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By JASON BROWN
Mahomet Citizen sportswriter
The Mahomet-Seymour Junior High School wrestlers sent five athletes to the IESA State Championships this week.
Bulldog Gage Granadino took home a third-place finish in the 126 weight class.
Other MSJH competitors included Caden Hatton (65), Owen Straub (85), Skyler Yancy (135) and Logan Burdette (155).
“Friday night we wrestled lights-out,” said coach James Heinold. “We went 7-1 the first two rounds and were sitting in eighth place out of 134 teams. We won all three matches in the prelims [with] Burdette winning by decision and Hatton and Straub winning by pin.”
In the first round, the Bulldogs won 4 of 5 matches.
Hatton, Straub and Yancy won close matches for decisions, and Granadino won by pin. Burdette lost to the eventual State runner-up.
“Saturday we ran into some tough matches,” said Heinold. “We had four wrestling in the quarter finals. We only won one of the four matches.”
Granadino won and moved onto to the semifinals, and the other four wrestlers lost, dropping to the wrestle backs.
With Gage’s wins and everyone else’s elimination, the Bulldogs were able to finish the state meet at 21st place out of 134 teams.
Gage lost his semifinal match to the eventual state runner up by one point. He got the first takedown but wasn’t able to pull out the win.
In wrestle backs, the Bulldogs lost close matches. All four were knocked out and eliminated.
Hatton lost a close match to a wrestler who beat him earlier in the year. Straub, meanwhile, lost a heartbreaker on a controversial call.
Yancy lost a close battle coming from a 4-0 deficit to tie it up and go into overtime. He lost in overtime.
Burdette got back in but lost in overtime to the eventual thrid-place finisher at 155.
“I am very proud of how the five individuals did at state,” Heinold said. “They all had wins and contributed points to the team. They represented Mahomet with respect and determination.
“Yancy, Granadino, and Burdette will go on and do great things in high school. I am looking forward to working with Hatton and Straub as they return to juinior high wrestling next year.”