Christian Brothers and Baylor have developed quite a rivalry on the wrestling mat in recent years as it seems like it’s always a battle between these two when it comes to state competition.
That was surely the case at the Chattanooga Trade & Convention Center Thursday as Baylor won its third-straight Division II Traditional state title.
Both of these teams qualified 13 of 14 individuals and both went home with a dozen medalists. Both teams had seven in the championship finals and five in the consolation rounds, but only until that last round did Baylor put a little distance between themselves and the Purple Wave.
The Red Raiders had a seven point lead after the quarterfinal round while it was just a five-point spread going into the medal rounds.
But that’s where Baylor shifted into another gear and pulled away, winning with a total of 216.5 points and five champions while Christian Brothers finished second with 187.5 points and just two champions.
Baylor and Christian Brothers had three head-to-head matches in the championship round and Baylor won all three as the Purple Wave simply didn’t have an answer.
Baylor coach Rex Kendle was somewhat emotional after the Red Raiders final match where former two-time state champ Jackson Bond lost a heartbreaking sudden death overtime decision to McCallie’s Braman when the McCallie senior escaped at the very end for a 3-2 decision.
It was a match that could have gone either way and there were some questionable calls by the referee on both sides, but it was a classic match between two really good kids who are also outstanding wrestlers. Thursday’s win gives Braman a 2-1 edge for the season.
“It’s hard for me to talk right now,” Kendle said while trying to somehow digest Bond’s last-second loss.
“I can’t tell you how proud I am of these guys as they’ve worked extremely hard through some really trying circumstances, but I’m especially proud of Kade Hartline. He’s moved around to different weights in the last couple of years, doing everything he could to help the team win, but he’s made huge sacrifices along the way and they all paid off tonight.
“I’ll hurt a lot over that 126-pound match, but I hope we never have to battle Covid again as that has taken the fun out of our sport. We knew that Christian Brothers was in position to win a lot of medals, so we couldn’t take anything for granted with them.
“But winning feels great and losing hurts, but that’s just the way it is in wrestling,” Kendle added.
Christian Brothers coach Derek Harrison echoed similar feelings.
“We qualified 13, had 12 win medals and put seven in the finals with two champs. We had a pretty good day, but Baylor is extremely talented and they always seem to bring out the best in our team. We were just excited to be able to compete with them today.
“It seems like we’ve faced one challenge after another, first with the Covid issues and then the worst snow storm in Memphis the last 30 years interrupted our training for about a week, but I’m really proud of our kids as they all battled today,” Harrison nodded.
McCallie coach Jake Yost was happy to have all seven of his qualifiers earn medals, including three with championships.
“Overall I felt like we fought hard and did pretty well with the guys we brought. We had three champs and two who finished second among our seven medalists,” he started.
“That was a heart-breaking loss for Gavin Cagle at 160, but I was equally as proud of Jack Braman for pulling that match out against the Bond kid. It was so much fun to watch two tremendous competitors and two really great kids battle it out. That gives Jack a 2-1 edge, but it was nice to win the most important match of the season,” Yost added.
While Whitworth was the Outstanding Wrestler, that 126-pound final was an easy choice for Best Match after Braman eeked out the 3-2 decision at the very end of the overtime periods.
While Baylor had five champs and two seconds in Bond at 126 and Micah Tisdale at 138, the Red Raiders also got thirds from Judson Jarrett at 120 and Omaury Alvarez at 170 while Anthony Mannella was fourth at 160. Heath Snodgrass and Matthew Smith both finished fifth at 220 and 285, respectively.
Boyd Buchanan’s Conor Payne was second at 132 while Tate Williams claimed third at 113 and teammate Kaiden Bates sixth at 152.
Notre Dame had four medalists, including Bob Deitch (113) and Luke Braman (126) with fourths, Joshua Deitch and Francisco Palacios fifth at 120 and 138, respectively.
Chattanooga Christian’s Ben Bumgarner claimed sixth at 170.
While Baylor and Christian Brothers were head-and-shoulders ahead of everyone else, Father Ryan finished strong in the consolation rounds to take third with 130 points while McCallie was fourth with 127 and Lakeway Christian fifth with 96.
Baylor had five champions, including Kade Hartline at 106, Nick Corday at 113, Garrison Dendy at 145, Gunnar Garriques at 182 and David Harper at 195. McCallie’s three winners included Jack Braman at 126, Emory Taylor at 152 and Alex Whitworth at 170.
The two champs for Christian Brothers were Dayne Dalrymple at 132 and Aidan Bowers at 160 while Lakeway Christian’s two winners included Keveyon Roller at 120 and Brayden Ivy at 138 while MBA’s Gabe Fisher was victorious at 220 and Father Ryan’s Parker Petersen the winner at 285.
Seven of those winners had been state champs before, including Whitaker being a five-time winner and earning Outstanding Wrestler honors for the third straight year. Taylor now has four state titles while Dendy has three. Dalrymple, Braman and Corday are now two-time winners.
SALE CREEK'S KATIE McNABB finished as the runner-up in the 170-pound weight class for girls after advancing to the finals with two first-period pins.
LEGEND AND FINAL TEAM SCORES: 1. Baylor (Bay) 216.5; 2. Christian Brothers (CB) 187.5; 3. Father Ryan (FR) 130; 4. McCallie (McC) 127; 5. Lakeway Christian (LC) 96; 6. Memphis University School (MUS) 69.5; 7. Montgomery Bell Academy (MBA) 53; 8. Christian Academy of Knoxville (CAK) 41.5; 9. Notre Dame (ND) 41; 10. Boyd Buchanan (BB) 39; 19. Chattanooga Christian (CCS) 5.
106 – Kade Hartline (Bay) dec. Alex Ropski (CB), 7-1;
113 – Nick Corday (Bay) major dec. Jay Eversole (LC), 13-2;
120 – Keveyon Roller (LC) won by technical fall over Wills Bronson (CB), 5:20;
126 – Jack Braman (McC) dec. Jackson Bond (Bay), 3-2 in sudden death overtime;
132 – Dayne Dalrymple (CB) major dec. Conor Payne (BB), 8-0;
138 – Brayden Ivy (LC) won by technical fall over Micah Tisdale (Bay), 4:40;
145 – Garrison Dendy (Bay) pinned Ben Stigamier (FR), 3:03;
152 – Emory Taylor (McC) dec. Evan Anthony (CB), 7-5;
160 – Aiden Bowers (CB) dec. Gavin Cagle (McC), 3-1 in overtime;
170 – Alex Whitworth (McC) won by technical fall over Jack Revere (Battleground Academy), 5:36;
182 – Gunnar Garriques (Bay) dec. Gervacio Gonzalez (CB), 7-1;
195 – David Harper (Bay) pinned Theo Sewell (CB), 1:11;
220 – Gabe Fisher (MBA) pinned Brik Boruff (Webb), 5:47;
285 – Parker Petersen (FR) pinned Wylie McDonald (McC), :27.
CONSOLATION FINALS FOR THIRD PLACE
106 – Joseph Calvin (FR) pinned Andrew Justice (CAK), 2:52;
113 – Tate Williams (BB) dec. Bob Deitch (ND), 3-0;
120 – Judson Jarrett (Bay) major dec. Matt Oberlander (FR), 12-0;
126 – Calvin Eason (FR) major dec. Luke Braman (ND), 18-6;
132 – Tim Charpenter (LC) dec. Parker Sapp (CAK), 4-2;
138 – Thomas Wesnofske (FR) major dec. Hart Gowen (MUS), 10-2;
145 – Sam Lee (CB) pinned Nick Krauss (Grace Christian), 2:39;
152 – Ian McGehee (MUS) dec. Logan Spell (Brentwood Academy), 6-5;
160 – Christian Howard (MUS) dec. Anthony Mannella (Bay), 7-5;
170 – Omaury Alvarez (Bay) major dec. Foster Salvaggio (CB), 13-5;
182 – Torrance Bostick (MUS) pinned Thatcher Frankfather (Franklin Road Academy), 1:41;
195 – Luke Estes (LC) dec. Ethan Fogle (CAK), 4-3;
220 – Connor Billingsley (CB) dec. Carson Gentle (McC), 5-0;
285 – Max Fisher (MBA) dec. Dion Stutts (MUS), 4-0.
CONSOLATION FINAL FOR FIFTH PLACE
106 – Cole Gumlick (LC) dec. Henry Ribble (MBA), 1-0;
113 – Joseph Jones (FR) won by technical fall over Brycen Jones (Goodpasture), 4:00;
120 – Joshua Deitch (ND) pinned William Donnelly (Brentwood Academy), 2:34;
126 – Chase Eakes (Friendship Christian) dec. Drake Bowers (CB), 7-0;
132 – Tyson Wolcott (Friendship Christian) dec. Carson Smith (Brentwood Academy), 7-3;
138 – Francisco Palacios (ND) dec. Nicholas Commons (CB), 7-3;
145 – Hawk Dunn (CAK) dec. Adam Garfinkel (MBA), 4-1;
152 – Andrew Laden (FR) dec. Kaiden Bates (BB), 7-4;
160 – Joey Terry (FR) dec. Matthew Hyde (MBA), 8-2’
170 – William Rodgers (FR) dec. Ben Bumgarner (CCS), 5-2;
182 – Miller Barnett (Battle Ground Academy) pinned Frankie Zahrobsky (McC), :55;
195 – Peyton Woodard (Nashville Christian) pinned Iman Lohrasbi (Battle Ground Academy), 3:11;
220 – Heath Snodgrass (Bay) pinned Richmond Flowers (Nashville Christian), 1:59;
285 – Matthew Smith (Bay) pinned Daniel Duncan (Nashville Christian), 4:18.
(Email John Hunt at firstname.lastname@example.org)