DEKALB — The Rochelle Township High School wrestling program competed at the Northern Illinois Big 12 Varsity and Open Championships in DeKalb this past Saturday, with the Hubs taking eighth out of 10 schools on the varsity level with 76 points and the lower-level Hubs finishing ninth with 61 points.
Senior Eddie Villalobos took second place at 138 pounds. Villalobos won by fall over Yorkville’s Nick Matkoutsis in 16 seconds before taking down Sycamore’s Syler Larson by 17-6 major decision. Villalobos lost by 8-3 decision to DeKalb’s Damien Lopez in the championships bout.
Sophomore Ben Harvey finished third overall at 182 pounds. Harvey won by fall over Sycamore’s Jaden Johns in 3:27 before taking a tough loss by 1-0 decision against DeKalb’s Logan Roach. Harvey won by injury default over Geneseo’s Eli Allen in 12 seconds before winning by 10-1 major decision against Kaneland’s Noah Butzman for third place.
Junior Bryan Garza placed fourth at 170 pounds. Garza won by fall over LaSalle-Peru’s Nick Krolak, and Garza earned a 6-0 decision against Kaneland’s Adeleke Sanni before losing by 8-3 decision against DeKalb’s Tucker Ikens. Garza topped Krolak again by fall before falling by 2-1 decision to Ottawa’s Cedric Fairrow in the third-place match.
Senior Jacob Fore also took fifth place, wrestling at 152 pounds. Fore received a first-round bye before losing by 9-6 decision to LaSalle-Peru’s Hunter Karun. Fore won by fall over Ottawa’s Thor Rick in 3:14 before losing by fall to Yorkville’s Anthony Cantu in the third-place bout.
Junior Gavin Ansteth took fifth place at 195 pounds. Ansteth lost by fall against Morris grappler Robby Bates before earning a fall victory over Sycamore’s Logan Egler in 1:14. Sterling’s Cade Lyons topped Ansteth by fall, but Ansteth rebounded with a fall over Ottawa’s Brandon O’Brien for fifth place.
Junior Zack Capes finished sixth at 285 pounds. Capes lost by fall to Geneseo’s Billy Blaser before winning by fall against Ottawa’s Jaxson Callahan in 1:56. Capes fell by fall against LaSalle-Peru’s Peyton Piraino and Sycamore’s Zechariah Hollingsworth in the fifth-place match.
Juniors Zeke Horn and Keegan Davis-Carter wrestled but did not place in the event.
Sophomore Ethan Albers finished first at 182 pounds, winning by fall against Yorkville’s Dayne Woodin in 1:41 before winning by 12-4 major decision over Yorkville’s Will Schumacker. Sophomore Ivan Pineda took third at 98 pounds, earning a 9-7 decision against Yorkville’s Jamori Holloway before losing by fall against Kaneland’s Cameron Phillips and earning a medical forfeit over DeKalb’s Rory Burright in the third-place bout.
Sophomore Noah Messer placed fourth at 170 pounds. Messer received a first-round bye before winning by fall over DeKalb’s Frankie Fotopolous in 1:05. Messer lost by fall to Yorkville’s Christian Aquino before suffering a close loss by 3-2 decision to LaSalle-Peru’s Tyler Lorden.
Senior Cody Hasz (170), freshman Osiris Lenker (145) and freshman Denny Johnson (120) each finished sixth at their respective weight classes. Freshman Baxton Beaird and sophomore James Kopec wrestled but did not place.