|Paulding stands atop NWC mat wars|
|Sunday, February 02, 2014 9:05 PM|
HARROD — The Northwest Conference wrestling championships were held Saturday at Allen East High School, with Paulding finishing on top with 302 points.
Jefferson was runner-up with 279 points, followed by Spencerville and Columbus Grove.
Lincolnview finished in seventh place with 98 points.
Jefferson head wrestling coach Mike Wilson said “all of our wrestlers had to win at least of couple of times for us to finish as high as we did in the team standings. We have a relatively young squad this year and I’m very happy how we finished.”
Finishing as conference champions for Coach Wilson were David Grant, Tanner Vermule and Dustin McConnahea.
Grant captured the title at 106 pounds, defeating Paulding’s Sidney Salinas 9-6.
“David’s match with Salinas for the first two periods was close,” explained Wilson. “Sidney is a tough wrestler and David turned it on in the final two minutes to pull out the victory.”
Preston Brubaker of Columbus Grove finished in third and Lincolnview’s Autumn Proctor placed fourth in the 106-pound bracket.
Vermule wrapped up his stellar senior regular season in defeating Spencerville’s Derrick Smith with a 13-2 major decision to win the 145-pound championship.
“I had confidence that Tanner would come out on top going into the tournament,” Wilson said. “Tanner has been wrestling well all year and I expected him to continue.”
Also at 145 pounds, Christian Stechschulte took fourth place and Lincolnview’s Josh McKenzie scored a major decision over Allen East’s Austin Tate to take fifth.
The final champion for Jefferson was McConnahea at 220 pounds.
“Dustin came out unseeded and pinned the first and second seeds and had five total,” remarked Wilson. “He was my wild card going in and won some matches we were not sure of to pick up key team points to help us finish second.”
Spencerville’s Wyatt Krouskop finished third in the 220-pound standings.
Jefferson also had three runner-ups on Saturday: Wyatt Place (126 pounds), Hunter Binkley (152) and Adam Crabtree (285).
Spencerville had two wrestlers crowned NWC champions and three runner-ups to finish third in the final team standings. “I was proud of our team effort this weekend,” said head Bearcat Coach Zac Clum. “I wasn’t sure how we stood in the team standings all day because the round-robin results aren’t added in until the end but I was pleased at the end.”
Spencerville’s Cody Dickson captured the 126-pound championship.
“Cody lost to Brett Sampson of Columbus Grove earlier in the year and wrestled strong with a major decision 16-8,” Clum added. “Jefferson’s Adam Crabtree gave our Logan Vandemark a tough match earlier in the year, so for Logan to pin Crabtree in 1:04 to win at 285 pounds is a big win. These wins give Cody and Logan big confidence boosts heading into sectionals.”
Spencerville’s three runner-ups included Cole Bellows at 138 pounds, Derrick Smith in the 145-pound bracke and senior Trevor Bockey recorded his 100th career victory, going 4-1 en route to his second-place finish at 132.
Lincolnview’s top finishers were a pair of runner-ups: Alex Rodriquez (113) and Doug Hicks (170).
The Columbus Grove Bulldogs had two wrestlers come home as NWC champions: Alec Gladwell (170) and Will Selhorst (182).
Regular season wrestling is wrapping up for most area squads.
Coach Wilson added “the only thing we have between now and sectionals is our pizza fund-raiser at the Eagles Tuesday night. We plan to rest up and heal, plus hit the weight room again to get ready for the post-season.”
An NWC junior high tournament was also held along with the high-schoolers. Allen East took first with 296 team points. Columbus Grove placed fifth, followed by Lincolnview and Spencerville.
Jefferson’s junior high squad matched the high school, also taking home the runner-up trophy. Bobby Stevenson was individual champion for the Wildcats. Jefferson additionally had five-ups: Conner Anspach, Matt Wiechart, Brock Klaus, Jordan Bonifas and Dylan Nagel.