GARFIELD HTS. — When the dust settled for Lorain County at the Division III district tournament at Garfield Heights High, the numbers went as follows: Eight state qualifiers, four wrestling programs and one district champion.
Black River junior 106-pounder Sebastian Vidika, who became a two-time district champion Saturday night, highlighted the list of the area’s eight.
Other state qualifiers included Clearview seniors Mike Hollingsworth (runner-up at 126) and Matt Hollingsworth (third at 132), Keystone senior Dillon Stiner (fourth at 120) and sophomore Jacob Worthington (runner-up at 182), Black River senior Mike Hozan (third at 120) and Elyria Catholic juniors Austin Kuchta (fourth at 190) and Adam Kuchta (fourth at 220).
Vidika capped his 4-0 district performance with a 16-7 major decision over Tuslaw’s Shane Johnston in the first championship match of the evening.
“I wrestled pretty solid except I screwed up twice in my two matches today,” Vidika said. “Both times I wound up on my back and it could have cost me. I made sure to get off and keep going with the match. I’ve got to avoid those because those kinds of screw-ups won’t fly down in Columbus.”
Vidika went 1-2 at state last year, missing a spot on the podium by one match.
“Last year was last year,” he said. “You’ve got to put it on the backburner and look forward to this year. Whatever you did last year isn’t going to help you really with this year, so you’ve just got to work on the mistakes you made last year and try to avoid them.”
Mike Hollingsworth, who is making his first trip to state, lost to defending district champ Zack Nelson of Apple Creek Waynedale in the final by a 21-3 technical fall. He qualified to state by pinning Kirtland’s Evan Francis in 5:47 earlier in the day.
“This has always been our goal,” Hollingsworth said. “This is kind of a relief. It’s always been one of those things that’s been held over you, and now, it’s not really there anymore. We’re there now.
“We’re trying to start our program over again. We’re trying to have people follow us in the coming years. To be able to represent Clearview at state should set the bar high for the guys behind us.”
Worthington clinched his first state trip by pinning Norwayne’s Heath Rohrbaugh in 3:25 during the semifinals. However, he was defeated 14-6 by defending champion Kevin Stock of Garrettsville Garfield in the final.
“My goal coming in was to be a state qualifier, and I’m glad I’ve accomplished my goal,” Worthington said. “I’m pretty excited about it. (Wrestling Stock) shows me that I need to work harder this week and what I need to improve on. He didn’t beat me by that much, so I know I’m right there with the best kids in the state.”
Stiner earned his first career trip to state the hard way, winning four consecutive matches after dropping his first-round match 5-0 to Hozan on Friday. Stiner capped his sterling run with an 11-3 major decision win over Girard’s Zane Chase in the consolation semifinals.
“I just did what I could,” said Stiner, who ended his tournament the same way it began, with a 3-0 loss to Hozan in the third-place match. “I didn’t want to let the pressure get to me, and in the past, that’s been my downfall. I knew that this was my last chance, so I just took it one match at a time. But to finally get to Columbus, it’s unexplainable. It’s awesome.”
Hozan also wrestled back after dropping a 16-3 major decision to two-time district and defending state champ Sammy Gross of Beachwood in the quarterfinals Friday. Hozan avenged his loss in the Patriot Athletic Conference tournament final two weeks ago by eliminating Lutheran West’s Tim Mecklenburg 3-0 in the consolation semifinals.
“He beat me at the conference, and it was a good match,” said Hozan, who placed fourth at state last year. “Sure, it would have been nice to win the conference title, but getting to state is the most important thing. On one hand, there’s a lot of pressure, but on the other hand, I know I was one of the top four guys here, so I went into each match with confidence.”
Matt Hollingsworth, who didn’t wrestle in the postseason as a freshman, sophomore or junior, became a state qualifier with a 13-11 win over Waynedale’s Bradley Wardell in the consolation semis. He defeated Mogadore’s Justin Chew 6-4 in the third-place match.
“We’ve both put in the work for four years,” Hollingsworth said of he and his brother. “This is something you look forward to when you start wrestling. Now that we’re there, we’ve just got to remember all the hard work and things should take care of itself. The main goal is to have fun and enjoy it.”
Austin Kuchta rebounded from a semifinal loss to defeat Beachwood’s Paully Flowers 9-4 in the consolation semis. Both he and Adam forfeited their third-place matches to their opponents.
Adam Kuchta won three matches Saturday morning to earn a trip to Columbus for the first time after missing it by one match last season. He edged Independence’s Alex Scotten 1-0 to reach the third-place match.
Wellington’s Ben Provoznik (132) and Clearview’s Deion Arnold (285) each finished sixth in their respective weight classes. However, the fifth-place finisher is considered the state alternate. Provoznik was the only placer out of the Dukes’ nine district qualifiers.
Mecklenburg took third at 120 to become a state alternate.
Contact Dan Gilles at 329-7135 or email@example.com.
TEAM STANDINGS: Waynedale 141, Loudonville 111.5, Tuslaw 109, Mapleton 95, Beachwood 82.5, Rootstown 79. Northwestern 74.5, Cardinal 72, Norwayne 67, Kirtland 61.5, Manchester 56, Clearview 54, Keystone 52, Black River 50, Waterloo 50, Grand Valley 48, Chippewa 42.5, Independence 41, Cuyahoga Heights 33.5, Elyria Catholic 30, Pymatuning Valley 30, Girard 29, Garfield 29, Lutheran West 24, Hillsdale 23, Orrville 23, Hawken 22, Dalton 21, Crestview 20, Jackson-Milton 19, Berkshire 18, Wellsville 17, Brooklyn 15.5, Wellington 15, Liberty 14, Mogadore 13, United 11, VASJ 9, Brookfield 8, Chanel 7, Columbia 3, Wickliffe 2.5, South Range 1, Oberlin 0, Cleveland Central Catholic 0, Trinity 0, Ledgemont 0, Newbury 0, Richmond Heights 0, Canton Central Catholic 0, Rittman 0, Smithville 0, St. Thomas Aquinas 0, Ursuline 0.
106 — CHAMPIONSHIP: Sebastian Vidika (Black River) maj. dec. Shane Johnston (Tuslaw), 16-7. THIRD: Joey Bowen (Manchester) dec. John Smith (Mapleton), 3-1. FIFTH: Mitch Tikkanen (Jackson-Milton) dec. Garrett Hall (Chippewa), 6-2.
113 — CHAMPIONSHIP: Zack Durbin (Mapleton) dec. Jett Heldenbrand (Hillsdale), 8-2. THIRD: Colton Ullman (Loudonville) def. Bobby Bowen (Manchester) by default. FIFTH: Cory Pucci (Cuyahoga Heights) dec. Ian Mast (Cardinal), 3-2.
120 — CHAMPIONSHIP: Sammy Gross (Beachwood) maj. dec. Dion Perez (Tuslaw), 15-6. THIRD: Mike Hozan (Black River) dec. Dylan Stiner (Keystone), 3-0. FIFTH: Tim Mecklenburg (Lutheran West) pinned Zane Chase (Girard), 4:17.
126 — CHAMPIONSHIP: Zack Nelson (Waynedale) tech. fall Mike Hollingsworth (Clearview), 21-3. THIRD: Josh Weber (Loudonville) dec. Evan Francis (Kirtland), 3-1. FIFTH: Jason Sadler (Rootstown) pinned Lewis Roginsky (Brooklyn), 1:35.
132 — CHAMPIONSHIP: Dylan Marthey (Tuslaw) dec. Casey Johns (Cardinal), 5-1. THIRD: Matt Hollingsworth (Clearview) dec. Justin Chew (Mogadore), 6-4. FIFTH: Bradley Wardell (Waynedale) dec. Ben Provoznik (Wellington), 9-2.
138 — CHAMPIONSHIP: J.J. Diven (Waterloo) pinned Graham Montague (Independence), 1:57. THIRD: Zane Nelson (Waynedale) dec. Chance Marthey (Tuslaw), 6-0. FIFTH: Cody Charvat (Berkshire) dec. Clayton Davidson (Kirtland), 5-2.
145 — CHAMPIONSHIP: Reid Stanley (Waynedale) dec. Brett Naymik (Mapleton), 3-0. THIRD: Drew Everett (Dalton) dec. Alex Angersola (Beachwood), 7-2. FIFTH: Kalil Evans (Chanel) maj. dec. Tucker Bender (Loudonville), 12-1.
152 — CHAMPIONSHIP: Kollin Moore (Norwayne) dec. Brad Potter (Orrville), 8-4. THIRD: Sean Szitas (Grand Valley) dec. Seth King (Hawken), 3-1. FIFTH: Jeff Powell (Tuslaw) dec. Nick Cardiero (Girard), 8-7.
160 — CHAMPIONSHIP: Ryan Harris (Beachwood) dec. Kurt Moore (Norwayne), 9-7. THIRD: Dakota Stanley (Waynedale) dec. D.J. Blair (Tuslaw), 3-1 (OT). FIFTH: Tanner Topp (Northwestern) dec. Luke Baldwin (Grand Valley), 3-1.
170 — CHAMPIONSHIP: Travis Linton (Rootstown) def. Brenden Stanley (Waynedale) by default. THIRD: Matt Hardenbrook (Crestview) dec. Joey Meek (Northwestern), 9-5. FIFTH: Travis Pickering (Mapleton) dec. Andrew Liese (Lutheran West), 7-2.
182 — CHAMPIONSHIP: Kevin Stock (Garfield) maj. dec. Jacob Worthington (Keystone), 14-6. THIRD: Glenn Zaller (Grand Valley) pinned Kile Schaefer (Northwestern), 3:32. FIFTH: Cody Ellis (Pymatuning Valley) dec. Heath Rohrbaugh (Norwayne), 8-6.
195 — CHAMPIONSHIP: Ryan Weber (Loudonville) dec. Evan Brettrager (Kirtland), 6-1. THIRD: Brandon Brenes (Waterloo) def. Austin Kuchta (Elyria Catholic) by default. FIFTH: Phil Eiesenhauer (Chippewa) dec. Paully Flowers (Beachwood), 7-0.
220 — CHAMPIONSHIP: Jake Moore (Rootstown) pinned Caleb Fry (Cardinal), 3:46. THIRD: Tyler Shank (Mapleton) def. Adam Kuchta (Elyria Catholic) by default. FIFTH: Seth Bloor (Wellsville) maj. dec. Alex Scotten (Independence), 13-5.
285 — CHAMPIONSHIP: Austin Cary (Loudonville) pinned Jacob Hanzel (Manchester), 5:30. THIRD: Zack Srock (Chippewa) pinned Matt Hunter (Northwestern), :23. FIFTH: Charlie Smith (United) dec. Deion Arnold (Clearview), 6-5 (OT).