Wrestling: Six area wrestlers win gold at SouthWest Suburban Conference Tournament
By Logan Malloy For Sun-Times Media January 19, 2013 10:28PM
Joliet Central’s Trayvon Zabala (top) wrestles Sandburg’s Jake Vales. | Ray Luna~For Sun-Times Media
Updated: February 21, 2013 6:36AM
In arguably the most formidable conference in Illinois, the SouthWest Suburban Tournament still belongs to reigning Class 3A state champion Sandburg.
But the potent competition didn’t stop six area wrestlers from capturing gold Saturday in Joliet.
Lincoln-Way East and Joliet Central notched two individual champs apiece, and East’s Kyle Langenderfer (152 pounds) and Central’s Trayvon Zabala (120) became three-time SWSC titleholders in the process.
Langenderfer defeated Sandburg’s Mitch Cook 9-4, while Zabala took a 4-3 advantage after two periods and before earning a 13-5 major decision over Sandburg’s Jake Vales.
“This is special for me; I’ve worked hard for it,” the undefeated Zabala said. “(Vales) was stronger than me, but I had the quickness, so I didn’t tie-up with him.”
Nick Allegretti won at 285 for the Griffins while Sharod Wilson repeated as the 182-pound titleholder for Joliet Central.
“My sophomore year, I went to JV conference and won that, so I didn’t expect to come here in our hard conference and win it two years in a row,” Wilson said.
Sandburg sent eight wrestlers to the finals and captured five titles, coming from Alante Walker (145 pounds), C.J. Brucki (160), Colin Holler (170), Ricky Robertson (182) and Bill Gore (220).
The Eagles took the unofficial team title with 269 points. Lincoln-Way Central finished as runner-up with 230 behind a second championship from Robbie Mikenis (138). Lockport (173) was third in the 16-team field.
“Something felt different about this week,” Mikenis said. “I felt like this was the best I’ve wrestled all year. We had great team practices all week.”
Earning a title for Lincoln-Way West was Kyle Rodriguez at 132 pounds.
“I felt like I controlled all my matches and did what I needed to do to take the title,” Rodriguez said. “We have a really good program. Coach (Brian Glynn) pushes us and we never take a break in practice.”
Homwood-Flossmoor’s Mike Burke (106), Thornton’s Kris Williams (113) and Bradley’s Jacob Igartua (126) rounded out the podium-toppers.