Wrestling: Lemont’s Giatras gets best of rival Young
By Logan Malloy For Sun-Times Media January 26, 2013 10:34PM
T.F. South's Joe Young (left) wrestles Lemont's Chris Giatras during the 182-pound championship match of the South Suburban Conference wrestling tournament at T.F. South High School in Lansing, IL Saturday, January 26, 2013. | Brett Roseman~Sun-Times Media
Updated: February 28, 2013 6:53AM
Lemont’s Chris Giatras and T.F. South’s Joe Young have a storied past.
Giatras topped Young in a high-flying title match last season at the South Suburban Conference Tournament, but Young answered on the gridiron eight-months later in their next meeting, handing Giatras and the Indians their only conference defeat with a game-winning touchdown.
“They’re two great athletes; two physically gifted kids that just go at it,” Lemont coach John St. Clair said. “It’s really fun to watch.”
Currently considered two of the best 182-pounders in the state, the pair wrote the final chapter to their rivalry Saturday in Lansing at the SSC Tournament with another spirited affair.
Tied 2-2 heading into the final period, Giatras (34-1) managed a late escape to seize a 3-2 decision and his second conference title.
“I knew this was going to be the last time I wrestled him, and I didn’t want to leave it with any regrets,” Giatras said. “He’s got unbelievable grip and he knows how to use his strength well. It’s a healthy rivalry. We like each other and it’s always fun to wrestle someone as good as he is.”
It was the last dance for Giatras and Young --both standout running backs for their respective football teams-- regardless of the state series. Giatras and Lemont compete in 2A and Young and the Rebels wrestle in 3A.
“I want to take this momentum and carry it into regionals, sectionals and state,” Giatras said. “It’s win a state championship or die trying.”
Lemont, after taking the tournament crown the last three years, finished 11th with 63 points in the 14-team field. Oak Forest (155.5) took first, T.F. South (139) nabbed second and Tinley Park (135) placed third.
Jason Walsh added a fourth place finish at 145 for the Indians, and Mike Devitt finished in a tie for third with Eisenhower’s Alec Gordon after a dual forfeit at 220.