Pine River net five all-state wrestlers
LEROY — Chase Morrison (42-8) placed at 285 pounds for Pine River to highlight the Bucks’ weekend at The Palace of Auburn Hills Thursday through Saturday for the Division 4 individual state finals.
He was among the five Pine River wrestlers to place in the top eight.
Morrison, a junior, decisioned Richard Clees, of Adrian-Madison, 8-3 to open the tournament, but then lost 4-3 to Dave Robertson of New Lothrop. He blanked Stevie Suliman, of Manchester, 1-0. He then pinned Brad Gierman of Brown City in 4:32 and edged Bob Livrenois of Erie-Mason 5-4. In his final match, Morrison was pinned in 3:47 by Nick Burt of Addison.
“Chase had a real strong tournament,” Pine River coach Tim Jones said. “He got out there against the eventual finalist from New Lothrop. It was a tight one-point match that could have gone either way. Chase saw the boy from Addison who was ranked second all year long. He wrestled him in a tough match. That was a great weekend for Chase.”
Andrew Park (32-9), a freshman, placed fifth at 103 pounds. He pinned Tommy Malloy, of New Lothrop, in 5:35 and pinned Ash Stokes, of Marcellus, in 2:58. In the semifinals, he lost on a pin in 48 seconds to Seth Harvey, of Addison, then dropped a 6-2 decision to Tommy Malloy of New Lothrop. Park won his last match 6-3 over Mason Rife of Webberville.
“It was a breakout freshman year for him,” Jones said. “We knew he was going to be pretty decent. He likes the big atmosphere. He had a nice draw down there and he made it work for him. His match for fifth and sixth was a huge win. For him to win that match was probably one of the stronger matches we had all weekend.”
Jeff Gross (37-13), a senior, placed seventh at 171 pounds. He decisioned Clayton Brockway of Hudson 29-20, lost a major decision 11-2 to Shane Rodenburg, decisioned Joe Fisher of New Lothrop 3-1, was pinned by James Cryderman of St. Ignace in 4:58 and decisioned Daniel Waterman of Constantine 7-4.
“A state qualifier last year, he had a couple of tough matches down there last year,” Jones said. “His goal was to get down there and place. It was a big improvement for him in the seventh-place match to win it. He’s a two-sport all-state athlete for Pine River. Those don’t come along that often.”
Tyler McCurry (43-12) a senior at 189, also placed seventh. He opened the finals with a pin in 5:08 over Zev Powell of Marcellus. He lost to Charlie Robertson of Sand Creek on a pin in 3:16, but came back to decision Tyler Grames of Hudson Area 4-0. Then he lost a decision 2-0 to Adam Lammers of Springport and ended his match with a 9-3 win over Gabe Zimmer of Ravenna.
“He had one tough loss early,” Jones said. “But to come back in that seventh-place match, we were proud of the way he came out and wrestled in the final match of his senior year.”
Also seventh was Jordan Stone (47-11), a senior, at 112 pounds. He lost to Brendan Abrigo of Manchester 10-2 in the first round. He then beat Dayton Vanderploeg of Martin by injury default. Stone lost a 4-2 decision to Connor Krupp of New Lothrop, but then pinned Rogelio Segndo of White Pigeon in 2:58.
“He had a really tough first-round match with a boy from Manchester who beat him at the team finals last week,” Jones said. “We knew that was going to be a tough match. He didn’t break down but came out and wrestled as tough as he could. The seventh-place match was probably the best one he had in weeks.”