Oakland County grapplers battle for bragging rights

Oxford High ends Catholic Central’s reign

By: Timothy Pontzer | C&G Newspapers | Published December 22, 2016

 Orchard Lake St. Mary’s Caleb Edmond, left, starts his match at the county tournament. Edmond finished third at 152 pounds.

Orchard Lake St. Mary’s Caleb Edmond, left, starts his match at the county tournament. Edmond finished third at 152 pounds.

Photo by Donna Agusti

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LAKE ORION — The 57th annual Oakland County Wrestling Tournament took place Dec. 16-17, with Oxford High besting 37 other teams to take home the prestigious championship.

The Wildcats totaled 176 points, capturing three individual titles in the 14 weight classes at the event that saw action at Southfield A&T and Lake Orion High on Friday afternoon and the finale at the latter site on Saturday.

Joe Wood has served as the tournament director for 10 years, pulling double duty this season after taking over the helm of the Troy High program this fall.

“There is a lot of work that goes into getting this thing off the ground every year,” Wood said. “I start in October, because there is a lot of prep with the seeding, geographical assignments, setting up two different sites on day one, and then making sure everything smoothly transitions to day two.”

Clarkston High took the runner-up spot with 145.5 points, followed by Holly High (117), Walled Lake Central (86.5) and Waterford Kettering (79.5).

Novi Detroit Catholic Central saw its streak of seven straight wins at the event snapped, taking sixth place with 72 points. Birmingham Groves (57), Lake Orion High (51), Orchard Lake St. Mary’s (42), Rochester Adams (36), Farmington High (34), West Bloomfield High (33), Ortonville Brandon (30.5), North Farmington (29), Troy High (29) and Walled Lake Northern (29) rounded out the top 15.

“Overall we had a heck of a day, with several young guys really getting good experience,” Wood said of his Troy squad. “We knew we had our work cut out for us, and I thought a top 25 would be a strong showing. I was pleasantly surprised with how well we did today, bringing six kids to day two, which is double from last year.”

Rochester Hills Stoney Creek (27), Rochester High (26), Birmingham Seaholm (24), Pontiac High (22), Waterford Mott (22), South Lyon High (21), Troy Athens (18), Hazel Park High (18), Southfield A&T (18), Berkley High (17), Royal Oak High (17), South Lyon East (16), Ferndale High (15), Farmington Hills Harrison (15), Milford High (15), Pontiac Notre Dame Prep (13), Auburn Hills Avondale (10), Novi High (9), Lakeland High (6) and Bloomfield Hills High (1) rounded out the scoring field. Birmingham Brother Rice and Walled Lake Western also competed, but did not register a point.

“The whole tournament was pretty good, especially when you look at the field here,” said Stoney Creek coach Rick Desotell. “We had a lot of young kids do really well, and a couple of our matches went to overtime, so we were that close to doing even better. We’re getting better as a program, so all in all we are very pleased.”

Individually speaking

Following is a look at each weight class, with the champion and all local grapplers who placed in the top eight. 

At 103 pounds, Walled Lake Central’s TJ Daugherty took home the crown. Locally, Blake Noonan of Stoney Creek placed seventh.

In the 112 class, Clarkston’s Marc Hanselman won the group. Walled Lake Northern’s Jarett Greenstein (third), Adams’ Varun Mangal (fourth) and Harrison’s Hanting Wong (eighth) also placed.

At 119, Cole Wiegers from Clarkston took the top spot on the podium. Groves’ Damon Dunbar was third, Rochester’s Brandon Troy grabbed fifth, and Walled Lake Northern’s Jack Greenstein tabbed eighth.

In the 125 grouping, Stoney Creek senior Nate Hampton won the title.

“This win is pretty important, because it’s my senior year and I was hoping to do some big things, and this definitely accomplishes that,” Hampton said. “The second day was pretty tough. The final match was really tiring, so I had to use everything I had in me to get it done.”

His coach was impressed with how Hampton was able to push through the fatigue, beating Troy’s Joey Mason for the championship. 

“There was a point in that match where both kids were equally tired,” Desotell said. “His mental game has really picked up, and you could see that he dug deep to win this.”

Hazel Park’s Joseph Eisho was third at 125 and Farmington’s Solomon Johnson was seventh.

Walled Lake Central’s Warren Stanfield III won the 130 grouping, followed by Groves’ Khalid Ford in second and Ferndale’s Joshua Young in sixth.

At 135, Orchard Lake St. Mary’s freshman Josh Edmond took home the hardware.

“It was a pretty tough day, but I worked really hard in the offseason and trained all year, and that paid off today,” Edmond said. “This really means a lot to me; I hope I can keep it going.”

Farmington’s Jake Justice (fourth), Groves’ Micah Mydloski (sixth) and Walled Lake Northern’s Nick Welch (eighth) also placed at 135.

Clarkston’s Jacob Rygielski led the 140 grouping. West Bloomfield’s John Hawkins took fifth, Rochester’s Benjamin Kable was sixth, Avondale’s Dolan Vincent secured seventh, and Adams’ Brendon Gibbons left with eighth.

Groves senior Colin Takata captured the 145-pound event.

“It’s amazing to get this — it’s all about the progress,” Takata said. “I’ve been working for something like this since I was a little kid. This is a message to all the young kids out there that all the work you do off the mat will show on the mat.”

Seaholm’s Nick Law finished fifth at 145, followed by Troy’s Alex Vecchioni at sixth.

Trent Myre of Oxford helped his team take the overall title with a win in the 152 class.

Myre outpaced St. Mary’s Caleb Edmond (third), Adams’ Louis Eble (fourth), Harrison’s Vincent Rawls (fifth) and Stoney Creek’s Kevin Price (eighth).

Myre’s teammate Devin Trevino grabbed the 160 crown for Oxford. 

West Bloomfield’s Alex Pallazola (second), Royal Oak’s Miles Filippis (third), Walled Lake Central’s Liam Kinjorski (seventh) and Avondale’s Adam Mather (eighth) also placed.

Holly’s Cade Dallwitz grabbed the 171 title. Southfield A&T’s Max Doggert was the runner-up, while Notre Dame Prep’s John Paul Terzano (fourth), Ferndale’s Ronnell McGhee (fifth) and West Bloomfield’s Peyton Coleman (eighth) also earned podium spots.

In the 189 division, Walled Lake Central’s Nick Onwenu won the championship. Athens’ Andrew Yan placed fourth.

At 215, Oxford saw its third individual champion, as Byron Schlickenmeyer took first. Walled Lake Central’s Connor Merchant finished fifth, Hazel Park’s Mason Young was sixth, and Seaholm’s Michael Schulcz notched seventh.

The heaviest division saw a crosstown rivalry in the final match. North Farmington’s Zach Doran won by fall against Farmington’s Donovan King to claim the 285 crown. Berkley’s Babacar Diop placed fourth, and Rochester’s Richard Hamilton tabbed eighth in the division.

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