MISHAWAKA — Bellmont put up a strong effort for the two-day Al Smith Classic at Mishawaka last week, but a rally by Penn in the final round plus a bad break for the Braves — a broken hand suffered by junior 140-pounder Brooks Faurote — resulted in a narrow Kingsmen win, 208-205.
The Braves led going into the placement round, 188-181, over the Kingsmen. Bellmont's Busse brothers, Will at 152 and Brad at 189, came through with falls and heavyweight Daniel Meyer pinned Goshen's Eric Forrest in 2:24 to end the meet, but it wasn't enough.
"There's plenty of ways we could have got it done. The first thing — I'm not being arrogant — but Brooks (Faurote, 140) comes back and gets third in this tournament. That would have got us the team points that we needed, but there's other ways . We just came up a little short," said Bellmont coach Brent Faurote.
Brooks Faurote fell in the semi-finals Thursday morning 3-2 to Matt Rattay of Lawrence North, and suffered what appeared to be a broken hand in the match. He defaulted from there and finished with sixth place.
The Braves went one for three in the championship round, but lost two close matches as Ryley Hankenson scored two quick takedowns on defending state champ Drake Stein of Princeton before eventually falling 5-4 at 171, and Travis Thatcher, a 2009 Classic champ, lost 3-1 to Taylor Grubb of Prairie Heights in the 215-pound title match. Thatcher tried a double-leg shot on the well-built Grubb with 18 seconds left, missed, and Grubb countered with the winning takedown.
Penn won two titles, one expected and one not so much. Top-rated Alex Gregory took out Steven Rieker of Columbus East 5-1 in the 135-pound final, then at 145, Grant Anglemyer downed Prairie Heights Zach Beebe 10-6.
Penn also won consolation matches at 215 and heavyweight for key points.
"Something like this may help us to turn the corner," said Penn coach Brad Harper, who notes that he has 100 out for varsity wrestling at Penn.
Host Mishawaka did little in the placement round, taking third with 179 points while Lawrence North had a champ and two runners-up to score 166.6, beating Merrillville by seven points. Prairie Heights was sixth with two champs, Grubb and Travis Barroquillo at 130.
Brad Busse had Bellmont's only third place finish, avenging his first loss of the tourney to Warsaw's Ross Hoover by bear-hugging Hoover and dropping him flat in 3:31 in the 189 consolation final. Busse had four falls in seven wins.
'He finally opened up after the first match. He really turned it jup an notch and scored a lot of big wins, picked up a lot of slack," praised Bellmont captain Daniel Meyer.
"He's just a beast. He doesn't hold back. He's there and he's ready and not afraid to pull the trigger," stated BHS assistant coach Paul Gunsett.
"I started off slow. I didn't feel too well that first matcfh in the morning. I warmed up and got better and better. And any chance I had to pin, I was ready for that opportunity," noted Busse.
John Mahlan won 8-3 in the wrestlebacks over Columbus East's David Johnson, then fell in 2:11 to Taylor of Lake Central in the match for third at 160 pounds.
Hankenson hit a shuck and then a side-cradle on Stein on a move that was blown dead when Hankenson looked as though we would score nearfall points. Stein rode out Ryley in period two, then scored a takedown and rode again in period three for the close win.
"Ryley proved that he is right there with the very best," said Gunsett. "Not many people were expecting that. Those two could meet later."
Meyer finally broke up a close match with two takedowns in period two against Forrest. "I hit a switch and caught an arm, and just turned him," explained the senior on the winning move.
Will Busse pinned Kolat of Riley, lost a decision to Hays of Center Grove, then felled Penn's Mike Hummer in 54 seconds in what appeared to be a big win for the Braves at 152 as he finished fifth.
Anthony Stebing won 3-2 over Goshen's Pickard, lost 7-6 to Logan of Mishawaka, and fell 10-4 to Reynolds-Smith of Riley, finishing sixth at 145.
Bobby Keuneke finished 8th at 119.
"We did about as well as we could do," stated Coach Faurote.
Bellmont takes on Homestead Thursday and hosts the BHS Super Duals this coming Saturday.
AL SMITH CLASSIC
TEAM: 1. Penn 205, 2.Bellmont 202, 3. Mishawaka 179, 4. Law. North 166.5, 5. Merrillville 159.5, 6. P.Heights 147, 7. Center Grove 146.5, 8. Jimtown 127, 9. Col East 126.5, 10. S.B.Riley 114, 11. Law. Central 112.5, 12. Munster 105.5, 13. Lake Central 102.5, 14. Elk. Memorial 954.5, 15. Chesterton 93.5, 16.Princeton 86, 17. Goshen 83, 18. Warsaw 83, 19. Lowell 78, 20. Michigan City 66, Peru 66. (12 others).
103-1. Nathan Boston (LN) d. Marciano (Munster) 4-1; 2. Garza (Merilv) m.d. Fozo (Mish) 10-2; 5. Davis (Penn) p. Sharp (Per).
112-1. Jarred Brooks (War) m.d. Ferdig (Adams) 16-3; 3.Medina (Mun) d. Newkirk (LC) 4-1; 5. Sparks (LAN) m.d. Hamm (P.H.) 15-5.
119-1. Kyle Ayersman (LC) d. Boston (Lan) 7-0;3. Carmichael (CEG) d. Brutus (LAC) 4-2, )T; 5. Loe (Per) d. Boots (P.H.) 6-2.
125-Layton Binion (Mish) d. Griessemer (Prin) 8-6; 3. Nick Crumme (Jim) d. Reiker (Col) 10-8; 5. Chapple (Penn) p. Simpson (Roc) 3:11.
130-1.T. Barroquillo (P.H.) d. Wisler (Mish) 4-1; 3. Johnson (LA) d. C. Crumme (Jim) 5-2; 5. Bogle (E. Mem) d. Manspeaker (Penn) 6-4.
135-1. Alex Gregory (Penn) d. Rieker (Col) 5-1; 3. Katsafaros (Che) p. Maacri (Mish) 1:23; 5. Robers (E. Mem) d. Slough (Jim) 7-5.
140-1. Brad Wartman (LC) d. M. Rattay (L. N.) 1-0; 3. Felske (MIC) d. Mavros (Loe) 5-1; 5. Ginter (Penn) by default over Brooks Faurote (B).
145-1. G. Anglemyer (Penn) d. Beebe (P.H.) 10-6; 3.Avalos (Mer) by def. over Logan (Mish); 5. Reynolds-Smith (Rily) d. Anthony Stebing (Bel) 10-4.
152-1. Matteson (E.Mem) p. Marshall (Mish) :51; 3. Hays (CEG) d. Schroder (Roc) 4-2; 5. Will Busse (Bel) p. Hummer (Penn) :54.
160-1. A.Quiroz (Che) d. Mappes (CEG) 8-3; 3.Taylor (LAC) p. John Mahlan (Bel) 2:11; 5. McCloud (Ril) d. Johnson (COL) 6-4 OT.
171-Drake Stein (Prin) d. Ryley Hankenson (Bel) 5-4; 3. Joe Peco (Hob) d. Crocker (Low) 7-0; 5. Winkauf (Jim) m.d. Wanrer (CEG) 13-3.
189-1. Kourtney Berry (Mer) p. Dillonbeck (Gosh) 4:47; 3. Brad Busse (Bel) p. Hoover (War) 3:51; 5. Haskett (LAN) d. Adams (Jim) 6-4.
215-1. Taylor Grubb (P.H.) d. Travis Thatcher (Bel) 3-1; 3. Reagan (Penn) d. Nickson (Mer) 4-2; 5. Seaman (Mun) p. Daniels (Gosh) 2:23.
185-1. Daniel Meyer (Bel) p. Eric Forrest (Jim) 4:14; 3. Maggart (Penn) d. Dozier (Ril) 2-1; 5. Biancardi (LC) d. Van Lul (Cal) 2-1.