by Angie Asam-Staff Writer
Three Onaway Cardinal wrestlers will compete at the Michigan High School Athletic Association individual regional tournament in Rogers City Saturday beginning at 9:30 a.m.
Senior Joe Traynham and junior Zeke Nave each captured district titles last Saturday in Manton while senior Elijah Shockley finished second to move on to the regional round.
The top four finishers in each weight class at the regional tournament will move on to the individual state finals at the Palace of Auburn Hills March 5-7.
Traynham was the number one seed at 112 pounds. He pinned Dylan Gilbert of Elk Rapids in one minute to start his day. In the semifinals he pinned Mio’s Patrick Stephens in 1:56 to move on to the final where he defeated Pine River’s Jordan Stone 4-0.
Traynham will face Maddy Lund of Bark River Harris in the opening round at regionals. Ranked number three at his weight class, Traynham will look to defend his individual state title.
Nave won the 125-pound weight class. He started the day with a technical fall victory 17-0 in 3:48 over Taylor Austin of Tawas. He then pinned Charlevoix’s Camden Alden in 2:53 to advance to the final where he pinned Pine River’s Tucker Fansler in 1:55 to take the title.
Nave placed at the state finals a year ago and is currently ranked seventh. He will face Norway’s Timothy Huddleston in the opening round at regionals.
Shockley (171) started his day with a technical fall victory (17-0) in 4:37 over Phillip Molitor of Lake City. He then pinned Reilly McMaster of Mio in 3:19 to advance to the final. In the final he was pinned by Pine River’s Jeff Gross in 1:31 to finish second. He will face Iron Mountain’s Aaron Bolo in the opening round of regionals.
ONAWAY HAD three other wrestlers who were just one win away from qualifying for the regional tournament. Freshman Lucas Tollini was 1-2 at 171 pounds. Tollini defeated Frankfort’s Gabe Huffman 4-3 before being pinned by Jeff Gross of Pine River and Devon Stonex of Elk Rapids to end his day.
Junior Jesse Watson was 1-2 at 130 pounds. He started the day with a pin over Whittemore Prescott’s Atreyu Waldorf in 1:24. He was then pinned by Hunter Eurich of Mio in 1:16 and fell to Waldorf 7-5.
Senior Raymond Self was also 1-2 at 130 pounds. He defeated Mancelona’s Noah Burroughs 14-8 before being pinned by Tyler McCallum of Charlevoix and Waldorf of Whittemore Prescott.
Bradley Moore (145) and Troy Klein (152) were each 0-1 at the district tournament.
LAST THURSDAY the Cardinals battled county rival Rogers City for the team district trophy. Onaway had defeated Rogers City twice this season, both times with the match ending in a 42-42 tie and the Cardinals winning on criteria. Thursday the Hurons defeated the Cardinals 42-32.
The teams double voided at 152 pounds. Klein was pinned by Jacob Sobeck at 160 and the Hurons led 6-0. Shockley defeated Austin Bober at 171 pounds and the score was 6-3. Tollini defeated Juan Beltran by pin at 189 pounds and the Cardinals led 9-6. Rogers City voided to Onaway’s Jason Price at 215 and Onaway led 15-6.
At heavyweight Keegan Freel went out to take on Huron Laine Curtis, whom he had beaten earlier, but Curtis caught Freel in a headlock and held him down for the pin making it 15-12.
Onaway voided at 103 and 112 and Rogers City led 24-15. Traynham won by technical fall at 119 to make it 24-20. Nave won by pin at 125 and the Cardinals led 26-24. Self won by pin at 130 pounds and the Cardinals led 32-24 with three matches to go.
Watson was pinned by Justin Saile at 135 pounds and the lead was just two, 32-30. Devin Tulgestke stepped on the mat to battle Max Kowalewsky at 140. The back and forth battle came to an end when Tulgestke lost by pin and the Hurons led 36-32. Onaway would void to Cameron Urban at 145 pounds and the Hurons took the district title.