EATON – With a limited lineup the Wayne wrestling fought its way to an 8th place finish overall Friday and Saturday at the 47th annual Eaton Invitational.
Due to injuries the Warriors only took nine wrestlers to the 21 team invitational and still achieved good results.
“Taking only nine to the tournament and to have five place is a big accomplishment,” said Wayne Assistant Coach Mike Padilla.
A few of the team’s top performers ran up against tough competition and didn’t place as high as expected. Padilla pointed out that the team is more focused on how well it performs at the Greater Western Ohio Conference tournament this weekend at Butler and beyond that during the sectional and district tourneys.
“This tournament was a good stepping stone, but we still need to improve,” Padilla noted.
Junior Jordan Hardrick placed 1st in the 160 pound weight class. Hardrick scored a 14-5 major decision against Isaac Allen of Wilmington in the championship match.
“Hardrick had the best tournament that he has wrestled in a while handling Wilmington’s state ranked kid handily,” Padilla praised.
At 195 pounds Tyler “Taz” Wilcox opened the tournament win a pin (3:59) against Christian Michael of Eaton. In the quarterfinals Wilcox scored an 11-2 major decision against R.J. Tolliver of Wilmington. Wilcox lost an 11-4 decision in the semifinal match Stone Day of Valley View. He also lost a 5-3 decision to Dylan Moran of Northmont in the consolation semifinal. In the battle for 5th place Tolliver avenged his earlier loss by pinning a 2-1 loss on Wilcox.
“Taz had a rough draw. He lost to the No. 1 wrestler in the state in Division II in the semifinals,” Padilla said. “During the 2-1 loss in the battle for fifth place there were a couple of questionable calls, but we tell our kids you can’t leave a match in the referee’s hands. He split his matches with Tolliver, who is ranked in the state as well. Wilcox didn’t wrestle well against Moran and sometimes it is hard to come back and place after losing in the semifinals.”
Cole Clyne, a senior, placed 5th in the 132 pound weight class. This was the first tournament he has ever placed in, according to Padilla.
Freshman Mason Lawson (120), has not placed since the Edgewood Invitational but ended up taking 4th at Eaton.
Jacob Padilla, a freshman heavyweight, took 3rd place winning by a fall (4:36) against Conner Barton of Wilmington. He lost a 3-0 decision to Chuck Saul of Northmont in the semifinal, an opponent he had beaten earlier in the season.
“Earlier in the year Jacob pinned Saul but Chuck has gotten better,” Padilla said. “I imagine they will see each other a couple more times before the season is out. Chuck won the battle this week.”
Overall, Padilla was very happy with the team’s performance.
“With the guys that we took to Eaton we are pretty happy with the outcome,” Padilla added. “We also had guys go to Butler for the JV and had two champs; Gary Emerson at 126 and Cole Kleff at 195.”
1. Northmont 234.5
2. Milton-Union 145.5
3. Ross 141.5
4. Valley View 124.0
5. Eaton 117.5
6. Reading 110.5
7. Edgewood 99.5
8. Wayne 91.0
9. Wilmington 84.0
10. Carroll 83.0
11. National Trail 68.5
12. Tippecanoe 67.0
13. Oakwood 60.0
14. Springfield 59.0
15. Waynesville 48.5
16. Arcanum 45.0
17. Shawnee 44.5
18. Bellbrook 43.0
19. Twin Valley So. 28.0
20. Thurgood Marshall 23.0
21. Dunbar 4.0