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Carroll sectional

Chargers win title, put 14 wrestlers in regional

Samuel Hoffman | The Journal Gazette
Carroll’s Riley Lefever pinned North Side’s Anthony Linnear to win the 170-pound title at the Carroll Wrestling Sectional on Saturday.

– The championship match with the buildup was kind of a letdown Saturday.

Carroll senior Riley Lefever made quick work of North Side’s Anthony Linnear at 170 pounds in a matchup that got plenty of buzz at the Carroll Wrestling Sectional. But Lefever built a 3-0 lead on Linnear in the second period before ending the suspense with a pin in 3:03.

“It was about staying in good position, pushing the pace and making him make the mistakes,” Lefever said. “He wasn’t really doing anything so I was starting to move him more and getting him out of position and firing my shots off more and work from there. I just want to keep wrestling right now. It is a good start and keeping the momentum going all the way.”

Lefever improved to 36-0, while Linnear dropped to 27-2 with both losses coming to Lefever.

“I was just trying to stay calm and hang in,” Linnear said. “I just stopped moving, and once I stopped moving he took advantage of it. It is frustrating losing to the same person over and over again, twice already. I will definitely use it as motivation.”

Lefever was the inspiration for the Chargers, who won their third straight team sectional title.

“That’s kind of what we expect out of Riley,” Carroll coach Scott Raypole said. “He leads by example out there on the mat, and he picks up the whole team.”

After winning only its second-ever NHC tournament title last week, Carroll won the sectional team title with 261 1/2 points. Churubusco was second with 169 1/2 , and Bishop Dwenger was third with 138 1/2 .

The Chargers qualified all 14 of their wrestlers for next week’s Carroll Regional, while getting four champions – Lefever, Steven Cardenas (126), Tristan Wilson (152) and Spencer Malcolm (160). Carroll had 10 wrestlers in the sectional finals.

“It’s been a pretty good couple of weeks,” said Raypole, whose team went 7-0 in NHC dual matches. “We started off slowly and got a couple of runner-ups, and we told them it was no big deal and let’s shoot for the end of the season. They feel pretty good with the win as a team and getting 14 guys to regionals.”

But because the IHSAA discontinued the team-only portion of its state tournament, the Chargers will not be able to go head-to-head with other sectional champions in a dual-meet format.

“I wish we would have had at least one more year of it because we have a good team this year, but I guess you have to go with it,” Lefever said.

Also winning weight classes were Garrett’s Hayden Lee (106), Northrop’s Logan Aldrich (113), Bishop Dwenger’s Dominic Garrett (120), North Side’s Carlos Garcia (132), Garrett’s Austun McCray (138), Churubusco’s Brandon Wormcastle (145), Bishop Dwenger’s Ben Evans (182), Churubusco’s Brian Richardson (195) and Jason Nicodemus (220) and Eastside’s Matt Beard (285).