CLEVELAND — Shane Mast doesn’t consider himself a defensive wrestler.
But Friday night in his biggest match of the season, the Wadsworth junior’s defense helped him upend a state-ranked opponent and become one of seven Medina Countians to secure a spot in the semifinals at the Cleveland Division I District.
“I think I’m better on offense, actually,” the 160-pound Mast said. “But if I build a lead up, I like to sit back and be defensive.”
Facing Amherst’s Mike Wearsch, who is ranked 10th in the state, the only lead Mast needed was two points.
After picking up a takedown in the first period and an escape midway through the third, the unranked Mast notched a 3-1 decision.
“I believe in my defense,” he said. “I didn’t think he was going to take me down in the last period. I know what he does. He looks to shoot on the right leg, so I just thought if I went out there and was offensive early and got the early takedown, I could hold him off for the win.”
Mast was joined by teammates Noah Baughman (106), Robbie Bosley (152) and Tim Knipl (170) as semifinalists, along with Brunswick’s Josh Heil (120), Nicky Kiussis (132) and Christian Camacho (138).
Like Mast, Kiussis used late defense to upset St. Edward’s Hunter Ladnier in the quarterfinals. The freshman, who is ranked 13th, trailed 2-0 late in the third before picking up an escape with 33 seconds remaining. He then executed the match-clinching takedown and rode No. 5 Ladnier in the final seconds.
“He was doing a good job of controlling the wrists, so once I got out and we were on neutral, I knew I had to take a shot,” said Kiussis, who lost to Ladnier at the Medina Invitational Tournament. “I set it up really good because he’s so tough, but, whew, I came away with the ‘W.’ My stomach was disagreeing with me, but I fought through it and I set the shot up and finished him off.”
Camacho was in a similar position with OlmstedFalls’ Adam Salti, as the junior broke a 2-2 deadlock with an escape with less than a minute left. It avenged Camacho’s six-point loss to Salti earlier this season.
“He kept going for a tilt and that’s what he scored on me last time, so I was ready for it this time,” Comacho said. “I was nervous (at the end), because I had to hold him off. Honestly, I didn’t think it was going to hold up, but it did and I’m happy.”
The state-ranked trio of Baughman, Heil and Knipl all faced ranked opponents in the loaded tourney and each won by decision.
Baughman, the projected state champ at 106, wasted little time picking up a takedown early on No. 3 Alan Hart of St. Edward. He built an 8-4 advantage before putting the match on ice with two more points in the third.
“I got a lot of takedowns, worked my stuff and did what I had to do,” the sophomore said. “I pushed the pace and wrestled my match, did what I like to be comfortable in, and it was a good day.”
No. 7 Heil broke a scoreless tie with Perry’s Mosies Guillen, the 13th-ranked wrestler in the 120-pound class, midway through the second with a takedown. He picked up another one in the third to record a 4-0 decision.
The Brunswick sophomore now has a crucial semifinal today with Elyria’s Armando Torres before a possible rematch with Brecksville’s Austin Assad.
At 170, the fifth-ranked Knipl rallied from a 2-0 deficit with eight straight points en route to a 10-5 victory against No. 13 Kevin Khoma of St. Edward.
Bosley’s 152-pound quarterfinal was never in doubt, as the senior stormed to a 6-1 lead on Whitmer’s Matt Torres and was able to hold off a handful of counters without allowing a point in an 8-1 victory.
“He wasn’t really doing much on the bottom, and anything I got on him he just laid there,” said Bosley, who beat St. Edward’s D.J. Williamson for the first time in three tries this season in the first round. “I just went with it and rode him out.”
The rest of the county’s participants will have to wrestle in the consolation bracket after losses.
Brunswick’s D.J. Skiba (106), Brett Thomas (126) and Mike Bekeny (182) won opening-round bouts before losing, along with Wadsworth’s Brandon Randolph (113), Darrin Gilkerson (132), Jordan Schleigh (138) and Alex Carrell (182).
|Cloverleaf heavyweight Cory Jenkin failed to pass the skin check before action Friday. The sophomore ended the season 14-18. Second-day action is set to start at 9 a.m. today, with the semifinals to start 15 minutes following. The finals will begin one hour after the morning session.|
Contact Dan Brown at firstname.lastname@example.org.
CLEVELAND — Semifinal pairings for today’s Cleveland Division I District held at Cleveland State’s Woodling Gymnasium.
Team standings: 1. Brecksville 78½, 2. Perrysburg 76½, 3. Oregon Clay 64 12, 4. Nordonia 51, 5. St. Edward 49, 6. Wadsworth 47½, 7. Elyria 40½, 8. Brunswick 35, 9. Olmsted Falls 29, 10. Lorain 25½, 11. Springfield 25, 12. Fremont Ross 24, 13. Mansfield 18½, 14. Findlay 13, T-15. North Ridgeville, Firestone 10, 17. Lakewood 9½. T-18. Copley, Cuyahoga Falls 8, T-20. Westlake, Strongsville 7, T-22. ToledoSt. John’s, Toledo Whitmer, Ashland 6, 25. Amherst 5½, 26. AvonLake 4, T-27. St. Francis DeSales, Sylvania Southview, Waite, Anthony Wayne 2..
106 — Nick Henneman (Clay) vs. Devione Edwards (Lor); Noah Baughman (Wad) vs. C.J. Leffler (Spr). 113 — L.J. Bentley (St. E) vs. Andrew Coghill (Nor); Mario Guillen (Per) vs. Garrett Lambert (Stro). 120 — Armando Torres (Ely) vs. Josh Heil (Bru); Evan Collier (NR) vs. Austin Assad (Bre). 126 — Justin Jolliff (Find) vs. Jared Davis (Clay); Xae’vier Edwards (Lor) vs. Justin DeMicco (Bre). 132 — Austin Hiles (Bre) vs. Richie Screptock (Clay); Nick Collica (Nor) vs. Nicky Kiussis (Bru). 138 — Gavin Nelson (Clay) vs. Christian Camacho (Bru); Sonny Lucas (Bre) vs. Yassir Abdelsalam (Lake). 145 — Trey Grine (FR) vs. Grayson Davis (Bre); Mike Decesare (Nor) vs. Matt Waltermeyer (Per). 152 — Ben Darmstadt (Ely) vs. Robbie Bosley (Wad); Heath Phillibert (Nor) vs. J.P. Newton (Per). 160 — Dan Waltermeyer (Per) vs. Shane Mast (Wad); Nick Stencel (Clay) vs. Austin Strnad (Bre). 170 — Tim Knipl (Wad) vs. Jesse Palser (Man); Troy Lang (Bre) vs. Mike Hansinger (OF). 182 — Matt Stencel (Clay) vs. Traevon Dickerson (Man); Rocco Caywood (Per) vs. Gabe Dzuro (St. E). 195 — Kadin Llewellyn (Per) vs. Ross Lonsway (Spr); Yousef Mustafa (West) vs. Josh Murphy (Bre). 220 — Alex Woicehovich (Nor) vs. Noel Caraballo (OF); Parker Knapp (St. E) vs. Arman Samouk (Cop). 285 — Jordan Lee (OF) vs. Cale Bonner (Per); Jovahn Fair (Fire) vs. Kevin Vough (Ely).