in four separate quarter brackets. Second ranked Thomas Dull of Terre Haute North, is in the same semi state as top ranked Nathan Walton of Brownsburg. Walton defeated Dull last week in the semi finals at Evansville. Dull probably got the best state draw he could have hoped for when he was put in the same quarter bracket with the champ from the New Castle semi-state, Alec Jessop of Hamilton Southeastern. Jessop is largely unknown to fans statewide so it should be an interesting battle versus last year’s 5th place finisher at 170.
      A whale of a Saturday morning match should be on tap between Cathedral’s Ben Stewart and Elkhart Memorial’s David Eli. The second ranked Stewart has finished 3rd at this weight class last year. Strong and fast, the Irishman is tough to deal with as his 33-1 record indicates. The fourth ranked Eli will not take a backseat to any one in this weight class. He has an outstanding 42-1 record, two state medals to his name, and a ton of confidence after blitzing the field at Fort Wayne last week. He pinned all four opponents and spent about six total minutes on the mat. Eli’s lone loss was in the championship match at the Al Smith, where he was defeated by Chesterton’s Andrew Davison.
      The light heavyweight class might have been the most difficult of the fourteen to select an outstanding quarterfinal bout. Sixth ranked Donnie Crider of Lafayette Harrison should tackle top dog, Mason Parris of Lawrenceburg. Interesting, but until someone proves me wrong, I think Parris will dominate anyone in his path. My choice then for the top second round match is between Daleville’s Corbin Maddox and Brownsburg’s Isaac McCormick. Maddox is currently ranked 4th in the state and has state hardware on his resume. However, the 8th ranked McCormick will be wrestling, not only for himself, but also for his team in their efforts to get a state crown. The match up also pits a wrestler from the smallest school with a qualifier against the prohibitive favorite for the team title. Interesting indeed.
      The big fellas have always held a special place in my heart and this year is no different. All four 2nd round bouts have an appeal bu the first one stands out in my mind. A potential match up between third ranked Wade Ripple from Mount Vernon and defending state runner up, Robert Samuels of Lawrence North. Ripple has torn through everyone this year after coming up one match short of making the state finals last year. Mount Vernon has an outstanding tradition in the heavyweight class. Samuels, currently ranked 9th, has had a few hiccups this year but obviously has the talent and experience needed to make a deep run this weekend.

      4035 6

      #WrestlingWednesday: Bailey Seeking the Elusive Blue Ribbon

      Breyden Bailey has done just about everything one can do to improve in wrestling. He puts time in the weight room, works relentlessly in practice and studies the sport. He’s gotten better in all aspects of wrestling. Yet, each year, despite his improvements, his season has ended in the exact same way -- third place.
      Bailey, a senior at Indianapolis Cathedral, is one of the most highly decorated wrestlers in Indiana history. He’s a four time sectional champion, a four time regional champion and as of last Saturday, he’s a four-time New Castle semistate champion.
      Going to state is nothing new for Bailey. He’s been there four times. He’s won his Friday night match the last three years. He’s also won his first and second matches on Saturday for the last three years.
      The state semifinals has proven to be the death round for Bailey. He has lost in the semifinals all three years. Each time, the opponent that has beaten him, has then fallen to the eventual state champion en route to a second place finish.
      Bailey has went on to win the third place match all three times.
      “It does mean a lot to me to be a four-time state qualifier,” Bailey said. “I am proud of my placings, but I want to win it.”
      Wrestling is in Bailey’s blood. His father, Bryan, is a two-time state champion from Martinsville and a one-time runner-up.
      “Bryan has been coaching Breyden his whole life,” Cathedral coach Sean McGinley said. “He’s been able to absorb things about the sport. Wrestling really is a way of life for him.”
      Bailey started wrestling when he turned seven. He had instant success, placing second in the ISWA folkstyle state that year.
      “Wrestling really seems to have come naturally to me,” Bailey said.
      About the time Bailey started wrestling, he also started going to the state finals in Indianapolis to watch the high school guys reach for their goals.
      “I’ve been going to the state tournament since I was in second grade,” Bailey said. “My favorite memory was when Briar Runyan from Martinsville won it. I remember getting my picture taken with him. They are close family friends.”
      Bailey doesn’t participate in any other sport. He says his normal day is waking up early, doing a little lifting or running a few miles, then going to school. During the school day he often gets the opportunity during one of his resource classes to look at film on wrestling. After school he goes to practice, then sticks around some nights to put extra work in with his freshman brother Logan.
      Logan lost in the ticket round of the New Castle semistate on Saturday.
      McGinley says there really isn’t a weakness in Bailey’s wrestling.
      “He’s good from top, bottom and neutral,” McGinley said. “But the first thing I’d say about Bailey is that he’s a student of the sport. I’ve never had a kid that has so much knowledge, that’s so involved in our room. He’s constantly helping other kids and coaching. He’s on another level in terms of his knowledge of the sport.”
      Bailey’s leadership (he’s a three-year captain at Cathedral) is one of the big reasons the Irish are considered contenders for the team state title this year.
      Cathedral won the New Castle semistate and will send seven grapplers to the state meet. The Irish were especially dominant in the middle weights. Jordan Slivka won the 126 pound class, Bailey took first at 132 and Zach Melloh won the 138 pound bracket. Elliot Rodgers finished second at 145.
      Ben Stewart finished second for Cathedral at 195 pounds and Andy Guhl was second at 220. Caleb Oliver finished fourth at 113.
      “We thought the semistate team championship would be close,” McGinley said. “I really thought it was Perry Meridian’s to lose. But we always talk about how we want to get on a little bit of a roll. We know if we lose one we aren’t expected to, we need someone who isn’t expected to win to pull off the upset.
      “That happened when we lost at 106 with little Bailey. We turned around at 113 and got back on track.”
      Oliver’s advancement was a bit of a surprise, considering he had just an 18-16 record entering the semistate.
      For Breyden, he has learned leadership skills by watching guys that were good leaders to him.
      “My freshman year we won state,” Bailey said. “We had guys like Vinny Corsaro and Wesley Bernard that were great leaders. I learned a lot from their style.”
      Bailey will wrestle for Division I Northern Illinois University next season. His college bio page will talk about his three third place finishes. He’s hoping there is also a line that reads “2017 Indiana state champion” as well.
      “Right now that’s my number one goal,” Bailey said. “I want to get under those lights.”

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