Created on Monday, 04 February 2013 Written by AARON LaBATT
Indian Lake takes second overall behind Graham
Winning a Central Buckeye Conference championship is far from easy, but Indian Lake’s Heath Lange and Benjamin Logan’s Beau Harmon made it look that way.
|LEFT: Ben Logan’s Beau Harmon locks up with Tecumseh’s Tristan Taylor during their 285-pound Central Buckeye Conference championship match. RIGHT: Bellefontaine’s Chase Wilcoxon works to hold down Stebbins’ Torey Brennan during their fifth-place 132-pound match. FRONT PAGE PHOTO: Indian Lake’s Heath Lange takes Kenton Ridge’s Tyler Sowards to his back during the 145-pound Central Buckeye Conference championship match Saturday at Benjamin Logan High School. (EXAMINER PHOTOS | AARON LaBATT)|
The two local standouts gave commanding performances Saturday to come away with individual CBC titles at Ben Logan High School.
A junior, Lange repeated as league champion by winning the 145-pound championship, and Harmon, a senior, won a second league title at 285 pounds.
Indian Lake also remained at the top of the CBC team standings and finished second overall. The Lakers were second in the Mad River division for the second time in three seasons.
“I’m very happy with how we performed,” said Indian Lake head coach Scott Tressler. “That is how you want your team to do at the league meet with the postseason starting soon. I thought we did really well for having two of our starters out of the lineup.”
Graham, which is ranked fifth in the nation, won its 12th consecutive CBC championship. The Falcons were first overall and first in the Mad River division with 341.5 points. They placed 13 of 14 wrestlers and won eight weight classes.
Kenton Ridge won the Kenton Trail division title for the third season in a row and was fourth overall with 148 points.
The Lakers accumulated 195.5 points. They had 12 placers, including one league champion in Lange.
The Raiders were fifth overall and fourth in the Mad River division with 138 points, while the Chieftains ended the day eighth overall and third in the Kenton Trail division.
“I think we did pretty well,” said Ben Logan head coach Tony Grant. “I figured we would be anywhere from fourth to sixth depending on who showed up. We had some bad draws, but the guys did a nice job.”
“I don’t think we can ever be pleased with an eighth-place finish at the league meet,” said BHS head coach Rick Reed. “I didn’t think we would finish high, but I hoped we would finish higher than eighth. We just didn’t maximize our points.”
Lange’s performance at the CBC tournament was one of the most impressive of the day. He recorded five first-period falls in less than 1:30. He pinned Ty Ott of Springfield Shawnee (1:15), Austin Ferguson of Tecumseh (:44), Jacob Houchin of BHS (1:28) and then Russ Hites of Ben Logan (1:27) in the semifinals.
The junior then handled Kenton Ridge standout Tyler Sowards in the finals with a pin in 44 seconds.
“It was nice to win it again,” said Lange. “I liked that I was able to pin everyone in the first period. It makes for a good day. This is not my goal, though. My goal is to be a state champion and the real season starts in two weeks.”
“Heath has been wrestling really well,” said Tressler. “Ever since his loss last week he has really turned things up and is wrestling aggressively. He took that out on some people and is peaking at the right time.”
Harmon, who won a CBC championship as a sophomore, reached the CBC finals last year but did not wrestle because of an injury. Having his hand raised Saturday as a senior capped a strong league performance.
“It felt good to come back and win another CBC title,” said Harmon. “It is something nice to add to my career. It’s also one step closer toward getting a state championship.”
The senior heavyweight went unchallenged on his way to another league title with five pins. Harmon pinned Beau Bassell of Urbana (1:01), Logan Ferrell of Tippecanoe (:42), Corbin McCune of Springfield Shawnee (1:36), Indian Lake’s Mason Evilsizor (4:10) and Tristan Taylor of Tecumseh (1:39) in the finals.
“Beau wrestled well,” said Grant. “He took care of business and hopefully he keeps it up. This will help his confidence level up for the postseason.”
Lange highlighted the Lakers’ day, but there were plenty of other placers helping the team to its runner-up finish.
Coming in third for Indian Lake were Phillip Golden (160), Shane Asman (195) and Mason Evilsizor (285), who is just a first-year wrestler.
Golden received a forfeit in the finals, while Asman pinned Aaron Leciejweski of Greenon (1:19) and Evilsizor pinned Logan Ferrell of Tippecanoe (1:42).
Placing fourth for the Lakers were Calob Nadeau (106), Tyrone Nadeau (113), Sean Warniment (220), Kurt Crockett (126), Calvin Davis (138) and Steven Major (220).
Taking fifth was Kurtis Gibbons (152) and coming in sixth was Simon Kirkpatrick (182).
Earning league runner-up honors for the Raiders were Caleb Houser (106) and Alec Felty (170).
Houser cruised to finals and beat the Lakers’ Calob Nadeau by a 15-6 major decision in the semifinals. Houser was then pinned by returning Graham state placer Eli Stickley in 1:34 during the title bout.
Felty edged Bellefontaine’s Nate Miler 6-4 in the semifinals before falling to Graham’s Lane Thomas by a 17-2 technical fall in the championship match.
“Caleb and Alec wrestled well,” said Grant. “Alec did a nice job with Miller in the semifinals and Russ Hites did well, too.”
Placing third was Beau Swank (220), who pinned the Lakers’ Major (2:52) in the finals.
Also for the Raiders, Russ Hites (145) came in fourth and Robby Eleyet (160) was fifth.
Nate Miller (170) led Bellefontaine with a third-place finish. He defeated Brandon Arndts of Tippecanoe by a 6-4 decision in the finals.
Battling an injured ankle, Joe Rindfleisch (182) battled for a fourth-place finish. He reached the semifinals and then defaulted in his fourth-place match.
“Alec Felty is a guy Nate has to beat if he wants to get where he wants to go,” said Reed. “Joe was hurt, make no mistake. He sat out three days of practice. He wanted to tough it out and we let him for three rounds. Joe proved he was willing to battle and handled his business with maturity.”
Coming in fifth for the Chiefs were Seth Newman (120) and Chase Wilcoxon (132), while sixth-place efforts came from Lance Houchin (106) and Chantz Rose (285).
The most outstanding wrestler award in the Kenton Trail division went to Kenton Ridge’s Elijah Cochran, while the most outstanding wrestler award in the Mad River division went to Graham’s Bo Jordan.
All three area teams take a short break and return to compete in the Division II sectional tournament on Feb. 15 and 16.
1. Graham MR 341.5; 2. Indian Lake MR 195.5; 3. Northwestern MR 158; 4. Kenton Ridge KT 148; 5. Ben Logan MR 138; 6. Urbana MR 115; 7. Tippecanoe KT 111.5; 8. Bellefontaine KT 98.5; 9. Stebbins KT 96; 10. Tecumseh KT 87.5; 11. Spring. Shawnee KT 73; 12. Greenon MR 61.