Bremen’s Abe Hall delivers message at wrestling regional

ROCHESTER — Coming into Saturday’s Rochester Wrestling Regional with a No. 2 state ranking, Abraham Hall was on a mission to prove himself.
The Bremen senior delivered a message that he was up to his rating, earning a heavyweight championship with a 2-0 victory over Penn’s Kade Maggert.
“After getting fourth the last two years and not really wrestling well, I wanted to make a statement that I deserved my ranking at number two,” said Hall. “I felt like I actually needed to prove something, that I was as good as people believe me to be.”
Hall, giving up more than 40 pounds to heavyweight runner-up Kade Maggert of Penn, went up 1-0 on an escape after starting the second period down, then rode out Maggert, who was penalized a point for stalling in the third period, to claim top honors with a 2-0 decision, remaining perfect on the year at 43-0.
It was the fourth time the two grapplers have show down after Hall lost a pair of matches to the Penn heavyweight last season.
“Having wrestled him four times we both pretty much know what each other is going to do. I tried to circle a little more than before just to try and keep him off balance. He’s a big boy, and even though he’s that big he’s still pretty quick so I didn’t want to get underneath him being a 240-pound heavyweight,” Hall explained.
“I knew that if I could get an escape I’d have the match in hand because I’m also pretty good on top. The bottom’s not as strong for him, so I knew if I could hold him down I’d have the match at hand.”
Hall was one of a trio of Bremen wrestlers to earn regional berths as Jose Rodriguez and Dylan Shumaker placed fourth at 120 and 126, respectively. He was also one of three area wrestlers to earn regional championships at Rochester as Culver Community’s Matt Hurford claimed a dominant 182-pound championship victory by pinfall, and Culver Military Academy’s Anthony McHugh stayed unbeaten with a 3-0 win in the 132-pound championship.
Hurford used a takedown-and-cut strategy against South Bend Riley’s Tyler Crain in his title match, going up 15-8 before eventually putting himself in position to finish the pinfall win at the 5:18 stop.
“I felt like that was working for me. When I was on top I couldn’t really turn him,” said Hurford of his strategy in the championship. “I was trying everything. My coaches were telling me what to try, I tried it and they just ended up telling me to cut him, and it worked out for me.”
Hurford moved to 42-1 with the regional title after starting the season at 220, and he’s hoping his perfect finish Saturday helps him toward his next goal of a semistate title at Merrillville next weekend.
“It feels good. Getting this championship really helps going into next week because I’ll face a four seed. It’s really a good thing to win this and see what you’ve got going on next week,” he said.
“I’d love to win semistate. I really need to work hard at it. I’d like to place at state. It’d be nice to place and make my home town proud of me.”
Control was the byword of the day for McHugh as the CMA 132-pounder benefited from a pair of penalties against Mishawaka’s Tommy Forte to claim a 3-0 championship decision and move to 40-0 on the season.
“I went into the match wanting to wrestle smart, thinking to be in control the whole time and just believing that I could win it,” he said. “Just being in control is probably what won me the match because he had a couple cautions that cost him, a locking hands, and I just stayed in control the whole time.”
McHugh was one of four Eagles to earn semistate berths as Edmond Hogan placed second at 152, Danny Williams finished third at 170, and Kayla Miracle was fourth in a 106 field stacked with talent.
“Overall we’re happy with the day. Four of our kids are going to get to go to semistate and experience that, and it’s not an easy thing to accomplish. I’m really proud of the guys and the girl that got through,” said Culver Academies head coach Matt Behling.
“It’s exciting for Culver wrestling. Four is the most that we’ve sent through to semistate in any recent year so it’s a big step forward for the program.”
Plymouth’s lone semistate berth was earned by 220-pound junior DeAndre Pickford, who placed fourth in his division with a 3-1 consolation loss to Adams’ Kenan Boyd to earn a ticket out to Merrillville in his first varsity season with the Rockies.
“We end up fourth; we’d like to have ended up third, but at 220 there were some tough kids,” said Plymouth coach Bob Read. “It’s good he’s a qualifier. He had a tough go in the first round. I don’t think that was his best match, but good enough to win coming back from a deficit, so that was good.”
Finishing out their seasons for Plymouth with first-round losses Saturday were John Mills at 106, Jacob Pearson at 170, Luke Schumacher at 126, Ian Horvath at 160 and Jacob Segraves at 195. Segraves’ finish was possibly the most disappointing for the Rockies, as the senior was leading Mishawaka Marian’s Robert Deering 1-0 in the third period of a first-round matchup before a cut to the face forced a stoppage. When action resumed, Deering scored a quick takedown to win a 3-1 decision and eliminate Segraves from semistate berth contention.
“That was a tough one to take. He’s a senior and you hate to see your seniors go down like that,” said Read. “Great kid, just fell short. I think the stop in the action with the cut really hindered us because I thought we had the kid on the rope physically. I thought he was pretty juiced and we were going hard. He gets that big break and comes back and explodes into one takedown, and that’s what beat us.”
White Herford topped the podium at 182, John Ahlenius closed his season with a first-round loss at 145, while Ian Randolph lost a first-round bout at 132, Allen Betts was eliminated in his opener at 113, and Austin Brisette took a pinfall loss to eventual 106-pound champ Zach Davis of Penn in his first round match.
“We had some tough losses, some guys we were really hoping could pull off victories and came out on the wrong side of it. In talking to them, they’re dedicated to getting better. They’re wanting to improve on the season next year,” said Culver Community head coach Louis Posa.
“I talked to Ian, our senior, a disappointing loss for him. Not the way he wanted to go out, but he’s a good young man, and he put in a lot of work for us, and we’re thankful for what he’s done for our program. He’s looking to wrestle at the next level and carry on in the sport.”
Triton saw a pair of wrestlers close out their year, meanwhile, as Jaremiah Kinsey lost his opener to the eventual 195-pound runner-up, and Dakota Grubbs closed out his high school career with a first-round pinfall loss to 152-pound champ Dann Ginter of Penn.
“I can’t say enough about Dakota Grubbs,” said Triton head coach Matt Arvesen. “You’re talking about a kid that has probably had two solid years as a junior and senior and came in every single morning with me at 6:30, did running, worked on technique and poured himself into the sport. I talked to him afterward, and I’m just proud of all the work that he did.”
Although they were eliminated from the tourney, three area wrestlers have a glimmer of hope to move onto the Merrillville Semistate as alternates in Culver’s Brissette, Plymouth’s Schumacher and Triton’s Grubbs.
At Rochester
106: Zach Davis (Penn) dec. Jake Sinkovics (Mishawaka), 6-2; 113: Jarred Brooks (Warsaw) pin Greg Newman (Wawasee), 1:03; 120: Jacob Davis (Penn) pin J. Heckathorn (Rochester), 3:18; 126: Grant Martsoff (Mishawaka) dec. Josh Juarez (Riley), 4-2 in OT; 132: Anthony McHugh (Culver Academies) dec. Tommy Forte (Mishawaka), 3-1; 138: Tristan Macri (Mishawaka) dec. Mitch Hartman (Clay), 4-2; 145: Trevor Manspeaker (Penn) maj. dec. Erik Ullery (Riley), 10-1.
152: Danny Ginter (Penn) dec. Edmond Hogan (Culver Academies), 7-2; 160: Chase Hack (Riley) dec. Kelly Kolat (Washington), 5-4; 170: Dwight Hunter (Clay) dec. Mike Anderson (Riley), 7-5 in OT; 182: Matt Hurford (Culver Community) pin Tyler Crain (Riley), 5:18; 195: Jaylin Allen (Clay) dec. Alex Skipper (Adams), 3-2; 220: Joe Gallegos (Clay) dec. Devin Reagan (Penn), 8-4; 285: Abraham Hall (Bremen) dec. Kade Maggert (Penn), 2-0.
106: Jacob Hartman (Clay) dec. Kayla Miracle (Culver Academies), 8-2; 113: Antwan Wordlaw (Riley) dec. Taylor Hart (Penn), 6-2; 120: Devin Childers (Tippecanoe Valley) dec. Jose Rodriguez (Bremen), 9-7; 126: Garrett Glueckert (Clay) dec. Dylan Shumaker (Bremen), 5-2; 132: Chris Johnson (Clay) by injury def over Chase Osborn (Penn); 138: William Howell-Bey (Washington) by injury def over Ben Varner (Penn); 145: Lane Smous (Mishawaka) dec. Isaiah White (Washington), 5-4 in OT; 152: Kyle Jones (Mishawaka) pin Ryan Lindsey (Wawasee), 2:42; 160: Joey Stasiak (Penn) dec. Clint Proctor (Mishawaka), 10-6; 170: Danny Williams (Culver Academies) pin Kyle Duzan (Warsaw), 2:14; 182: Thomas Demal (Penn) pin Tyler Schmidt (Clay), 3:45; 195: Robert Deering (Marian) dec. Dominique Avila (Riley), 3-; 220: Kenan Boyd (Adams) dec. DeAndre Pickford (Plymouth), 3-1; 285: Dimetri Kaplanis (Wawasee) dec. Marcus Dozier (Riley), 6-2.