After winning the Porter Memorial Tournament for the first time in the program's five-year history, the Hilliard Bradley High School wrestling team focused its attention on its next goal.
The Jaguars will continue pursuit of the OCC-Cardinal Division title when they compete against Dublin Jerome and Westerville South on Thursday, Jan. 16, at home.
"It's a great measuring stick for where we're at right now, but we've turned the corner into the league and (the) OHSAA (state) duals phase of the season, so that's our complete focus," coach John Riggs said. "It's always a positive to come out and perform well in your home tournament, but at the end of the day, our focus right now is on the league race and OHSAA duals."
Bradley, which won the OCC-Capital championship in the 2011-12, is tied for first in the OCC-Cardinal with Westerville North. Both teams have won their first three league duals.
The Jaguars, who placed second (6-1) to Darby (7-0) in the OCC-Cardinal last season, will compete against North on Jan. 30 at home before facing the defending champion Panthers in their league finale Feb. 6 at Memorial Middle School.
Prior to this season, Bradley's best finish in the Porter tournament came in the 2011-12 season, when it placed second (140) to Teays Valley (182.5). The Jaguars finished fourth (135.5) behind champion Darby (158) last season.
Bradley pulled ahead early in this year's eight-team event and finished with 225 points, winning by a relatively comfortable margin over runner-up Teays Valley (206).
"It's a great showcase for the sport of wrestling in Hilliard," Riggs said.
Bradley had one only champion in the event in Jake Stratton, who finished first at 170 pounds, defeating Lancaster's Eric Deluse 4-3 in the final.
"The whole team wrestled well," Stratton said. "We had a bunch of kids to the finals. We all did well. I was hoping to (wrestle) a little bit better, but overall we got first place."
C.J. Campbell reached the final at 113 before losing to Teays Valley's Luke Nace 3-2.
Also losing by a narrow margin in a final were Rob McGrath, who lost to Teays Valley's Cameron Lathem 3-1 in overtime at 120, and Keegan Driscoll, who lost to Lancaster's Scott Deluse 6-4 in overtime at 160.
Also reaching the finals were Justin Lemmermen (126), Ryan McGrath (138) and Patrick Yeo (182).
Lemmermen lost to Darby's Zach Garrett 12-5, McGrath lost to Mount Vernon's Lane Hinkle 3-0 and Yeo lost to Darby's Trevor Parker 14-6.
Finishing third were Alex Prestel at 106, Will Stratton at 132 and Ryan Kraynak at 195, while Jacob Pugh at 152 and Ryan Beveridge at heavyweight were fourth.
Bradley defeated Canal Winchester 70-9 and Westerville Central 74-0 in league matches Jan. 9.
"That's our goal: OCC champs," Stratton said. "We just have to wrestle hard every week and in practice every day, keep going hard and don't back off."
Wildcats place fourth in Porter tournament
Davidson had three champions in the Porter tournament in Trent Gill (106), Amir Mansour (195) and Bobby Smith (132) en route to finishing fourth (168.5).
In the finals, Gill defeated Lancaster's Colton Chase 5-4 in overtime, Mansour pinned Teays Valley's Brandon Evans in 2 minutes, 57 seconds and Smith beat Darby's Quentin Thatcher 12-4.
Garrett McIlvain placed second at 145, losing to Lancaster's Tanner Miller 16-7 in the final, and Simon Erben (126) and Logan Sadler (heavyweight) both placed third.
"It's a good tournament," coach Dominic DiSabato said. "There's definitely some good competition here. For just an eight-man bracket, it was a grinder. It's definitely something to get us ready for the (Division I) district tournament."
Davidson opened its OCC-Central schedule by defeating Thomas Worthington 39-34 and Upper Arlington 36-33 on Jan. 9.
Sadler secured the win over Thomas by pinning Liam Buchy in 47 seconds, and Gill sealed the win over UA by pinning Harper Nelson in 1:54.
"That was a lot of fun," DiSabato said of the wins over the Cardinals and Golden Bears. "We hung in. We knew (the matches) were both going to be close and I wasn't sure we could win either one of them going into the night and we pulled out both of them. We fought. We're not obviously to the caliber that we've been in the past couple of years, but a little fight will take you a long way."
Davidson finished third (5-2) in the OCC-Central last season behind Marysville (7-0) and Thomas Worthington (6-1).
The Wildcats play host to Central Crossing and Westland in league duals Thursday, Jan. 16. They then will face Olentangy Liberty on Jan. 23 at home before traveling to Marysville on Jan. 30 for their league finale.
Panthers finish fifth in Porter tournament
Darby had two champions in the Porter tournament in Garrett (126) and Parker (182), as it finished fifth (152).
Placing second were Thatcher (132) and Chad Miller (heavyweight), who was pinned by Teays Valley's C.K. Kinzer in 13 seconds in the final.
Austin Rayburn (113) and Robert Valenti (120) both placed third and Kyle Colvin (160) finished fourth.
"For the most part, I thought we wrestled pretty hard," coach Brendan Moody said. "We're just so banged up. We had so many kids out that it probably isn't telling on the team score.
"We're taking the right strides and wrestling a little harder every time out."
Darby defeated Westerville South 55-15 and Jerome 43-29 in OCC-Cardinal duals on Jan. 9.
The Panthers, who lost to Westerville North 39-24 on Dec. 19 in their league opener, are 2-1 in the league.
"It's still up for grabs," Moody said of the league title. "We'll see what happens with the Bradley-Westerville North match and see if we can still try and sneak in there and tie for the title."