Login NowClose 
Sign In to chronicle-tribune.com           
Forgot Password
or if you have not registered since 8/22/18
Click Here to Create an Account
Close

4 county wrestlers move on to state

1 / 2
STATE BOUND: Stewart Mossholder, competing in Saturday’s semistate meet, is one of four Grant County wrestlers moving on to the IHSAA state finals.
2 / 2
ON TO STATE: Oak Hill’s Harper Dedman finished second at semistate in the 113-pound class and will move on to the IHSAA state wrestling finals.

By CHUCK LANDIS - clandis@chronicle-tribune.com

FORT WAYNE — No matter what happens next, nothing beats the thrill of getting a ticket punched for the IHSAA state wrestling finals.

Moments after securring his place with a second-round decision, Oak Hill 182-pounder Bradley Rosman jumped into the arms of coach Andrew King like he was shot from a cannon. Similar emotion releases came from three other Grant County wrestlers during the semistate tournament at Allen County War Memorial Coliseum, Fort Wayne.

“I felt I had accomplished what I’d been dreaming about,” Rosman said. “One of my goals my whole life is to go to state and I feel really happy about that.”

What made it more emotional was Rosman’s father Chris passed away following last year’s semistate when Bradley lost in the ticket round. Bradley said he knew Chris would have been thrilled he achieved his objective.

“He was on my mind the whole day,” Bradley said of his father. “Mission accomplished.”

Joining Rosman at Friday and Saturday’s state finals are two Oak Hill teammates, Harper Dedman and Stewart Mossholder, and Madison-Grant’s A.J. Jones. The four county wrestlers are the largest contingent since four also went to the 2005 finals which included Rosman’s brother Craig Rosman.

After punching their tickets, Dedman and Mossholder moved on to the finals and finished runners-up in their weight classes, while Rosman and Jones won consolation matches for third place. The Eagles would place fifth in the team standings, their best finish ever at semistate.

“I lost in the ticket round last year, it really motivated me,” said Dedman, who competed in the 113-pound class. “It’s incredible. I’ve dreamed of wrestling down at Bankers Life (Fieldhouse) since I was a little kid and it’s finally coming true.”

Dedman and Mossholder fell one step of becoming Oak Hill’s second semistate champion (Owen Perkins in 2016 was the first). Both lost to Huntington North wrestlers in the finals — Dedman 11-2 to Preston Teusch at 113 pounds and Mossholder was pinned by Charlie Agnew at 195.

Agnew was the same wrestler who deprived Mossholder of a state finals ticket in 2018 in a 6-2 decision. Mossholder fell behind early and never could get back on his feet to muster a counterattack before Agnew closed out the match in the third period.

“He’s tough, no doubt about it,” Mossholder said of Agnew. “I wrestled him last year in the first round and he’s strong and knew I had to be careful with what I did. I was down (5-0) going into the third and I felt like he gave me an opportunity, but he muscled right through it and worked out in his favor and once I was on bottom I was pinned.”

While Dedman and Tuesch have met many times growing up, the semistate was their first as high schoolers.

“I couldn’t really get off bottom and my attacks weren’t very good,” Dedman said of facing Tuesch. “I wasn’t wrestling too great in the finals, but you have to give him props.”

Rosman pinned Garrett’s Austin Leach in the consolation match after dropping a 5-2 decision to Jay County’s Mason Winner, the eventual champion, in the semifinals. Jones needed 23 seconds to pin Monroe Central’s Logan Swallow for third place after dropping a 4-1 decision to Yorktown’s Holden Parsons, who went on to win the 285-pound class.

Of all the county wrestlers, Jones had the most dramatic match to get to state. After trailing in the third period, he came back to beat Carroll, Fort Wayne’s Reeve Muncie 4-2 in overtime. Jones was just able to keep his feet inbounds as a put Muncie on the mat for the winning takedown.

Two local wrestlers who wrestled at state last year won’t make a return trip. Mississinewa’s Kyler Funk dropped a 5-2 decision to NorthWood’s Jake Lone, also a state finalist in 2018. Marion’s Victor Lee did not make weight at 195, and he had been the top-rated wrestler according to indianamat.com and third in the state.

“We worked hard all summer and this is what we came here for,” Marion coach Lonnie Johnson said. “It’s not only disappointing to me but it’s disappointing to the coaching staff, the principal, AD, every person in Marion Giants nation.”

Funk was twice assessed 1-point penalties for striking Lone’s head, the second time after he had tied the match.

“Jake Lone is No. 1 in our semistate and ranked very highly in our state,” Ole Miss coach Kurt Funk said. “He placed in the state last year and we knew we’d have our hands full, and we were gonna have to wrestle well. He made mistakes in the match but hopefully learned from them and can come back strong in his senior year.”