By JOE CENTERS
Reflector Managing Editor
TOLEDO — The stage is set. The pieces are in place. The countdown is on.
Monroeville High School’s wrestling team takes aim at its first Div. III state title beginning Thursday in Columbus.
The Eagles will take six wrestlers to the meet, including — for the final time — the Fab Four.
Senior Logan Stieber will go after his fourth straight state title, while junior teammates Hunter Stieber, Cam Tessari and Chris Phillips will each go after their third.
All four won titles last year but the team fell just one point behind Troy Christian for the team title.
This year the Eagles have some backup help for the Fab Four in Cal Clark and Brent Wilken.
Just one more win could put the Eagles over the top, and head coach Scott Bauer knows it.
“Excellent weekend for us,” Bauer said. “We brought eight kids in and all eight wrestled well.
“Hopefully we can take care of business next week,’’ he added. “We have to wrestle well and get some bonus points. Getting two extra kids down there is huge for us. We’ve done what we need to be to be in a position to win it.”
Along with titles from the Stieber brothers at 119 and 125 respectively, Tessari 140 and Phillips 171, Clark finished third at 145 and Wilken was fourth at 189.
The Eagles defended their district crown with 161.5 points, followed by Elmwood with 116.5 and Edison with 106.5.
In all, 13 local wrestlers will compete in Columbus. Along with the six from Monroeville, Edison will have three representatives, South Central two and St. Paul and New London one apiece.
Edison’s representatives are Cam Michel (first at 103), Kyle Burns (second at 130) and Dylan Howard (second at 160).
“Hopefully the draws come out and we wrestle well next weekend,” Edison coach Davy Hermes said. “No matter what the draws are ... it comes down who has the best weekend. We’re looking forward to it All three of them have good shots.”
South Central had to district champions — Payton Oney at 135 and Anthony Ferber at 152.
“They have been working a long time to get to this moment,” Trojan coach Ken Johnson said. “They are both seniors and they have worked since they were like, this big,” the coach added while holding out his hand at waist level.
Johnson said there are “no guarantees,” but coming off Nick Hamilton’s state title run last year gives the two something to shoot for.
“Give them a little bit of fire inside, knowing it is a possibility,” he said “It’s definitely got them moving forward in that direction.”
Advancing for St. Paul is Mitchell Gross, who was fourth at 171.
“We brought two and got one,” St. Paul coach Pat Welfle said. “Not a bad percentage. It would have been nice to get Cam (Crum) out. Last week Isaac (Livengood) broke his hand (while earning a trip to the districts). All in all the kids did a nice job.”
Welfle, a veteran of the state tournament wars, knows Gross will have to be ready to go.
“It’s a whole different ballgame, but at the same time it’s more of the same ... a different mentality,” he said. “You have to be ready each match.”
Advancing for New London is Taylor Amburgy, who placed fourth at 130.
“We brought in four underclassmen and they all won matches,” New London coach James Toukonen said. “Taylor made it down to state as a junior which is good. Hopefully we want to go down there and win some matches and show we can compete.
“We’re hoping to turn that corner to get some younger kids down there, break through and continue it on. This is a step in the right direction this year. We are happy.”
Wrestling starts at 3 p.m. Thursday with the championship preliminaries and first round of consolations at the Schottenstein Center.
Action continues at 10 a.m. Friday with the quarterfinals and second round of consolations. The semifinals and consolation quarters are slated for 6:30 p.m. Friday.
The tournament wraps up starting at 10 a.m. Saturday with the consolation rounds. The finals are scheduled for 5:30 p.m.
Team Standings: Monroeville 161.5, Elmwood 116.5, Edison 106.5, Crestview 104, Liberty Center 92, Montpelier 78.5, Archbold 73.5, Swanton 65.5, Clear Fork 62, South Central 61. 25. 25. St. Paul 23, 26. New London 20.5, 35. Western Reserve 10.
103: Cam Michel (Edison) dec. Dexter Lee (Elmwood) 5-3
112: Nick Goebel (Elmwood) dec. Cade Mansfield (Ayersville) 5-1
119: Hunter Stieber (Monroeville) maj. dec. Wyatt Music (Crestview) 11-2
125: Logan Stieber (Monroeville) tech. fall Cody Laney(Hicksville) 17-2
130: Alex Lopez (Patrick Henry) dec. Kyle Burns (Edison) 3-2
135: Payton Oney (South Central) dec. Jordan Cowell (Archbold) 3-1
140: Cam Tessari (Monroeville) maj. dec. Josh Goebel (Edgerton) 12-2
145: Luke Boehm (Montpelier) dec. Tyler Baer(Elmwood) 5-2
152: Anthony Ferber (South Central) dec. Jake Elling (Liberty Center) 7-5SV
160: Kyle Gladieux (Cardinal Stritch) pin Dylan Howard (Edison) 1:11
171: Chris Phillips (Monroeville) tech. fall Xavier Dye (Patrick Henry) 22-7
189: Rich Ulmer (Galion) dec. Brandon Tantari (Lake) 7-4
215: Derek Johnson (Swanton) dec. Zane Krall (Liberty Center) 4-1
285: Mimmo Lytle (Swanton) pin Clint Endicott (Crestview) 2:46
Third-fourth place matches
103: Alex Guerra (St. Mary C.C.) dec. Alec Durbin (Crestview) 4-2
112: Joe Dauch (St. Mary C.C.) maj. dec. D.J. Ferguson (Montpelier) 14-5
119: Jared VanVleet (Edgerton) dec. Luke Kern (Liberty Center) 8-5
125: Westley Lee (Elmwood) dec. Chris Delaney (Delta) 4-0
130: Mitchell Emmitt (Elmwood) maj. dec. Taylor Amburgy (New London) 13-3
135: Cal Clark (Monroeville) maj. dec. Damen Escobedo (Gibsonburg) 13-0
140: Austin Maneese (Clear Fork) dec. Tyler Yant (Delta) 8-4tb
145: Zach Niner(Liberty Center) dec. Jared Deatrick (Paulding) 7-2
152: Matt King (Huron) dec. Nick Hall (Crestview) 4-2
160: Auston Hood (Buckeye Central) dec. Tom Leahey (Swanton) 5-0
171: Brandon O’Neill (Clear Fork) dec. Mitchell Gross (St. Paul) 5-1
189: Josh Stockmaster (Buckeye Central) dec. Brent Wilken (Monroeville) 3-0
215: Joe Whisler (Crestview) dec. Stephen Klotz (Lakota) 3-1
285: Nino Majoy (Huron) dec. Bryan Eyerly (Ontario) 3-1
103: Brandon Fahrer (Evergreen) dec. Seth Colvin(Delta) 11-4
112: Ben Timmons (Lakota) dec. Adam Klavinger (Genoa Area) 10-3
119: TJ Weirauch (Archbold) pin Austin Hilty (St. Joseph C.C.) 2:26
125: Drew Keefer (Liberty Center) dec. Alex Glenn (Otsego) 10-5
130: Carl Crozier (Clear Fork) pin Oliver Stuckey (Archbold) 1:54
135: Isaih Vega (Hicksville) dec. Nic Hernandez (Elmwood) 9-7SV
140: Scott Traver (Genoa Area) dec. Tyler Majoy (Edison) 17-12
145: Jamie Kimberlin (Edison) dec. Bryce Hussey (Ayersville) 4-0
152: Derek Jimenez (Montpelier) dec. Brad McConnell (Seneca East) 8-1
160: Dakota Sheets (Edgerton) dec. Garrick Montgomery (Crestview) 8-6
171: Dalton Ishmael (North Baltimore) pin Jake Sheehy (Genoa Area) 3:31
189: Jake Baker (Elmwood) dec. Shem Neuenschwander (Archbold) 3-1
215: Matt Wells (Montpelier) pin Isaac Bowling (St. Joseph C.C.) 1:24
285: Marc Moser (Tinora) maj. dec. Ben St.John (Woodmore) 12-3