The 2022 college wrestling national championships are over … but the great...
11-time champ Blair leads after Day 1 of 20th Ironman
CUYAHOGA FALLS, Ohio — In the past 19 Ironman wrestling tournament, Blair Academy has won 11 team championships. The Bucs from Blairstown, Pa., found themselves in first place against after Day 1 results of the 2013 tournament, hosted by Walsh Jesuit High School.
Heading into Saturday morning’s quarterfinals, Blair — which has won the last two Ironman titles, leads the field with 88.5 pounds. The Bucs are followed by Oak Park River Forest (74), St. Paris (Ohio) Graham (68) and Edmond North (65.5) from Oklahoma.
2013 Walsh Jesuit Ironman — Day One Highlights
(Through Round of 16)
106 pounds — Three of the top four seeds all advanced, including No. 2 Tyler Warner of Ulrichsville (Claymont, Ohio) and No. 3 Joey Prata of St. Christopher (Va.), who each pinned both of their foes. The only exception came with the No. 4 seed Hunter Bray, who lost 5-4 to Tanner Smith of St. Paris Graham (Ohio). Warner is Prata is ranked No. 10 by WIN, while Warner is rated No. 16 by WIN.
113 pounds — Just as at 106, three of the top four seeds advanced to the quarterfinals, including No. 1 seed Spencer Lee of Franklin Regional — also ranked No. 1 nationally by WIN — who scored one pin and two technical falls. And while both No. 2 Eli Stickley of St. Paris Graham (#14 by WIN) and No. 4 Jack Mueller (#13 by WIN) of Trinity Christian (Texas) also advanced, No. 3 seed Jose Rodriquez of Massillon Perry suffered an injury in his first-round match with Brandon Tyson of Broomfield, Colo., and forced to default. Meanwhile, another wrestler ranked by WIN — No. 6 Adrian Camposano of Fresno Central (Calif.) — was pinned in the second round by Hayden Lee of Marysville, Ohio.
120 pounds — All four top seed reached Saturday morning’s quarterfinals, including top-seed Brent Fleetwood — ranked No. 5 nationally by WIN — of Smyrna, Del. But Fleetwood, a three-time Delaware state champion, did get a scare in his second match when he held on to edge Jimmy Overhiser of Wyoming Seminary (Pa.), 1-0. One of the upsets at this weight came in the second round when Jordan Allen — WIN’s 17th-ranked 113 pounder — of Huntington, W. Va., lost 5-4 to Alex Mackall of tournament host Walsh Jesuit High School.
126 pounds — Blair Academy’s No. 1-seed Matthew Kolodzik, the 2011 Ironman champion and 2012 runner-up and ranked No. 4 by WIN, pinned both of his foes to reach the quarterfinals. The junior will be joined in the quarters by the other top-three seeds, including 11th-ranked Johnny Jimenez of Marmion Academy (Ill.), who finished third in last year’s Ironman. The senior did have a tough bout in the Round of 16 when he defeated Joshua Wimer, 3-1, of Central Crossing (Ohio).
132 pounds — Zahid Valencia of St. John Bosco (California) is already half way to becoming just the second wrestler to win four Ironman championships and the junior, ranked third by WIN at 126 pounds, has his sights on a third title by winning two matches, including a Round of 16 pin against Cody Shephard of Huntington, W.Va. Meanwhile, No. 2-seed Bryce Meredith of Cheyenne, Wyom., needed overtime to defeated Brent Moore of St. Paris Graham (Ohio).
138 pounds — Based on seeds, Blair Academy’s No. 1 Joey McKenna and No. 4 P.J. Klee, the former Blair wrestler who now competes for Cardinal Newman (Calif.), should meet in Saturday’s semifinals. But McKenna, ranked No. 5 by WIN, must first get through No. 6-ranked Isaiah White of Oak Park River Forest (Ill.) in the quarterfinals after each wrestler won on Friday. In the bottom bracket, the top seeds advanced, including No. 2 Colton Adams of Scottsbluff, Neb., who only competed in one match after he received a medical forfeit in the Round of 16.
145 pounds — St. Paris Graham’s Micah Jordan, who finished second in last year’s Ironman, is seeded No. 1 and pinned both of his foes to reach the quarterfinals. Jordan, who is ranked No. 3 at 138 pounds, will wrestle WIN’s 11th-ranked Larry Early of Oak Park River Forest in Saturday’s quarterfinals. Also advancing was No. 2 seed Grant Leeth of Kearney, Neb., No. 3 seed Vincent Joseph Pittsburgh Central Catholic and Alfred Bannister, ranked No. 13 by WIN at 138 pounds.
152 pounds — The 2013-14 season has already been pretty good for Jacob Danishek of Dayton Christian, who opened up the year with a Super 32 championship in October. Two months later, the senior and three-time state champ is hoping to improve on last year’s second-place Ironman finish. Danishek scored a pin and defeated Luke Fortuna of Montini Catholic (Ill.). Meanwhile on the bottom bracket, No. 2 seed Jack Bass of Robinson, Va., will not reach the finals after the senior lost 4-3 to Casey Sparkman of Massillon Perry.
160 pounds — Blair Academy’s Dylan Milonas was forced to settle for second place in last year’s Ironman after capturing a title as sophomore in 2011. This year, he is seeded No. 1 and scored two falls to reach Saturday’s quarterfinals. The other top three seeds also advanced, including No. 2 Alex Marinelli of St. Paris Graham, who also recorded a pair of falls. Milonas is ranked No. 3 at 152 by WIN, while Marinelli is WIN’s fourth-ranked 152-pounder.
170 pounds — Anthony Valencia, the older brother of 132-pound Zahid Valenica, is a two-time Ironman place-winner. The junior from St. John Bosco (Calif), ranked No. 19 at 152 pounds, is the No. 1 seed at this year’s Ironman and used a pin and major decision to reach the quarterfinals. Valencia is one of six wrestlers ranked by WIN and the others also advanced: Lance Dixon (sixth-ranked at 182) of Edmond, Okla.; Davonte Mahomes (7th at 160 of Oak Park River Forest; Josh Llopez (12th at 160) St. Mary’s Ryken (Md), Travis Linton (No. 16 at 170) of Rootstown, Ohio, and Myles Martin (No 5 at 160) of McDonogh (Md.).
182 pounds — The are five wrestlers ranked by WIN at this weight and two of them met in the Round of 16, where 7th-ranked Corey Griego of Sultana, Calif., pinned No. 17 Dylan Reynolds of Saagertown, Pa., in 5:59. Meanwhile, second-ranked Bo Nickal of Allen, Texas, earned two falls to advance to the quarterfinals. Unfortunately for No. 2 seed Joel Dixon of Edmond, Okla., had his championship hopes eclipsed by Rocco Caywood of Perry, Ohio, in a 2-1 tiebreaker.
195 pounds — No. 1-seed Derek White of Edmond, Okla., No. 2-seed Josh Murphy of Brecksville, Ohio, and No. 3 L.J Barlow of Havervord Prep (Pa.) all advanced to Saturday’s quarterfinals. No. 4 seed David Showmuni of Blair Academy was not as fortunate as the junior was pinned in the Round of 16 by Zach Smith of North Alleghany, Pa.
220 pounds — Top-seed Andrew Dixon, ranked No. 7 by WIN, is one of three triplet siblings from Edmond, Okla. The senior also reached the quarterfinals with two pins. The other top seeds also won, including Parker Knapp of St. Ed’s (Ohio), who needed overtime to edge Seth Brennock of Loveland, Ohio, 6-4.
Heavyweight — Top-seed Michael Johnson of Montini Catholic is a two-time Ironman placer who has yet to capture a championship. The junior put himself in good position on Friday with a pair of pins; both coming under one minute. Meanwhile, second-seed Jake Pinkston of Robinson, Va., was not as fortunate when he was pinned by freshman Kevin Vough of Elyria, Ohio, in 4:34 of their pigtail match. Vough then added two more pins to reach the quarterfinals.