Once again, some of the state's top wrestlers made their way to Whitnall High School for the annual Zelinski Duals on Jan. 23.
Whitnall/Greendale co-coach John Quinlan said the competition in the meet was high-caliber.
'We saw one of the best teams in the state, Stoughton, knocked off (by Mukwonago),' Quinlan said. 'Sauk Prairie, another top-five team, finished 3-2 for the second year in a row. That shows how good the wrestling is. If you're a wrestling fan, this was the place to be.'
Local teams West Allis Central and Whitnall/Greendale were part of the fun, and both earned places in the top eight of the 16-team field.
Bulldogs take fourth
The Bulldogs captured fourth place, behind Mukwonago, Stoughton and Sauk Prairie, winning two of five dual meets on the day.
Whitnall/Greendale finished eighth and won one of five dual meets.
Central opened the tournament with an 84-0 rout of Milwaukee Hamilton, winning each of the nine contested matches by pin. The longest pin time was just 2 minutes, 35 seconds.
The Bulldogs then downed a strong Muskego squad, 37-30, behind victories by Tom Lenz (113 pounds), Tyus White (126), Mauricio Cardoso (138), D'Andre Brown (145), Hunter Dziewik (152), Jorge Barragan (160), Dustin Diebitz (182) and Quentin Brown (106).
Central lost to Sauk Prairie, 51-17; Stoughton, 51-20; and Mukwonago, 48-15, to come in fourth. Those teams finished one-two-three for the tournament.
White went 5-0 on the day, and Cardoso was 2-0 in limited action. Going 4-1 were Barragan and Laren Stadler at heavyweight, and finishing 3-2 were Quentin Brown, D'Andre Brown and Diebitz.
Whitnall/Greendale downed Green Bay Preble, 38-33, in the opening round, earning a spot in the four-team B pool, which featured stronger competition than the C or D pools.
The team then fell to Stoughton, 69-3; Kenosha Bradford, 54-15; Muskego, 48-23; and Beaver Dam, 49-26.
Seth Nowak and Chase Kendall both posted 4-1 records. Nowak notched three pins and an injury default, and Kendall collected three pins and a decision.
Sebastian Iverson was the only other Whitnall/Greendale wrestler with a winning record, taking three decisions by one- or two-point margins. One of his losses came to Stoughton state champion Brandon Klein.
Injuries strike again
The team lost Gabe Lewis to a dental injury, Jordan Reiner to a broken finger and John Poulakos to a knee injury, adding to an already-long list of sidelined wrestlers.
'Our kids didn't quit,' co-coach Craig Austin said. 'AJ Arnold and Jake Blanco, for example, didn't win, but AJ wrestled three state-ranked wrestlers, and Blanco took on four of them.'
Quinlan, who also served as the tournament manager, was pleased with the event.
'I'm really happy with the way it went,' he said. 'The parents stepped up and really helped. We had volunteers today from all four of the decades that I've been here. I'm always amazed at how many people are willing to give up their Saturday to help make this work.'
West Allis Central and Whitnall/Greendale both had conference dual meets as well last week.
CENTRAL 72, BROOKFIELD CENTRAL 10: The Bulldogs won behind pins from Tyus White (132), Mauricio Cardoso (138), Jorge Barragan (160), Dustin Diebitz (182) and Jeff Leflore (195).
WHITNALL/GREENDALE 63, PIUS XI 12: Winners were Sebastian Iverson (120), Seth Nowak (132) and Gabe Lewis (138). The local team also picked up eight forfeits.
THIS WEEK:The Bulldogs next meet rival West Allis Hale at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Jan. 28, at home. Whitnall/Greendale faced New Berlin on Jan. 27.