BELLEVILLE – Alton's wrestling team sent a total of six wrestlers to next weekend's IHSA Class 3A Individual Sectional tournament at Normal Community at Saturday's IHSA Class 3A Regional at Belleville West.
Edwardsville is sending 10 individuals to the sectional. In addition, the Tigers, by winning the team title, qualified for the IHSA Class 3A Team Sectional, set for Feb. 25; the site is yet to be determined.
Alton wrestlers who went through included Connor Broyles, third at 120; Tim McCarvey, third at 126; Phyllip DeLoach, first at 145; Nicholas DeLoach, first at 152; Qiante Wagner, first at 160; and Darian Pierson, second at 285.
“We'll take it,” said Redbird coach Eric Roberson. “Our kids really battled all day, and I thought it was going to be a battle. I'm proud of the kids' effort. What we need to do now is get the kids going to the sectional ready to go.”
The Tigers won the title with 165 points, ahead of the Redbirds' 156. The host Maroons took third with 101 points, followed by Granite City with 96.5, Collinsville with 87.5, O'Fallon with 76, Quincy with 61.5, Belleville East with 54 and Danville with 19.
Edwardsville wrestlers who qualified for the sectional included Jaleen Yancey, second at 106; Ben Schluter, first at 113; Tanner Ambry, first at 120; Rafael Roman, third at 138; James Ziegler, second at 152; Chris Prosser, third at 160; Mason Taylor, third at 170; James Watters, third at 182; Cameron Blair, second at 195; and Bobby Burnside, third at 285.
It wasn't an easy task, though, thought Tiger coach Jon Wagner. “Their kids came out hard and took a couple from us we didn't expect,” Wagner said. “We knew going in they had some good wrestlers and we expected it was going to be tough.
“Our depth paid off. We've got some pretty solid guys on the team. What we need to do know is get some things tightened up and get ready for the sectional and then the state tournament (which is set for Feb. 19-21 at Champaign-Urbana's State Farm Center).”
Feeney, 56, is a native of Granite City and graduated from Granite City South in 1978. He was a part-time writer for the old Granite City Journal from 1979-84 before attending Eastern Illinois University in Charleston,
from which he earned his BA in journalism in 1988. He has worked for newspapers in Sikeston, Mo., Rocky Mount, N.C., Seneca, S.C. and in Charleston-Mattoon. He also worked for the old St. Clair County Suburban