COLUMBUS — For the third time in the last four seasons, the Miami Trace wrestling team qualified to the State wrestling dual team tournament.
The Panthers competed in Division II in the quarterfinals at St. John Arena Sunday afternoon.
Miami Trace was the No. 7 seed (out of eight teams) taking on the No. 2 seed the Greenmen from Aurora High School (a suburb of Cleveland).
Aurora won the match, 63-6.
Miami Trace scored at the very end when Aurora did not send a heavyweight to go up against Miami Trace senior Grant DeBruin.
Five of the other 13 matches were decided by pin by the Greenmen.
The two closest matches of the dual came at 113 pounds and at 182 pounds.
At 113, sophomore Weston Melvin lost to junior Robbie Sagaris, 4-0.
At 182, senior Dawson Wallace lost to freshman Quinn Gorman, 12-8. Wallace did have a lead in that match.
In the first semifinal in Division II, Louisville (of Stark County east of Canton) defeated Bellevue (of Huron County, located between Toledo and Cleveland), 51-22.
In the second semifinal, Graham Local (winners of the previous seven consecutive State dual tournaments) slipped past Aurora, 32-30.
In the championship match, Louisville dethroned Graham, 34-30. It was Louisville’s first time in the State dual team tournament.
“Dawson’s match was just fun to watch,” Miami Trace head coach Ben Fondale said. “We got out to an early lead. The other boy was a little bit heavier than us and that eventually caught up to us.
“Dawson showed a lot of heart,” Fondale said. “He went after it. He wrestled the entire six minutes. He didn’t back up at all. The other kid was hit with stalling once or twice. He’s a good senior leader.
“Aurora is just a good team,” Fondale said. “They’re one of the top teams in the state, no ifs, ands or buts about it. They are just a hammer of a team. They are just solid all the way around. They have good kids all over the weights.
“The effort from our guys was there,” Fondale said. “We had a lot of guys fight off their back and wrestle the whole time and not give up. There were a couple of things on the technique side that me and (assistant coach Jacob Garringer) saw that we’re going to have to talk to them a little bit about. (These are) things that they’ve already been taught, but, maybe it was the high stress, high competition environment. I don’t know if they were nervous, or what, but there were a couple of times where we didn’t do things the way we normally do in the room.
“Our guys are pretty excited for the opportunity to come up here and compete and represent our community,” Fondale said. “We have a lot of young guys who are hopefully a little bit hungry for next year and we’ll hopefully win a match or two next year up here.”
Miami Trace will be looking to repeat as Frontier Athletic Conference champions at the conference meet at Washington High School Saturday, beginning at 9:30 a.m.
Aurora 63, Miami Trace 6
106 Codie Cuerbo 10 (Aurora) pin Titus Lehr 11 (Miami Trace) 0:47 6
113 Robbie Sagaris 11 (Aurora) dec. Weston Melvin 10 (Miami Trace) Dec 4-0 3
120 Antwan Sagaris 11 (Aurora) dec. Aiden Johnson 9 (Miami Trace) tf17-0 5
126 Bo DiJulius 10 (Aurora) dec. Aaron Little 9 (Miami Trace) md14-3 4
132 Brian Kennedy 11 (Aurora) dec. Jared Seymour 10 (Miami Trace) tf17-1 5
138 Nic Willingham 10 (Aurora) dec. Storm Duffy 12 (Miami Trace) md10-2 4
145 David Cumberledge 12 (Aurora) pin Vincent Munro 9 (Miami Trace) 2:27 6
152 Tyler Lillard 9 (Aurora) dec. Graham Carson 11 (Miami Trace) md12-2 4
160 Dylan Fishback 10 (Aurora) dec. Kylan Knapp 10 (Miami Trace) tf16-1 5
170 Ethan Anderson 12 (Aurora) pin Jayden LeBeau 10 (Miami Trace) 3:28 6
182 Quinn Gorman 9 (Aurora) dec. Dawson Wallace 12 (Miami Trace) Dec 12-8 3
195 Evan Anderson 10 (Aurora) pin Bryce Bennett 10 (Miami Trace) 1:33 6
220 Joey Arnold 9 (Aurora) pin David Tyndall 12 (Miami Trace) 2:19 6
285 Grant DeBruin 12 (Miami Trace) forfeit (Aurora) Forfeit 6