Monday, March 3, 2008

Wrestling notebook: Amputee's efforts earn crowd's hearty support

Saturday, March 1, 2008 2:56 AM
By Jeremy McLaughlin


NEAL C. LAURON dispatch
Chris Canty, left, of DeSales reacts to losing a 145-pound match to Dustin Fraley of Miami Trace in Division II.

Carter, a quadruple amputee, won his opening match Thursday but lost twice yesterday and was eliminated from the 103-pound Division II tournament. After a 5-3 loss signaled Carter's exit, fans stood and applauded for a full two minutes.

Later, before the evening session, the senior was honored with a video tribute on the scoreboard and got a second, even longer ovation.

"It's been a trip," Carter said. "I'll never forget it. I'll probably brag about it my whole life. I'll probably wake up every morning and remember these last two days and what an adventure it was, all the blood, sweat and tears it took to get to this tournament."

Pleasant came into the Division III tournament looking to avenge a narrow loss to Troy Christian last year (154-151.5). Through the quarterfinal round, the Spartans were in good shape. Pleasant led Troy Christian 75-70 and both had six semifinalists.

But the evening session was a disaster for the Spartans. They lost five of their semifinal matches, two of them to Troy Christian, and are left with no chance of making up a 46-point deficit. They dropped to third behind Monroeville.

"It was a tough round," coach Doug Short said.

Defending champion Jedd Moore at 152 is Pleasant's only finalist.

Ready for No. 1
West Jefferson senior Jim Householder focused on two goals all season: get to the Division III 119-pound final and wrestle the top-ranked wrestler in the nation.

He'll do both today. Householder won 10-3 in a semifinal against Mike Kovach of Bedford Chanel. He goes against Logan Stieber of Monroeville tonight.

"(Stieber) is the one I've worked for," Householder said. "The last two years I've worked to get to his level, and it's what I've trained for. Win or lose, I know I earned my way to that final."

Get the party started
Central District wrestlers will kick off the first three Division III finals. Spencer Pierce of North Union faces Stieber's younger brother, Hunter, at 103. Tyler Heminger of Northmor goes against another Monroeville wrestler, Cam Tessari, at 112, followed by Householder.

Zach Nelson of Madison Plains will be in the 145 final. Nelson, a 2006 champion, will face Zach Toal of Troy Christian, a 2007 champion.

DeSales heavyweight John Hiles, a projected champion in Division II, lost a quarterfinal match 2-1 to Adam Walls of St. Paris Graham. A stalling call late in the first period that gave Walls a point was the difference.

Hiles rebounded with two consolation wins, including a pin. Two wins today and he would place third.

State of the state
St. Paris Graham has six finalists in Division II and all must win for it to tie the record for individual champions. Cleveland West set the mark more than 50 years ago. St. Paris Graham leads second-place Oak Harbor by 100 points.

Lakewood St. Edward leads in Division I with 119 points. Massillon Perry is second, trailing by 40. Westerville North is fourth with 51.

Individually, Tony Jameson of Austintown-Fitch advanced to the Division I 145 final. He is looking to become Ohio's 16th four-time champion.

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