How area wrestlers fared on Thursday at the state championships:
Nick Mancini (103) — lost to Jacon Spearman (Lancaster) 9-1; pinned Austin Daly (Lakota East), 0:43.
John Dillon (119) — dec. Josh Parrett (Kettering Fairmont) by technical fall, 15-0.
Nico Graziani (152) — pinned Devan Price (Elyria), 1:14.
Johnny McComas (125) — pinned Andrew Macioce (Circleville Logan Elm), 3:15.
Ron Foster (130) — lost to Brent Fickel (Parma Padua), 4:36; lost to David Day (Germantown Valley View) 8-4.
Steven Swartz (145) — lost to John Novak (Walsh Jesuit) 14-4; lost to Nathan Bowers (Miami Trace), 3:57.
Robby Reed (125) — dec. Chase Leedy (Tol. Cent. Cath.) 2-0.
Alex Benedict (130) — dec. Chris Schulz (Lewistown Indian Lake) 8-1.
Nick Nadeja (152) — dec. Will LeBoeuf (Day. Oakwood) 5-3.
Tyler Lias (171) — lost to Delane King (Hebron Lakewood) 14-2; lost to Brandon Taylor (Gallia Academy) 9-8.
Dustin Graham (112) — lost to Bobby Mason (Parma Padua), 3:38; pinned Tyler Price (Pataskala Licking Hts.), 2:22.
Adam Lamancusa (160) — dec. Justin Hasley (Marietta) 6-1.
Connor Sharp (285) — lost to Trevor Strickland (Clyde) 11-1; pinned J.R. Forsee, 3:47.
Jacob Carpenter (135) — lost to Ian Baker (Shadyside) 6-5; lost to Tim Grys (Collins Western Reserve) 9-4.
Vinnie Pizzuto (119) — won by tech. fall over Max Reeder (Genoa), 16-0.
Tim Wiseman (125) — dec. Adam Ankrom (Carroll Bloom-Carroll) 6-2.
Johnny Matacic (130) — pinned Kenny Price (Archbold), 4:52.
Today’s sessions: 10 a.m. and 6:30 p.m.
By BRAD EMERINE
There were no surprises for Jackson-Milton in the first day of the Division III state wrestling championships on Thursday at Value City Arena.
All three of its senior participants are former state placers, including Johnny Matacic, the defending champion at 130 pounds.
Despite the past experience, coach Dave Tomaino said the first day is usually the most difficult.
“Everyone comes in trying to make weight and that makes everyone a little sluggish,” Tomaino said. “That’s why anything can happen in the first round. Now it’s time to get rehydrated and come back [today] and set the house on fire.”
Vinnie Pizzuto won via tech fall, 16-0 over Genoa’s Max Reeder at 119 pounds, Tim Wiseman defeated Bloom-Carroll’s Adam Ankrom 6-2 at 125 and Matacic pinned Archbold’s Kenny Price in 4:52.
Matacic was a little thrown off just before his match when he was announced as a defending champion.
“As soon as they announced it, everybody just looked at me and I just said, ‘Oh my God,’” he said. “The first match is tough, always, no matter what.”
Matacic also had trouble sleeping Wednesday night, as he tried to make sure he would make weight.
“I was so thirsty all night,” he said. “I just kept thinking of getting something to drink. I woke up and I thought I actually drank something and I’m like, ‘Oh my God.’”
Pizzuto had no troubles once he reached the mat.
“I had no nerves, I just worked my stuff,” Pizzuto said. “My goal is to win it all and just have fun.”
In fact, the trio all has legitimate goals of winning titles.
“The expectations are three state champs,” Tomaino said. “We’re ready for this. All have been here twice before and we all wrestled a schedule from Hades to get ready for this.”
Overall, the 17 area wrestlers went 10-7 in the first round and 13 remained alive for placement entering today’s rounds.
In Div. I, Boardman junior John Dillon rolled as expected in his 119-pound opener. The two-time state placer, who is the projected champion by the Brian Brakeman Report, defeated Josh Parrett of Kettering Fairmont 15-0.
“Dillon just absolutely hammered his opponent,” coach Dom Mancini said. “If he wrestles to his potential, nobody’s beating him down here.”
Dillon’s teammate, junior Nico Graziani, earned a pin in his state debut match against Elyria’s Devan Price at 152 pounds.
“It feels great to conserve a lot of energy and come out and get the first one by pin,” Graziani said.
Boardman’s Nick Mancini lost his opener 9-1 to Lancaster’s Jacob Spearman, but rebounded to pin Lakota East’s Austin Daly in 43 seconds.
“The goal with these three was for Dillon to win, Nico to finish in the top four and for Nick to finish in the top eight,” coach Mancini said. “That would give us a good team score.”
In Div. II, Canfield seniors Robby Reed and Alex Benedict both won openers. Reed held off Toledo Central Catholic’s Chase Leedy 2-0 at 125 and Benedict beat Chris Schulz of Indian Lake 8-1.
“Alex got the first takedown and that was critical,” coach Dean Conley said. “He controlled the second period and kept the pressure on. Robby worked hard and did a great job hanging tough. I’m proud of both of them.”
Girard junior Jacob Carpenter lost his opener, a tough 6-5 decision to Shadyside’s Ian Baker in Div. III. He then lost 9-4 to Tim Grys of Collins Western Reserve.
“Jacob wrestled too cautious and ran out of time [in the first match],” Girard coach Jim Cardiero said. “It wasn’t nerves, really. His opponent did a nice job countering in the third period and things didn’t work out his way.”
Hubbard senior Nick Nadeja beat Dayton Oakwood’s Will LeBoeuf 5-3 at 152, but teammate Tyler Lias lost his 171-pound opener 14-2 to Hebron Lakewood’s Delane King in Div. II. Lias was then eliminated 9-8 by Brandon Taylor of Gallia Academy. Lias finished 32-15.
Adam Lamancusa gave West Branch its lone first-round win, as he beat Marietta’s Justin Hasley 6-1 at 160. Dustin Graham was pinned in 3:38 by Parma Padua’s Bobby Mason at 112 and heavyweight Connor Sharp lost 11-1 to Clyde’s Trevor Strickland.
However, both responded by pinning opponents in the second round.