First place in the OCC-Cardinal Division will be on the line today when the Olentangy High School wrestling team plays host to Marysville in a dual match.

First place in the OCC-Cardinal Division will be on the line today when the Olentangy High School wrestling team plays host to Marysville in a dual match.

The Braves and Monarchs are both 4-0 in OCC-Cardinal matches and the winner will take a major step toward winning the league championship, as each squad will have only two remaining league matches.

Marysville beat Olentangy 41-21 in the final of the OCC-Cardinal tournament last season to break the Braves' three-year streak of winning the league title.

"Marysville's going to be the toughest team we've faced in a dual match up until this point in the season," coach Matt Hammons said. "They beat us last year and they've got three returning state placers who are expected to compete for state titles. On paper, most people would consider them to be the favorite in this match, but we've got some state-level guys, too, so I think it should be a great match."

Last week, Marysville was 10th in the Division I state poll and Olentangy was tied for ninth in the Division II state poll.

The Monarchs had four wrestlers ranked in the top two in their weight classes in the Division I area coaches poll last week in Jake McCombs (first at 125 pounds), Caleb Marsh (first at 160), Nathan Weeks (first at 215) and Zev Green (second at 145).

Last season, McCombs finished 55-2 at 125, placed third at state and won sectional and district titles. Weeks finished 36-4 at 215, placed fourth at state, won a sectional title and was district runner-up. Marsh went 44-3 at 160, placed sixth at state, won a sectional title and was district runner-up.

Nine Braves were ranked in the top three in the Division II area coaches poll last week in Trevor Fiorucci (first at 103), Anthony McHugh (second at 119), Al Caserta (second at 125), Anthony Fosco (tied for third at 130), Britt Yant (third at 140), Joe Grandominico (first at 145), Caleb Hetterscheidt (first at 152), Joey Gadd (second at 160) and Alex Stinemetz (third at 215).

That could lead to some high-level matches at 125, 145, 160 and 215, but Hammons said each match will be equally important.

"Neither of us have any holes in our lineup, so every match should be good," Hammons said. "There's a good chance that each team could end up winning seven matches, so it could come down to who gets more bonus points and who does a better job of staying off their backs and avoiding tech falls in matches they don't win. We'll need all of our guys to contribute in different ways to beat Marysville."

•Two weeks after winning the 12-team Pioneer Invitational for its first tournament victory in program history, Orange went 5-0 to win the Ultimate Warrior Duals last Saturday at Huber Heights Wayne.

The Pioneers defeated Cincinnati Princeton B 71-12, Middletown 42-25, Fairborn 48-18 and Trotwood-Madison 69-9 before beating Troy 39-26 in the final.

Jonathan Edwards (103), Artem Timchenko (112), Josh Toprani (140) and Daniel Waldron (145) each went 5-0 and J.J. Jurcisek (119) and Dante Ventresca (135) each went 4-1.

"It was a good win," coach Brian Nicola said. "Edwards dominated everyone, showing superior size and technique. Timchenko showed why he is one of the top freshmen around and dismantled everyone. ... Toprani was excellent, dominating from all positions. He started making the offseason commitment (last) summer and his jumps have been huge. Waldron is having the kind of senior year everyone hoped for. He deserves it and is a great leader."

• Liberty competes today at Westerville North against DeSales and North.

Coach Mark Marinelli coached DeSales for 15 seasons before taking over at Liberty in the fall of 2007.

"Any time you can wrestle a good program, not just DeSales, it's special," Marinelli said. "But I still know a few of the kids and a lot of people over there at DeSales, so I am looking forward to wrestling my old team. It should be fun."

The Patriots then compete Saturday in the Grizzly Invitational at Wadsworth.

"This is going to be a real tough tournament, which is what we're looking for," Marinelli said. "A lot of teams from Northeast Ohio will be there, including Wadsworth, which is the No. 1 team in the state. We could go to easier tournaments and pick up more wins, but we need to keep wrestling better people so we can get ourselves ready for the sectional and district tournaments."