BY WENDI REARDON PRICE
Clarkston News Sports Writer
Senior Jake Calvano and sophomore Conor Donahue made their first trip to the MHSAA Individual Wrestling Finals memorable as they placed in the top eight at the Palace of Auburn Hills, March 2-4.
“Jake and Conor becoming state placers was awesome,” said Freddie DeRamus, head coach for Clarkston Varsity Wrestling. “Jake joins his brother Chris on the wall. Conor is the first sophomore to place in the tourney since Nick Vandermeer. There were a lot of good things to take from this weekend.”
Donahue placed in sixth place in the 130-pound weight class.
He lost the fifth place match to Hunter Hohman from Lapeer, 5-3.
He opened the tournament with wins over Wayne Memorial’s Nick Daniels, 3-0; and Macomb Dakota’s Tyler Sanders, 6-4.
He lost his next two match against Detroit Catholic Central’s Kevon Davenport, 9-0; and Walled Lake Central’s Warren Stanfield, 10-2.
Calvano (152) finished in eighth place after a 3-1 loss in overtime to Holt’s Adam Hall, finishing his senior year with an overall 27-13 record.
He posted two wins during the finals over Grand Haven’s Bryan Batten, 7-5; and Oxford’s Trent Myre, with a fall, 1:27.
He lost to Dustin Solomon from Macomb Dakota, 3-2; and Nathan Atienza from Livonia-Franklin in a technical fall, 17-2. Atienza finished as state champion.
Sophomore Mac Hanselman made his second appearance at the finals and finished with an 1-2 record for an overall 33-13 record in the 112-pound weight class.
He defeated Holt’s Michael Thackthay in overtime with two points, 14-12.
“He was down five points going into the third period,” said DeRamus. “He tied the match up in the last 20 seconds and ended up winning in overtime. That said a lot about our three days in the Palace. We fought hard for every point win or lose.”
He lost to Hartland’s Corey Cavanaugh with a fall, 1:08; and Macomb Dakota’s Justin Tiburcio, 4-0.
Senior Jacob Rygielski finished the season being in the top 16 in the state in his first and final trip.
Rygielski (135) finished with a 35-16 record. He defeated Rockford’s Noah Anderson in his second match, 11-4. He lost his first match to John Glenn’s Anthony Gibson, 12-0; and his third match to Rockford’s Andy Hansen, 4-3.
“Jake and Mac didn’t medal but they wrestled with a lot of courage,” DeRamus added. “As a staff of course we want everyone to leave with something. All four wrestlers went into the Palace and wrestled tough. They really represented Clarkston Wrestling.”
BY WENDI REARDON PRICE