ST. JOSEPH — St. Joseph's quadrangular wrestling meet provided plenty of excitment here Wednesday night as the final two meets of the evening ended in spectactular fashion.
Coach Taylor Misel's Bears trailed Holland West Ottawa 38-21 with three matches left, but St. Joe recorded three straight pins to nip West Ottawa 39-38.
And, Battle Creek Lakeview edged out Niles 35-33 by winning the final match in sudden-death overtime. Lakeview (11-1) is rated No. 9 in Division 1, while Niles (9-5) is No. 9 in D2.
"It's what high school wrestling is all about," said Misel, after his 215-pounder Joey Siccurello stuck Ottawa's Santos DeLaRosa in 1:58, capping the Bears unlikely rally. "It was a great win for our program before a packed house (in the fieldhouse)."
"I knew we needed a pin, and I caught him in a head-and-arm," explained Siccurello. The pin came two seconds before the end of the first period. The three consecutive pins by Matt Morris, Drake Collins and Siccurello improved the Bears to 9-7.
Niles coach Todd Hesson admitted his team's close loss to Lakeview was a tough pill to swallow, but remained positive on his team's effort. "These kids come to wrestle every meet, and that's all any coach can ask."
Niles defeated St. Joseph 50-24 in a SMAC West Division opener for both teams. Lakeview thumped West Ottawa 63-12 in the night's other opener.
A key match in the Vikings' win over St. Joseph came when freshman Mike Robles nipped the Bears' Nolan Wertanen 10-8 at 103 pounds in a battle royale of highly-rated wrestlers. It was the first loss of the season for Wertanen, rated No. 1 at 103 in D2. Robles is rated No. 4.
Winning both of their matches for St. Joseph was highly-touted sophomore Jacob Halsey at 130. He improved to 18-2 on the season and is rated No. 6 at 125 this week. Morris, Collins and Siccurello claimed two pins each.
Niles 50, St. Joseph 24
103 - Mike Robles (N) d. Nolan Wertanen 10-8; 112 - Jordan Zimmerman (N) p. Collin Staneart 2:29; 119 - Carson Landon (N) d. Jack Sherman 6-4; 125 - James Pegan (N) p. Ted Olmsted 1:59; 130 - Jacob Halsey p. Blake Mann 1:27; 135 - Ryan Franco (N) p. Gabe Soler 1:25; 140 - Javond Ball (N) m.d. Yazan Farhan 17-5;
145 - Skyler Means (N) by forfeit; 152 - Hunter Fazi (N) m.d. Ben Betita 14-2; 160 - Kade Wagley (N) p. Brandon Jones 0:55; 171 - Matt Morris (SJ) p. Connor Tibbitts 3:15; 189 - Drake Collins (SJ) p. Darian Sosa 3:52; 215 - Joey Siccurello (SJ) p. Chase Andres 1:24; Hwt - Caden Smith (N) p. Cameron Hureski 0:52.
St. Joseph 39, West Ottawa 38
103 - Nolan Wertanen (SJ) p. Trale Bumsted 1:01; 112 - Matt Hakken (WO) d. Collin Staneart 6-4 in OT; 119 - Owen Foster (WO) t.f. Jack Sherman 18-3; 125 - Julio Sanchez (WO) p. Ted Olmsted 1:14; 130 - Jacob Halsey (SJ) d. Emilo Castenada 5-1. 135 - Quincy Moyo (WO) p. Emer Dyes 3:24; 140 - Gabe Soler (SJ) p. Avont Chanthalamon 3:32;
145 - Terrell Hawkins (WO) p. Yazan Farhan 2:59; 152 - Ben Betita by forfeit; 160 - Omar Salas (WO) p. Brandon Jones 4:34; 171 - Matt Morris (SJ) p. Logan Hornshaw 0:57; 189 - Drake Collins (SJ) p. Andy VanDyke 0:51; 215 - Siccurello (SJ) p. Santos DelaRosa 1:58; Hwt - Logan Lewis (WO) p. Cameron Hureskin 5:59.