DG North Takes Second at DG South Invite
By Curt Herron
One week after finishing second to a fellow West Suburban Conference Silver Division team in a tournament, Downers Grove North turned in the same showing.
After taking second to Proviso West at last week's Hinsdale South Tournament, the Trojans were runner-ups to Hinsdale Central at Saturday's Downers Grove South Mustang Invite.
The similarities didn't stop there, however, as three Downers North individuals who won titles at Hinsdale South duplicated the feat at the nine-team Downers South meet.
In addition, a total of 10 Trojans placed among the top four finishers in their weight classes in both events, with the chief difference being one less title won this weekend.
Jimmy Nehls (130), Maxx Lozano (135) and Zach Lommatzsch (189) each won their second tournament title of the season while Cullen Cummings (125) just missed getting his first.
Coach Chris McGrath's Trojans also received third-place performances from Nico Hesslau (103), Dave Tessiatore (140), Mario Lozano (145) and Jake Styve (215).
Mike Gastedello (160) and Justin Novatny (285) settled for fourth place while Jesse Spaargaren (152) and Brendan Johnson (171) fell one a win shy of the third-place match.
Those efforts helped the Trojans to finish with 175 points, which was 20 better than third-place Batavia but was 43.5 points behind the champion Red Devils.
Just a night earlier, Downers North rallied late to edge Hinsdale in a WSC Silver dual meet, providing themselves with momentum and the Red Devils with some extra motivation.
It also created a situation where a few individuals from the two schools had to square off again for the second straight day, which resulted in some interesting results.
Nehls opened with two falls before facing Hinsdale Central's Ernest Battaglia again and the third-ranked Trojan captured a 7-3 victory in the 130 title match.
"I wrestled the same kid that I did last night and it was another close match," Nehls said. "I feel like I wrestled a little better today. Last night I was tired and today I felt a lot better.
"I've started the season off pretty well and seen solid competition and I'm looking forward to the next couple of weeks. My mission this year is to win state and I'm going to do what it takes.
"We had a couple of rough duals against Mundelein and Oak Park but we came together big in our dual meet with Hinsdale Central. Everyone wrestled well and I think we're going to go on a roll."
Maxx Lozano advanced to the 135 finals with a fall and a decision and then had a battle on his hans before claiming a 3-1 win over East Aurora's Hector Ruiz.
"Winning this title was really nice," Lozano said. "It's the second tournament that I've won this year and this is a tough tournament and the kid that I wrestled from East Aurora is pretty good.
"I definitely wrestled my heart out all day and I don't think that I could have wrestled any better. I'm very pleased with my start this season and our team is also competing very well so far.
"We lost to Oak Park last week but bounced back and beat Hinsdale Central last night for a huge momentum swing. We're pretty confident in ourselves and whether we win or lose, we keep battling."
Lommatzsch saw his season-long pin streak snapped when he settled for a 7-0 decision over Hinsdale Central's Andrew Pyle in another rematch in the 189 finals.
"I'm pretty excited so far but there's always room for improvement," Lommatzsch said. "And our team really pulled together in our win over Hinsdale Central last night.
"All of us on the team are really good friends and we're always hanging out because we've been wrestling together since we were in elementary school.
"Our team has really been coming together. We worked hard in the offseason and we've been working hard in the practice room every day and it's starting to pay off for us."
In the 125 championship match, Hinsdale Central's Matt Freyn avenged a tough defeat from the night before when he pulled out a 2-1 victory over Cummings.
Tessiatore won a major decision and got a pin to reach the 140 semifinals, where he fell 12-3 to the eventual champ, Boylan's second-ranked Blaise Butler.
After winning his next match with a decision, North's other champion at Hinsdale South captured a 3-0 win over Bolingbrook's Antonio Govea for third place.
Hesslau beat Hinsdale Central's Marco Del Rosario on Friday, lost to him 2-1 in their opener on Saturday and then beat him 3-1 in the 103 third place match.
Mario Lozano fell 6-4 in his opener at 145 to eventual runnerup Alex Anaya of Downers South but took third after winning 5-2 over Bolingbrook's Sean Thomas.
After getting pinned by eventual 215 champ Brian Allen of Hinsdale Central, Styve won his next three matches, capped by a fall in 5:52 over Bloom's Henry Tampson.
Gastedello got pinned in the 160 semifinals by eventual champ Willia Anaya of Downers South and then won a decision before falling 6-2 to Bloom's Dylan Findley.
And Novatny won a close decision in the wrestlebacks before getting pinned in 1:24 by Boylan's Jake Armellani in the third place match for the heavyweights.