MENTOR, Ohio — Clay freshman Kevin Contos entered the weekend with a record of 31-7 on the season. When it was over, he had added four more wins and a district championship in the OHSAA Division I Mentor district tournament at Mentor High School.
Contos defeated Tristan Brady of Elyria 7-3 in the final of the 152-pound division to become the only Toledo-area wrestler to win a district title. He got out to a good start, scoring a takedown in the opening moments of the match and holding a 2-1 lead after one round.
With a 5-1 lead in the third and final round, Contos gave up a takedown but quickly got the two points back with a takedown of his own to stretch the lead back to four at 7-3.
“I knew I couldn’t let him score again,” Contos said. “I could tell he was tired after the first takedown and he didn’t want any more after the second.”
The freshman won by pin in his first match and in the semifinals, with a 6-1 win over Trevor Begin of Midview in the quarterfinals. Contos now adds the district title to his championship from the Clay sectional. With the win, he advances to the state tournament in Columbus, which begins Thursday at the Jerome Schottenstein Center on the campus of the Ohio State University.
“This an amazing feeling,” Contos said. “It’s one that I want to keep happening and I will try to do it again at state tournament next week.”
The top four wrestlers in each weight class advance to the state meet.
Two other Clay wrestlers, Nick Henneman (138) and Garret Anderson (145), were also in the district finals, but both lost their championship matches. Henneman lost 9-7 in overtime to Sam Dover of St. Edward and Anderson lost 5-3 to Josh Jaeckin of Olmsted Falls.
Henneman suffered a cut in his match when he was headbutted just seconds into the overtime period. After a lengthy delay to get his back out on the mat, the match continued Dover scored the only two points of the period.
“I worked too hard to not finish the match,” Henneman said. “I wouldn’t say it was frustrating, it was more painful. But that’s part of wrestling, it’s tough.”
Eleven other local wrestlers also advanced to next week’s state tournament: Caleb Yates (113), Cody Moosman (120), and Nick Schneider (132) of Anthony Wayne; Dru Hernandez (160) and Zach Bryant (182) of Findlay; Brian Bethel (152) of Springfield; Nick Daly (285) of Clay; Ricardo Aviedo (106), Moises Guillen (138) and Josh Herhold (160) of Perrysburg, and Kyle Walsh (195) of Whitmer.
Clay finished third in the team standings with 106.5 points, while Perrysburg scored 94 points for fifth place. St. Edward had the best team total with 330.5 points.