Greg Diakomihalis, pictured with his older brother Yianni Diakomihalis, topped Jakason Burks (Photo/Juan Garcia)
BETHLEHEM, Pa. -- Sunday afternoon saw the lid lifter of the fall preseason scholastic wrestling showcase events with the Who's Number One event that is conducted each season by FloWrestling. Hosted at Grace Hall on the campus of Lehigh University, it is an exhibition that features many of the nation's best wrestlers in mostly one-off matches.
The lone weight class where contestants wrestled multiple bouts was at 138 pounds. The opening round matches for the group of four saw Jojo Aragona (Pope John, N.J.) upend Gabriel Tagg (Brecksville, Ohio/USOTC) 8-4 in a showdown of top 35 wrestlers in the Class of 2019, while Junior National freestyle champion Keegan O'Toole (Arrowhead, Wis.) earned an upset victory over No. 11 overall senior Jaden Abas (Rancho Bernardo, Calif.) by 8-0 major decision. Then in the last match of the afternoon program, it was Aragona -- ranked No. 29 overall in the Class of 2019 -- beating No. 18 overall Class of 2020 wrestler Keegan O'Toole by a 5-2 decision.
Kurt McHenry (Photo/Juan Garcia)
In addition to O'Toole, two additional wrestlers from the Badger State earned victories in the Who's Number One event on Sunday afternoon. At 120 pounds, Junior National freestyle champion Eric Barnett (Hortonville, Wis.) beat two-time Cadet world freestyle champion Kurt McHenry (St. Paul's, Md.) 1-0; Wisconsin commit Barnett is ranked No. 33 in the Class of 2019, while Michigan commit McHenry is ranked third. The other victorious wrestler was Cadet World champion Macey Kilty, who beat Cadet National freestyle champion Kennedy Blades 6-5 in a female freestyle bout at 152 pounds.
The featured bout of the day in terms of talent level was probably the 170-pound bout between top six Class of 2019 prospects Carson Kharchla (Olentangy Liberty, Ohio) and Julian Ramirez (Blair Academy, N.J.). No. 5 Khachla avenged a 4-3 tiebreaker loss from the consolation semifinal of the Walsh Ironman with a dominating 11-4 victory over No. 6 Ramirez. Another arguable feature bout saw another Ohio native earn the win, as senior Jordan Decatur (CVCA, Ohio) beat junior Josh Saunders (Christian Brothers College, Mo.) in a battle of No. 4 overall wrestlers in their respective grade levels; the match contested at 132 pounds.
Five other matches were contested during the afternoon program.
At 152 pounds, it was a battle of top 100 seniors, as No. 7 Andrew Alirez (Greeley Central, Colo.) beat No. 70 Jace Luchau (Selma, Calf.) 3-2.
At 160 pounds, No. 2 overall Class of 2021 wrestler Alex Facundo (Davison, Mich.) beat No. 16 overall Class of 2019 wrestler Brevin Balmeceda (South Dade, Fla.); Facundo was a Cadet World bronze medalist this summer, while Balmeceda won a Super 32 Challenge title last fall.
At 106 pounds, Cadet World silver medalist Richard Figueroa (Selma, Calif.) avenged a 4-3 semifinal loss at the Walsh Ironman, as he beat Jacob Decatur (CVCA, Ohio) 1-0; Figueroa is ranked No. 3 in the Class of 20201, while Decatur is slotted No. 52 in the Class of 2019.
At 182 pounds, a battle of top 40 Class of 2019 wrestlers, saw No. 38 Devin Winston (Park Hill, Mo.) upset No. 24 Abe Assad (Glenbard North, Ill.) 6-2; the North Carolina commit Winston used a big move late in the match to beat the Cadet World bronze medalist Assad, an Iowa commit.
At 113 pounds, it was a battle of top 35 Class of 2020 wrestlers were No. 17 Greg Diakomihalis (Hilton, N.Y.) upended No. 33 Jakason Burks (Omaha Burke, Neb.) 6-4; Diakomihalis was a Super 32 Challenge champion in 2016, while Burks won a Cadet National freestyle title this summer.
138: Jojo Aragona dec. Gabe Tagg, 8-4
138: Keegan O'Toole maj. dec. Jaden Abas, 8-0
120: Eric Barnett dec. Kurt McHenry, 1-0
152: Andrew Alirez dec. Jace Luchau, 3-2
160: Alex Facundo dec. Brevin Balmaceda, 7-3
152: Macey Kilty dec. Kennedy Blades, 6-5
106: Richard Figueroa dec. Jacob Decatur, 1-0
182: Devin Winston dec. Abe Assad, 6-2
113: Greg Diakomihalis dec. Jakason Burks, 6-4
170: Carson Kharchla dec. Julian Ramirez, 11-4
132: Jordan Decatur dec. Joshua Sanders, 5-3
138: Jojo Aragona dec. Keegan O'Toole, 5-2