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HIGH SCHOOL REVIEW FOR DECEMBER 4: Perry Meridian, Soddy Daisy win early tests

By Rob Sherrill, W.I.N. High School Editor

The Early Birds: Perry Meridian, Soddy Daisy win early tests

This is the first installment of's daily high school wrestling blog. We'll be taking a look at the news of the day … trying to go around the nation as often as possible.

The major duals and major tournaments will get major play… but so will some wrestlers and events off the beaten path. After all, that's what makes this blog national.

Capital City Classic
Host Indianapolis Perry Meridian High got off to another fast start, outscoring cross-town rival Warren Central High, 286.5-247.5, and crowning seven individual champions in one of the season's traditional openers Nov. 18.

Freshman Jacob Tonte, whose father is Perry Meridian coach Jim Tonte, won the first of the seven crowns, pinning top-seeded Nick Odom of Warren Central in 34 seconds as the Falcons quickly built on the 22-point lead they held entering the finals.

Beech Grove High finished third in the eight-team tournament with 161.5 points.

Perry Meridian advanced 12 to the finals; every weight class but 189 and 215, where they picked up fifth- and third-place finishes, respectively. Last year, the Falcons advanced to the dual-team state tournament with a 25-0 record before falling, 25-23, in the quarterfinals to eventual champion Evansville Mater Dei High. The two powerhouses are largely rebuilding this year, with just five state qualifiers between them, but showed they are well on the way to respectability once again.

The Falcons also got wins from junior Brian Vest (119 pounds), senior Shawn Brown (145), junior Chris Stepp (152), senior Kyle Adams (160), senior Craig Masengale (171) and junior heavyweight Chico Adams. Adams finished eighth in the state tournament a year ago and Vest and Adams were state qualifiers.

Despite missing several wrestlers who were helping Warren Central win the Class 5A state football championship - becoming the first Indiana school to win four straight state football crowns - the Warriors still advanced eight to the finals and got titles from Chris Conte (130), John Norris (135), Grant Berry (140) and Miles Toran (215). Norris finished eighth in state last year and Conte was a state qualifier.

Beech Grove senior Ethan Harris (125), a state champion as a sophomore who slipped to seventh place last year in a 119-pound weight class that included three defending champions, was voted the meet's Outstanding Wrestler after recording two pins and adding a 20-5 technical fall in the finals over Perry Meridian's Glen Fields.

Indianapolis Franklin Central High's D.J. Rackley (112), a state qualifier last year, pinned Cadet National placewinner JImmy Schoettle of Perry Meridian to win that crown and Jeffersonville High's Justin Cunningham won at 189.

Soddy Daisy rally tips Baylor
Dustin Stewart (112), state place-winner Wes Brett (119) and Taylor Witt (125) won the final three matches to give defending Division 1 individual team champion Soddy Daisy High a 29-28 comeback victory over defending Division 2 individual team champion Chattanooga Baylor Schoolbefore a packed house Nov. 30.

With his team trailing 28-19, Stewart beat Bailey Whitaker, 5-1, to make it 28-22 before Brett, fifth in the state meet last year, won and added a crucial bonus point with an 11-0 major decision over Trey Stavrum. Witt, a sophomore and a state qualifier a year ago, gave up the initial takedown to senior state runner-up Trey Downey in the first period, but escaped to make it 2-1 after a period, then took a 4-2 second-period lead with an escape and a takedown. A third-period near-fall sealed a 7-2 Witt victory and Soddy Daisy's first victory over Baylor in four years.

Adam Shuford's technical fall at 130 and senior two-time state champion Ben Johnson's pin at 135 gave Baylor an 11-0 lead that stood until the final match. Soddy-Daisy got pins from senior state champion Tyler Roberson (189) and senior state runner-up Matt Lettner (215) that cut the lead to 21-19. In between, senior state champions Reed Doster (152) and Daniel Waddell (160) won for Baylor, though Doster was held to a 1-0 victory by senior Jarriett Toney, third in state last year.

Also scoring major decisions were Soddy Daisy senior Jason McCroskey (140), third in state last year, and Baylor senior McLain Still, the returning state heavyweight runner-up.

W.I.N. Magazine provides updated coverage of high school wrestling all season long on its expanded website in its JRC High School News section:
W.I.N. Magazine's JRC High School News

To subscribe to W.I.N. magazine,visit:
Online W.I.N. Magazine subscription page

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