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An individual league title had escaped Maumee heavyweight Brett Boggs three times before he stepped on the mat to face Perrysburg's Dave Wyper in the 275-pound championship match at the 41st annual Northern Lakes League wrestling championships last night at Maumee.
Boggs wouldn't be denied a fourth year as he literally escaped defeat with a 7-6 win over Wyper that also clinched the NLL tournament and league championships for the Panthers.
Wyper owned a 6-5 lead over Boggs with 15 seconds remaining in the match. All the Perrysburg junior needed to do to defeat Boggs was not let the Panthers' co-captain escape his clutches during the final seconds. But he couldn't and with six seconds left Boggs broke free and pulled off a reversal that brought loud cheers from the home crowd.
“I thought about all the hard work I'd done in the summer and all the hard work in practices, so I thought I might as well just go for it,” said Boggs, who finished as a state runner-up last season only weeks after losing in the NLL finals.
Boggs' victory capped five consecutive wins by Maumee wrestlers to close out the tournament. Jeff Henneman (160 pounds), Justin Schutte (171), Jeremy Carpenter (189) and Pat Kowalka (215) were victorious moments before Boggs' effort. All five victories were necessary for the Panthers to claim the championship for the tournament and league.
Maumee finished with 176 points to repeat as the tournament champion. Perrysburg was second with 173, followed by Anthony Wayne 162, Springfield 137, Northview 69, Rossford 55.5, Southview 19 and Bowling Green 4.
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The league championship was determined by a combination of the league tournament and dual meets. Maumee finished with 34 points. Anthony Wayne finished second with 30, Perrysburg and Springfield had 29 apiece, Northview 18, Rossford 11, Bowling Green 7 and Southview 6.
“It was a little different from last year's tournament when we were always in front,” Maumee coach Ken Walczak said. “To pull out five wins in a row like that, that's amazing.”
A win over Boggs by Wyper would have led to the Yellow Jackets sweeping the tournament and league championships. It was the fourth time this season for Boggs to defeat Wyper.
“I feel I'm getting a lot better against him,” Wyper said. “This one I feel like I had control of him the entire time. I just couldn't get a good hold of him.”
Victories in title matches by Perrysburg's Tony Rodriguez (103), Noah Zyduck (119), Nick Samenuk (130) and Kyle Hreben (145) put the Yellow Jackets in good position.
Hreben, a state qualifier a year ago, pinned Anthony Wayne's Zach Switzer at the 3:03 mark in the match. He claimed the 130-pound title last season.
“I just kept to my basics,” Hreben said. “It's exciting each year, especially this year since it's my senior year.”
Anthony Wayne's Caleb Metcalf (112), Springfield's Chris Cramer (152) and Carpenter also earned league titles after moving up in weight classes. Schutte repeated as champion in the same weight class.
Metcalf pinned Perrysburg's Patrick Metting at the 1:26 mark of the title match.
Anthony Wayne's Justin McCulloch (119) and Daniel Mundrick (135) earned titles as well as Springfield's Curtiss Nicholas (140).