Eight area wrestlers claimed titles at the Perrysburg Invitational Tournament last night, and three of them repeated as champions.
Hilliard Davidson captured the team title by outdistancing host Perrysburg by 28 points. The Yellow Jackets edged Springfield by one point, 151-150, for second place.
Perrysburg seniors Tony Rodriguez and Matt Holland claimed titles on their home mat. The Blue Devils had five wrestlers finish in the top four, led by Cody Reitmeier's championship.
"This tournament is the key point in the season for us," said Perrysburg coach Jeff Bucher, whose Yellow Jackets also placed second here last year. "We wrestled well this weekend. I'm excited for our two senior captains who went out with a win under the lights."
Nearly 1,500 fans turned out for the championship finals that took place under a spotlight.
Delta, which took fifth, had two wrestlers defend their PIT titles as Jared Evans took the 103-pound weight class and Jamison Moss easily prevailed at 145. Waite was seventh with four wrestlers finishing in the top four. St. John's Jesuit also had two individual champs, Nate Savona and James Kettinger, and finished 11th.
Tinora's Matt Bloniarz improved to 20-1 when he captured his second PIT title in a row.
Delta's Evans made quick work of Jimmy Millar of Hilliard Davidson in the 103-pound championship. Evans took Millar down just 32 seconds into the first period and pinned him with 44 seconds left.
"We have great coaches and they told me to wrestle my match," Evans said. "I expected a little more because when you get to the finals of the PIT, you expect good competition."
Perrysburg's Rodriguez captured his 100th career victory in style by winning the 119-pound class in front of the home crowd. Rodriguez controlled Brandon Chappell of Hilliard Davidson and walked off with a 10-3 win.
"All of my friends are here and it's nice that they can see why I suffer [in practice]," Rodriguez said. "It feels like all of the hard work is paying off."
The best title match came in the 130-pound division, where Perrysburg's Holland outlasted Waite's Vinny Lopez 8-5.
Lopez (14-5) threw Holland to his back 58 seconds into the bout, getting three back points to take a 5-0 lead after one period. Holland came right back in the second with an escape, a takedown and then a near pin to take a 6-5 lead.
"I didn't come out very strong," Holland said. "In the middle of the second, I felt him gassing. Once I realized he couldn't hang with me, I picked up my intensity."
In the third, Holland bloodied Lopez's nose, then scored one more takedown to capture an 8-5 victory. Holland, who said he had never placed at the PIT after wrestling in it as a sophomore and junior, improved his record to 17-6.
"It feels so good," he said. "All of my family and friends were here."
Defending state champion Moss of Delta showed exactly why he won the 145-weight class last year with a systematic dismantling of North Royalton's Tim Becka. Moss methodically took Becka down and kicked him out, racking up 20 points at just the midpoint of the match. Moss (13-1) handed Becka only his third loss of the season with a 26-11 technical fall.
"I'm mainly a feet-wrestler," Moss said. "I was going for an all-takedown technical fall."
At 152, St. John's got a 13-1 win from Savona, who improved to 25-1 with a decisive win over Dan Fladda of North Royalton.
At 160 Kettinger (24-2) registered a technical fall over Big Walnut's David Bowman in the third period. Reitmeier (19-2) pinned A.J. Muscaro of Hilliard Davidson in the first period.
Maumee's Billy Francis dropped a tough 3-2 decision to Nate Bowman in the championship match at 189.
Matt Bloniarz of Tinora topped Hilliard Davidson's Adam Vaccari 7-5 to win the crown at 125. Tinora's Mark Bloniarz dropped his match in the 135-pound championship to Jesse Oberdove of North Royalton.
Bryan's Cody Sofoulis placed second at 112.
Springfield, which had 10 place in the top eight, got third-place finishes from Kevin Byers (112) and Zach Vandromme (125). Bryan Mc-
Kenzie (215) and Chris Holland took fourth.
"I thought we could be in the hunt," Springfield coach Tim Dishong said. "This is a great tournament. It's a good gauge for all the teams."
Oak Harbor, another strong team, was forced to forfeit several matches because wrestler were unable to travel because of weather.
Perrysburg also had 10 of its 14 wrestlers finish in the top eight as Tony Castillo took fourth in the 140-pound division.
Contact Mark Monroe at: email@example.com or 419-724-6110.