MARCH 5, 2021 - TROY
It was an up and down afternoon for the Covington Buccaneers during the first day of the DIII District Wrestling Tournament at Hobart Arena in Troy as four wrestlers advanced, while five wrestlers saw their season’s end.
Advancing into tomorrow’s championship semifinal round are freshman 106 pounder Michael Hagan and senior 138 pounder Cael Vanderhorst, while senior 126 pounder Kellan Anderson and senior 170 pounder Trentin Alexander advance into the consolation rounds.
Hagan was dominant in his first ever trip to the district tournament as he used up just 25 seconds of the clock to pin Pape Mbaye of North College Hill in his opening match.
The Buccaneer freshman then faced Miami East senior Olivia Shore, who is a trailblazer in the sport of girls wrestling as a two-time state champion. Shore is also the first female to ever win a match in the boys state tournament. In a tightly contested battle, Hagan was able to surge to an early lead and control the match with an impressive 8-5 victory.
Hagan (40-1) faces Lane Bergman (33-8) of Versailles in tomorrow’s championship semifinal. A win will secure a trip to the state tournament.
Cael Vanderhorst (47-0) was equally dominant at 138 pounds as he pinned Kaden Sarbough of Middletown Madison in 1:18 and then followed with a 1:45 pin of Ezekiel Burkholder of Lima Bath.
The Buccaneer senior, who placed at state as a freshman and a sophomore before having his opportunity at state glory taken away last year due to COVID, will face Pierce Taylor (21-1) of McNicholas in the championship semifinal with and opportunity to advance to state for the fourth straight year.
Kellan Anderson (33-4), like Vanderhorst, continued his quest to become a four-time state qualifier with a 35 second pin of Masson Klosterman of Coldwater in his opening bout. The Buccaneer senior then dropped a very tough 7-2 decision to Trey Allen (35-1) of Mechanicsburg in a match that was much closer than the final tally.
Not to be deterred, Anderson responded with a 40 second pin over Damian Moler of Brookville and will face Nathan Opichka (17-5) of Medeira in the consolation quarterfinals tomorrow.
Trentin Alexander (37-6) gutted out an impressive win over Kaden Langdon of Carlisle by sticking his opponent with just three seconds left in his open match of the tournament. He then fell to Nick Alvarez (31-4) of Legacy Christian in the championship quarterfinal round, but rebounded to pin Ben Logan’s Connor Witt in the consolation round.
Alexander will face a familiar foe in the consolation quarterfinal in Cael Gostomsky (29-6) of Arcanum.
Five Buccaneers saw their seasons come to an end on Friday - one of those being senior David Robinson.
Robinson, who finish fourth in the Covington sectional a week ago, opened the tournament against Rylan Hurst of Greeneview, the champion from the Madeira sectional. The Buccaneer senior shocked the Greeneview wrestler who entered the tournament with a sparkling 24-2 record, by controlling the match throughout en route to a 7-3 victory.
He then faced David Davis of Miami East, a returning state qualifier from a year ago at 132 pounds, and dropped into the consolation round with a defeat in 1:46.
Looking to rebound from his quarterfinal loss, Robinson was leading Columbus Grove’s Landen Schroder 3-0 late into the second period before getting caught with a reversal to the back and a pin with just one second left on the clock.
David Robinson closes out a very memorable senior season with a 28-13 record.
Also wrestling well despite seeing his season come to an end was freshman 113 pounder Carson Taylor, who actually tips the scale at 98 pounds.
Taylor opened the tournament with a defeat to Hunter Sidle of Allen East, but returned to the mat just 45 minutes later to pin David Vonderwich of Northeastern in 4:46. The Buccaneer freshman then fell to Gavin Caprella (25-3) of Lima Central Catholic to conclude his freshman campaign with a very impressive 34-5 record.
Junior Connor Sindelir performed very well in the 152-pound weight class, which is considered a meat grinder from top to bottom. He dropped his opening bout 12-8 in a back-and-forth match to Trenton Gatchell (32-11) of Allen East, but followed with a 3:55 pin of Gavin Palmer-Leach of Greeneview.
Unfortunately Sindelir ran into Deer Park’s Gabe Wilson (16-2), the champion of the Lima sectional, in his second consolation bout and dropped out of the tournament with a major decision defeat.
Sindelir ends his junior season with a 33-14 record and plenty of potential for an extended run at state next year as a senior.
Th heartbreaker for Covington came at 220 pounds as junior Rickey Stephan was wrestling extremely well in his opening match against Timothy Smith of North College Hill, the champion from the Madeira sectional. Unfortunately Stephan suffered an apparent serious injury to his foot - an injury that led to a loss by pin and forced him to default his consolation match. Stephan ended his junior campaign with a 15-12 record.
Lastly, junior 285 pounder Scott Blumenstock found himself facing the champion from the Madeira sectional in the opening round, which ended with a defeat via pin. Blumenstock then dropped his next match to Jake Thiel of Mechanicsburg to conclude his season with a 17-18 record.
Wrestling resumes tomorrow morning at 9:30am.