posttrib
SPOTTY 
Weather Updates

Wrestling: Portage sends 14 to regional

Updated: March 3, 2014 6:00PM



GARY — Portage advanced all 14 wrestlers to next week’s Calumet Regional, including nine sectional champions and outdistanced second-place Hobart 293-203.5 to win the team championship.

“For the first time in, I think, 10 years we’ve gotten all 14 guys through to the regionals,” Portage coach Leroy Vega said. “These guys now expect to win, that is the mentality we’ve tried to teach these guys.”

Portage champions were Miguel Prado (113), Juan Duque (126), Steven Lawrence (138), Davin Gonzalez 145, Iszak Morgan (152), Darren Svitko (160) Matt Hedrick (195), Travis Williams (220).

And in one of the afternoon’s more compelling matches, Portage sophomore Gaige Torres used a reversal and a near fall for a five-point move to beat Hobart freshman Brendan Black 9-4 at 120 pounds.

“He made a mistake and I capitalized on it,” Torres said. “I just reversed him and after that (five-point move) I knew I had the match. I figure we will probably meet again next week in the regionals.”

The host Warriors had two champions. Nick Fowler scored four first-period points and made them stand up against Griffith’s Ryan Dunlap to win at 182 pounds, and Alec Noworul squeaked by Lake Station’s Steven Armes 2-1 to win at 132 pounds.

“I’ve wrestled him six times and he is hard to take down and score on,” Noworul said. “He’s a defensive wrestler and I knew I had to be active. It was really frustrating because I like to go out and dominate but I knew I had to do whatever it takes.”

Hobart junior Scottie Sopko won his third sectional title at 170 pounds with a 15-6 major decision over Lake Station’s Nathan Dodge.

“I just go out there and try to score points,” Sopko said. “He was a tough, strong kid and he just kept going and going. You just can’t take the toughness out of a kid. It was good to wrestle someone like him.”

Griffith freshman Jeremiah Reitz keeps rolling along with a 15-3 major decision over Hobart’s Zach Pardus at 106 pounds and River Forest senior Robert Yanez pinned Calumet’s Marshawn Manuel at 1:54 to win the 285-pound title and improve to 34-0 on the season.

“I was OK on my shots, I don’t want to be a defensive wrestler,” Yanez said. “I’ve wrestled him five times and the closest match was 6-4. I am feeling pretty confident going into next week’s regionals.”



© 2014 Sun-Times Media, LLC. All rights reserved. This material may not be copied or distributed without permission. For more information about reprints and permissions, visit www.suntimesreprints.com. To order a reprint of this article, click here.