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Massey scores All-Ohio honors for Woodridge

By MICHAEL LEONARD Sports Editor Published: March 19, 2017 12:00 AM
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Columbus -- Results from the Division II state wrestling tournament might indicate the best season in the history of Woodridge wrestling ended with a whimper.

Woodridge coach Mike Massey will have none of that. He knows the ups and downs of the state tournament are too hard to predict.

Besides, Massey also is one proud father.

Bulldog junior David Massey earned Woodridge's first All-Ohio spot in years, as he took sixth place at 126 pounds. The state tournament took place March 9 to 11 at Value City Arena in Columbus.

Senior 138-pounder Eli Yoho and junior 170-pounder Spencer Robinson each finished 1-2 at states and off the podium.

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The Woodridge wrestlers finished with 13 team points, tying them for 31st place in the Division II team race. St. Paris Graham won the Division II team title for the 17th straight year with 232.5 points.

David Massey began the tournament with a dominant win, scoring a 9-2 win over Bellbrook's Ben Sherill.

Both Masseys knew the key match would come against Ashland's Matthew Taylor in the quarterfinals. Taylor eliminated David Massey in the consolation bracket at last year's tournament.

"We knew he had to beat Taylor," coach Massey said. "We knew David had to go out there, try to keep it close and hit something big late."

He definitely hit something big late. Trailing in the third period against Taylor, Massey was able to chinwhip Taylor onto his back. He got the pin in 5:49 to advance to the semifinals and secure his first All-Ohio spot.

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"David always believes," coach Massey said after the win over Taylor. "I know he believes he can win tonight. too. Right now, he's trying to think of a way to beat [CVCA's Jordan] Decatur."

Massey's match with Decatur was a rematch of the sectional final at St. Vincent-St. Mary. However, Massey had no better luck this time, as he was pinned in 1:49. Decatur went on to win the Division II state title at 126 pounds.

Massey had a bit of a rough morning March 11. He lost 6-1 to Graham's Jeffrey Thomas in the consolation semifinal and then fell 3-1 to Licking Valley's Addison Fogle.

The younger Massey was lukewarm on his final place.

"I feels good to be All-Ohio," David Massey said. "It kind of sucks that I just lost two matches."

Coach Massey said his son's season was a big success.

"His goal was to get All-Ohio and he accomplished that," coach Massey said. "We're going to get back at it and I know he'll have some higher goals next season."

Meanwhile, Yoho's goal of winning the state title fell apart in the quarterfinals.

Yoho looked solid in his first match, as he beat Ashland's Landon Plank 9-3 to advance.

"You can't let anyone slide," Yoho said. "They want it as much as you. When it comes down to it, I know I've worked as much as the other guys. I put 80 days in the summer. I know I've put the work in. It's one period, one match at a time."

In the quarterfinal, Yoho looked like he was in command of his match with Steubenville's Anthony Rice. Leading 7-3 with less than 10 seconds left, Yoho's first All-Ohio spot seemed like a lock.

However, Young got a takedown in the waning seconds and referee's awarded him two backpoints. Despite Massey's protests, the call stood, giving Young a 7-6 win and sending Yoho to the consolation bracket.

"That kid did to Eli what David did to Taylor," coach Massey said.

The frustration continued for Yoho in the consolations, as he frequently shot on Carrollton's Justin Shaw, only to get countered. Shaw caught Yoho on his back in the third period and eliminated him with a 10-1 major decision.

"You see that all the time," Massey said. "Kids lose a match they're not supposed to lose in the quarterfinals and then they can't make it back."

While lamenting the end of Yoho's high school career, Massey was proud to note it won't be the end of Yoho's wrestling career. Yoho has committed to continue his academic and wrestling careers at Mercyhurst University in Erie, Penn.

Meanwhile, Robinson got stuck with a bit of a tough draw, as he faced All-Ohioan Keysean Amison in his first match. Amison won a 9-0 major decision and went on to take fifth place at 170 pounds.

Robinson rebounded well, as he scored a 12-2 major decision win over Carrollton's Brenton Miller.

"That's the best I've seen him wrestle all year," coach Massey said.

Needing a win secure his first All-Ohio place, Robinson ran into his nemesis -- St. Vincent-St. Mary's David Heath. Heath won a 6-1 decision and went on to take third place.

"Spencer still hasn't really reached his potential," coach Massey said. "I hope this gives him a taste of what it means to be successful."

Email: mleonard@recordpub.com

Phone: 330-541-9442

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