State-streeters prepare for Banker's Life in Indy
Kaine Luginbill (right) leads AC as one of two state competitors. Bellmont brings three to the mix. (Photo by Jim Hopkins)
"Out of the three kids, two got their best possible draws," stated Bellmont coach Brent Faurote after reviewing the IHSAA State Finals pairings.
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Bellmont will send three to state Friday and Adams Central two, and four of the five have decent paths, and the fifth, BHS senior Logan Neher at 145, has been wrestling at such a high level that is definitely not a stretch for him to go out and beat the No. 4 rated Isaac Rentas of Merrillville.
"The bottom line, a kid has got to go in and make it his night. Neher did take out the No. 7 kid Saturday, and it was a convincing win," pointed out the coach.
Neher avenged an earlier loss Saturday to Jake Weimer of East Noble, ousting Weimer from the field with a 13-5 major win.
"Logan has that confidence right now. He can get it done."
"Realistically, we're underdogs in all there matches," added Faurote.
The good news out of the Adams Central camp is that senior Derek Ellinger is recovering from a sprained ankle suffered in the 138-pound championship match at the Coliseum.
"Trainers looked at it, and they are both confident that they can tape it good. He'll be back on the mat at least two days this week.,” said Schultz.
Ellinger is rated No. 13 overall, and he faces No. 15 Wyatt Seng, 29-6 from Evansville Mater Dei.
AC junior Kaine Luginbill, readying for his second state finals, is ranked No. 16, and takes on No. 15 ranked Michael Bates of South Bend Washington.
"Both of our guys should be in those matches. We didn't draw a monster guy. Both of those draws are okay with us. We'll wrestle those and go from there."
After finishing fourth at semistate, Bellmont frosh Bryce Baumgartner drew a semi-state champ, but did not get one of the top-rated guys.
"Bryce actually drew into the best semistate he could have. He was looking at drawing the No. 1 kid, the returning state champ, or drawing another top kid. He's got Koontz from Edgewood, ranked in the top 12, but not a returning place winner," said Faurote.
Indianamat.com ranked Baumgartner ninth a few weeks back, and Koontz No. 14.
BHS frosh Jon Becker did almost as well. "Becker could have ended up with the No. 2, No. 4 or No. 8, and he drew No. 8. That was the best he could have drawn," said Faurote of Austin Holmes, 37-2, of Hamilton Southeastern.
"We have three kids that have never been there before, so that it will be a neat thing for them," said Faurote.
"We expect to have some butterflies, but they've got to know that it's a six-minute match, like all the other matches they've been in there this year."