For Chase Brennan 2012-2013 season was about redemption.
After taking home a state title in 2011, as a freshman, at 103, the Monett Cub was defeated by eventual state champion Trevor Burkhart in the semifinals as a sophomore at 106.
So on Saturday evening when the 113 pound junior saw his opportunity to get revenge against the sophomore from Cameron, he took it.
Brennan used a big escape and takedown combination to take 6-2 lead that he would not relinquish en route to a 6-4 win, giving him his second state title in three years.
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“It feels great. I couldn’t ask for better season. I knew I wanted a rematch and I got it,” said Brennan.
His coach, Daryl Bradley, also was excited about the Brennan-Burkhart rematch.
“We wouldn’t have it any other way than to wrestle that kid (Burkhart) again and compete against the best. He is a tough kid; he beat us last year so to go back and get him this year is a great feeling,” said Bradley.
Brennan’s journey nearly left his coach at a loss for words.
“I can’t describe it now, I’m just so happy for him, he’s worked so hard. He’s done everything we’ve asked him to do and then some. He is the epitome of our program. To see him fight through adversity, battle back from some tough losses and to see it all come together here is just awesome,” said Bradley.
For Monett, who returns six state qualifiers on next year’s team, Bradley hopes this serves as a motivator.
“Hopefully the kids see this and think man I’m not coming here to watch next year, I’m coming here to participate and hopefully that will take us to the next level and we’ll have a better state tournament next year,” said Bradley.
Fellow Cub Devon Overall took home a fourth place finish at 195 after falling to Alton Harrell of Owensville 7-6.
For Overall, who was also a member of Monett’s Final Four football team, it has been a special year athletically.
“Man, we are just getting it done. It has been a good year to be a Cub,” said Overall.
Overall made huge strides in his game over the past four years to get to Saturday’s podium.
“To see a kid like Devon succeed gives you hope. Devon was a JV kid for a few years and really wrestled some tough kids and got beat on. He kept working, got in the weight room and lived in there. Last year he qualified for state, got that taste of things and really shined this year and it carried on to the state tournament,” said Bradley.
For Reeds Spring Saturday was also a banner day.
The Wolves, who advanced both Tyler Miller (195) and Zach Kearney (220) to state finals were able to bring one back when Kearney, a junior, scored a third period escape to slide past Kyle Cook of Boonville 5-4.
Miller, a 39-8 senior, was pinned by Fulton’s Paul Brooks to take home a runner-up finish for the Wolves finished ninth as a team with 72 points.
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Reeds Spring freshman Broden LeMaster also helped to make it a great weekend for the Wolves, registering a 4-2 decision over Marshall’s Nick Harper to claim fifth place at 152.
Nevada 120 pounder Slade Stiles captured one of the more rare feats you’ll see at the MSHSAA Wrestling Championships, taking home third place for the fourth consecutive year. The senior pinned St. Charles West Brendan Hachtel at 3:38. Both of Stiles previous came to the eventual champion in his class.
Joining Stiles as a medalist were a trio of other Nevada Tigers.
Missouri State Football signee Sam Ellifrits pinned Damien Bell from McCluer South-Berkley in just :57 seconds to also take home third. The 285 pound Ellifrits dropped his semifinal match to fellow future college football play Maliek Collins of Center. Collins, signed with Nebraska earlier this month, is 49-0 on the season.
Fellow Tigers Colby Smith, senior, and freshman Dayton Miller also took home fifth place honors in the 220 pound weight class.
Jacob Miles of Bolivar placed fourth at 138, falling to Dominick Guthrie of Moberly.
Rogersville’s Ethen Carlberg (113) and Brian Dickey (138) took home fifth and sixth places respectively.