January 25-26, 2013 – Lima
Covington had an outstanding first day at the Lima Central Catholic wrestling invitational on Friday, finishing the first day in 2nd place out of 38 teams – 1/2 point behind Archbold. The Buccs advanced all eleven competing wrestlers to the second day – eight through the first two championship rounds and into the quarterfinals, and the remaining three into the third consolation round.
Covington’s wrestlers advancing in the championship bracket include Connor Ryan (106, 2-0), Ryan Ford (126, 2-0, 2 pins), Brock Smith (138, 1-0), Daniel Jennings (145, 2-0, 1 pin), Jake Sowers (152, 2-0), Kyler Deeter (160, 2-0, 2 pins), Ben Miller (170, 2-0, 2 pins) and Brian Olson (195, 1-0, 1 pin).
Advancing to the third consolation round were A.J. Ouellette (170, 1-1, 1 pin), Justin Daniel (220, 1-1, 1 pin) and Jordan Wolfe (285, 2-1, 2 pins).
Covington followed up their great first-day start to the Lima Central Catholic (LCC) Wrestling Invitational with an equally impressive second day, bringing home the championship at the 38-team mega-tournament. The Buccs – who led by 2.5 points going into the finals – finished in first place with 157.5 points, holding off top-five finishers Greeneview (147.5), Dixie (147), Ayersville (140.5) and Archbold (136).
Winning this tournament is the Buccs’ greatest team achievement since finishing 29-0 in duals during the 2009-2010 season. This year’s senior class – Kyler Deeter, Brian Olson, Brock Smith and Jake Sowers – got to experience both successes as they competed as freshmen on that undefeated squad.
It took a total team effort at LCC as all eleven competing wrestlers won matches and earned valuable points for the team. While individually, a few of the wrestlers would like to have a match or two back; as a team, the Buccs wrestled an outstanding tournament – placing six wrestlers and narrowly missing out on a few others reaching the awards podium.
Brian Olson led the way for Covington by winning the 195 lb. championship with a 9-6 decision over Marcus Smith of Carlisle in the finals. Olson finished 4-0 with 2 pins at the tournament and advanced to the semi-finals with a 7-3 decision over Adrian Harding of Greeneview.
Three teammates – Ryan Ford, Jake Sowers and Kyler Deeter – nearly joined Olson on the championship mat, but dropped overtime and 1 pt. decisions to fall into the consolation bracket.
Ryan Ford (126) finished 6-1 overall with 2 pins and took 3rd place for the Buccs with an 8-1 decision over Zach Alvarado of Cincinnati Hill’s Christian Academy in the finals, after earning an 11-2 major decison over Carlisle’s Jordan McKnight of Carlisle in the consolation semi-finals.
Jake Sowers (145) also finished in 3rd place with a 6-2 decision over Cole Vencill of Dixie in the finals – which was a key head-to-head bout against the Greyhounds in determining the team championship. Sowers earned a pin over Wes Buettner of Delphos St. Johns in the consolation semifinals, and finished 6-1 overall with 2 pins.
Kyler Deeter (160) nearly upended eventual champion Jimmy Sandlin of Carlisle, dropping a semifinal overtime match, and then never fully recovered as he dropped his consolation semifinal bout. Deeter earned a forfiet victory over Mechanicsburg’s Max Erwin to take 5th place overall and finish with a 4-2 record with 2 pins.
Also placing for the Buccs were Daniel Jennings (145) and Ben Miller (170) who both finished in 4th place. Jennings – who entered the tournament unseeded – knocked off two seeded wrestlers and finished 5-2 overall with 3 pins. Miller – seeded 5th – also finished with a 5-2 record, earning two pins at the tournament.
Connor Ryan (106) and A.J. Ouellette (182) also wrestled great at the event, finishing in the top eight with 3-2 records. Both battled through key overtime decisions and Ouellette earned 2 pins overall.
Jordan Wolfe (285), Brock Smith (138) and Justin Daniel (220) also earned key victories and valuable team points for the Buccs. Wolfe finished with a 3-2 record with 2 pins, while Brock earned a key victory and Daniel earned 1 pin.
Covington competes next in the third round of the OHSAA Team Duals at Versailles high school on Wednesday, January 30, at 6 pm. The Buccs face Mechanicsburg while Versailles faces Troy Christian. The winners then square off immediately afterwards.