In a wrestling tournament that was canceled Saturday and rescheduled for Sunday, this year’s DuPage Valley Conference meet ended up being a numbers game for Glenbard North’s Jon Marmolejo.
A very impressive numbers game.
The Panthers’ senior became the seventh wrestler in DVC history to win four conference titles, and the fifth wrestler to do so for Glenbard North, which won its 16th consecutive DVC team title at Naperville Central.
Marmolejo’s accomplishment won him tournament’s outstanding wrestler award, but as impressive as those numbers are, he spoke afterward to the high standard set for one of Illinois’ power programs.
“We wanted all fourteen of us to reach the finals. That’s how hard our room works,” Marmolejo said. “A lot of hard work goes into this but I’ll need to work even harder for the state series, and we’ve all got things we need to improve on.”
Teammates Austin Gomez (106), Pat Augustyn (120), Jered Cortez (132), Colton Wegner (170), and Luke Greenberg (195) joined Marmolejo in North’s parade to the top of the medals stand.
North posted a 269-178.5 edge over second-place Glenbard East, which was led by champions Josh Martin (145) and D’Andre Johnson (285), who pinned all three of his opponents and set a new Rams’ season record for pins with 27, capped by a fall on the title mat against North’s Chris Edwards.
Martin and Wheaton Warrenville South’s Andrew Ives were tied 4-4 after two periods of their title match before a Martin escape and takedown in the third gave him a 7-5 win.
“I got my escape and I didn’t want to let him score at all in the third period,” Martin said. “I thought (Ives) was getting a little tired on his feet so I just wanted to keep the pressure on him. But he was squirmy.”
West Aurora also posted two champions on the day in Chachie Jacquez (113) and Joe Griffin (160). Jacquez and North’s Kirk Johansen were tied 7-7 after two periods before the Blackhawks’ junior used a pair of takedowns and one turn in the third, winning a 14-8 decision.
“As the match went on I started to see what (Johansen) was working with,” Jacquez said. “It feels great to see the work you put in during the season pay off like this.”
Wheaton North placed third as Anthony Yanan used a takedown in overtime against Naperville North’s Chris Zhang to win the title at 220, while Lake Park’s Zach Wolf (152) and WW South’s Qarin Johnnic (138) also won titles.
At 182, Naperville North’s Brandon Gilligan won a hotly contested 7-5 decision over Lake Park’s Kenny Jones to win his first DVC title.
“There are a lot of people yelling and screaming, and when things don’t go your way you just have to keep wrestling,” Gilligan said. “I just had to stay to my game plan and I was able to get the takedown I needed to get the win.”