HUNTLEY – If Huntley sophomore David Ferrante was upset after failing to medal at the IHSA individual state meet over the weekend, he rebounded in the best way possible.
Ferrante recorded a first-period pin at 160 pounds in Huntley’s 41-27 victory over Prospect on Tuesday at the IHSA Class 3A Huntley Dual Team Sectional.
For the first time in its 18-year history, the Huntley wrestling team is heading to the dual team state quarterfinals.
Huntley advances to Saturday’s Class 3A state quarterfinals at Grossinger Motors Arena in Bloomington. The Red Raiders will take on Glenbard North at 9 a.m. Saturday, with the winner advancing to the state semifinals at 2 p.m. The state championship and third-place matches are at 6 p.m.
“It’s pretty surreal to accomplish something that no team at Huntley has ever accomplished before,” Ferrante said. “It’s a first in program history, and we’re looking to make more firsts this year.”
Ferrante, a fourth-place medalist as a freshman, was happy for another shot in 2018.
“For me personally, falling short of my goals at [individual] state, it’s a really good opportunity to end the season on a win and on a high note in general,” Ferrante said.
Also recording pins Tuesday for Huntley were Gannon Kosowski (138) and Nik Wise (220). The Red Raiders won nine total matches.
Jimmy Pellegrino (106), Sammy Spencer (113), Zach Spencer (132), Luke Loprieno (145), Rukkus Hunkins (145) and Juan Quiroz (170) all recorded victories.
Senior Zach Spencer, fresh off his fifth-place state medal performance at 126, won his match, 11-7, over Prospect’s Gianni Rago at 132. Zach Spencer wasn’t thrilled with his performance Tuesday, but he was happy for his team.
“State wears down on you a lot,” Zach Spencer said. “I went from wrestling really high, to a low today. I’m a little disappointed, but I’m not disappointed in how we wrestled as a team, and we pulled out a pretty decisive win.”
Zach Spencer noted that Wise’s pin was a big momentum boost for the Raiders. He was also proud of Ferrante’s performance.
“David had a tough week last week; he lost in the blood round, but he came out with a pin [Tuesday],” Zach Spencer said. “He didn’t give up; he came back and wrestled tough.”
Huntley coach B.J. Bertelsman brought his team into the gym during practice Monday and pointed to the wrestling record board.
In Bertelsman’s words, “Ain’t much on it.”
Only last season’s Fox Valley Conference title and regional title mark the record board. Bertelsman’s team will add another FVC title, regional title, and now a trip to state to the record books.
Prospect moved some wrestlers around, but it didn’t matter.
“I knew they would bump some guys around,” Bertelsman said. “We trust our guns.”
The match started with Zach Spencer at 132, and Huntley jumped out to a 29-0 lead after six matches.
“It’s pretty exciting,” Zach Spencer said. “I think we can even go further than this. I’m happy for now, but I won’t be really excited until we go down and get ourselves a medal down there, get a trophy.”