Local wrestlers close out 2018 on a winning note

Waterford’s Haden Offenberger won the 152-pound weight class at the Skyline Invitational in Gallipolis. He pinned Thurgood Marshall’s Xodus Thompson in the opening period of the finals match. Courtesy photo

Warren High’s Peyten Kellar and Trent Sayre each was a champion at last Saturday’s 25th annual Americas Best Value Inn Wrestling Tournament at St. Clairsville High.

And, further south on the same day, at the Skyline Invitational at Gallia Academy, Waterford standout Haden Offenberger was the lone local grappler to claim an individual title.

The Warrior duo helped the royal blue and white grapplers finish with 264 points, one behind second-place Shenandoah High and Martins Ferry. The host St. C Red Devils repeated as tourney team champion with a winning total of 385.5.

St. Clairsville’s Koen Kish was voted the Delande Brothers Most Outstanding Wrestler by tournament coaches. He won all eight of his 120-pound matches by first-period pins.

Seventeen schools competed in the two-day event.

“It’s a good, solid tournament,” said Warren head coach Jim Rhodes.

Ohio Division II top-ranked Kellar was first in the 126-pound weight division, while Sayre stood atop the podium in the 152 weight class.

“Both went 9-0,” Rhodes said.

Warren 113-pounder Cole Coleman was runner-up at 8-1 after dropping a two-point decision in the final to Worthington Kilbourne’s Spencer Parker-Gordon.

Also placing for the Warriors were Ben Goedel (138 pounds), Dylan Anderson (195), and Tristan Duffey (145).

“Both Ben and Dylan were fourth,” Rhodes said. “And Tristan ended up in the toughest pool in a three-way tie. He went 8-1 and finished fifth on tie-breaking criteria.”

St. C’s Austin DaRe was first and Wellsville’s Justin Sarge second at 145.

“The three best 145s were in the same pool,” Rhodes said. “He (Duffey) beat the two that wrestled for third and fourth. Just the way it.fell out. He ended up on the short end of the stick.”

Rhodes said that Warren was without the services of state qualifier Brady Oberdier (160) and Liam Kellar (152).

Warren is scheduled to wrestle at the Licking Valley Invitational at 10 a.m. Saturday.

“Wrestling is a such great sport,” Rhodes said. “You have six minutes. Period. No timeouts, No halftime. No substitutions, and no time to catch your breath between quarters. Just six minutes. It’s one on one to get your job done.

“When it’s over, win or lose, it’s all on you. It teaches so many life lessons, and to see these young kids work so hard, give up so much, it makes it all worthwhile.”

Over at Gallia Academy, Offenberger pinned Xodus Thompson of Thurgood Marshall in the opening period of the finals match to finish first.

“Haden just got medically cleared Friday morning (Dec. 28),” said Waterford boss Greg Offenberger. “He bumped up to 152 and won the weight class.”

Team-wise, the Wildcats were 16th in a field of 26 other schools, including Belpre High and Marietta High, which finished 20th and 24th, respectively. Athens High won the tourney with 267.5 points.

“We had some guys missing from the lineup and only had six compete,” Coach Offenberger said.

The Cats’ mat roster also included Tyson Moore (113), David Simpson (132), Ethan Root (160), Nate Hutchins (182), Colin Jackson (220), and Haydon Reynolds (285).

Belpre had two Skyline placers in Andrew Maranda (113, 4th) and Dakota Ross (285, 3rd).

Marietta had two grapplers in the competition in Maclane Roe (106) and Ethan Prather (285).

Waterford is slated to compete in the Steve Yinger Memorial Invitational at Nelsonville York at 9:30 a.m. Saturday.