State Wrestling Tournament Notebook: Stieber wins fourth title; Graham rolls
Led by the final performance from one of the state’s all-time greats – senior Logan Stieber – Monroeville captured its first Division III team title with relative ease Saturday at the 73rd annual Ohio State Wrestling Tournament. Did we say ease? Of course Graham won in D-II again...
Led by the final performance from one of the state’s all-time greats – senior Logan Stieber – Monroeville captured its first Division III team title with relative ease Saturday at the 73rd annual Ohio State Wrestling Tournament.
Although the Eagles were thought to get challenges from Bedford Chanel and Cuyahoga Valley Christian Academy, they didn’t.
Monroeville finished with 116 points, while runner-up CVCA had 76.
Stieber, an Ohio State recruit, won his state record 171st straight match with a pin of Miami East’s Zane Goldberg in the 125 final. He finished his high school career with an overall record of 174-1. Stieber’s lone defeat is a 7-3 setback as a freshman in the finals of the 2006 Ironman to current Penn State freshman and four-time state champion David Taylor (Graham).
Stieber, who has been ranked No. 1 in the country in his weight class for the last three years, has been especially dominant on the sport’s final weekend. In 16 state matches, Stieber won nine by pin and seven by tech fall.
“It’s a lot harder then people think. There’s a lot of stress,” Stieber said. “But I was relaxed this week and I felt good and I usually wrestle better when I’m like that. I was thinking about it in the tunnel, but freshman year I was all stone-faced and nervous before I came out and this year I was joking around with people and trying to relax.
“Ever since I was a little kid one of my main goals has been to win four state titles. No one likes to lose. It’s very easy to get motivated.”
Monroeville was also powered by its trio of monster juniors, who each added their third state titles.
Logan’s brother Hunter won at 119, while Cam Tessari and Chris Phillips won at 140 and 171, respectively.
On the season the quartet of the Stieber brothers, Tessari and Phillips went a combined 190-1.
Cal Clark added points with a seventh place finish at 135.
Monroeville’s title ends a string of three straight by Troy Christian. The Eagles finished fifth.
GRAHAM GREAT – AND NATIONAL CHAMPIONS – AGAIN
A year after breaking a 58-year old record for most individual state champions with seven, the Falcons fell one short of tying their record with six. The consolation prize was the program’s 10th straight D-II state title and 12th overall. The Falcons scored 223 points to runner-up Oak Harbor’s 78.5.
Individual champions for the Falcons were Ryan Taylor (so., 103), Bo Jordan (fr., 130), Issac Jordan (so., 135), Felipe Martinez (so., 140), Huston Evans (so., 171) and Max Thomusseit (sr., 189).
Graham also appears to have wrapped at least a share of its second national championship as well. Tied with Apple Valley (MN) for No.1 in the Amateur Wrestling News national poll, expect the Falcons to stay there once the final rankings are released in a week following the Pennsylvania State Championships next weekend.
In a meeting of defending state champions, Aurora’s Ty Mitch won his third championship with a 7-4 victory over Graham’s Nick Brascetta in the D-II, 119 final. Despite having lost to Brascetta twice earlier this year, Mitch came out fast and scored on a takedown seconds into the match. He never let up or trailed.
ANTICIPATED MATCH-UP II
The third, fourth and fifth times weren’t the charm for Kenton Ridge senior Tucker Armstrong. Neither was the sixth. In a bout between state champions, Armstrong fell to Graham’s Martinez for the sixth time this year in the D-II 140 final. It was the fourth straight week the duo had met in the finals (Central Buckeye Conference, Tipp City Sectional, Goshen District and State). Martinez’s 7-1 win was also the most lopsided of the duo’s six meetings, three of which had been decided by a point.
There were a total of seven wrestlers who finished undefeated seasons. They were:
B.J. Miller, Sr., Defiance (54-0, D-II, 112): Miller is the school’s first state champion since 1971.
Logan Stieber, Sr., Monroeville (55-0, D-III, 125): Stieber as noted above won his fourth state title.
Felipe Martinez, So., Graham (38-0, D-II, 140): The championship is Martinez’s second.
Cam Tessari, Jr., Monroeville (53-0, D-III, 140): Tessari won his four state matches 3:41, 1:22, 9-2 and 10-0.
Nick Sulzer, Sr., Lakewood St. Edward (40-0, D-I, 160): Sulzer’s title was his first after finishing second twice and third once.
Chris Phillips, Jr., Monroeville (42-0, D-III, 171): Phillips dominated his competition again, winning his four state matches 20-5, 1:25, 26-12 and 7-5.
Nick Miller, Sr., Centerville (21-0, D-I, 189): Miller dropped 51 pounds to get down to 189 for the season. He was a fullback for the Elks and played football at 240. The dedication and sacrifice far outweigh the doubt now. He is Centerville’s first state champion since 1985.
There were several wrestlers who made history or snapped long exiles from the state podium for their school. The list includes:
Artem Timchenko, Olentangy Orange, D-I, 112: The freshman became his school’s first state placer with a seventh place finish.
Brian Spangler, LeGrange Keystone, D-III, 103: The sophomore is his school’s highest state placer ever after finishing runner-up.
Matt Perez, London, D-II, 119: The senior became his school’s first state placer with a seventh place finish.
Jared Beatty, Arcanum, D-III, 125: The junior became his school’s first state placer ever after finishing eighth.
Thomas Butryn, Ashtabula Edgewood, D-II, 125: The senior became his school’s first state placer since 1998 with a sixth place finish.
Tyler Luft, Asheville Teays Valley, D-I, 145: The senior became the Vikings first state placer since 1999 by finishing fourth.
Caz Gresham, Goshen, D-II, 152: The senior’s third place finish was the highest by anyone from Goshen since 1979.
Waquiem Comar, Twinsburg, D-I, 152: The senior’s state title was the first for a Twinsburg wrestler since 1988.
Dennis Raber, Orrville, D-III, 160: The senior became his school’s first state champion since 1986.
Logan Erb, Wapakoneta, D-II, 215: The junior’s state title was just the second in school history and first since 2000.
John Sullenbarger, Arcanum, D-III, 189: The senior became his school’s second placer and it’s highest ever by finishing seventh.
The Dayton-based Greater Western Ohio Conference had a banner year at the state tournament in D-I.
Last year the GWOC had just two wrestlers finish in the Top 3 and this year it had five, including Centerville teammates Nick Miller and Kyle Rose who placed first and second, respectively, at 189 and 215.
Other top 3 finishers were Miamisburg’s Fayette (third at 135), Springboro’s Cody Shivener (130) and Beavercreek’s Josh Stevens (125).
Centerville’s Brian Mathews was fourth at 152.
In all, 11 GWOC wresters placed.
FUTURE FOUR-TIME WINNERS?
There were three freshmen that won state titles his year. Heil from St. Edward, Bo Jordan from Graham and Nathan Tomasello of CVCA (D-III, 103).
The finals and overall attendance for the state tournament was the
lowest its been since the event moved from Wright State’s Nutter Center
Regardless, the state wrestling championship (Session 5) remains the single highest attended OHSAA state championship event, eclipsing finals in both football and basketball.
MARK YOUR CALENDARS
The 74th annual state wrestling championships will be held March 3-5, 2011 at the Schottenstein Center.
KEEP AN EYE OUT
For Ohio High Magazine’s Winter State Tournament Commemorative Issue due out in early April. The special supplement will include a recap of the entire state tournament and feature a photo gallery of every state champion in every weight class in each division. We’ll also unveil our JJHuddle/Ohio High All-State Tournament Team and name our Ohio High/Huntington Bank State Wrestler of the Year. Click here for more information.