Wrestling: Hubs field multiple medalists at Marty Williams Invitational

The Rochelle Hub varsity wrestling team finished ninth out of 26 schools in the 2023 Marty Williams Invitational on Saturday, scoring 261 points. The Hubs (22-1, 5-0 Interstate 8) saw six athletes record top-6 finishes and take home individual medalist honors in the meet. (Courtesy photo)

Rochelle finishes ninth out of 26 competing schools

MAHOMET — The Rochelle Hub varsity wrestling team finished ninth out of 26 schools in the 2023 Marty Williams Invitational on Saturday, scoring 261 points. The Hubs (22-1, 5-0 Interstate 8) saw six athletes record top-6 finishes and take home individual medalist honors in the meet.

Sophomore Xavier Villalobos (28-2) led Rochelle with a second-place finish in the 120-pound bracket. Villalobos scored a 16-3 major decision over Mattoon’s Vincent Gibson and a second-period fall over Riverton’s Kameron Sklenka to enter the championship bracket, where Villalobos notched a third-period fall over Byron’s Jackson Norris and outlasted Rock Island’s Daniel McGhee for a 4-2 sudden victory in the semifinal round. Villalobos faced off against Normal West’s Froylan Racey for the title, conceding a 5-3 decision in the final seconds. 

Junior Brock Metzger (26-8) took third in the 182-pound bracket, reaching the championship bracket with a fall over Mahomet-Seymour’s Hayden Hart before holding off Byron’s Kyle Jones for a 14-8 decision in the quarterfinals. Metzger recovered from a 7-2 loss against Rock Island’s Steven Marquez in the semifinals, overcoming a significant deficit with a fall over Ft. Zumwalt North’s Deacon Moran in the third-place bout. Metzger trailed 11-0 after the first period.

Four Hubs including sophomores Joseph Nadig (25-6) and Kaiden Morris (27-6) as well as freshmen Brenden Voight (24-9) and Roman Villalobos (22-13) placed sixth at their weight classes. Nadig went 2-2 over four bouts in the 126-pound bracket, winning by fall over Mahomet-Seymour’s Reese Wilson and earning a forfeit over Richland County’s Carson Bissey. Morris also went 2-2 over four bouts in the 220-pound bracket, notching a 12-1 major decision over Peotone’s Alex Cardenas and a 7-3 decision over Naperville Central’s Nicolas Basteiro.

Voight finished 3-2 over five bouts in the 145-pound bracket, opening the tournament with a fall over Mahomet-Seymour’s Jackson David and a 9-1 major decision over Mahomet-Seymour’s Kaleb Roberts. Voight notched a fall over Metamora’s Seth Shaw in the consolation rounds. Villalobos recorded falls over Mattoon’s Brock Taylor and Mahomet-Seymour’s Brad Schoonover as well as a fall over Byron’s James Cone during the consolation rounds. 

Junior Tommy Tourdot (7-5) won four bouts to take ninth in the 113-pound bout. Tourdot split his first two matches, winning by fall over Champaign Centennial’s Owen Esslinger and conceding a 7-4 decision to Ft. Zumwalt North’s Nathaniel Provost. Tourdot ran through the consolation bracket, stringing together three straight victories by fall over Riverton’s Matthew Miller, Belleville West’s Amir McCoy and Champaign Centennial’s Jaiden Smith. 

Sophomore Grant Gensler (22-12) took 11th in the 152-pound bracket, finishing 3-2 over five bouts. Gensler’s victories came by injury default over Mahomet-Seymour’s Deandre Hughey, by fall over Mt. Zion’s Kaden Becker and by fall over Metamora’s Jaydon Fisher. Sophomore Robert Stoffel (2-3) finished 12th in the 285-pound bracket, going 2-3 over five bouts with a fall over Mattoon’s JD Sullivan and a 9-1 major decision over St. Laurence’s Normal Bilek.

Other notable finishers for the Hubs include freshmen Keagan Albers (12-10 - 16th at 106) and Frank Nasca (9-8 - 22nd at 138) as well as sophomore Weylin Nay (13-11 - 17th at 132) and senior Jorge Driggs (4-10 - 18th at 195). Nonscoring athletes for Rochelle included freshmen Freddie Hernandez (8-8 - 19th at 106), Tony Milburn (14-14 - 15th at 113) and Cammyla Macias (0-5 - 16th at 120) along with senior Josey Weber (0-4 - 20th at 126), junior Riley Damask (4-4 - 19th at 132) and sophomore Dempsey Atkinson (1-5 - 24th at 145).