CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WCIA) — Of the hundreds of wrestlers that descended on the State Farm Center this weekend, only 42 would walk out state champions. We’ve got highlights and reaction from our state title bouts and some of the third place matches here.
There’s winning a state championship and then there’s Hayden Copass who not only did that but dominated the entire heavyweight bout.
“It’s great, that’s what everybody dreams of, and dreams come true if you work for them,” Copass.
On his way to winning his first state title, the Westville-GRF junior did not allow any of his opponents to score on offense. He also ends the season with a perfect record, coming a long way since suffering a knee injury at the beginning of the season.
“I put in the extra work, and I had to do everything I could to get back in, and I did something right,” Copass said.
And no stranger to the state title match is Logan Deacetis of Prairie Central, who extended his win streak to 108 matches, one of the longest in the IHSA, while winning his second-straight state title. As for a new face to the title match, Oakwood-Salt Fork’s Gage Reed wins his first title, after placing fifth last year.
“It’s amazing this is everything I worked for,” Reed said. “I can’t even say anything I just can’t stop smiling right now.”
“It just shows my hard work is paying off in the wrestling room, and all the time I’m putting in,” Deacetis said.
But the title match is also we’re all good things sometimes come to an end. In the 2A 220 match both wrestlers combined for undefeated records, Glenwood’s Connor Miller ended his run with a defeat in overtime.
“I really wish I could have pulled that match out and got the first place, but second place feels good and I’ll just do better next year,” Miller said.
For the wrestlers that didn’t make here on podium this season, some will still have another chance this season. Several area teams will compete in the dual championships, with sectionals starting on Tuesday.
For all the results, click here.