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Streaks Come Up Short At District

TJ Weirauch was on the short end of an 8-7 decision to Liberty Center's Luke Kern in the consolation semifinal at the Div. III district wrestling meet, Feb. 26-27. The AHS junior placed fifth in the 119-lb. weight class and is a state alternate.– photo by Scott Schultz

TJ Weirauch was on the short end of an 8-7 decision to Liberty Center’s Luke Kern in the consolation semifinal at the Div. III district wrestling meet, Feb. 26-27. The AHS junior placed fifth in the 119-lb. weight class and is a state alternate.– photo by Scott Schultz

Nine Archbold wrestlers made the journey to the Division III district wrestling tournament at Owens Community College, Friday, Feb. 26 and Saturday, Feb. 27.

The season ended for eight.

Jordan Cowell (135 pounds) was the only Streak to advance to the state tournament.

“What was positive about this weekend is that everyone down here won a match,” said Brian Becher, AHS head coach.

“I told the kids coming into this tournament this is the start of next year, since we have so many kids coming back. Even Shem (Neuenschwander, a senior) is part of that, too, because he helped with momentum.”

State Alternate

TJ Weirauch (119 lbs.) placed fifth, which gives him a state alternate spot.

After pinning Genoa’s Shawn Gantka, Weirauch dropped into the consolation bracket after losing a 10-4 decision to Crestview’s Wyatt Music in the quarterfinal.

The AHS junior faced Sandusky St. Mary Central Catholic’s Adam Guerra in the second consolation round. Weirauch polished off Guerra 6-0 and then topped Austin Laney of Hicksville 8- 6, moving Weirauch into his go-to match.

Just one person stood between Weirauch and a trip to Columbus: a familiar opponent, Liberty Center’s Luke Kern. Kern and Weirauch have been going head to head for the past three weeks. Kern won the Northwest Ohio Athletic League meet and then took the sectional crown.

Weirauch jumped out to a 4-0 lead after the first period. Starting neutral in the second, Kern scored on a takedown, but Weirauch still held a 4-2 lead to start the fi- nal period.

Taking down Kern gave Weirauch the optional start, upping the lead to 5-2. Kern came right back with a takedown and two near fall points, and Weirauch scored on an escape at the 1:03 mark.

Kern scored another takedown and Weirauch was awarded a penalty point as the match came to a close, with Kern picking up an 8-7 decision.

“TJ wrestled well in the consolations, and then was up 4-0 on Kern,” said Becher. “I thought the match was over.

“Big difference was TJ got put to his back, but TJ hit the headlock at the end. We thought we had two and so did about 20 other people that came up and talked to me after the match, but the official felt different.”

Weirauch pinned Fremont St. Joe’s Austin Hilty to earn the state alternate spot.

Go-To Matches
Come Up Short

Oliver Stuckey (130 lbs.) won his opening two matches on Friday, pinning Margaretta’s Matt Smith, a senior, at 1:44, and recording a 9-1 major decision over South Central’s Dakota Workman.

In the semifinal he faced Edison’s Kyle Burns, who is rated third in the Brakeman report. Burns pinned Stuckey at 3:25, dropping the AHS sophomore into the consolation bracket.

In Stuckey’s go-to match he faced Elmwood’s Mitchell Emmitt. Emmit scored first on a takedown. Stuckey picked up an escape, and Emmitt scored again on a takedown for a 4-1 lead after the first period.

Emmitt started down to start the second. He added to his total with an escape for a 5-1 lead heading into the third. Stuckey added an escape, but Emmit won a 5-2 decision.

In the match to determine fifth, Carl Cozier of Clear Fork pinned Stuckey at 1:54.

“Oliver had a rough Saturday. He went 2-0 on Friday and 0-3 on Saturday,” said Becher.

“We didn’t think he would beat the Burns kid, but we thought he would come back in the consolation round against the kid from Elmwood.

“But he just didn’t get after him, and he came out flat in the fifth-place match.”

Neuenschwander (189 lbs.) made a valiant effort to keep his season going, but came up short in his go-to match.

He pinned Plymouth’s Nick Fletcher in 32 seconds in his opening match and Northwood’s Mike Miller at 3:42 in the quarterfinal, moving him into the semifi nal where he met Galion senior Rich Ulmer.

Ulmer sent the Archbold senior into the consolation bracket with a 17-2 technical fall.

In his go-to match, Neuenschwander faced Buckeye Central’s Josh Stockmaster, where Stockmaster recorded a fall at 2:32.

Neuenschwander lost a 3-1 decision to Elmwood’s Jake Baker to finish sixth.

“Shem had a real good night on Friday, but Saturday you run into the tougher kids,” said Becher. “Overall, I was pleased.

“There was disappointment, but the kids wrestled hard. It’s just an emotional roller coaster. A lot of disappointment today with the kids you thought were going to make it and didn’t.”

The Rest Of The Streaks

Ben Eggers (103 lbs.) was pinned at 5:50 in the first round by Evergreen’s Brandon Fahrer, dropping him into the consolation bracket. Eggers pinned South Central’s Joe Gavarrette at 3:30 and Bucyrus freshman CJ Neubacher at 4:34 before losing a 10-3 decision to Delta’s Seth Colvin.

Eggers finished his freshman year with a 33-28 record.

Cody Kovnesky (152 lbs.) lost a 5-4 decision in his opening match to Edison’s Travis Lombardi. In the consolation bracket Kovnesky pinned Northwood’s Daniel Prothero at 2:45, but then Montpelier’s Derek Jimenez defeated Kovnesky 4-2, ending his sophomore season with a 34-19 record.

Tyler Rufenacht (160 lbs.) won a 7-5 decision over Swanton’s Tom Leahey, then dropped into the consolation bracket when Crestview’s Garrick Montgomery recorded a 16-6 major decision.

Rufenacht closed out his sophomore campaign with a 28-9 record when he was pinned by Buckeye Central’s Auston Hood in the second consolation round.

Eli Urbina (171 lbs.) was pinned at 5:30 by Mitchell Gross of St. Paul in the first round. In the consolation bracket Urbina scored a 4-2 decision over Christian Peters of Cardinal Stritch.

Urbina’s season came to a close when Evergreen’s Richard Spencer scored a 6- 3 decision in the second consolation. Urbina closed out his sophomore season with a 28-24 record.

Brandon Dennie (285 lbs.) pinned Bucyrus’ Andrew Michalek at 1:43 in the first round, then dropped into the consolation after getting pinned in 13 seconds by Swanton’s Mimmo Lytle.

Dennie won a 5-2 decision over Lakota’s Jarett Smith in the second consolation round, but was pinned at 4:26 by Ontario’s Bryan Eyerly in the third consolation.

The AHS junior ended the season with a 51-10 record.

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