Seven Saints claim sectional titles at Conant
St. Charles East's Ben Davino, who has never lost in an Illinois gym, came close Saturday at the Conant sectional in Hoffman Estates.
But it wasn't a wrestling match. It was his cellphone.
Davino recovered his prize possession right after he won the 126-pound title match. Davino, who is now 46-0, had just defeated Glenbard North's Christian in a technical fall with a 21-6 victory.
"I was scared," said Davino, who won on his previous two matches with early falls. "I was confident with my wrestling, but I need my phone."
Davino was one of 10 St. Charles East wrestlers to compete in the sectional finals. Along with Davino, the Saints won seven title bouts.
Dom Munaretto got the Saints off to a great start at 106. Munaretto (46-0), who is a freshman, used his speed to beat South Elgin's Demetrios Carrera (38-2).
"I just told myself to keep going," Munaretto said. "I was always thinking about scoring the next point."
Brody Murray (33-4) pulled off one of the few upsets in the finals. The junior stunned previously-unbeaten Evan Garzzini (20-1) 6-4 at 182.
"He was bigger than me," Murray said. "I was trying not to do his game. I was trying to stay underneath."
Tyler Guerra (46-5) won a technical fall at 138. He beat Glenbard North's Solomon Gilliam 20-5. Gilliam had advanced to the finals by pinning his first three opponents.
Jayden Colon (37-5) won on a fall with 29 seconds left at 145. Lane Robinson (33-14) won a tight 2-1 match over Wheaton North's Mikey Rosch at 170.
Austin Barrett (35-7) wrapped up the winning day for the Saints at 285 with an 11-4 win over Elgin's Adam Lambaz.
Conant's Ethan Stiles took an important step to becoming the first Cougar grappler to win the state title. After pinning his first two opponents, Stiles beat St. Charles East's Anthony Gutierrez with a 15-5 major decision.
"I am just trying to sharpen myself up for state," said Stiles, who will wrestle at Nebraska next year. "Whether that is takedowns or riding, I am just trying to get focused and locked in."
St. Charles North's Drew Surges (9-0) got off to late start this season due to football. But Surges, who missed qualifying for state last year due to an injury, remained unbeaten this season, with a 12-1 major decision over St. Charles East's Brandon Swartz.
"I am looking forward to heading downstate," Surges said. "I went into the match and I knew my game plan and I stuck to it."
Maine South's Teddy Flores (37-3) won at 120. The junior toppled St. Charles East's AJ Marino 5-3.
"It was good day," Flores said. "Next week is more important though."
At 132, York's Sean Berger (36-2) pinned Oak Park's Joseph Knackstedt with just four seconds left in the match.
West Chicago's Nolan Allen (26-0) remained unbeaten when he won at 152 defeating DeKalb's Jacob Luce 7-2.
In a rematch of the MSL 113 title bout, Schaumburg's Brady Phelps (40-0) beat Conant's Luis Flores 9-4.
Glenbard North's Blake Maday (37-9) won at 220 when Elk Grove's Dylan Berkowitz withdrew due to an injury.