FARGO, N.D. — The tradition continues.
Dylan Shawver (113 pounds) and Mick Burnett (120) added to Elyria’s continued success at nationals by reaching the final day of the Cadet Freestyle Tournament on Sunday.
In a tournament with 1,153 wrestlers, both Pioneers will finish in the top six. That gives the Pioneers an All-American five years in a row and six of the last eight years.
“I wouldn’t say there’s pressure since we’ve had so many guys come down here and place,” Burnett said. “It’s definitely a hard thing to do.
“Tradition helps us because we come down here and expect to place at this tournament. We’re not known as the underdog. We’re usually somewhere near the top.”
Burnett earned his All-American status in his first appearance at nationals. He opened the tournament with wins over regional champ Jack Svihel of Minnesota and Super 32
All-American Jagger Condomitti of Pennsylvania on Day 1 and continued Sunday with a quarterfinal win over Illinois state champion Jerome Lindsey.
Colorado state champion Dominic Serrano, ranked 17th in the nation, ended Burnett’s winning streak with a 6-4 decision in the semifinals.
Burnett will wrestle for fifth after falling by a point to Oklahoma state champion Caleb Tanner in the consolation semifinal.
Shawver, who knocked off a Greco-Roman and Freestyle state champion in Jaxon Smith of Georgia on Day 1 and then knocked off a regional runner-up and state runner-up in Nebraska’s Maxx Mayfield in the quarterfinals, had a similar day.
While national folkstyle champion and United World Wrestling (formerly Fila) All-American Noah Surtin of Illinois got him in the semifinals, Shawver became an All-American for the second year in a row. He’ll wrestle for fifth after falling to returning All-American and New Jersey state champ Anthony Clark in the consolation semifinals.
“It’s just about focusing on your match and worrying about that,” Shawver said. “It means a lot to be All-American. It shows how much I’ve worked. Elyria has made me better because the coaches watch over you and guide you to do the right stuff.”
So what if their success will mean opponents will be that much more eager to beat them?
“Unlike some people, I like it,” Burnett said. “I like to be the one that’s being chased. It makes me go harder. There’s someone that will always be chasing me. It pushes me to go harder.”
“I just need to wrestle harder and strive for higher achievements,” he said.
Bryce Allison (100) saw his day end early in Cadet Freestyle when he was pinned by Oklahoma’s Eli Griffin two rounds from placing.
At the Junior National tournament, Elyria’s Josh Breeding (132) was the only Lorain County wrestler to reach Day 2.
After building an eight-point lead to start his first match, Breeding lost 14-10 to Michael Gunther of Illinois.
They were the last points scored. He beat Missouri’s Mitchell Bohlken, Michigan’s Corbyn Munson and Arizona state runner-up Angelo Pool by a combined 30-0. None of the three matches went longer than 35 seconds.
“That first match taught me to wrestle the whole match,” Breeding said. “Now that have that first match past me, I’m just going to keep moving forward. I think being here really helps. I feel like I’m on a roll right now.”
Contact Brad Bournival at 329-7135 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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