Tough night on mat for SJ-O, GCMS
Area schools were shut out Tuesday night in their bids to advance to this weekend's dual-team wrestling state tournament.
In Class 1A sectional matches at Clinton, 14th-ranked Macomb edged 13th-ranked St. Joseph-Ogden 34-33 and, in a rematch from 2007, Petersburg PORTA reversed the outcome against Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley, beating the ninth-ranked Falcons 34-26.
GCMS (21-5) won five of the first six matches and built a 22-3 lead before No. 4 PORTA rebounded.
The Bluejays were not able to clinch their advancement until the final bout, at 140 pounds, when Zach Langloss used a late reversal to edge Gage Merritt 7-5.
GCMS needed a pin from Merritt in order to advance.
Falcons who helped the team to the early lead were Stephan Birt (152), Colten Unzicker (160), Cameron Thomas (171), Tyler Flynn (189) and Cody Flynn (215). Thomas had the meet's fastest fall, pin- ning Greg Gurski in 20 seconds.
Guy Kirby (135) also won.
Macomb (17-5) overcame a 15-6 deficit and triumphed over SJ-O (17-9). With three matches remaining, Macomb led 34-15.
The Spartans then received consecutive pins from Mike Nix (130), Micki Speckman (135) and Orin Allen (140). Nix and Allen each recorded first-period falls.
Other Spartan winners were Lukas Allison (160), Caleb Skinner (171) and Kyle McClain (189). Skinner needed an overtime takedown to collect his win.
SJ-O seniors who ended with a win were Nix, Speckman, Allison and Skinner.
At Lisle. Top-ranked Wilmington won nine of 14 matches against No. 25 Prairie Central (16-7) en route to a 51-25 triumph.
PC's Ben Diller (heavyweight) had the meet's quickest pin (37 seconds). Teammate Josh Smith's pin at 119 pounds accounted for his 30th win of the season.
"We wrestled well against a very good Wilmington team," Prairie Central coach Joe Cliffe said. "I am proud of the effort these kids have put forth all year."
At Peoria Woodruff. Unranked Peoria Woodruff won the first four bouts, building an 18-0 lead on No. 24 Mahomet- Seymour and eliminating the Bulldogs from the Class 2A dual-team state series with a 37-23 triumph.
In last weekend's individual state tournament, M-S had four qualifiers and Woodruff had one.
Those individuals met in the marquee match at 171 pounds, where M-S junior Andrew Brewer used a 6-1 edge in takedowns to beat senior Andre McFadden 16-10.
Other Bulldogs who ended their seasons with wins were Jason Cleary (189), Brandon Harvey (112), Lyle Shallenberger (130) and Dylan Howard (135).
Harvey had the meet's fastest fall, ending his match in 1 minute, 37 seconds.
M-S finished 19-5. Shallenberger and Kyle Vilven, who lost an overtime decision at 145, were the lone seniors in the Bulldogs' lineup.
In the sectional finals, third-ranked New Lenox Providence topped Woodruff 57-12.
Providence (21-1) moved on to Saturday's state quarterfinals.
The IHSA has shifted the state tournament site from DeKalb to Wharton Fieldhouse, in Moline.