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In the 160-pound championshp match, Plano's Wes Brown (right) escapes from Sterling Newman's Brian Bahrs. | Jon Cunningham~For Sun-Times Media
Plano’s wrestling team took a step forward in finishing third at the I-8 conference tournament on Saturday, just six team points behind second-place Sandwich.
“Taking third was nice because we were fourth as a dual team this year, so we moved up a little bit,” Plano coach Joe Kampf said. “Now we know that we’re going to have to beat Wilmington here in two weeks if we want a regional championship.”
Wilmington outscored Sandwich 216-169.5 to win the I-8 team title and will join Plano at the Class 1A Seneca Regional on Feb. 2.
“We know what the goal is and hopefully we’ll wrestle the way we’re capable of to beat them,” Kampf said. “We’ll see what guys show up for us.”
Wes Brown (34-3 at 160) and Derrick Maisonette (33-1 at 220) won I-8 titles for Plano, while Jake Wilson (27-7 at 106) and Junior Nunez (16-6 at 285) placed second in the conference. Both Brown and Maisonette were the top seeds in their weight classes.
Brown won 5-3 over Seneca’s Tommy Lovett to win his title, while Maisonette won 8-3 over Herscher’s Beau Thomas.
“Everybody else on the team was basically in the third-place match,” Kampf said, “and Shaun Wollenweber was able to take third for us.”
Wollenweber (23-9) won a 5-3 overtime decision on the third-place mat at 132 over Manteno’s Travon Done.
Placing fourth for Plano were Ivan Lopez (24-11 at 138), Zack Tomac (15-8 at 145), Killian Murphy (22-14 at 152) and Alex Rodriguez (21-17 at 170). Myles Mendoza (123-16 at 113) pinned Kenny Demarah of Herscher to place fifth for the Reapers.
Plano went 25-6 in duals this season, setting a program record for wins. Kampf’s boys went 8-3 in I-8 duals this year.
Batavia finished fourth at this year’s Upstate Eight Conference meet, getting titles from Joel Shump (34-0 at 126) and Jon Wagner (30-5 at 160) and a pair of seconds from Mickey Watson (14-3 at 195) and Mitchell Krusz (15-7 at 285).
The Bulldogs finished a half-point behind third-place Metea Valley. St. Charles East finished first, with Neuqua Valley second.
Batavia also got thirds from Mike Doranski (21-15 at 106) and Connor McKeehan (26-5 at 220), and a fourth from Charlie Smorczewski (26-10 at 138).
Geneva’s Brad Martens (31-4 at 120) won his second UEC title and the Vikings got a second from Jake Boser (182) and a fifth from Alex Kunkle (160).