that second to Lakewood St. Edward is just about as good as first and
in the fact that first is getting a little closer every year. Sunday the Crusaders finished runner-up to the Eagles at the
Division I portion of the Ohio High School Wrestling Coaches
Association Ohio Duals Team Tournament for the third straight season.
WADSWORTH – Wrestlers at Cincinnati Moeller can take some solace in the fact that second to Lakewood St. Edward is just about as good as first and in the fact that first is getting a little closer every year.
Sunday the Crusaders finished runner-up to the Eagles at the Division I portion of the Ohio High School Wrestling Coaches Association Ohio Duals Team Tournament, held at Wadsworth High School. It was Moeller’s third consecutive runner-up finish in the event, all to the Eagles.
St. Edward won this time around 36-25 on the strength of Jamie Clark’s pin 50 seconds into his 112-pound bout with Moeller’s Like Guju. The Eagles won the last three matches, starting with heavyweight Mark Horton and followed by 103-pounder Gus Sako.
“It’s tough competition,” St. Edward coach Greg Urbas said. “(Cincinnati) Elder in the second round, they’re tough. They’re rapidly improving. And Moeller wrestled real tough. I know they’re doing a bunch of work in the offseason and they’re doing the right things. They’ve got good great school programs. I know they’re working hard.”
And they’re inching closer to the Eagles. Two years ago, St. Edward beat the Crusaders in the final 49-14. Last year it was 39-27. This time Moeller led 25-24 with three classes left to contest. That was thanks in large part to a 9-7 sudden-death win at 215 by Ross Quehl over Mike Green.
“That was a tremendous match,” Urbas said. “Those kids let it all hang out. Then our two lightweights really came through again.”
The middleweights came through pretty big for the Eagles as well. Trailing 13-6 after four weight classes – bouts started at 119 – St. Edward got a win from Neil Birt at 140, a pin from Connor Suba at 145 and a clutch decision from Cory Martinson at 145.
“I felt good today,” Martinson said. “Coach has been telling me all week that this was a week I’d need to come out, step up and explode and win big matches. Today was a big win. It helped my team get the momentum back.”
The Eagles started the day with a 54-6 win over Teays Valley. They beat Elder 34-26 in the semifinals, a match not as close as the final score.
Also winning for St. Edward in the championship match were Anthony Salupo (125), Nick Sulzer (130), Brian Roddy (171) and Mark Horton (285).
Moeller got wins from Adam Wallander (119), Pierce Harger (125), Matt Holtman (135), Trey Messerang (160) and Alex Apking (189).
Urbas said he wasn’t surprised by the closeness of the final match, or that the rest of the state seems to be gaining ground on the Eagles.
“There’s a lot of great coaches out there,” he said. “We’re working hard and there’s a lot of other programs that are working very, very hard as well. There was some great competition here today.
“We worry about every match. Every individual match and every team match. We don’t go into any of these things cocky because that’s when you get knocked right on your butt. We’ve got a lot of room for improvement. We know we need work. We’ve got to keep working on our basics.”
Moeller began with a 43-15 win over Cleveland St. Ignatius, then topped Massillon Perry 33-23 in the semifinals.
Perry, which beat Toledo Waite 49-21 in the first round, finished third. The Panthers got a pin from Sam White at 112 in the final bout of match to clinch a 31-30 win over Elder in the third-place match.
Elder was the other semifinalist, beating Central Crossing 31-26 in the first round.