MARION — Some wrestlers buckle under the pressure of performing well during the postseason of their senior season. Others, like Avon Lake’s Mark Tomanek, win district championships.
“I work good under pressure I guess,” Tomanek said.
Tomanek’s accomplishments this season have been jaw-dropping — a 38-2 record, a 160-pound championship in the always-tough Southview sectional tournament and the simple fact that he hasn’t been on his back one time this year.
But all endeavors pale next to the dominating 9-4 win he earned over St. Ignatius junior Marc Bryan, who’s ranked No. 2 in the state, Saturday night in the Marion Harding Division I district final.
“I didn’t even think I’d beat Marc Bryan,” Tomanek said. “I thought I’d keep it close, but to dominate him like I did … I just felt like a hammer out there.”
Tomanek joined Olmsted Falls 125-pounder Mike Varga, St. Edward 135-pounder Collin Palmer and Elyria 152-pounder Zack Goins as area district champs, with 15 other area wrestlers joining the quartet in the top four places to earn state tournament berths.
The Shoreman said he’s been focused during his postseason run and all he needed to get going Saturday night was for Bryan to put him on the mat.
“It happens … people get takedowns on me,” Tomanek said. “But I’m going to come back. Once I get that first takedown, I’m not going to let up on you.
“I want those points back plus double what you just took from me.”
The other district champions earned their titles in a variety of ways.
Goins didn’t even have to wrestle as St. Edward senior Cory Martinson forfeited — the same reason Goins captured his sectional crown at Southview. Varga held off a late charge by Marion Harding junior Callen Vanderhoff for a 6-5 victory. Palmer handed Mansfield Madison senior Josh Speelman his first loss of the year after 41 wins with a 5-2 decision.
Speelman earned a point in the match when Palmer was called for stalling while on top, and escaped being assessed points against him for a near fall Palmer appeared to have on him — both decisions bringing groans from the St. Edward faithful.
“The match was tighter than it should have been,” said Palmer, a Columbia Township resident. “I don’t know how you get called for stalling when you’re trying to turn a kid. That ref was terrible — he also missed back points. I don’t know what he was doing out there.”
But in true Palmer fashion, the Eagles junior — who will be going for his third straight state championship next weekend — managed to power through and pick up the victory. Palmer has never lost a match during his high school postseason career.
The area also had several district runners-up.
Southview’s Uland Ralston lost to top-ranked Gus Sako of St. Edward in the 103-pound title match, Elyria’s Steve Mitcheff lost a tight match to St. Edward’s Jamie Clark at 112, Elyria’s Dalton McHenry had to stop wrestling against St. Edward’s Nick Sulzer in the 130 final when he suffered an arm injury, Amherst’s Aaron Winemiller rested his injuries and forfeited to St. Edward’s Brian Roddy in the 171 final and North Ridgeville’s Greg Byrd was also hit with an unpopular stalling penalty during a 3-2 overtime loss to Sandusky’s Delonne Baker in the heavyweight title bout.
The losses in the finals didn’t deter the wrestlers’ excitement over earning trips to the state tournament.
“I can’t even explain how I’m feeling right now,” Byrd said after his 5-3 semifinal win over top-ranked James Meder of Valley Forge. “That’s the best match I’ve had all year. I’ve busted my behind and I made it out.”
Also making it out were third-place finishers Narcisco Inchaurregui (112) of Southview, Nick Lawrence (119) of Westlake, Westlake resident Anthony Salupo (125) of St. Edward, Devin Henry (152) of Westlake, Ryan Nelisse (189) of Elyria and Jerry Knapp (215) of Olmsted Falls.
Earning state berths with fourth-place finishes were Avon Lake resident John Cobos (119) of St. Edward, Nolan Grame (125) of Berea, Joe Abujaradeh (171) of Berea and Ryan Smugala (215) of Westlake.
Avon Lake’s Blake Jardonek (112), Southview’s David Gyorfi (119), Avon Lake’s Danny Urbin (125), Southview’s Bobby Cruz (145), Midview’s Sean Pincura (152) and Berea’s Larry Tischler (160) won their fifth-place matches and will be designated the state alternate for their weight classes.
Elyria’s four state representatives — plus the Pioneers’ five other district qualifiers — earned enough points to help the team to a third-place finish behind district champion St. Edward and runner-up St. Ignatius. Southview finished 44 points behind Elyria, but it was still good enough for fourth place in the 41-team field.
Contact Shaun Bennett at 329-7137 or email@example.com.
TEAM STANDINGS: St. Edward 266.5, St. Ignatius 116, Elyria 109, Southview 65, Findlay 64, Normandy 60, Mansfield Madison 59.5, Toledo Waite 58, Oregon Clay 57, Westlake 55, Olmsted Falls 53, Toledo St. Francis DeSales 52.5, Berea 52, Sandusky 50, Avon Lake 49.5, Shaker Heights 46, Springfield 45, Marion Harding 42, Parma 40.5, Sylvania Southview 36, Toledo St. John’s Jesuit 33, Lakewood 26, Fremont Ross 24.5, Amherst 24, Bowling Green 22.5, North Ridgeville 21, Lima Senior 18.5, Toledo Start 15, Valley Forge 14, Midview 13, Cleveland Heights 7, Anthony Wayne 6, Sylvania Northview 6, Toledo Whitmer 5.5, Ashland 4, Toledo Rogers 4, Perrysburg 3, North Olmsted 2.5, Toledo Bowsher 0, Mansfield 0, Midpark 0.
103 — CHAMPIONSHIP: Gus Sako (St. Edward) maj. dec. Uland Ralston (Southview), 12-1; THIRD-PLACE: Garrert Manley (Springfield) def. Javon Wright (Lima Senior) by injury default; FIFTH-PLACE: Davion Caston (Sandusky) dec. Willie Long (St. Ignatius), 4-0.
112 — CHAMPIONSHIP: Jamie Clark (St. Edward) dec. Steve Mitcheff (Elyria), 5-2; THIRD-PLACE: Narcisco Inchaurregui (Southview) dec. Brian Frehmeyer (Parma), 12-5; FIFTH-PLACE: Blake Jardonek (Avon Lake) def. Dan Glaser (Normandy) by injury default.
119 — CHAMPIONSHIP: Scott Fuller (Toledo Waite) dec. Jerome Robinson (St. Ignatius), 5-1; THIRD-PLACE: Nick Lawrence (Westlake) dec. John Cobos (St. Edward/Avon Lake), 6-1; FIFTH-PLACE: David Gyorfi (Southview) maj. dec. Kyle Leedy (Toledo Start), 8-0.
125 — CHAMPIONSHIP: Mike Varga (Olmsted Falls) dec. Callen Vanderhoff (Marion Harding), 6-5; THIRD-PLACE: Anthony Salupo (St. Edward/Westlake) maj. dec. Nolan Grame (Berea), 9-1; FIFTH-PLACE: Danny Urbin (Avon Lake) dec. Alex Marzec (Toledo St. Francis DeSales), 8-1.
130 — CHAMPIONSHIP: Nick Sulzer def. Dalton McHenry (Elyria) by injury default; THIRD-PLACE: Alex Latham (Sylvania Southview) dec. Larry Countryman (Marion Harding), 1-0; FIFTH-PLACE: Kyle Marrone (Parma) pinned Naseem Merhi (Westlake), 2:57.
135 — CHAMPIONSHIP: Collin Palmer (St. Edward/Columbia Twp.) dec. Josh Speelman (Mansfield Madison), 5-2; THIRD-PLACE: Pat Duffy (Lakewood) dec. William Palmer (St. Ignatius), 7-5; FIFTH-PLACE: Yohe Rojas (Fremont Ross) dec. Aaron Dietsch (Toledo St. Francis DeSales), 13-6.
140 — CHAMPIONSHIP: David Habat (St. Ignatius) dec. Neil Birt (St. Edward), 12-8; THIRD-PLACE: Alex Herrick (Toledo Waite) pinned Justin Yetzer (Mansfield Madison), 4:51; FIFTH-PLACE: Aaron Ferguson (Springfield) dec. Alex Laney (Toledo St. Francis DeSales), 9-4.
145 — CHAMPIONSHIP: Connor Suba (St. Edward) maj. dec. Kevin Caraballo (St. Ignatius), 11-3; THIRD-PLACE: Jerrel Valliant (Sandusky) maj. dec. Rudy Hendon (Bowling Green), 11-3; FIFTH-PLACE: Bobby Cruz (Southview) pinned Mark Orth (Oregon Clay), 2:50.
152 — CHAMPIONSHIP: Zack Goins (Elyria) def. Cory Martinson (St. Edward) by injury default; THIRD-PLACE: Devin Henry (Westlake) dec. Troy Glasko (Normandy), 5-3 (OT); FIFTH-PLACE: Sean Pincura (Midview) dec. Scott Magnani (Berea), 9-3.
160 — CHAMPIONSHIP: Mark Tomanek (Avon Lake) dec. Marc Bryan (St. Ignatius), 9-4; THIRD-PLACE: Justin Wharton (Toledo St. Francis DeSales) dec. Maks Babuder (Toledo St. Francis DeSales), 7-5; FIFTH-PLACE: Larry Tischler (Berea) dec. Craig Greene (St. Edward), 5-3.
171 — CHAMPIONSHIP: Brian Roddy (St. Edward) def. Aaron Winemiller (Amherst) by injury default; THIRD-PLACE: Jefferson Ajayi (Shaker Heights) dec. Joe Abujaradeh (Berea), 4-3; FIFTH-PLACE: Michael Alexander (Findlay) pinned Ben Morrissey (Oregon Clay), 2:22.
189 — CHAMPIONSHIP: Matt Alexander (Findlay) dec. Greg Isley (Sylvania Southview), 6-5; THIRD-PLACE: Ryan Nelisse (Elyria) maj. dec. Joshua Robertson (Normandy), 9-1; FIFTH-PLACE: Tyler Benton (Toledo Waite) dec. Landon Meadows (Toledo St. John’s Jesuit), 6-5.
215 — CHAMPIONSHIP: Roman Lawson (Shaker Heights) dec. Mike Green (St. Edward), 5-3; THIRD-PLACE: Jerry Knapp (Olmsted Falls) dec. Ryan Smugala (Westlake), 4-2; FIFTH-PLACE: Michael Samijlenko (Normandy) pinned Gehad Suleiman (Lakewood), 2:52.
HVY — CHAMPIONSHIP: Delonne Baker (Sandusky) dec. Greg Byrd (North Ridgeville), 3-2 (OT); THIRD-PLACE: Max Gladstone (Findlay) def. James Meder (Valley Forge) by injury default; FIFTH-PLACE: Brandon Clark (Mansfield Madison) dec. Zach Laird (Olmsted Falls), 2-0.