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107 Schools Have Qualifiers at 2010 State Wrestling Tournament

A field of 456 wrestlers from 107 of the 132 schools that entered the Illinois Elementary School Association (IESA) state wrestling series will compete this weekend in the 31st annual Boys State Final Wrestling Tournament at the Convocation Center on the campus of Northern Illinois University.

There will be a total of 703 bouts over the two days with competition in 19 weight classes. The 107 schools with at least one wrestler advancing to the State Tournament represents 81 percent of the total number of schools that entered the state series. It is the fifth time in IESA history that the state final wrestling field included 100 or more schools. In 2006, there were 100 schools with qualifiers, in 2007 there were 106 represented at the State Tournament. Wrestlers from 109 schools in 2008 competed. In 2009, 105 schools were represented.

Breakdown of the competitors by grade in school is: 9 fifth graders, 51 sixth graders, 106 seventh graders and 290 eighth graders.

Doors open at 2:30 p.m. Friday and bouts will begin on eight mats at 3:30.

The preliminary round and first round bouts will be conducted Friday. Doors open at 8:00 a.m. Saturday and wrestling resumes at 9:00. Semifinals are set to begin Saturday afternoon at approximately 12:30 p.m. Championship bouts are scheduled to begin at 5:00 p.m. Championship bouts will be conducted simultaneously on two mats in the following tandems: 112-119; 105-126; 100-135; 95-145; 90-155; 85-167; 80-185; 75-215; 70-275; 65.

Single-day tickets are priced at $10.00 each day for fans in high school and adults. Price of single-day tickets for senior citizens (age 62 and above) and students in grades K-8 is $5.00 each. Children below kindergarten are admitted free.

Visit for additional information regarding complete pairings by weight class, team rosters, the 2010 Grand Marshals and the sectional place winners by site. Results from the state tournament will be posted continuously throughout the weekend.

Grand Marshals are Joe Spiezio of Braidwood, long-time athletic director, assistant principal at Reed-Custer Middle School, and a former president of the IESA Board of Directors; Basil Bakakos, former wrestling coach at Johnsburg JHS; and Bill Honeycutt, veteran wrestling official.

Three individual champions from last year return. Corey Jurzak of Coal City won as a sixth grader in 2009 at 65 pounds and comes into the state tournament as the 80-pound champion in the Normal Kingsley Sectional. Cooper Collings of Mattoon won as a seventh grader in 2009 at 70 pounds and comes into the state tournament as the 75-pound champion in the Stanford Olympia Sectional. Joe Nelson of New Lenox Liberty won as a seventh grader at 80 pounds last year and comes into the state tournament as the 105-pound champion in the Bolingbrook Brooks Sectional. Seth Newkirk of Litchfield won the 75 pound title in 2008 and, after an injury in 2009 held him out, is in the 90 pound field this year and was the Chatham Glenwood Sectional winner.

Mahomet-Seymour is the all-time leading producer of individual state champions with 42. Sandwich is next at 25 followed by Bloomington JHS at 23. They are the only schools in IESA wrestling history to have 20 or more individual champions. These schools round out the top nine in producing individual champions: Coal City 18, Fox Lake Stanton 18, DeKalb Huntley 17, Channahon 15, New Lenox Oster-Oakview 15 and Shorewood Troy 14.

Mahomet-Seymour also leads in team titles with 6, the last coming in 2009 with 152 points. Mahomet-Seymour won its other team titles in 1984-92-93-94-96. Tied for second in team titles are DeKalb Huntley and New Lenox Martino with four each. DeKalb Huntley last won in 2004 and New Lenox Martino last won in 2002.

Bloomington JHS has been the team to beat in recent years. The Knights are after their fourth team championship in the last six years. After finishing second in 2002 and 2004, Bloomington JHS won in 2005 with 182.5 points, in 2007 with 225.5 points and in 2008 with 197 points. In the past 10 years, Mahomet-Seymour has taken home 6 trophies (1st-4th), Bloomington JHS 6 and New Lenox Liberty 4.

Homer Glen Homer qualified the most wrestlers for the state tournament with 12, including five sectional champions. The sectional champions are sixth grader Chase Peters at 80, eighth grader Austin Strzelczyk at 85, eighth grader Dan Radcliffe at 95, seventh grader George Tragos at 100 and eighth grader Collin Farley at 112.

Darien Eisenhower is second in total qualifiers with 11 and seven of them earned sectional titles in the rugged Barrington Sectional. The sectional champions for the Generals are Ahmir Hooks at 65, Nick Perisin at 80, Joe Nugent at 95, Rob Regan at 100, Justin Maslow at 119, Ameer Diab at 135 and Alec Portillo at 275. Hooks is a sixth grader while Nugent and Regan are seventh graders.

Bloomington JHS has 10 state tournament qualifiers and eight of them were sectional champions. They are Kevin Johnson at 65, Steven Bradford at 90, Bradd Wyatt at 95, Derrick Watts at 100, Kyonn Keith at 105, Steven Bishop at 112, Austin Weltha at 126 and Damian Watts at 135. All are eighth graders except Johnson and Damian Watts, both seventh graders.

Green Oaks Oak Grove has 10 state tournament qualifiers and two of them were sectional champions. Both eighth graders, the sectional champions were Kayne MacCallum at 145 and Tim Grote at 185.

The third school with 10 state tournament qualifiers is perennial power Sandwich. The Braves has two sectional champions at the DeKalb Sectional. They were sixth grader Kyle Bronski at 70 and eighth grader Bailey Watros at 112.

A trio of schools also produced nine state tournament qualifiers. They are Antioch, Cahokia Wirth and Vernon Hills Hawthorn North. Antioch had five sectional champions: Tristin Evea at 65, Tyler Stephens at 105, Gunnar Skoog at 112, Lowden Strohman at 126 and Dalton Garland at 167. Cahokia Wirth has four sectional champions: Dameon Adams at 80, Gerald Hardin at 155, Herman Gomilla at 167 and Shelton Pippen at 185. Vernon Hills Hawthorn North had four sectional champions: Peter VanderBloomer at 80, Juan Jahen at 90, Matt Hutchison at 100 and Felipe Vazquez at 105. Hutchison was 2nd at 95 pounds in 2009.

Eight schools have eight state final qualifiers each. They are (with sectional champions in parenthesis): DeKalb Clinton Rosette (5), Glen Ellyn Hadley (3), Joy Mercer County (3), perennial power Mahomet-Seymour (4), McHenry Parkland (1), Mundelein Carl Sandburg (3), Normal Parkside (3) and Shorewood Troy (3). Two of the three Shorewood Troy sectional champions wrestled in title bouts in 2009. Cody Grosse was second at 65 pounds last year and is at 75 pounds this year. Jayvin Bandy was second at 112 pounds last year, losing 4-2 in overtime, and is at 135 pounds this year.

The four schools with seven state tournament qualifiers each -- Lake Zurich North, Lake Zurich South, Monticello and Prospect Heights MacArthur -- all have one sectional champion.

Mattoon qualified five wrestlers and four of them were sectional champions. They are Cooper Collings at 75, Mitchel Godden at 145, Nicholas Polston at 155 and Blake Hampton at 185.

The Convocation Center is hosting the IESA State Wrestling Tournament for the seventh straight year. The NIU campus is site of the event for the 11th straight year.

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