Oxford High knocks off Rochester Adams in regional final

Wildcats notch four pins in final

By: Timothy Pontzer | C&G Newspapers | Published February 15, 2017

ROCHESTER HILLS — Oxford High earned its ninth regional championship in 10 seasons, handling Rochester Adams 54-12 in the title match.

"Our guys earned this one, we had a lot of great performances up and down," said Oxford  coach Paul McDevitt. "After beating Clarkston (in the semifinal), we didn't want to have a letdown, so we huddled up with everyone and said, 'We came here to win this.' We had confidence that we would match up well with Adams, but in high school sports you can never take anything for granted, so I was very pleased with how our guys came out and performed."

The Wildcats dispatched rival Clarkston High 34-18 in the first round. Oxford then blitzed the Highlanders with three pins in the first four bouts, opening the match on a 41-0 run through eight weight classes.

"Oxford is Oxford, as much as I want to say something negative about them since we got beat, I just can't," said Adams coach Mike Holtz. "They are just a bunch of hard-nosed kids that wrestle hard, and the facts are the facts with them. Congrats to them on another win, something they do with great kids, great coaching, and an amazing program."

Adams hosted the event, knocking off Utica Eisenhower in the other first-round duel. The Highlanders collected pins at 135, 140 and 152 pounds to help build up a 30-0 lead before the Eagles could get on the board.

"Eisenhower had a few guys out of their lineup, but we wrestled the guys in front of us," Holtz said. "There was a little concern that we would be happy with just getting to regionals. I was worried we might come out a little flat, but the seniors did a nice job of setting the tone against Eisenhower. I'm very pleased with how we performed on our home court one last time."

Adams and Ike clashed earlier in the season, with the same result, that time by a 42-21 margin. Eisenhower coach David Drath admitted that a few holes in his roster cost his squad.

"We didn't have our full lineup, we were missing guys for a few different reasons," Drath said. "Adams is really tough, and they came to play tonight. We wrestled really hard, but we got manhandled in a few weights, which kind of upset me. This is the second time we wrestled them, and we knew it would be another uphill battle."

The victory marked the fourth time in the past six years that Adams advanced to the regional final. With a young roster, Holtz is looking for next season to be the time where his squad can take that next step.

"We're only graduating eight, and we have 23 freshmen and nine sophomores," Holtz said. "With only three juniors on the team right now, so the next couple years we will be young, but still have a lot of experience. The future is bright, we just have to keep working hard to be able to make it to states."