If the young Althoff Crusaders wanted to make a statement at the Class 1A Roxana Regional, they certainly did so Saturday.
Freshman Chase Bittle remained undefeated with a 14-second pin in the 113 pound final and six Crusaders teammates also won championships as the Crusaders cruised to the team title.
Bittle, whose title was the first of five consecutive championships won by Althoff, paved the way for the Crusaders, who finished with 191 points, 25 more than runner-up Litchfield (166).
Following Bittle’s win, Eli Wall-Lampkin (120) won by decision, Jevon Hey (126) won by injury default and two-time state tournament medalist Jarid Braunagel won by technical fall in the 4:32 of his bout at 132.
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Freshman Daniel Braunagel then completed the Crusaders’ remarkable run with a pin in the 138 final. Freshman Zach Braunagel later completed the family trifecta by taking the title at 160. Rodney Baker capped off the Crusaders’performance with a championship at 285.
Jarid Braunagel and Baker are ranked first in the state at their respective weights/
Also advancing for Althoff were Cody Harris (145), Austin Carey (152) and Zach Guerrero (170). Those 10 wrestlers will advance to the Vandalia Sectional on Feb. 13-14.
Carlyle junior Aaron Nettles and Mater Dei senior Michael Hamilton placed second at their respective weights, leading the way for local wrestlers at Lawrenceville High School
Nettles placed second at 120, while Hamilton was second at 152. Carlyle senior Brendan Pfister was third at 220. All three wrestlers move on to the Vandalia Sectional
Freeburg standout Cooper Secker won the 120 pound championship while highly touted Sparta wrestler Will Monroe took home a title at 220 o pace the local contingent at Carterville High School.
Red Bud junior Trevor Barbeau was second at 152. All three grapplers will advance to the Vamdalia Sectional.
Mississippi Valley Conference champion Triad claimed five individual championships as it cruised to a 59-point win at the Waterloo Sectional.
The Knights finished with 185 points, well ahead of East St. Louis (126). Host Waterloo was third with 100 points.
Junior Merik Fulton got the Knights off to a good start by winning a title at 126 and when senior Cole Wysocki won the championship at 138 by major decision, Triad was well on its way to the team honors.
Seniors Cole Witzig (170) and Alex Crehan (182) along with junior John McKinney (195) also won titles for the Knights, who will advance eight wrestlers to the Danville Sectional on Feb. 13-14.
Second-place East St. Louis’ only title came at 113 from Christopher Tucker, but the Flyers did qualifty six wrestlers on to the sectional.
State-ranked Nick Czar of Highland remained undefeated by claiming the 225 title. The Bulldogs also got a win from sophomore Trent Rakers at 160.
Also winning titles were Marlon Manuel of Cahokia (120), Mac Mundy of Waterloo (145) and Jacob Musick of Mascoutah (220).