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Area wrestlers vie for state berths at sectionals

02/06/2013, 7:15pm CST
By Gary Larsen

Sectional matchups across Illinois Saturday will determine which wrestlers will advance to the individual state finals at Champaign's Assembly Hall Feb. 14-16.

Waubonsie's Howard Beatty (right) and Oswego's Nick Aguirre compete in the 138 lb finals during the Class 3A Bolingbrook Regional on Saturday, Feb. 2, 2013. | Mike Mantucca ~ For Sun-Times Media

After winning a regional title at 182 pounds, Geneva senior wrestler Jake Boser pondered his approach to Saturday’s Class 3A Shepard Sectional.

“I’ll go hard this week in practice but I’ll ease up a little bit because the hay’s in the barn at this point,” Boser said. “All the hard work’s been done so now it’s just go-time.”

Saturday’s sectionals across Illinois in three classes will determine who advances to the individual state finals at Champaign’s Assembly Hall Feb. 14-16.

While many of Marmion’s 13 sectional-qualifying wrestlers have a handful of losses to their names, anyone underestimating the Cadets will do so at their own risk.

“Like our coaches said at the [Naperville Central regional] seeding meeting, we didn’t have a single head-to-head matchup with any of the kids there,”

Marmion’s Jake Field said. “We’ve got a lot of losses while a lot of them are undefeated, but we knew coming in that with our schedule we’ve wrestled in tournaments ten times harder than this one.”

Marmion’s sectional crew includes eight regional champs in Fields (126), Anthony Bosco (106), Johnny Jimenez (120), George Fisher (132), Trace Carello (145), Riley DeMoss (152), Cody Snodgrass (195) and Alex Fritz (285).

Other regional champions present at Shepard will be West Aurora’s Tim Young (170) and Batavia’s Charlie Smorczewski (138). “I know it’s going to be tough and I’ll just focus on whoever I’m bracketed against when the time comes,” Smorczewski said.

Breon Hoosier (170) and Sam Freedlund (220) will represent Metea Valley at Shepard. After placing second to Naperville Central’s Luke Roth at 220, Freedlund is ready to prep for his chance to wrestle downstate.

“I’ll study the film of that match and study some of my other opponents so I’m prepared for the sectional,” Freedlund said. “I’m hoping to get all the way to state. Breon and I will really kick it up a notch this week in practice and push it up harder than ever.”

Waubonsie Valley will send regional champs Jimmy Davis (132), Howard Beatty (138) and Anthony Touchstone (220) to the Class 3A Moline Sectional.

Other regional champs headed to Moline are Oswego East’s Andrew Chastain (152) and Zach Prinz (170), and Oswego’s Max Larsen (160), along with a regional runner-up in East Aurora’s Frederico Diaz (285).

“At this time of the year, there are no easy matches,” Waubonsie Valley coach Brad Caldwell said. “Any wrestler that wants to qualify for the state meet has to beat someone to get there. Matches will come down to heart and desire.”

Class 1A Plano advanced four regional champs to Saturday’s Plano sectional in Ivan Lopez (138), Wes Brown (160), Derrick Maisonet (220) and Junior Nunez (285) while runner-up Dan Cuevas (106) of Aurora Central Catholic also advanced.

Kaneland regional champions Esai Ponce (132), Sonny Horn (138), Dan Goress (145) and Zach Theis (285) will wrestle at the Class 2A Rochelle Sectional.

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