Sports

Wrestling insider: Barone athlete of the week

Athlete of the week

Eric Barone

Crystal Lake South, sr.

Barone (30-4) won the Oak Park-River Forest Invitational Jan. 25 at 145 pounds. In the finals, Barone decisioned Lyons Johnny Mologousis, 8-1. Barone also had a big win against McHenry on Jan. 23 to help the Gators win the Fox Valley Conference Valley Division title.

Noteworthy

Heavier and Happier: Cary-Grove’s Mike Cullen has bumped up from 113 to wrestle 120 at the FVC Tournament at McHenry. Cullen said he felt better physically and mentally at the higher weight.

“At 120, I don’t have to focus that much on weight,” Cullen said. “Physically I’m not drained.

He said cutting weight has given him trouble in long matches and tournaments where he has struggled in the third period. Cullen is hoping the extra weight and strength gives him an edge.

“At 120, I don’t see that happening that much,” Cullen said of losing power. “At 120, I’m able to work a lot for offense.”

Wounded Warriors: McHenry coach Will Gaddy is hoping to get two of his top wrestlers back from injury for regionals in a week. Cam Pait at 160 and Luis Hernandez at 220 are both not wrestling at the conference tournament.

Both are ranked by illinoismatmen.com, Pait at No. 11 and Hernandez, who is undefeated this season, at No. 8.

Hernandez said, despite missing time due to injury, his focus hasn’t changed.

“I have the same goals. I want to win state,” Hernandez said.

This weeks top meets

Regional Tournaments

Saturday

Class 1A

Alden-Hebron Regional: Christian Liberty Academy, Aurora Central Catholic, Harvest Christian Academy, Genoa-Kingston, Mooseheart, North Boone, Rockford Lutheran, Wheaton Academy.

Class 2A

Hampshire Regional: Crystal Lake Central, Hampshire, Harvard, Johnsburg, Marian Central, Richmond-Burton, Woodstock, Woodstock North.

Belvidere Regional: Marengo, Belvidere, Belvidere North, Burlington Central, Joliet Catholic Academy, Kaneland, Boylan, Sandwich, Sycamore.

Class 3A

McHenry Regional: Cary-Grove, Crystal Lake South, Prairie Ridge, Barrington, Buffalo Grove, Deerfield, Lake Zurich, Stevenson.

DeKalb Regional: Dundee-Crown, Huntley, Jacobs, Harlem, Auburn, Rockford East, Guilford, Jefferson, Hononegah.

--Rob Smith

rsmith@shawmedia.com

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