The Juneau-Douglas High School wrestling team advanced eight wrestlers to next weekend's 4A Wrestling State Championships in Chugiak this weekend by placing either first or second at the Southeast Conference Regional Championships in Wrangell.
Ketchikan won the team title with an overall score of 260.5 to top Juneau-Douglas' tally of 163.5. However, JDHS won five of Saturday night's seven finals matches. Three Crimson Bears also became alternates in their weights.
Cole Bosio picked up his title at heavyweight without ever hitting the match, as Ketchikan, the only other team in the conference this season, did not have a heavyweight for him to face.
Freshman Wilson Suzuki also picked up his championship in quick fashion by dominating Ketchikan's Corey Jepson in the finals to the tune of 13-1. Jepson had defeated Suzuki in a matchup earlier this season, but he got his revenge when it counted Saturday.
"It was a very nice victory over someone who had beat him pretty good before," JDHS coach Bob Cox said. "Wilson is wrestling very, very good right now. He really took the match to the other guy."
Fellow freshman Thomas Riley followed with a title of his own, pinning his only Ketchikan opponent to keep Juneau-Douglas perfect at 2-0.
Senior Bryce Saviers, the top seed at 125 pounds, pinned Ketchikan's Josh Hahn to win his respective division.
"Bryce had pinned him before at the Pilot Tournament, but he's a tough wrestler," Cox said. "Bryce knew that last win was in the past and wrestled a smart match."
Kyle Barry lost his semifinal match to take third at 130 pounds, but he becomes the alternate if anything should happen to Ketchikan's top two wrestlers.
The Crimson Bears did not have a 135 pound competitor.
Ben Roemling defeated teammate Alex Barto at 142 pounds in the semifinals to knock Barto out of the runnings for state. Roemling then pinned Ketchikan's top seed Devin Kleinschmidt in the finals to become the team's fourth champion.
Randy Segelhorst lost in the finals at 150 pounds to Ketchikan's Ryan John, but will still move on to the state competition.
Sam Cordeiro lost his semifinals match to Ketchikan's Phillip Johnston at 152 pounds and will not move on to state.
Senior Kurt Barry won his semifinal match at 171 pounds by pin, and then went on to defeat top seed John Smith from Ketchikan in the finals to become JDHS' fifth champion. Barry and Smith were actually tied at the end of regulation, but Barry picked up a takedown in overtime by narrowly keeping his toes inbounds while Smith fell out of bounds.
"He's one of our seniors and it's his first regional championship, so his win was a real big deal for him and for us as a team," Cox said.
Tony Berril lost his finals match at 189 pounds, will also move on to state in Chugiak. Berril also was named Juneau's winner of the sportsmanship trophy.
Roemling was named to the conference's all-academic team, an award given to competitors who maintain a GPA over 3.0.
"Now we just have to practice and get ready for state next weekend in Chugiak," Cox said. "Overall it was really good wrestling. The kids showed a lot of heart and wrestled up to their capability today."
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