WAUSEON — Wauseon won a fairly close decision over Delta last week, 43-28, to win the regular season NWOAL title. Wauseon led by just three points, but won its final two matches by pins to pull away.
With that fairly close decision in mind, Wauseon expected a tight battle with Delta for the NWOAL tournament crown on Saturday. But Wauseon, on the strength of placing 11 of its 14 wrestlers in the top four, won its third consecutive crown, topping runner up Delta, 219-193.
Delta had just one less individual champ than Wauseon, 5-4, but the Panthers only placed eight of its wrestlers in the top four.
Of the other teams, Liberty Center (150.5) placed third, while Archbold (125) finished fourth.
“We knew it was going to be close with Delta and they stayed with us the whole way, but we were able to pull away a bit in the middle of the day,” Wauseon head coach Mike Ritter said. “Basically, we were without two of our starters today, so our other guys really stepped up. I’m really proud of all of our guys and we had two guys (Gavin Ritter, 120 and Xavier Torres, 170) come out with their third league titles.”
Wauseon also had three grapplers who claimed their first crown. Damon Molina (106) topped Delta’s Carson Chiesa, 10-6, Nolan Ray (126) won by a 34 second fall over Swanton’s Zack Schaller and Aaron Harris (220) won by a fall in 3:10, over Delta’s Austin Kohlhofer.
“This win was pretty nice, because this is my first tournament win in high school,” Harris said. “I knew Kohlhofer was expecting me to try to throw him, so I had to be patient in getting things set up. I knew I could throw him and I was able to, midway in the second period, to get my pin.”
Gavin Ritter won a close, 4-2 decision over Liberty Center’s Dylan Matthews. Ritter broke a 2-2 tie with a takedown in the second period.
“It was probably closer than it should have been, but it’s a great feeling to win a league title for the third time,” Gavin Ritter said. “I wasn’t able to get another takedown, but felt I was in control the whole time.”
Torres won with a pin in 3:25 over Swanton’s Xavier Wiemken.
“It’s a great feeling to win for the third time,” Torres said. “A lot of hard work and dedication went into getting to this points. I’m looking forward to carrying this success through the postseason.”
Delta had four champions, including Cole Mattin claiming his fourth title, pinning Archbold’s Brennan Short in 3:22.
“It’s awesome getting four,” Mattin said. “Really, it’s a great accomplishment, because the NWOAL is a very tough league.”
Delta’s other champions were: Zach Mattin (113), Dawson Swicegood (145) and Dalton Richard (285). Mattin won an 11-0 major decision over Wauseon’s Spencer Martinez. Swicegood won by forfeit over Wauseon’s Evan Banister and Richard topped Wauseon’s Sammy Sosa, 2-1 with a third period reversal.Richard finished second last year, losing his 220 pound title match by an ultimate tiebreaker.
“Overall, second place was not what we wanted, but when you break it down to individual efforts, it was a good tournament,” said Delta coach Sam Carrizales. “In particular, it was a great match by Dalton, after losing to Sosa last week. He won’t have to face Wauseon again this year, since they are in a different division. So, for Dalton, being a senior, to win his first league title is a great way to cap off his NWOAL career.”
Liberty Center had seven players place in the top four and had one champion. Tyler Kay (152) won a 5-3 decision in overtime over Swanton’s Ryan Marvin.
Archbold had two champions. Zach Rocha, a senior, won his first NWOAL title by a 12-4 major decision over Wauseon’s Connor Twigg.
“It feels good to finally get one,” Rocha said. “I placed second last year, so I’ve been waiting for this for a long time.”
Archbold’s Mason Babcock won a 7-2 decision over Bryan’s Dylan McCandless, getting three takedowns and an escape point. McCandless closed to within 5-2 with an escape in the third period, before Babcock gained a little more breathing room with a late takedown.
“It feels great to win, like I’m on top of the world,” Babcock said.
Patrick Henry had two individual champions. T.J. Rhamy (160) won by forfeit over Archbold’s Kasyn Schaffner and Wil Morrow (195) surprised Caleb Carpenter, with a pin in 1:05. Morrow had been 0-2 against Carpenter beforehand.
“I lost a close one to him as a freshman in the finals (and then was injured at last year’s NWOAL meet),” Morrow said. “He was coming at me and I did my throw and it worked. It felt good to finally beat him.”
Wauseon 219, Delta 193, Liberty Center 150.5, Archbold 125, Swanton 100.5, Montpelier 91.5, Patrick Henry 81, Bryan 40.0, Evergreen 17.0
106 — Damon Molina (W) dec. Carson Chiesa (D), 10-6; 113 — Zack Mattin (D) major dec. Spencer Martinez (W), 11-0; 120 — Gavin Ritter (W) dec. Dylan Matthews (LC), 4-2; 126 — Nolan Ray (W) pinned Zack Schaller (S), 0:48; 132 -Zach Rocha (A) major dec. Connor Twigg (W), 12-4; 138 — Cole Mattin (D) pinned Brennan Short (A), 3:22; 145 — Dawson Swicegood (D) won by forfei over Evan Banister (W); 152 — Tyler Kay (LC) dec. Ryan Marvin (S), 5-3 (OT); 160 — T.J. Rhamy (PH) won by forfeit over Kasyn Schaffner (A); 170 — Xavier Torres (W) pinned Xavier Wiemken, 3:25; 182 — Mason Babcock (A) dec. Dylan McCandless (B), 7-3; 195 — Wil Morrow (PH) pinned Caleb Carpenter (LC), 1:05; 220 — Aaron Harris (W) pinned Austin Kohlhofer (D), 3:10; 285 — Dalton Richard (D) dec. Sammy Sosa (W), 2-1.
106 — Ethan Borstleman (LC), Bye; 113 — Zach LaPlante (S) pinned Cameron Henneman (LC), 1:52; 120 — Kasche Bible (M) dec. Anthony Meyer (PH), 8-6; 126 — Shane Eicher (A) dec. Ashton Varney (M), 2-1; 132 — Tre Hutchinson (M) dec. Evan Perry (D), 9-7; 138 — Ethan Branum (S) pinned Brayden Custer (M), 2:23; 145 — Josafat Hinojosa (PH) pinned Bronson Sines (M), 1:56; 152 — Carson Meyer (A) dec. Ethan Glover (W), 3-1; 160 — Ian Saunders (S) dec. Brian Floyd (E), 9-5; 170 — Tyler Echler (LC) tech. fall Gavin Wurm (M), 17-2; 182 — Rollin Robinson (D) won by default over Owen Johnson (LC); 195 — Drew Krall (W) dec. Logan York (E), 4-2; 220 — Mason Foote (M) dec. Ray Culler (LC), 4-3 (UTB); 285 — Conner Johnson (LC) pinned Monte Treesh (M), :36.