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Amos named InterMat High School Wrestler of the Year

Braxton Amos has been named InterMat High School Wrestler of the Year (Photo/Sam Janicki, SJanickiPhoto.com)

Link: Final High School Individual Rankings

If one has been paying any attention to the news, the novel coronavirus has put global society at a total stalemate for the last week and will do so for the foreseeable future. Prior to this stalemate, all but one of the state championships were conducted for 2019-20. Ohio was the exception. Normally at this point, postseason national tournaments (i.e. NHSCA grade-level and USA Wrestling folkstyle) would be upcoming; however, those events have been postponed until the COVID-19 stalemate comes to an end.

Since that is the case, InterMat has decided to conclude the 2019-20 scholastic wrestling season from a national rankings perspective. The below article will acknowledge the Wrestler of the Year along with the other wrestlers ranked No. 1 in the country at their respective weight classes.

Wrestler of the Year: Braxton Amos, Parkersburg South (W.Va.), 220 pounds

Already a Cadet (now 16U) double national champion before stepping into high school, the University of Wisconsin signee packed more than a full four years' worth of accomplishments into a three-year scholastic wrestling career. Amos missed his freshman season due to injury sustained during September 2016. However, in the next three seasons he amassed an in-season record of 132-0 with many of those matches being first-period pins.

Amos is a three-time state high school champion, three-time Super 32 Challenge champion, three-time Walsh Jesuit Ironman champion, and three-time Powerade champion. He is the No. 1-ranked wrestler at 220 pounds for the second straight season. This past summer he was a Junior National finalist in both styles at 220 pounds, winning the title in freestyle and advancing to the Greco-Roman final before having to injury default.

Previous Wrestlers of the Year

2019: Carson Kharchla (Olentangy Liberty, Ohio)
2018: Gable Steveson (Apple Valley, Minn.)
2017: Vito Arujau (Syosset, N.Y.)
2016: Mark Hall (Apple Valley, Minn.)
2015: Mark Hall (Apple Valley, Minn.)
2014: Chance Marsteller (Kennard Dale, Pa.)
2013: Kyle Snyder (Good Counsel, Md.)
2012: Jason Tsirtsis (Crown Point, Ind.)
2011: Morgan McIntosh (Calvary Chapel, Calif.)

Other top-ranked wrestlers

Andre Gonzales after winning a California state title (Photo/Tony Rotundo, WrestlersAreWarriors.com)

106 pounds: Andre Gonzales (Poway, Calif.)

After placing third at state in the 106-pond weight class last year as a sophomore, Gonzales would go on to win Junior National titles in both freestyle and Greco-Roman at 106 during the summer. His lone loss as a junior came up at 113 pounds in the Reno TOC final, 3-2 to national No. 3 Joey Cruz (Clovis North, Calif.). Gonzales earned state gold this season with a pair of wins over wrestlers ranked inside the top 15 nationally at the state tournament.

113 pounds: Richard Figueroa (Selma, Calif.)

Through three years of high school wrestling, Figueroa remains unblemished except for single loss in the final of the 2017 Walsh Jesuit Ironman. He is a three-time state champion, this year scorching his way through the bracket with two shutout technical falls, a pin, and a pair of victories over nationally ranked opposition (including a fourth win over national No. 3 Joey Cruz in the championship match). Figueroa is also a two-time Cadet World Team member in freestyle, and has finished the season ranked No. 1 nationally in this weight class each of the last two seasons.

120 pounds: Greg Diakomihalis (Hilton, N.Y.)

After his return from an offseason knee injury in early January, Diakomihalis amassed a 25-0 record on the way to his fifth state championship. The Cornell commit finished his career with a record of 219-2, including a winning streak of more than 175 straight matches going back to his eighth-grade season.

126 pounds: Nic Bouzakis (Wyoming Seminary, Pa.)

Already a high school state champion in seventh through ninth grade at Lake Highland Prep (Fla.), Bouzakis added a National Prep title during his debut season at Wyoming Seminary as a high school sophomore. Prior to the start of the high school season, Bouzakis was a 16U National freestyle champion and a Super 32 Challenge champion (it was his third placement in the high school division of the Super 32). During 2019-20, Bouzakis was a champion at the Walsh Jesuit Ironman with his lone loss coming in the Powerade final by disqualification due to an illegal slam.

132 pounds: Shayne Van Ness (Blair Academy, N.J.)

Despite missing the first month of this scholastic season, Van Ness had established his robust credential and ability level with his success last season and then a pair of wins during Who's Number One in early October against the two wrestlers that ended the season ranked directly behind him. Upon return, Van Ness dominated his way to a National Prep championship with three pins and two technical falls in five bouts, including wins over three of the other four top-five finishers.

Wyoming Seminary's Beau Bartlett (Photo/Sam Janicki, SJanickiPhoto.com)

138 pounds: Beau Bartlett (Wyoming Seminary, Pa.)

The Penn State signee won a fourth National Prep title with four pins in four bouts leading up to an 11-4 victory over nationally ranked Lucas Chittum (Blair Academy, N.J.) in the championship match. During the season, he continued to be in title contention at everything under the sun, including a runner-up finish at the Walsh Jesuit Ironman and earning a second title at the Powerade Tournament in two career attempts.

145 pounds: Lachlan McNeil (Wyoming Seminary, Pa.)

The North Carolina signee arguably made the most profound leap from the end of last season to the end of this season out of any wrestler in the country. After ending last season as runner-up at National Preps in the 120-pound weight class, McNeil finished third in Junior freestyle and was Super 32 Challenge champion at 138 pounds in the offseason; then during this season he dominated his way to titles at the Walsh Jesuit Ironman, Powerade, and National Prep tournaments during an undefeated season.

152 pounds: Chase Saldate (Gilroy, Calif.)

The Michigan State signee had a superlative senior season, going undefeated on the way to a state championship, including titles at the Reno TOC and Doc Buchanan Invitational; this included a 5-0 mark against four different nationally ranked opponents. Between last year's state runner-up at the start of this season, Saldate placed fourth in Junior freestyle and was champion in the Super 32 Challenge, with both coming at 152 pounds.

160 pounds: Keegan O'Toole (Arrowhead, Wis.)

The Missouri signee finishes his career a four-time state champion after going 49-0 during his senior season, which means that O'Toole ends scholastic wrestling on a 100-match win streak going back to the consolation semifinal round of the January 2018 Cheesehead. He is a four-time Fargo freestyle All-American, including a Junior National champion in the summer of 2018. Most notable wins during the scholastic period were beating No. 2 Padraic Gallagher (St. Edward, Ohio) at Who's Number One and beating No. 8 Luke Odom (Edwardsville, Ill.) in the Cheesehead finals.

170 pounds: Alex Facundo (Davison, Mich.)

The Penn State verbal commit ends the season ranked No. 1 for a second straight season, and is now a three-time state champion. A two-time Cadet World Team member in freestyle, Facundo won a Brecksville Holiday Tournament title during the season, and is now 109-3 in his high school career.

Patrick Kennedy after winning his fourth state championship (Photo/Mary Christen, The Guillotine)

182 pounds: Patrick Kennedy (Kasson-Mantorville, Minn.)

On the way to four state titles in ninth through 12th grade, the Iowa signee amassed a record of 158-2, including 127 consecutive wins after a 5-2 defeat against Brandon Moen (Owatonna, Minn.) on February 3, 2017. If including seasons in junior high where he finished sixth then third at the varsity state tournament, his six-year career record was 223-20. In the most recent offseason, Kennedy absolutely dominated his way to a Junior National freestyle title at 170 pounds, and upended Facundo in Who's Number One preseason showcase.

195 pounds: Rocky Elam (Staley, Mo.)

Even managing to mix in some international competition, the Missouri signee managed to amass a 32-0 record during his senior season of competition on the way to a repeat state title. Elam's four-year high school record finishes at 144-4. He also is a three-time Fargo freestyle All-American, including a Cadet National title in 2018; Elam also has a 2019 Junior Folkstyle national title on the resume, along with a title from the Preseason Nationals this past fall.

285 pounds: Nash Hutmacher (Chamberlain, S.D.)

In one last season of wrestling before moving on to play on the interior defensive line at the University of Nebraska, Hutmacher went 42-0 with all but two matches being first-period wins by fall; those other two matches were a forfeit victory in a dual meet and a win by fall in the third period. He is now a four-time state champion with a record of 165-0 during those seasons, with his last loss coming in the consolation semifinal round of the state tournament during his eighth grade year.

Ranked wrestlers by state

49: Pennsylvania (3 individuals ranked No. 1 nationally)
30: California (3)
27: New Jersey (1)
26: Ohio
21: Illinois
10: New York (1), Oklahoma
9: Florida, Minnesota (1)
8: Georgia, Michigan (1)
7: Colorado, Indiana, Iowa, Missouri (1), Nebraska
5: Texas, West Virginia (1), Wisconsin (1)
4: Kansas
3: Maryland, Oregon
2: Arizona, South Dakota (1), Virginia, Washington
1: Hawaii, Connecticut, Kentucky, Tennessee

Thirty states in all had a nationally ranked wrestler (i.e. attend a high school in that state).

Comments

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pappap (1) about 9 months ago
Gage Garcia of southern colunbia high school of pennsylvania deserved to be considerd at 195 lbs