CUYAHOGA FALLS — When Walsh Jesuit hosted a wrestling tri-meet Thursday, it was showcase of three programs at different points in their respective developments.
For Cuyahoga Valley Christian Academy, this month is about priming for another run at the Division II state meet.
For Stow-Munroe Falls, It’s about trying to improve ahead of the postseason. For Walsh, its about trying to rebuild.
The level each program is at was reflected in the results.
CVCA dominated their Wyoga Lake Road rivals, beating Walsh in a 50-17 win. Despite giving up three forfeits to Stow, the Royals scored a 41-33 win to improve to 2-1 in dual meets.
"There were no surprises tonight," said CVCA coach Dave Bergen. "Now we have to get ready for the GIT [Grizzly Invitational Tournament at Wadswoth] on Saturday. That will be a bone crusher."
Stow rebounded to score a 54-12 win over Walsh. Stow moved to 6-5 in dual meets, while Walsh dropped to 0-2
"It was a tough week because we had no practice on Monday and no practice on Tuesday," said Stow coach Tyler Buckwalter. "We kind of had to roll right into this.
"We’ve got to get better at certain positions," he added. "Overall, I thought we could have wrestled a lot better against CVCA."
CVCA was coming off a sixth-place finish Jan. 19 at the Maumee Bay Classic, which was hosted by Oregon Clay High School. CVCA finished with 114.5 points. Brighton, Michigan, won the team title with 208 points.
CVCA’s Decatur twins each won their respective weight classes at Maumee Bay. Senior Jacob Decatur won the 113-pound title with a 3-2 win in the ultimate tie-breaker over Clay’s Jacob Moon, while Jordan Decatur won a battle of defending state champions, beating Delta’s Cole Mattin 3-1.
The Royals also got a third-place finish from 145-pounder Austin Pownall, as well as eighth-place finishes from 120-pounder Caden Scarbrough and 126-pounder Matt Williams.
All five of CVCA’s placers went 2-0 Thursday, except Pownall.
Jacob Decatur got a pin and a 20-5 technical fall, Scarbrough and Williams each got two pins, while Jordan Decatur got a 17-0 technical fall and a forfeit. CVCA also got two pins from 160-pounder Dalton Duvall and a pin and a forfeit from heavyweight Breslin Walker.
"Austin Pownall was in the two toughest matches of the night and he wrestled well," Bergen said, as Pownall scored a tight 1-0 win over Walsh’s Adam Salek.
"We’re making progress," Bergen added. "I think as a team we have a very high bar."
For Stow, the week began with a trip to the Bill Dies Memorial Tournament Jan. 18 and 19., which saw the Bulldogs finish 20th in the 33-team field with 57.5 points. Brecksville-Broadview Heights won the tournament with 301 points.
The highlight of the tournament was the performance of 145-pounder Dan Patten, who won his weight class.
Patten defeated Thornville Sheridan’s Jordan Barnett 8-4 to win the 145-pound title. Stow also got a sixth-place finish from 120-poudner Vince Randall.
"It was awesome to win it," Patten said. "I can’t recall anyone from Stow being able to win at the Dies."
Patten was involved in two of the best matches of the night Thursday, as he faced two familiar foes. Wrestling at 152 pounds, Patten scored a takedown in the final 20 seconds to beat Pownall 2-1 and then beat Salek — his former drill partner at Walsh — 7-3.
"Pownall is tough," Patten said. "When I’ve wrestled him, It’s always been close. When Adam and I were having wrestle-offs at Walsh, I think he had a 6-5 lead. I was happy to even up the series."
Stow’s only other double winner on the night was 195-pounder Darrell Rakic, who pinned CVCA’s Kyle Miller in 1:15 and got a forfeit vs. Walsh.
It was a long night for the Warriors, as Walsh managed only three victories in wrestled bouts Thursday.
Two of those from from 106-pounder Jack Schmidt, who scored an 18-3 technical fall over CVCA’s Jackson Sullivan and a 10-3 decision over Stow’s Luke Marconi.
Walsh’s other win came on a tight 5-4 decision from 152-pounder David Thompson over Stow’s Jacob Bukowski.
Walsh Jesuit coach Tommy Milkovich noted he was two starters, putting his team at a big experience disadvantage.
"I only had two of my good wrestlers out there tonight," Milkovichsaid. "The rest of my guys are all young. CVCA had good kids up and down the lineup. I’ve got first-year wrestler after first-year wrestler.
"It’s going to take time to build it back up," he added.