Trombley Prevents History, Makes His Own
March 5, 2016
By Jeff Chaney
Special for Second Half
AUBURN HILLS – Jarrett Trombley ended a bit of history Saturday night at the MHSAA Individual Wrestling Finals at The Palace of Auburn Hills.
And along the way, he kept his own bit of history going.
The Lake Fenton sophomore beat Grand Rapids Catholic Central senior Devin Schroder 6-4 in overtime, preventing Schroder from winning his fourth MHSAA championship and becoming just the 22nd wrestler to accomplish that feat.
And Trombley won his second straight Division 3 Finals title, to go with the 112-pound championship he earned last year while wrestling for Corunna High School.
"Pretty much everyone knew who won this match would be a (four-time) champion, whether it was me in two years or him today," Trombley said. "I'm just really happy to hold him back from history and make some of my own history today."
It wasn't easy, though, as the match went into an extra period, where Trombley secured the win with a takedown.
"That's why we work so hard, Trombley said. "We were both very well-conditioned athletes; it just came down to whoever had the most heart."
Champion: Anthony Gallagher, Perry, Jr. (42-1)
Decision, 2-0, over A.J. Geyer, Lake Fenton, Jr. (51-9)
After shaking hands with the opposing coaches, Anthony Gallagher sprinted across the mat and jumped into his coach's arms.
He first wanted to share his special moment with two people who helped realize his dream.
"This is amazing," Gallagher said. "My coaches and I put so much work into this. So much blood, sweat and tears, and to finally see what I've wanted to accomplish since the start of the year is amazing."
What's even more amazing is that Gallagher is the first wrestling MHSAA champion at Perry High School in 41 years.
Champion: Spencer Good, Jackson Lumen Christi, Jr. (43-4)
Decision, 6-3, over Blain Wood, Caro, Soph. (51-6)
Good was better than good; he was great this weekend in Auburn Hills. And because of that, the Jackson Lumen Christi junior is a champion.
Good said it was old-fashioned work ethic that helped him come out on top in his weight class this weekend, and it showed in the Final as he took the match to Wood from the start.
"I am so thrilled with this; this is the best feeling I have felt in my life," Good said. "There is so much work and effort put into this sport, and this is the dream behind it all. You put in so much work, to finally accomplish this, it's a big deal."
Champion: Aaron Kilburn, Richmond, Sr. (44-4)
Decision, 7-1, over Trevor Robinson, Shepherd, Fr. (49-6)
Kilburn is a man of few words. He let's his talking be done on the mat.
Kilburn won his second title with a workmanlike 7-1 decision.
The Richmond senior won his first title at 112 pounds at the end of his sophomore season.
"It feels a little different this time since it’s my senior year," Kilburn said "Going out with a bang, that's a bonus."
Even though it was Kilburn's day, he looked back at Richmond history to get through his last year.
"Watching him (Richmond 4-time champion Devin Skatzka) dominate this tournament for four years helped," Kilburn said of his former teammate who accomplished that feat last year. "He just dominated this tournament, and showed me."
Champion: Alex Martinez, Ida, Sr. (45-0)
Decision, 4-3 OT, over Kole Krauss, Grand Rapids Catholic Central, Sr. (43-2)
As a freshman, Martinez advanced to the Finals, only to lose a tough match and finish runner-up.
It took two long years to get back to wrestling Saturday night at The Palace for a championship, but that's where Martinez found himself, wrestling Krauss for the title at 130 pounds.
The match went to overtime, and Martinez rode Krauss out for a hard-fought 4-3 victory.
"I got the early takedown in the first, and that's what I knew I had to do right away to win," Martinez said. "I wrestled him earlier in the season, and that's how I beat him then; I got an early takedown in the first.
"Then in the second period I rode him out," he added. "In the third period, I got a little gassed, I'm not going to lie. Triple overtime, I was stuck on bottom all match, so I went on top and that is usually my best position. I got that side headlock, and got it done."
Champion: Reiley Brown, Whitehall, Sr. (51-1)
Decision, 2-1 OT, over Matt Santos, Saginaw Swan Valley, Sr. (51-2)
It was a battle of returning champions at 135 pounds, and the match would not disappoint, as Brown rode out Santos in triple overtime for the win, 2-1.
"I expected that match completely," said Brown, who will be wrestling at Central Michigan University next year. "I knew we were going to be defensive on our feet. I knew it was going to be close, and I knew it was going to come down to the mat wrestling like it did. Whitehall is known to be dominant on top, that is what we work at."
Champion: Jwan Britton, Whitehall, Sr. (51-2)
Decision, 5-4, over Zach Blevins, Dundee, Sr. (49-5)
Britton didn't get a chance to watch teammate Reiley Brown win his MHSAA title. He was busy in the tunnel of The Palace warming up for his match as Brown was finishing off Matt Santos.
But Britton knew something special happened for the Whitehall wrestling program, and he wanted to keep that feeling going in his match.
And that happened, as Britton beat Blevins on a late takedown.
"I didn't even get to watch his (Brown's) match, but we both had a plan to come out here and wrestle for a championship," Britton said. "My coach said I was better on my feet, so when he was up by one in the third because I cut him early, I knew I could win on my feet."
Champion: Kanen Storr, Leslie, Sr. (58-0)
Technical fall, 17-2, over Jaycob Sharp, Remus Chippewa Hills, Soph. (50-7)
On a night when several past champions, and a few multiple champions like Schroder and Lowell senior Lucas Hall went down to defeat, Storr, a returning two-time champ, was not about to fall by way of the upset.
"Sitting back in that tunnel, watching all these upsets go down, it's a crazy thing," Storr said. "Guys I thought would never lose, went down. But they may have let up, they might have gave those extra points up that they shouldn't have. Going into my match, I really changed my mindset to score and get a comfortable lead, to score, score and score."
Champion: Sean Sterling, Dundee, Jr. (47-4)
Decision, 4-2 OT, over Collin Lieber, Croswell-Lexington, Jr. (54-1)
Sterling reached into his school's past for inspiration for what he did Saturday night, earn a championship with a 4-2 overtime win over the previously undefeated Lieber.
Now he will be an inspiration for Dundee's future.
"The entrance to our building, there is a picture of every state champ, and every day I walk into school and look at every single one of them," Sterling said. "And now I am going to be one of them. Knowing that some kid will be looking up at me now, that's cool."
Champion: Foster Karmon, Grand Rapids Catholic Central, Sr. (34-0)
Decision, 9-3, over Tyler Childs, Birch Run, Sr. (43-9)
Karmon has had a great high school career that spanned over two schools.
He started by winning an MHSAA title his sophomore year, and then carried that success over to Catholic Central his past two years.
He won his third overall title, and second at GRCC.
"I don't think it's really set in completely," Karmon said. "It's been a good career. I had a good time at Allegan, and a good time at Catholic Central. Each program had upside. A lot of history at Allegan, and a lot of good workout partners at Catholic Central. And a lot of good coaches at both."
Champion: Daniel Thompson, Lake Odessa Lakewood, Jr. (49-2)
Decision, 6-5 OT, over Adam McCann, Midland Bullock Creek, Sr. (53-1)
Thomson picked up a little scouting report from a friend, Lapeer senior Devon Pingel, that helped him win Saturday.
"That helped me a lot. I owe a lot to him, because my focus was to stay aggressive progressively throughout the match. That helped a lot when we got into overtime," Thompson said.
Unfortunately, Thompson's friend Pingel was losing his championship match a mat away from Thompson.
Champion: Brandon Whitman, Dundee, Soph. (48-1)
Decision, 2-1, over Jared Roehl, Millington, Jr. (44-2)
When two reigning champions meet on the mat, the margin of error shrinks, and the matter of victory can be as little as a little more work and effort to pull out the win.
That was the case when Whitman and Roehl met for Roehl's title Saturday night.
Whitman, who won at 171 last year, found that little bit extra in beating Roehl by the score of 2-1.
"That was tough," Whitman said. "At the beginning of the year we kind of figured we were going to face him, and we knew we were going to have a tough time with him. I knew I had to practice harder to get the job done."
Champion: Quintin Wilber, Montrose, Sr. (48-4)
Decision, 8-2, over Tyden Ferris, Delton Kellogg, Soph. (54-3)
Wilber not only showed his great athleticism during his 8-2 win, but also after, completing a near-perfect back flip to seal it.
And during the post-match interview, Wilber wanted to flip some of the credit to the people he said helped him realize his dream of a title.
"This feels real good," Wilber said after his win. "I went in with the mindset I could do it, and I went in and got after it. I want to thank my (workout partners) for pushing me and getting after me. And to all my teammates, thank you."
Champion: Trent Hillger, Lake Fenton, Jr. (63-0)
Fall, 1:27, over Maddox Maki, Williamston, Sr. (45-6)
Hillger may have had the most impressive weekend of any champion in any division at The Palace.
He pinned his way to his second championship, including a fall against reigning heavyweight champion Maki in the Final in one minute, 27 seconds.
Hillger won his first title at 215 pounds last year.
"Being a state champ last year, I wanted to come back as a returning state champ and not lose my title," Hillger said "I wanted to be aggressive and use my speed to my advantage. Coming up from a lighter weight class, a lot of these heavyweights are slower, and I wanted to go out there and wrestle my match."
The MHSAA Wrestling Finals are presented by the Michigan Army National Guard.
PHOTO: Lake Fenton’s Jarrett Trombly works against his Semifinal opponent Friday on his way to claiming a second MHSAA championship Saturday. (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 firstname.lastname@example.org 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.)