Hartley Roundup: Hawks' Newsome, Rathburn finish on podium at state wrestling tournament
Dylan Newsome didn’t get the final result he was hoping for in the Division II state wrestling tournament, but the Hartley sophomore has much on which to build with two prep seasons remaining.
During the state championship match at 170 pounds March 14 at Sparta Highland, Newsome led Tiffin Columbian junior Brody Conley 4-2 early in the third period when the match took a turn.
Conley, a Cornell commit who was fourth in the 2019 state tournament and also was a state qualifier last season, picked up an escape and then followed with a takedown to assert control on his way to a 7-4 victory.
While Conley completed a 48-0 season, Newsome finished 46-1.
“I knew for sure it was going to be us in the finals ever since the beginning of the season,” Newsome said. “Being young, I still have a lot to look forward to. Nothing was expected this season, so I just went in wrestling my best every time and it got me to the state finals. Of course it wasn’t the result I wanted, but I’m proud of it. I’ve just got to keep coming back. I’ve got two more years left and, hopefully, I can win two state titles.”
Newsome was joined at state by freshman Cooper Rathburn, who finished seventh at 113 as the Hawks tied for 22nd (25) behind champion St. Paris Graham (181.5).
Newsome opened state March 13 by beating Salem’s Caiden Hart 9-2 and East Liverpool’s Howard Williams 4-3 in a quarterfinal.
He advanced to the final after Painesville Harvey’s Jayden Jackson was forced to injury default in the semifinal. Newsome was beating Jackson handily when Jackson defaulted.
“It was a good match (in the state final),” coach Kevin Petrella said. “That kid is a stud. Honestly, I think a lot of people didn’t think it was going to be like that, but our coaches and Dylan thought we had a pretty good shot at winning that match.
“I know he broke our (technical) fall record and he only got taken down a handful of times this year. He’s only a sophomore, so he’ll be back.”
Rathburn lost his state opener 4-2 to Aurora’s Robbie Sagaris but beat Cuyahoga Valley Christian Academy’s Braden Hahlen 1-0 and Mentor Lake Catholic’s Joey Romano 13-2 in the backdraw before falling 5-1 to Louisville’s Dan Adams in a consolation quarterfinal.
In the seventh-place match, Rathburn beat Millersburg West Holmes’ Mason Taylor 2-1.
“It’s been a lot of fun,” Rathburn said. “I just wanted to come, compete and give it my all. I knew if I did that, I had a good shot of placing.”
Rathburn finished 40-11. He placed second in a sectional Feb. 27 and 28 at Licking Valley and third at district March 4-6 at Wilmington.
“What a (state) tournament he had,” Petrella said. “Just wrestled his best. You could just see the growth in Cooper from the beginning of the season until now. He had a goal of placing at the state tournament this year and he worked towards that.”
Hartley’s other district qualifiers were sophomore Griffin Halenar (195) and senior Tony Thivener (220), both of whom went 1-2. Halenar finished the season 19-10, and Thivener went 36-8.
Placing fifth at sectional were senior Noah Houchins (126) and sophomore Eyan Jackson (182). Houchins finished 20-16.
Another key senior for the Hawks, who won their eighth consecutive CCL title, was Cody Ihm. He went 26-16 at 145.
Others who competed at sectional were senior Jared Miller (160), junior Ryan Hannah (152) and sophomore Isaac Asiedu (heavyweight).
“We need to bring some of these other guys along on our team, but we should have a pretty good team over the next couple years,” Petrella said. “We’ve got some young guys who are pretty good. In past years where our program does a lot of catching up is springtime, and last year we didn’t have a springtime.”
•CCL standings: Hartley (3-0), DeSales (2-1), Watterson (1-2), Ready (0-3)
•Seniors lost: Brody Halenar, Noah Houchins, Cody Ihm, Jared Miller and Tony Thivener
•Key returnees: Isaac Asiedu, Griffin Halenar, Ryan Hannah, Eyan Jackson, Dylan Newsome and Cooper Rathburn
•Postseason: Fifth (129) at sectional behind champion Jonathan Alder (196), 14th (48.5) at district behind champion St. Paris Graham (293), tied for 22nd (25) at state behind champion Graham (181.5)