Brooks Faurote, according to the Indianamat.com IHSAA State Wrestling preview, is the field's best chance to stop three-time state champ Jason Tsirtsis from matching the four state title resume of his older brother, Alex.
And that from a group which doesn't exactly gush about the Bellmont wrestling program, though statistics don't lie, the Braves are, have been, and will be the best in northeast Indiana. Look it up!
The BHS senior is one of four Bellmonters set for Friday's opening round at Banker's Life Fieldhouse. All four come in as semistate champs and will face fourth-place finishers from other semistates. One win puts a wrestler into the placement derby on Saturday.
Seniors Ben Baker at 195, Bobby Keuneke and 120 and junior Brad Busse at 182 will also be going for a spot on the podium for the Braves. South Adams has three wrestlers, including senior semistate champ Todd Batt at 132, as well as frosh Sawyer Miller at 106 and junior LJ Moser at 113. Adams Central will be represented by senior Chantz Luginbill at 160 pounds.
Faurote, rated 2nd at 145 to Tsirtsis, is 139-25 for his career, with 83 falls, putting him in the top 10 in wins and falls at BHS. Tsirtsis, of Crown Point, is 38-0 this year to the 43-1 of Faurote, whose only loss was to 138-pound state favorite Devon Jackson of Yorktown in the first week of the season. Faurote and Tsirtsis, rated 8th in the nation, will meet in the Saturday semi-finals, if both wrestlers win their first two matches.
Faurote will face 32-14 Alex Katsafaros of Chesterton, a sophomore, in the Friday test. While Faurote won the Al Smith Invitational title in late December, Katsafaros took seventh in that meet.