The 15th annual Bill Evans Memorial Wrestling Invitational at Battle Creek Central on Saturday was filled with lots of successes, excitement, great competition and honors.
•Lakeview won the prestigious 15-school event, compiling 265.5 points. Second was Linden with 200.5, third was Coldwater with 177.5, fourth was Bronson with 168, fifth was Harper Creek with 165, sixth was Battle Creek Central with 135, seventh was Pennfield with 125, tying for ninth was Lakeview “B” with 119, Marshall was 12th with 92.5, Maple Valley was 14th with 28 and Union City was 15th with 21.
•Lakeview 103-pound junior Brendan Stevens, the No. 1-ranked wrestler in the state in Division 1 according to michigangrappler.com, kept his perfect season intact by earning his weight crown and improving to 39-0. Stevens was named the event’s outstanding wrestler of the lower weights. Lakeview’s other weight class champ was 152-pounder Stephon Moody, while earning his 100th career victory during the tourney was Lakeview 112-pounder Lal Sang.
Lakeview’s Stephan Moody wrestles Marshall’s Justin Saari in the Bill Evans Memorial Invitational at Battle Creek Central on Saturday.,
• Each of the city’s four prep wrestling programs — Lakeview, BCC, Pennfield and Harper Creek — had at least one weight class champ apiece. Pennfield had first-place finishes by Dylan Huff at 119 pounds and Taylor Dean at 285; Harper Creek’s Jake Bishop won at 145; and BCC’s Jacob Taylor was the winner at 171 and was voted outstanding wrestler of the higher weights.
•Two other local schools also had weight class champs: Coldwater’s Josh Powers won at 125, and Bronson’s Brett Burtrum at 189.
•And, presenting medals during the end-of-meet awards ceremony were Tony Evans and his family. Tony Evans, son of the late Bill Evans — a longtime athletics coach and sports promoter and teacher in the Cereal City who passed away in 2003 — is a teacher and coach in the Lakeview district who is still involved in mentoring young wrestlers, and on Saturday he also got to watch his son compete for the Spartans at 130 pounds.
“My dad was a Bearcat through and through who graduated from Battle Creek Central … and it’s just very nice that the school here keeps honoring him with this tournament year after year. And today was especially nice for myself and my family, as my son got to be a part of wrestling in it, too,” Tony Evans said.
Lakeview coach Chris Dunham said he was very pleased with the way his team performed Saturday in winning the tourney title — in an event that comes just one week away from league meet competition and less than two weeks before MHSAA postseason action begins.
“It was awesome to see Brendan keep winning today, especially a couple of his tougher matches which should get him even more ready for the stronger postseason competition that’s to come, it was great to see Lal Sang win his 100th career match … and overall, what I was really pleased about was that my kids just keep on continuing to improve. They took it up another notch today, and it’s great to see we’re still progressing,” Dunham said.
Lakeview’s Stevens finished his day with a pin in his title match against East Lansing’s Benyamin Kamali, and noted that even though he’s ranked No. 1 in the state in his weight class and unbeaten on the campaign, he remains motivated to excel even further.
“I just think about last year at the state meet all the time, when I didn’t place at state, and that’s kind of given me a chip on my shoulder every time I go out there for a match this year,” Stevens said. “I think of that, and that motivates me … and today I wrestled pretty good after my first match and now I just want to continue to keep working hard and get back to state and do better there.”
Following is a list of all first-place finishers Saturday, along with top-six local finishers for each weight class:
EVANS TOP FINISHERS
103: 1-Brendan Stevens (Lakeview), 4-Chase Seeley (Lakeview B), 5-Terry Vette (Harper Creek), 6-Shuaib Aljabaly (Coldwater).
112: 1-Luke Zimmerman (Linden), 2-Daniel New (Lakeview B), 4-Kurtis Babcock (Pennfield), 5-Lal Sang (Lakeview), 6-Dakota Trimm (Harper Creek).
119: 1-Dylan Huff (Pennfield), 2-Mitch Coon (Harper Creek), 3-Patrick Thang (Lakeview), 4-Tyler Massey (Coldwater), 5-Kiefer Bartlett (Marshall), 6-Jacob Butters (Bronson).
125: 1-Josh Powers (Coldwater), 2-Hunter Peri (Harper Creek), 3-Wesley Disbro (Bronson), 4-Lal Lian (Lakeview B), 5-Anthony Barron (Lakeview), 6-Chris Hall (Marshall).
130: 1-Jonah Grimm (Mendon), 4-Donovan Marshall (BCC), 5-Mason Evans (Lakeview), 6-Brenner Beck (Harper Creek).
135: 1-Wyatt Cool (Mendon), 3-Brandon Rose (Lakeview), 4-Randall Linton (Coldwater), 6-Jameson Browne (BCC).
140: 1-Patrick Kerr (Linden), 2-Nooh Aljabaly (Coldwater), 3-Joe Ramos (Harper Creek), 4-Htay Thet (Lakeview), 6-Keshawn Canales (BCC).
145: 1-Jake Biship (Harper Creek), 2-Brennon Gooding (Lakeview), 3-David Erwin (Bronson), 6-Michael Davis (Pennfield).
152: 1-Stephon Moody (Lakeview), 3-Kenny Grayer (BCC), 5-Jesse Miller (Coldwater), 6-Justyn Jones (Lakeview B).
160: 1-Kamyab Kamali (East Lansing), 2-Jon Cox (Lakeview), 4-Mykal Kline (Bronson), 5-Zach Chehowski (Coldwater), 6-Van Hup (Lakeview B).
171: 1-Jacob Taylor (BCC), 2-Jukoada Sexton (Bronson), 4-Chase Gibson (Bronson), 5-Corey Dexter (Marshall).
189: 1-Brett Burtrum (Bronson), 2-James Ruanta (Lakeview), 4-Zach Gipple (Coldwater), 6-Adis Garza (BCC).
215: 1-Austin McNeill (Linden), 3-Matt Barrett (Lakeview B), 4-Cole Winters (Lakeview), 5-Nick Schwarz (Pennfield), 6-Colin Klein (Coldwater).
285: 1-Taylor Dean (Pennfield), 2-Joey Losinski (Bronson), 3-Owen Miller (Marshall), 5-Chris Powell (Harper Creek), 6-Austin Rutz (Coldwater).
Marshall 47, (at) Jackson Lumen Christi 31: The Redhawks picked up their 10th straight victory, led by Logan Kiessling with 13 points. Also for Marshall (12-1, 8-0 Interstate 8), Jill Konkle had nine points, five steals and five rebounds and Emily Delmotte had seven points and four rebounds.
Bronson 51, (at) Cassopolis 48 (Fri.): Skyler Sobeski netted 14 points, and Payton Robinson and Kinslea Blouin had 10 points apiece in the Vikings’ victory.
Following are highlights from Interstate Eight Conference matches from this past week:
Coldwater def. Pennfield: Top individuals for Coldwater were Shawn Johnson with 232-201, Buddy Bailey with 224-190 and Brady Omo with 188-194. Top individuals for Pennfield were Bailey Neal with 192, Max Jackson with 190 and Corie Gardiner with 175. Pennfield is now 0-6.
Lumen Christi def. Marshall: Top individuals for Marshall were Grey Gillett with 178-199, Brady Brisson with 188-172 and Mick Schaum with 169. Marshall is now 2-4, and Lumen Christi is 4-2.
Coldwater def. Parma Western. Top individuals for Coldwater were Johnson with 224, Bailey with 194 and Collin Outwater with 194. Coldwater is in first place in the league at 6-0.
Coldwater def. Pennfield: Top individuals for Coldwater were Patricia Neely with 175-224, Sadie Youse with 170-213 and Kira Mobley with 169. Top individuals for Pennfield were Kadee Bechman with 175-165, Megan Elwell with 146 and Tabitha Haskins with 136. Pennfield is now 0-6.
Lumen Christi def. Marshall. Top individuals for Marshall were Sara Parks with 169, Autumn Hazel with 141 and Houston Jones with 140. Marshall is now 2-4, and Lumen Christi is 3-3.
Coldwater def. Parma Western. Top individuals for Coldwater were Youse with 163 and Alysia Vanwormer with 158. Coldwater is now 5-1 and in second place in the I-8..
MONDAY, FEB. 2
• BOYS’ BASKETBALL: Lakeview at K-Central (rescheduled from Jan. 9), Mendon at Bronson
• GIRLS’ BASKETBALL: Lakeview at K-Central (rescheduled from Jan. 9), Burr Oak at Bellevue, Tekonsha at Climax-Scotts, Pittsford at Colon, Calhoun Christian at Maple Valley
• BOWLING: Galesburg-Augusta vs. Parchment at Continental, Coldwater at Jackson NW
TUESDAY, FEB. 3
• BOYS’ BASKETBALL: Calhoun Christian at Barry Co. Christian, Harper Creek at Lakeview, Schoolcraft at Pennfield, Quincy at Athens, Bellevue at Burr Oak, Climax-Scotts at Tekonsha, Colon at Pittsford, K-Christian at Delton Kellogg, Caledonia at Gull Lake, Homer at Springport, Union City at Concord
• GIRLS’ BASKETBALL: Barry Co. Christian at Calhoun Christian, Lakeview at Harper Creek, Pennfield at Schoolcraft, Mendon at Bronson, Sturgis at Coldwater, Delton Kellogg at K-Christian, Gull Lake at Stevensville-Lakeshore, Holt at Marshall, Quincy at Olivet
• BOYS’ SWIMMING: Harper Creek at Otsego
• WRESTLING: Quincy at Vandercook Lake
• BOWLING: Jackson NW at Marshall