It’ll be a different venue and a different feel, but there will be some familiar surnames with Will Carlile when the Litchfield High School senior makes his fourth trip to the state wrestling meet on Thursday, June 24.
Carlile was one of four Panthers who finished in the top four of the Lawrenceville Class 1A Sectional, put on by Illinois Wrestling Coaches and Officials Association after the IHSA decided not to hold a postseason tournament.
Carlile, who finished fourth as a sophomore and was state champion at 132 pounds last year, will be joined by Alex Powell, Carter Powell and Brady Davidson, harkening back memories to Carlile’s first trip to state when he was a freshman and joined Bailey Powell (Alex and Carter’s older brother) and Collin Davidson (Brady’s older brother) at state.
At Lawrenceville, both Carter Powell and Carlile took home sectional titles, going 3-0 with their first place matches a rematch of last Sunday’s regional championship bouts.
Powell took a pair of wins by fall to make it to the first place match, pinning Keegan Murray of Hillsboro at the 1:44 mark and Bobby Rodriguez of Benton at the 3:02 mark. In his final match, Powell beat Aaron Niemeyer by dec. 8-3, after pinning the East Alton-Wood River 113-pounder at regionals.
Carlile also started the tournament with two wins by fall, pinning Jaxon Trent of Monticello with 39 seconds left in the first and Ryan Kaiser of Vandalia 33 seconds into the third. In the finals, he scored his second straight major decision victory over Reed Davis of Illinois United (the Jacksonville Routt/School for the Visually Impaired/School for the Deaf co-op team), this time by a 10-1 score.
Both Alex Powell and Brady Davidson finished fourth at Lawrenceville, where only the top four advanced to state.
Powell beat Hank Warfel of Cumberland, before falling to Jarek Wehrle of Vandalia by pin. In the consolation bracket, Powell won his blood round match against Satchel Taylor of Mt. Carmel by fall, before losing to Tony Keene of Harrisburg in the third place match.
Like Carlile and Carter Powell, Davidson faced familiar competition as he took on not one, but two opponents from regionals. After pinning Winston Suni of Carterville in the opening round, Davidson lost to Jason Shaw of East Alton-Wood River, the same opponent that moved him to the consolation bracket in regionals.
The Litchfield 126-pounder would rebound though, pinning Drake Moss of Benton with 18 seconds left in the first quarter to earn his spot at state and a shot at third place, where he was set to face Owen Miller of Vandalia. Unfortunately, Davidson wasn’t able to get another match with Miller, who he had pinned at regionals, and lost the match due to a medical forfeit.
The four state qualifiers made up a little over half of the Litchfield contingent at sectionals, with Ashtin Carver (132), Aaron Roach (138) and Kaleb Crabtree (145) also making the trip.
Crabtree went 0-2 with two tough matches, while Carver had three wins in four matches before falling to Elijah Schlessinger of Metro-East Lutheran in the consolation semifinal to end his day.
Aaron Roach had a pair of wins in his final tournament as a Panther, but lost a narrow 9-7 decision to Vincent Fiore of Warrensburg-Latham to end his wrestling career.
The IWCOA Class 1A State Tournament will begin at 9:30 a.m. Thursday, June 24, at the Bank of Springfield Center in Springfield. Unlike the IHSA tournament, the IWCOA state tourney will be done in one day, with state champions crowned that evening.
June 19 at Lawrenceville
IWCOA 1A Sectional
106: Alex Powell (25-5), 4th - def. Hank Warfel (Cumberland) by dec. 9-4; lost to Jarek Wehrle (Vandalia) by fall at 1:56; def. Satchel Taylor (Mt. Carmel) by fall at 2:50; lost to Tony Keene (Harrisburg) by fall at 2:44.
113: Carter Powell (27-1), 1st - def. Keegan Murray (Hillsboro) by fall at 1:44; def. Bobby Rodriguez (Benton) by fall at 3:02; def. Aaron Niemeyer (EAWR) by dec. 8-3.
126: Brady Davidson (21-8), 4th - Def. Winston Suni (Carterville) by fall at 2:43; lost to Jason Shaw (EAWR) by fall at 3:18; def. Drake Moss (Benton) by fall at 1:42; medical forfeit to Owen Miller (Vandalia).
132: Ashtin Carver (14-11) - def. Holden Allsopp (Benton) by fall at 1:11; lost to Arojae Hart (Murphysboro) by fall at 3:26; def. Gage Rusher (Taylorville) by fall at 1:38; def. Gavin Mann (West Frankfort) by maj. dec. 12-2; lost to Elijah Schlessinger (MEL) by fall at 4:58.
138: Aaron Roach (14-12) - def. Halen Daly (Tolono Unity) by fall at 0:56; lost to Cole Peters (Rochester) by tech fall 17-0 at 4:51; def. Braydon Schubert (Pinckneyville) by maj. dec. 13-2; lost to Vincent Fiore (Warrensburg-Latham) by dec. 9-7.
145: Kaleb Crabtree (2-9) - lost to Braxton Manuel (Tolono Unity) by fall at 0:44; lost to Avery Grimes (Benton) by fall at 3:39
152: Will Carlile (22-1), 1st - def. Jaxon Trent (Monticello) by fall at 1:21; def. Ryan Kaiser (Vandalia) by fall at 4:33; def. Reed Davis (Illinois United) by maj. dec. 10-1.