Valley heavyweights to meet in state final
COLUMBUS West Branch heavyweight Ian Sharp says his size is “old news.”
If that’s the case, why hasn’t anybody figured out how to score on him?
Sharp hasn’t allowed a single point in the tournament as he heads into today’s finals.
“I’m flustered,” Sharp said. “I didn’t think I’d make it to the finals like this.”
Some of the attempts to score on the 6-foot-6, 280-pound Sharp almost look comical. Take his quarterfinal match against Indian Creek’s Sam Robinson on Friday. Thirty-six seconds into the match, the pair found themselves chest-to-chest standing straight up. Sharp began to lean forward, Robinson’s legs buckled and he went splat on his back. Sharp got the pin.
He’ll see a familiar face in the finals: Canfield’s Mason Giordano. While Sharp has defeated him four times in his career, that development brings him no peace. All of their matches have been low-scoring affairs. Their most recent meeting — the district final in Alliance — saw Sharp take a 1-0 victory.
“We’re both very familiar with each other and we practically can’t score on each other,” Sharp said.
Giordano stands 6-foot-2 and weighs around 225. Despite the size disadvantage, he offers a unique threat.
“I’ll use my athleticism and speed on him and create an angle of attack,” Giordano said.
The two seniors have had very different careers. Sharp is a lifer of the sport and is the third member of his family to be in a state final. Giordano began wrestling in his sophomore season.
“He started wrestling freestyle with us — just jumped in with the guys — and he got a lot better in the first year,” teammate David Crawford said.
The pair are in the same offseason wrestling club as drill partners and travelled to Fargo, N.D., for tournaments together.
“It was one of my worst mistakes to have him as a drill partner,” Sharp said. “He got so much better. He got a lot more aggressive and a lot more slick.”
The two keep it civil off the mat and the two families get along, but that will get put aside today.
“I have a tremendous amount of respect for him, but once we step on that mat, we’re not going t