D3 Preview: Back For a Final Shot
February 27, 2013
By Geoff Kimmerly
Second Half editor
A total of 11 wrestlers – or nearly half of last season's finalists – will return to The Palace of Auburn Hills this weekend for another run at Division 3 championships.
Consider that a total of 11 wrestlers in this division also enter undefeated, and there should be plenty of stories to tell by the time the final round finishes up Saturday night.
See below for 10 contenders to watch this weekend, plus others who enter the tournament undefeated or coming off runner-up finishes in 2012. Follow all the matches beginning with Thursday's first round live on MHSAA.tv, and click here for results at MHSAA.com. And check back with Second Half later Saturday night for full coverage from the Finals, including comments from all 14 champions.
10 to watch
285: Josh Capen, Ithaca senior – Hoping to add an individual title to the football championship he helped win this fall; comes into this weekend 40-0.
119: Dakota Ball, Ida sophomore – Enters the weekend 47-4 and going for his second MHSAA championship after winning 103 last season.
119: Andy Caffrey, Parchment senior – Finished fourth at this weight last season, but enters this time 50-0 and arguably the favorite to finish first.
125: Zack Cooper, Whitehall senior – Won championships at 112 and 103 the last two years, respectively, for Remus Chippewa Hills; enters this weekend 50-0 in his first Finals for Whitehall.
135: Zehlin Storr, Leslie junior – Fell to Devin Skatzka (see below) 5-4 in last season’s 135 Final, and should be the favorite this time entering at 55-0.
145: Devin Skatzka, Richmond sophomore – A week after his team finished runner-up in Battle Creek, Skatzka brings a 48-2 record to Auburn Hills and will try to add to his 2012 title at 135.
152: Todd Olson, Dundee senior – Helped Dundee to the team championship last weekend and enters Thursday 46-3 and hoping to finish with another title after ending runner-up at this weight in 2012.
189: Dalton Bailey, Houghton Lake senior -- Last season at 171 became his school’s first finalist dating back to at least 1967, and can become the first champion Saturday after entering 37-0.
189: Donovan Fouchey, Oscoda senior – Bailey might be the favorite, but Fouchey is 46-2 and looking to finish first this time after ending second at this weight in 2012.
215: Gage Hutchison, Buchanan senior – Looking to close an outstanding career with a third straight championship match berth and second-straight title after winning 215 last season; he enters this weekend 52-0.
Also undefeated: Leslie freshman Kanen Storr (103, 54-0), Grand Rapids Catholic Central freshman Devin Schroder (112, 49-0), Grand Rapids Catholic Central sophomore Nate Limmex (130, 18-0), Allendale junior Colin Beebe (189, 35-0), Comstock Park senior John Weldon (140, 34-0).
Others runners-up: Caro senior Shane Herrmann (119, 43-9, 103 in 2012), Allendale senior Luke Jensen (119, 33-4, 112 in 2012), Dundee senior John Marogen (285, 40-7, 285 in 2012), Shelby senior Austin Felt (112, 38-10, D4 103 in 2012).
PHOTO: Buchanan's Gage Hutchison (right), here in last season's Division 3 championship match at 215, will go for a second-straight title this weekend. (Click to see more at HighSchoolSportsScene.com.)
Bragging Rights for Both as Multi-Sport Sage Twins Shine at Ford Field
By Keith Dunlap
Special for MHSAA.com
March 10, 2023
SOUTHGATE – The question of “Which child is your favorite?” is impossible for any parent to answer, but Shawn Sage has an additional question that’s impossible to answer regarding his son Jackson and daughter Brooklyn.
That question is, “Who would win a wrestling match between the two?”
“They are both raising their hands right now smiling about it,” Shawn Sage said with a laugh during a phone conversation.
It’s a good-natured question anybody can pose to Shawn Sage, given his son and daughter are not only twins by birth, but in wrestling achievements as sophomores at Southgate Anderson.
Last weekend at Ford Field, Jackson Sage competed in his second Individual Finals, where he finished fourth in Division 2 in the 157-pound weight class.
It was an improvement from last year’s event, when he qualified as a freshman but didn’t place.
“I was more used to it,” Jackson Sage said. “Last year was a different experience being at Ford Field the first time.”
Brooklyn Sage qualified for the Individual Finals this season as well, where she finished sixth in the Girls Division 155-pound weight class.
The winter was busy for both, but especially for Brooklyn. In addition to competing in wrestling, she was also a member of the school’s competitive cheer team.
“I knew that it would be a commitment,” she said. “But I was up for it. I was at the school for about 14 hours a day, but it was worth it at the end.”
Jackson and Brooklyn are each three-sport athletes. Jackson is the quarterback on the football team in the fall and a member of the track team (he competes in 300 hurdles and two relays) in the spring, while Brooklyn plays softball.
But it’s wrestling where the two share their greatest bond athletically.
Jackson started getting involved in the sport when was around elementary school age, and Brooklyn would tag along to practices.
Along the way, she became intrigued enough to try wrestling herself.
“I liked being able to know that I could defend myself and take care of myself in different ways,” she said. “To be able to stand up for myself.”
Brooklyn said she stopped wrestling competitively around sixth grade because there weren’t opportunities for girls to compete only against each other, but that changed when a girls-only division was added to the MHSAA Tournament with the 2021-22 season.
With both able to compete in high school, at-home workouts intensified. The two regularly train against each other on a mat in their basement, where technique is honed and toughness is sharpened.
“She pushes me a lot,” Jackson said.
Both also learn from each other’s experiences.
“I feel like watching him made me more motivated to do it,” Brooklyn said. “He’s taught me a lot of technique that I wouldn’t have known from his past experiences and coach.”
Added Jackson: “I’ve learned from her matches.”
This week has actually presented a rarity for both in that they’ve had time off.
With wrestling ending and spring sports not officially opening practice until Monday, the two haven’t had practices and competitions.
That’ll change next week when they go their separate ways with Jackson to track practice and Brooklyn joining the softball squad, and they’ll focus on those sports for the rest of the school year.
But with two more years of eligibility left and all-state finishes in wrestling already, the sky is the limit for the next two years in that sport for both.
With that in mind, the questions to Dad about who would win a match are likely only getting started.
Keith Dunlap has served in Detroit-area sports media for more than two decades, including as a sportswriter at the Oakland Press from 2001-16 primarily covering high school sports but also college and professional teams. His bylines also have appeared in USA Today, the Washington Post, the Detroit Free Press, the Houston Chronicle and the Boston Globe. He served as the administrator for the Oakland Activities Association’s website from 2017-2020. Contact him at [email protected] with story ideas for Oakland, Macomb and Wayne counties
PHOTO Southgate Anderson twins Brooklyn, left, and Jackson Sage both placed at this season’s Wrestling Individual Finals. (Photo courtesy of the Sage family.)