Wednesday, February 8, 2023

Blue Devils sweep double dual

INDEPENDENCE—In sweeping Thursday’s double dual the Independence wrestling team came up with some clutch wins and losses.

Independence defeated Cardinal, 41-33, then closed out the night with a 28-27 win over St. Ignatius.

“In matches like the two we wrestled, getting bonus points and not giving up bonus points is huge,” said Independence coach Ken DeAngelis. “Luke Swauger lost a match 7-0 but he saved us a point. Kevin Clymer won a match by eight points and got us an extra point. Those points here and there are the difference in a close match. We give up three forfeits so we’ve got to cover bonus points somewhere.”

Michael Kucera (106) opened the Cardinal dual with a forfeit and David Goldwin pinned his opponent in 3:46 to give the Blue Devils a 12-0 lead.

Matt Mroczynski (138), Clymer (160), Nick Mroczynski (170) and Josh Stasek (285) all won by pin and Alex Nelson claimed a technical fall at 152.

“You look at that match against Cardinal and it comes down to the heavyweight match but you’ve got to go all the way to the beginning of the match when they bumped away from Michael Kucera and caught me sleeping a little bit,” DeAngelis said. “They bumped to David Goldwin, a freshman with a little bit of experience, and he went out and wrestled the match of his life. That won us the dual right there. It was huge.”

Goldwin was winning his match 2-0 after the first period then recorded a takedown and three back points before recording the fall.

Nick Rossi lost by major decision to returning state qualifier Trent Mast at 126 and Drew Benos suffered a technical fall loss at 145 but they helped Independence’s cause by not being pinned.

“We weathered the storm with some of their hammers,” DeAngelis said.

Mroczynski’s pin at 170 was followed by three straight forfeits that allowed Cardinal to pull to within 35-33 heading into Stasek’s bout.

DeAngelis never doubted Stasek could win despite having the outcome of the match resting on his shoulders.

“The biggest thing was he stepped out on that mat and believed he was going to win,” DeAngelis said. “We work with him every day in the room. He’s wrestling with (Steve) Coljohn, with (Paul) Deely, with me, and you just believe you’re going to win. He stayed in a good position and stuck to the plan. He was physically tough and that is what we were looking for.”

Independence won six matches in its one point win over St. Ignatius.

Rossi and Swauger won by decision, Clymer scored a major decision and Matt Mroczynski, Nelson and Nick Mroczynski all won by forfeit.

“That was fun,” DeAngelis said. “We’ve got a young team and these kids just keep getting better and better every week. They work hard. That’s our whole goal, just to keep getting better every day and score the next point. These young kids are growing up and it’s fun.”

Independence 41, Cardinal 33
106: Michael Kucera (I) by forfeit; 113: David Goldwin (I) pinned Anthony Brezo, 3:46; 120: Trent Mast (C) maj. dec. Nick Rossi, 9-0; 126: Brandon Nevison (C) dec. Kyle Corsi, 6-3; 132: Mason Lustig (C) dec. Luke Swauger, 9-2; 138: Matt Mroczynski (I) pinned Anthony Stango, 0:32; 145: Brandon Neikirk (C) tech. fall Drew Benos, 15-0; 152: Alex Nelson (I) tech. fall Zane Drebus, 15-0; 160: Kevin Clymer (I) pinned Sam Ellis, 0:50; 170: Nick Mroczynski (I) pinned Williams Brooks, 1:05; 182: Kyle Simms (C) by forfeit; 195: Geno Argento (C) by forfeit; 220: Bryn Havel (C) by forfeit; 285: Josh Stasek (I) pinned Alex Fabiny, 5:06.

Independence 28, St. Ignatius 27
106: Matthew Wipkey (SI) pinned David Goldwin, 1:43; 113: Patrick Francis (SI) pinned Michael Kucera, 3:07; 120: Nick Rossi (I) dec. Zach Morgan, 6-4; 126: Jake Micheli (SI) pinned Kyle Corsi, 5:58; 132: Luke Swauger (I) dec. Michael Caldwell, 4-2; 138: Matt Mroczynski (I) by forfeit; 145: Zach Tomford (SI) dec. Drew Benos, 4-3; 152: Kevin Clymer (I) maj. dec. Logan Toth, 11-3; 160: Alex Nelson (I) by forfeit; 170: Nick Mroczynski (I) by forfeit; 182: double forfeit; 195: double forfeit; 220: double forfeit; 285: Mike Chime (SI) pinned Josh Stasek, 5:03. 


Steve Hare
Steve Hare is the Chagrin Valley Conference's Sports Information Director. He also created and publishes, an online publication dedicated to providing hyperlocal coverage to area high school athletic programs. Hare began covering high school sports for the Lake County News Herald in 1997. Hare attended Willoughby South High School through the middle of his senior year, then graduated from Berkshire High School in Burton in 1986. He played football, wrestled and was an all-Geauga county baseball player (1986). He lives in Chardon with his wife Paulette and their children.

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