Bedford's Emerson a state champion

Wingate, Antrassian also place for Mules


Bedford senior Austin Emerson completed some unfinished business last Friday and Saturday at the Michigan Division 1 individual state wrestling tournament at Ford Field in Detroit.

The Kicking Mules’ 285-pounder won all four of his matches to capture a state championship, ending Saturday with a 5-1 decision against Detroit Catholic Central’s Steve Kolcheff in the title match to finish a 48-3 season.

Emerson had lost a heartbreaking 3-2 decision in last year’s 285-pound state final against repeat state champion Nicholas Jenkins of Detroit Catholic Central.

To reach this year’s final, Emerson beat Clarkston’s Rocco Spindler by injury default in the first round, won by disqualification against Macomb Dakota’s Rahmi Khalil in the quarterfinals, then pinned Grand Ledge’s Brady Riggs 50 seconds into their semifinal match.

Bedford had two other state placers Saturday at Ford Field.

Junior 215-pounder Blake Wingate (41-9) reached the championship match before being pinned in 5 minutes, 28 seconds by Detroit Catholic Central’s Easton Turner.

Wingate advanced to the final by beating Connor Merchant of Walled Lake Central 5-1 in the first round, surviving to edge Dominick Wilson of Portage Central by ultimate tiebreaker after a 1-1 stalemate in the quarterfinals, and taking a 4-2 decision against Emmanuel Willie of Livonia Franklin in the semifinals.

Mules senior Neil Antrassian (46-8) placed fifth at 152 pounds, pinning Oxford’s Trent Myre at 3:40 in the final match. That victory enabled Antrassian to avenge his earlier 8-5 loss to Myre in the second round.