Sunday, March 25, 2018
In less than a minute, Jack DelGarbino become a state champion.
The Girard heavyweight capped a dominant season on the mat by pinning Steubenville’s Tyler Ely in 38 seconds. The junior was the area’s lone undefeated wrestler with a 49-0 record and became his school’s first wrestling state champion.
DelGarbino began the year as the state’s No. 1 wrestler and on the way to Columbus, he won an Eastern Ohio Wrestling League title. He went top Alliance’s Top Gun tournament — one of the nation’s toughest tournaments — and pinned every opponent he faced. He also was one of two local champions in Austintown Fitch’s Josh Hephner Memorial Classic.
“I knew I could do everything that I’ve done if I worked hard enough for it,” DelGarbino said. “Seeing it come together is amazing.”
DelGarbino wowed the Jerome Schottenstein crowded with a move known as a “Japanese whizzer” in the final. Ely began by charging and pushing DelGarbino. The Indians’ heavyweight responded by pulling on Ely’s right arm and falling backwards, using Ely’s weight and momentum to throw him on his back and get the pin. It was a move DelGarbino hadn’t used in high school wrestling and had he screwed it up, he would have been the one getting pinned.
“I was ready to go the whole match. I was testing him low and testing him high,” DelGarbino said. “He eventually got me in a bad position, but he was pushing me and that opened up the throw.”
There isn’t much of an offseason for DelGarbino, who will compete in several national tournaments before he starts his senior year. He also he was a first-team all Northeast Ohio District selection as a defensive lineman on the Girard football team.
DelGarbino brought home his family’s second state title. His father, J.T., won a state title for Liberty in 1991 before being part of three national champion football teams at Youngstown State.
“There’s the expectation to do it again and he’s pushing me toward that,” DelGarbino said. “He doesn’t want me getting ahead of myself and he doesn’t want me thinking I going to just win it again because I’ve done it once.”
— Brian Dzenis