INDEPENDENCE– Lance Evans and Louis Gnida won their respective weight classes at the WaMaC wrestling tournament over the weekend, helping the Spartans to a sixth-place finish.
Heavyweight Logan Linderbaum finished third Saturday at Independence
Solon finished sixth in the 15-team tournament with 133.5 team points, sandwiched between Central DeWitt and Mount Vernon. Independence and West Delaware tied for the first place team title with 218.5 points.
“It is our first time having two champions in the WaMaC,” said head coach Brooks McLaren. “It is difficult to earn a championship so having two is great for our program moving forward.”
Gnida, wrestling at 120 pounds, won by technical fall in his quarterfinal match, and won by decision in his semifinal and final matches.
Evans at 220 pounds continued his undefeated season by pinning all three of his opponents.
Linderbaum fell to West Delaware’s Richard Heveron in a tie-breaker semifinal, but then rebounded for a tough 3-2 decision in the third place match.
“With Logan placing third, I think he will have additional motivation going into sectionals as he didn’t get what he wanted at conference,” McLaren said. “The WaMaC is a tough tournament. Our kids won the matches they were supposed to win but we didn’t have any big upsets. In a tournament like this and at this time of year you want to see some kids step up, beat some kids seeded higher than them to get some additional confidence moving into the postseason. We did avenge some losses from earlier in the year, which is a positive. Now is the time of the year to make a name for yourself, we need to make the most of our opportunities.”
Kade Steuhm (132 pounds) and Danny Whitmore (182) placed fifth for the Spartans, while Cole Fritz (138) and Max Turkal (195) both placed sixth.
Graeson Dall (145) was seventh and Bailey Redlinger (113) eighth to complete the Solon scoring.
“Kade Steuhm had a solid day winning three matches (two pins) improving his record to 18-2 moving into sectionals,” McLaren noted. “We are looking for Kade to turn some heads this postseason. Graeson Dall had a strong freshman performance ending the day with a pin.”