The Rockford wrestling team hosted a double dual with Detroit Catholic Central, Grand Haven, and Hesperia on Wednesday, Dec. 21. The Rams took on OK Red conference foe Grand Haven before wrestling the Shamrocks of Detroit Catholic Central (DCC).
Senior leadership and a pair of 2-1 decisions helped to propel the Rams to a dual meet victory against Grand Haven. Senior Cullen Maksimowski battled Garrett Young to a 0-0 tie after the first four minutes of their match at 125 pounds. Young escaped early in the third period to gain a 1-0 lead. A late takedown by Maksimowski gave Rockford the decision.
Defending state champion and second ranked senior Austin Scogg struggled against Grand Haven’s Dakota Juarez. Scogg scored a reversal in the second period and then held on for a 2-1 victory. Juarez, who is ranked fourth, scored his lone point in the third period with an escape.
All six seniors wrestling for Rockford won their matches. Tyler VanRooyen easily defeated Chris Tebeau with a second-period technical fall in the 130-pound match. Trent Boyer jumped up to 140 pounds and downed Grand Havens’ Luke Averill, taking a 13-3 major decision. At 160 pounds, Dan Apkarian added a major decision of his own when he beat Drew Ellingbe 11-3. Robby Gorton (189 pounds) won 8-3 over Matt Mulcay.
These six wins helped bring the Rams to a 37-23 victory over the Buccaneers, improving their conference record to 2-0.
The second dual of the evening pitted the Rams against Division I’s top team, DCC. The powerhouse Shamrocks won 13 of 14 matches to easily down the 10th ranked Rams. Rockford’s sole win was at 103 pounds when Steven Jendritz scored a 12-4 major decision over Parker O’Brien.
“Grand Haven was the team we needed to beat tonight,” said Rams Head Coach Brian Richardson. “They’re a well-coached team, and my kids busted their tails to beat them.”