Niles dominant in winning Division 2 regional title

Published 9:54 am Sunday, February 17, 2019

EDWARDSBURG — Total domination is the only way to describe what the No. 7-ranked Niles wrestling team did to the field at the Division 2 team regional at Edwardsburg Thursday night.

The Vikings, seeking their fifth regional championship in the last seven years, won 23 out of 28 matches, including 14 by pin, in routing the host Eddies 58-14 in the semifinals and Battle Creek Harper Creek 61-9 in the championship match.

““This was good for our juniors and seniors,” said Niles coach Todd Hesson. “The last time we went a couple of years ago they were freshmen and sophomores. They were a part of it, but they weren’t leading the way. This time the focus is on them. They’ve done a great job and I’m happy for them.”

Niles had seven pins in the semifinals against Edwardsburg. Picking up the pins were Robert Buckland (152), Cade Best (171), Brian Soto (285), Carson Landon (119), Ryan Franco (125), Bryce Brust (130) and Connor Tibbitts (140).

It did not get any better for Harper Creek in the finals.

Battle Creek needed a monumental comeback in the semifinals against Mattawan to even advance.

Harper Creek trailed the Wildcats 33-0 before score 42 unanswered points to pull out the 42-36 victory.

Ironically, Harper Creek also trailed 33-0 to the Vikings. But there would be no such comeback as Niles finished with seven pins in the title match. Earning those six-point victories were Conner Pickens (103), Cole Simpson (160), Ken Krempetz (215), Brian Soto (285), Bryce Brust (130), Kade Wagley (145) and Robert Buckland (152).

Niles must now wait to see where they will be seeded for the Division 2 quarterfinals at Wings Stadium in Kalamazoo on Friday. The Vikings will wrestle at 6:45 p.m. The winner advances to the semifinals at noon on Saturday.



At Edwardsburg



103: Conner Pickens (N) p. Bryce Trimm 2:56; 112: Jamison Zimmerman (N) d. Marvin Crespo 14-9; 119: Greylon Dishman (B) p. Carson Landon 1:45; 125: Ryan Franco (N) d. Chandler Froehlich 5-0; 130: Bryce Brust (N) p. Brian Castellanos 1:28; 135: Javond Ball (N) m.d. over Jordan Stasa 16-6; 140: Matthew Martinez (B) d. Skyler Means 7-3; 145: Kade Wagley (N) p. Justin Stasa 3:26; 152: Robert Buckland (N) p. Trevor Brooks :40; 160: Cole Simpson (N) p. Jake Pancoft 1:21; 171: Cade Best (N) d. Jade Mainstone 10-6; 189: Dawson Bruckner (N) d. Joe Edmonds, injury default; 215: Ken Krempetz (N) p. Gavin Morrison 1:07; 285: Brian Soto (N) p. Jackson Bradley :21




103: Conner Pickens (N) wins by forfeit; 112: Jamison Zimmerman (N) m.d. over Nicholas Eaton 10-2; 119: Carson Landon (N) p. Earl Shaw 3:24; 125: Ryan Franco (N) p. Kaden Parsons 2:18; 130: Bryce Brust (N) p. Austin Peacock 1:34; 135: Jackson Hoover (E) t.f. over Javond Ball 19-4; 140: Connor Tibbitts (N) p. Jacob Reece :53; 145: Michael Tatay (E) p. Garrett Clendenem 2:20; 152: Robert Buckland (N) p. Brayden Burgess 1:37; 160: Caden Reece (E) d. Cole Simpson 7-4; 171: Cade Best (N) 1:55; 189: Dawson Bruckner (N) d. Dillon Hurst 11-4; 215: Tysen Custard (N) d. Drew Bidwell 3-1; 285: Brian Soto (N) p. Ethan Griffen 1:14

Varsity records: Niles 18-4, Edwardsburg 17-8