West Allis advances four wrestlers to state
Kruzick, Ellis, Wanta, Choinski all qualify
The fortunes of the two West Allis wrestling teams varied widely in a WIAA Division 1 sectional meet at Waukesha West on Saturday.
West Allis Hale experienced plenty of satisfaction, sending three wrestlers - Trevor Kruzick, Luke Ellis and Dallas Wanta - through the sectional to this weekend's state individual meet at the Kohl Center in Madison.
West Allis Central, however, endured plenty of heartbreak, advancing just Mark Choinski and seeing the dreams of five other wrestlers end with third-place finishes.
Wanta qualified by winning the title at 220 pounds in the sectional, while Kruzick (120 pounds) and Ellis (126) earned second places to advance to state.
For Central, Choinski captured second at 132 pounds to earn his ticket to the Kohl Center.
Wanta (43-4) opened Saturday's sectional by pinning his first two foes in 29 and 40 seconds, then downing Austin Clement of Kettle Moraine, 12-1, in the title match.
"Dallas has been consistent all season," Hale head coach Randy Ferrell said. "He has put in the off-season work to earn his trip. I know he has big goals and hopes to reach a few of them at the state tournament."
Wanta will take on Nick Noye of Reedsburg (33-13) in his first state match at 3 p.m. today. Possibly awaiting him in the second round, if he wins, would be unbeaten Dakota Johnson of Elkhorn (33-0).
Kruzick (36-7) posted a pin in 3 minutes, 38 seconds, then a 9-2 decision in the second round at sectional. He was blanked 10-0 by champion Kody Azarian of Waterford in the title bout, but rebounded to pin Central's Tere White in 1:49 to claim second place.
"Trevor had two very good matches going into the finals," Ferrell said. "We knew that the final match was tough, but all matches are tough at this point. We then set our sights on winning the wrestleback match. (Kruzick) had beaten (White) two times before."
Kruzick opens against Robert Lee of Kaukauna (41-4).
Ellis (27-13) started his sectional with two decisions, including a 9-4 triumph over Jose Ramos of Central. That proved to be crucial, because after he lost the title match on an 8-3 decision to Joshua Peltier of Brookfield Central, Ellis automatically claimed second place over Ramos because he had beaten him earlier in the day.
"Luke has been on quite a ride all season," Ferrell said. "He has wrestled very well but just hasn't broken through. He has put in the hard work and is now peaking at the right time."
Ellis, however, draws Colin Baine of Wausau West (46-0) in his first state match.
Central's Choinski (19-3) pinned two foes in 1:21 and 1:52 before losing a 3-1 decision to Hank Mattson of Mukwonago in the title match. Choinski then advanced over Richard Shaw of Waukesha West because he had beaten him earlier.
He next meets Gabe Grahek of Marquette (43-0), who beat him in Greater Metro Conference action.
"Mark has been wrestling tough all year," Central head coach Jon Nelson said. "He gets his rematch against Gabe and is ready to finish the season strong, with a goal to place at state."
Central racks up thirds
Finishing third for Central at the sectional - and missing state qualifying by one spot - were White at 120 pounds (35-8), Ramos at 126 (28-12), Alan Silva at 138 (38-5), Dylan Diebitz at 160 (40-2) and Jason Alvarez at 170 (18-14).
White lost the second-place wrestleback to Kruzick, while Ramos was eliminated because of his loss to Ellis. Silva lost in the semifinals to Tommy Kolasinski of Mukwonago, who went on to take second place, and Alvarez fell short ultimately because of a semifinal loss to Whitnall's Zach Barnhart.
The toughest fate belonged to Diebitz, who dropped a 5-4 decision to Cody Nannemann of Waterford in the semifinals, then saw Nanneman advance over him for second place.
"(Diebitz) was up 4-0 over Nannemann but gave up a reversal in the second," Nelson said. "Going into the third down 4-2, Nannemann reversed Dylan, so Dylan was down 5-4 and could not escape to bring it to overtime."
Taking third for Hale were Andrew Buelow at 182 (25-11) and Ryan Vankerkvoorde at heavyweight (37-10).
Claiming fourth were Tong Vang of Central at 195, Taylor Tomczak of Hale at 160 and Logan Mocco of Hale at 170.
Losing the first match were Central's Tyus White (106), Ryan Ulbrich (145), Chris Helm (152) and heavyweight Robert Torres and Hale's Jon Baltz (106), Josh Petrovich (138) and Jake Gruichich (152).
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