EAST LANSING, MI. – A slew of California wrestlers competed at the Michigan State Open to kickstart the 2018-19 college wrestling season. Many wrestlers, especially those redshirting or first-year athletes for their respective universities, participated in the freshman and sophomore division. Those that have redshirted or have been part of the varsity squad in previous seasons grapple in the open division.
Redshirt-sophomore Kenneth Moore (Northern Illinois/Hoover HS) lead the way for California wrestlers as he won 165-weight class in the open division. In the championship finals, Moore, defeated fellow teammate, Caden McWhirter, 4-3. Moore and McWhirter wrestled each other at the Northern Illinois wrestle-offs with Moore winning the match 4-2 in overtime. In the semifinal round, Moore defeated Californian Jeremy Thomas of the University of Oklahoma, 3-1 in the first overtime period.
Alex Felix (Ohio State/Gilroy HS) wrestled to a championship title at 141-pounds in the freshman and sophomore division. The Buckeye freshman posted three falls in the championship bracket, before, disposing of Edinboro’s P.J. Gohn 3-1 in the semifinal round. In the championship round, Felix and fellow Buckeye teammate Quinn Kinner forfeited against each other.
Competing unattached at 149-pounds, Peyton Omania (Michigan State/DeLaSalle), was triumphant in reaching the championship bout in the freshman and sophomore division. Omania dismantled the competition as he outscored his first three opponents 36-1. However, he fell to Sammy Sasso of Ohio State 10-3 in the championship match.
Redshirt freshman Jeremy Thomas (University of Oklahoma/Calvary Chapel) also placed in the open division at 165-pounds. After losing to Kenneth Moore of Northern Illinois in the semifinal round, Thomas won two additional matches in the consolation bracket to place third. He capped his day with a fall over Blake Montrie of Central Michigan in the third-place bout.
Redshirt junior McCoy Kent (Northern Illinois/Enochs HS) placed fourth at 149-pounds.
Redshirt sophomore Justin Thomas (University of Oklahoma/Calvary Chapel) placed fifth at 157-pounds.
Redshirt freshman Anthony Mantanona (University of Oklahoma/Palm Desert HS) placed fourth at 174-pounds.
Redshirt sophomore Christian Rebottaro (Michigan State/Monte Vista Christian) placed fifth at 285-pounds.
Freshman Matt Vinci (Northwestern University/Cathedral Catholic) participated in the freshman and sophomore division and placed fourth at 125-pounds.
Freshman Izzak Olejnik (Northern Illinois/Bakersfield HS) placed fourth at 157-pounds in the freshman and sophomore division for the Huskies.