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Handing out awards for wrestlers

Posted Saturday, March 06, 2010 by Paul Costanzo

Costanzo: Handing out awards for wrestlers


March 6, 2010

It's already been quite a year for area wrestling, and there's still one day to go.

There was a team state championship, 26 individual state qualifiers and seven individual semifinalists. That's pretty amazing considering we only have 11 schools in our wrestling coverage area.

So today, I'd like to honor some of the best in the area with some awards. This has nothing to do with the all-area team, which will come out in about two weeks, or the wrestler or coach of the year.

These are just some fun awards to celebrate a fun season.


  • Match of the Year: I'm certain there were a ton of great matches that I'll be missing here, but for me, the most enteraining match I watched all season was Yale's Mike Tyranski and Capac's Tom Bolday going at it at the individual district. Tyranski won that battle with a last-second takedown, which was a fitting climax to a great match. It was amazing to watch two wrestlers that big move that well for six minutes. There were some great scrambles throughout, and just generally some very good wrestling.


    Honorable mention: Casey Martin of Richmond holding off a pin attempt by Dundee's Chris Rau to clinch Richmond's state title; Richmond's Brian Henke scoring a last-second takedown against Dundee's Brandon Desbrough to force overtime -- in a match Henke eventually won -- also at the state finals. (I could probably list all the matches from that dual, really.)


  • Breakout Star: This is an award for an underclassmen that burst onto the scene this year, and there were a lot of kids that broke through this year all over the area. But nobody put himself on the map more than Richmond's Stephen Ireland. He was a state qualifier last season, but this year took his game to another level. He was undefeated going into the state finals, and was one of the favorites to win a state title at 103 in Division 3. Only a sophomore, Ireland should be a force for two more years.


    Honorable mention: Adrian Morang, Richmond; Sean Lemerise, Memphis.


  • Most Improved Wrestler: After the district tournament, Richmond's Dakota Boldrey essentially told me he wasn't any good last year. This year, however, he was a regional champion and helped to solidify the top of Richmond's lineup. He still has one more year improve.


    Honorable mention: Morang; Chad Hughes, Port Huron Northern; Drew Saunders, Marysville.


  • Wrestler to watch for: There are plenty of great wrestlers returning next year -- Brian Henke, Justin Russo, Austin Pickering, etc., etc. -- but one that's under the radar and could make some noise next year is Northern's Kevin Nguyen. He showed a lot of promise this year, and should make big strides with another year under Ken Meinhardt.


    Honorable mention: Nate Henke, Richmond; Cody Dobson, Croswell-Lexington.




  • Contact Paul Costanzo at (810) 989-6251 or pcostanzo@gannett.com. View Costanzo's blog at www.thetimesherald.com/sports.
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