The Macomb Daily

‘Part of history’

Romeo defeats Rochester Adams, wins first regional since 2012

- By Chuck Klonke

Last week after winning a wrestling team district championsh­ip, Romeo coach Jim Cali said, “it’s not over yet.” It still isn’t over.

The Bulldogs advanced to the state quarterfin­als Wednesday with a 73-6 win against Rochester Adams in the Division 1 regional at Troy. Before getting there, however, Romeo won a thrilling 36-30 decision over Dakota in a battle of Macomb Area Conference Red Division rivals.

“I can’t be more proud of these guys,” Cali said after the Bulldogs earned their first trip to the state team finals since 2012. “They came out like they wanted it. Obviously, Dakota is a fantastic team. We needed every ounce of everything we can do to pull it out.”

Every match was important for Romeo in ending Dakota’s string of seven straight regional championsh­ip, but two stood out.

One was Owen Youngblood’s 3—1 decision over Ozia Wilson at 120 pounds. Youngblood got a takedown in the final 10 seconds to get the win.

“I’ve never wrestled him, but I’ve wrestled his older brother (Orion) and it was close against him,” Youngblood said. “I’m just glad I could go out and help the team win. I knew I was going to be a key match. Something just clicked and I went full mode and got the takedown.

“This means a world to us and the entire Romeo community. The last time we did this was 2012, so it’s great to be a part of history.”

Another was Marcus Donovan’s 11-10 victory against Connor Palazzolo at 138. Donovan, who wrestled with a mask protecting his broken nose also got the deciding points on a takedown in the waning seconds.

“I knew I had to get it done so I just battled through it,” Donovan said. “I was losing with 30 seconds to go so clutched up and got the takedown.”

Donovan, who had to stop

the match a couple times because he had difficulty breathing, has gone to the state finals as an individual.

“I’ve never been to team states but I’ve heard great things about it,” Donovan said; “I’m very excited for the team. It’s way better to go as a team.”

Donovan’s win started a string of five straight wins for the Bulldogs and cut Dakota’s lead to 21-12.

“Those were both huge wins,” Cali said. “Give Dakota credit. They bumped their lineup around. They’ve got a good heavyweigh­t and their lower weights are strong. They’re strong through the middle, too. They don’t have any

weak holes.”

Neither does Romeo. “We’re two good teams,” Cali said. “When we saw the brackets we felt it was a shame one of us wasn’t going to go (to Kalamazoo). I’m sure there are a lot of other good teams around the state in the same situation.”

After wins by Jack Zehnder (144) and Joshua McMillan (150), James Rivers put Romeo ahead 25-21 on pin of Brayden Miller. Tyler Pressel pinned Dakota’s Troy Weiand with 23 seconds left in the 165 match to extend the Bulldogs’ lead to 31-21. Aiden Criteser kept the Cougars alive with a 6-0 decision over Nathan Miller at 175, but Brayden Mirjavadi clinched the win with a technical fall against Brady Hamby. Romeo’s other win came from freshman Bryce Holt at 106.

Dakota’s other wins were from Anthony Coleman (285), Orion Wilson (113), Drew Astorga (126) and Caleb Weiand (132).

Dakota coach Ed Skowneski was gracious in defeat.

“Sometimes things don’t go your way,” he said. “We’ve had a pretty good run. I told the kids I still love them. Tomorrow we get up and go back to work. We have 13 individual­s still in the tournament and our goal now is getting them to peak at the right time.

“Romeo has a very talented team. They have a lot of depth and they wrestled well tonight.”

Skowneski said that the loss will motivate the returning Cougars.

“We’ll have a chip on our shoulders from here on out and we’ll use this to get better,” he said.

Adams reached the championsh­ip match with a 45-25 win against Troy.

A key win for the Highlander­s came from senior Michael Dreon at 165.

“He was down four to six points against an athletic kid who does a lot of upper body stuff and in one of those scrambles he was able to capitalize and get the pin,” said coach Mike Holtz.

“Troy is always tough and well-coached. We were looking to come here and compete. I’m real proud of my seniors. We have good boys, they work hard and do the right things on and off the mat. Romeo is a top team. Obviously, we got our tails handed to us, but they earned it.”

Adams has six wrestlers going to the individual regional Saturday at Chippewa Valley.


Romeo 73, Rochester Adams 6

106 pounds: Bryce Holt, R, pinned Chris Spresney, RA, 1:27. 113: Owen Perry, R, dec. Andrew Maynard, RA, 7-5. 120: Owen Youngblood, R, pinned Chad Crenshaw, RA, 1:40. 126: Jace Morgan, RA, pinned Nicolas Miller, R, 1:58. 132: Alex Angelo, R, pinned Ian Sellman, RA, 1:45. 138: Anthony Yuguilima, R, won on void. 144: Jack Zehnder, R, pinned Dominic Beccari, RA, 2:40. 150: Joshua McMillan, R, pinned Kris Dombrowski, RA, 1:59. 157: James Rivers, R, pinned Michael Ackerman, RA, :28. 165: Tyler Pressel, R, maj. dec. Michael Dreon, RA, 11-0. 175: Nathan Miller, R, pinned Andrew Romansksi, RA, 1:06. 190: Brayden Mirjavadi, R, pinned Tanner Buck, RA, 3:34. 215:

Ian Antonelli, R, pinned Haeseon Yoon, RA, 3:35. 285: Iban Contreras, R, pinned Sergei Moveesyan, RA, :16. (Match started at 106.)


Romeo 36, Dakota 30

285 pounds: Anthony Coleman, D, pinned Ibsn Contreras, R, 4:38. 106: Bryce Holt, R, pinned Carl Nihranz, D, 3:05. 113:

Orion Wilson, D, pinned Owen Perry, R, 1:45. 120: Owen Youngblood, R, dec. Ozia Wilson, D, 3-1. 126: Drew Astorga, D, pinned Nicolas Miller, R, 5:03. 132: Caleb Weiand, D, dec. Alex Angelo, R, 7-2.

138: Marcus Donovan, R, dec. Connor Palazzolo, D, 11-10. 144: Jack Zehnder, R, dec. Jake Ferguson, D, 6-2. 150: Joshua McMillan, R, maj. dec. Dominic deMusa, D, 20-9. 157: James Rivers, R, pinned Brayden Miller, D, :51. 165: Tyler Pressel, R, pinned Troy Weiand, D, 5:37. 175: Aiden Criteser, D, dec. Nathan Miller, R, 6-0. 190: Brayden Mirjavadi, R, tech. fall Brady Hamby, D, 18-3 (4:08). 215: Logan Criteser, D, won on void. (Match started at 285.)

Rochester Adams 45, Troy 25

285 pounds: Sergei Movsesyan, RA, pinned Conner Miller, T. 106: Drake Sharp, T, dec. Chris Spresney, RA.

113: Andrew Maynard, RA, dec. Ryan Cerballes, T. 120: George Mayotte, T, dec. Chad Crenshaw, RA. 126: Jace Morgan, RA, pinned Alex Daniol, T. 132: Avi Shah, T, pinned Ian Sellman, RA. 138: Eli Thomas, RA, dec. Landon Shamoun, T. 144: Dom Beccari, RA, pinned Nick Stromberg, T. 150: Kris Dombrowski,

RA, dec. Christian Kress, T. 157: Mike Ackerman, RA, dec. Zephyr Fegley, T. 165: Michael Dreon, RA, pinned Dmytro Lichykaki, T. 175: Philip Lucht, T, dec. Andrew Romanski, RA. 190: Tanner Buck, RA, won on void. 215: N/A(Match started at 285.)

ATTENTION COACHES: Email game reports to sports@macombdail­y.

 ?? PHOTOS BY GEORGE SPITERI — FOR MEDIANEWS GROUP ?? Romeo celebrates after winning a regional for the first time since 2012.
PHOTOS BY GEORGE SPITERI — FOR MEDIANEWS GROUP Romeo celebrates after winning a regional for the first time since 2012.
 ?? ?? Romeo’s Owen Youngblood has control of Chad Crenshaw of Rochester Adams during their match at 120pounds during a Division 1regional final on Wednesday.
Romeo’s Owen Youngblood has control of Chad Crenshaw of Rochester Adams during their match at 120pounds during a Division 1regional final on Wednesday.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from United States