Indian wrestlers head to Ford Field

Vince Perez drives his opponent from Melvindale into the mat during regionals last week. Photo by Kerry Hamilton Smith.

The Tecumseh Wrestling Team will be making its third straight appearance as one of the Division 2 elite eight teams to compete at the quarterfinals in Kalamazoo on Friday. Six individuals will head to Ford Field to compete for the individual state championship title.

The team made it to the quarterfinals after they won their region at home on Wednesday, Feb. 13. They beat New Boston Huron in a thrilling 36-33, last second victory in the semifinals of the regional meet, then went on to beat Melvindale in the finals, 59-15.

Against New Boston the team jumped to a 30-0 lead with a pin by Jeremiah Torres at 103, Chandler Elizardo received a void at 112, Josh Hilton pinned at 119, Vince Perez took another void at 125, and Kellen Patton pinned his opponent at 130.

New Boston started their comeback with Tecumseh’s Victor Coscarelli, Nick Tincher, and Olen Boatright each suffering losses, bringing the score to 30-10.

Brenden Dyer pinned his opponent, extending the Indians’ lead to 36-10. The Chiefs then went on a 17-0 run with two pins and a technical fall. Clayton Boatright dropped a decision, making it 30-36. The final match was at 285 with New Boston needing a six-point pin to tie the meet and ultimately give Huron the victory by tiebreaker criteria. While he didn’t win his bout, Dominic Flores showed extraordinary effort; he was millimeters from a pin, but battled to keep his shoulders off the mat. With that effort, New Boston only took three points and Tecumseh moved into the finals.

The finals were not as dramatic, as the Indians jumped out to a big lead with two pins by Patton and Hilton and a major decision by Perez, making the score 16-0. Tecumseh then won four out of the next five matches, making the score 37-3. The Indians voided at 160 making the score 37-9. Austin Davis then sealed the regional title with a pin, making the score 43-3. The Tribe won three of the next four, making the final score 59-15.

On Saturday, Feb. 16, the Indians qualified six wrestlers for the individual state finals at Ford Field. Hilton (112), Perez (119), and Clayton Boatright (189) were all champions. Patton (125) and Coscarelli (130) both took second. Lucas Petty also took fourth at 135.

The team will compete Friday, Feb. 22 at 6:45 p.m. at Wings Events Center in Kalamazoo for the state wrestling finals.

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