News & Multimedia


News Archive - Most Recent News Is at the Top

2011-2012 Postseason


Not this time: Eagles soar and fly away with title
Sandburg wins swing matches to deny OPRF its second title · 02/25/2012


The Huskies came out blazing on this day. They didn't lose one contested bout against Harlem in the quarterfinal round. The (Harlem) Huskies only victories came via forfeit. The final score was 44-24.

In the semifinals, our Huskies continued their path to the finals against a very tough Barrington Broncos team. The Huskies stressed their might early and finished off the team from the northwest suburbs 35-21. Across the mat, Glenbard North and Sandburg waged an epic battle. The Eagles had just enough to advance to meet our Huskies.

In the championship, the dual looked strong early. Davonte Mahomes (152) won by decision. Michael Woulfe (160) took a major. Joe Ariola only gave up three points to Ricky Robertson (170), before Andre Lee scored a definitive major decision at 182. Our very own Sam Brooks scored a pinfall victory at 195. Emonte Logan was leading but got caught in five point move to lose the lead and the match. Marq Brumant did well, winning by decision.

At 106 pounds, Sandburg made their move. Jim Pellegrino surprised Matt Rundell early and then scored a takedown in overtime to win a match to start the Eagle rally. At 113, Darius Henry couldn't secure a victory over Jim Panozzo of Sandburg. In fact, the Huskies couldn't manage a victory from 106-126. Johnny Gahagan put up a strong showing against state runner-up Sebastian Pique, and John Pellegrino outpointed Larry Early at 126 pounds. Cameron Harris defeated a very tough Dan Garcia to give the Huskies hope. Jake O'Mara (138) had a chance to send the Huskie fans home happy, but a fall by Mitch Cook spoiled the fun in a very close match. In the last bout, winner would take all. It was a tall task for Zach Pickering, and Colin Holler gave Sandburg the 3A Dual Team Title.

Box Scores | Quarterfinal | Semifinal | Championship

It was a great season, and we'll have some time to take a few looks back. A sincere thank you if you made the trip down or helped over these last several weeks. Despite this result, we are the Huskies, and relentlessly we pursue. Being outpointed in a dual won't stop that. "With defeat comes growth." Probably many more things, too. I'm proud of the kids, coaches, parents, volunteers, and fans. Without you, none of the greatness of this year and of this program could be possible. In Huskie Pride...always.



Final day: Eight teams hope to "Bloom" down south for the winter
Nothing to hold back with nine months to recover; large field of challengers · 02/25/2012


On this very special day, three more wrestling team titles will be awarded by the IHSA: one in 1A, one in 2A, and the one you likely care most in 3A.

The Huskies come into a situation where several teams can be lethal. In perhaps the most spread out bracket in years, there are eight quarterfinalists hoping to hustle home holding heavy hardware.

Best of luck to the Orange & Blue. It's high time for this February's 7 to receive the Huskie Style treatment! In relentless pursuit!

Jump to links | IHSA bracket | with Ilinois Matmen rankings | | Ilinois Matmen Coverage

Multimedia | Please take many photos and videos to share with me, so I can do the same. If we have the fortune of doing something special, please share any video links that you find (or create yourself), so I can post the video on this site. Three years ago I ran to find the best seat of the house in the championship just so I could show the world the Orange & Blue Wrecking Crew. It's time the world take notice once again! Huskie Pride!



Dead red: Huskies bury Devils 47-19, earn gas card to Bloomington
OPRF loses just two contested bouts against conference foe Hinsdale Central; Sandburg advances · 02/21/2012

Darius Henry (left) and Zach Pickering (right) were two reasons the Huskies won big on Tuesday. (Photos by Peggy Young)

OPRF had the home "field" advantage on Tuesday as the hosts of a Class 3A Dual Team Sectional. As favorites in the dual, the Huskies (18-3, 6-0) did not disappoint. The Orange & Blue were white hot on this evening, losing only two contested bouts: Marq Brumant-Jack Allen and Johnny Gahagan-Juwan Edmond. Both of these HC talents medaled at the state tournament just three days ago. The dual featured two new-familiar faces in victorious fashion: Darius Henry (113) and Zach Pickering (152). The other Huskie winners were Andre Lee (182), Sam Brooks (195), Emonte Logan (220), Matt Rundell (106), Larry Early (120), Cameron Harris (132), Jake O'Mara (138), and Colin Rogers (145).

All Huskie Quarterfinal | OPRF now heads to U.S. Cellular Coliseum on Saturday to face the Harlem Huskies at 9 am. The winner of this dual will earn a medal spot and wrestle twice more: at 2 pm and at 6 pm. Come down if you can, or watch it on (IHSA) tv!

Many of the same links apply as for individual state. Don't forget this gem:

Jump to brackets | IHSA bracket | bracket with Illinois Matmen rankings

Forever Young | Today's event photos were provided by Peggy Young, iPhone photographer extraordinaire. Below are a few more of her gems.

With Colin Rogers (left) and Larry Early (center) victorious, the Huskie dog was jumping (right). (Photos by Peggy Young)

OPRF-HC Writeup | Heading South (by Mack Bolen)

Many birds fly south for the winter, like the Carl Sandburg Eagle. Seems like a top dog from up north is also joining in the annual post season ritual; the Husky. On Tuesday night at the OPRF Dual Team Sectional, Carl Sandburg made short work of Mt Carmel, 66-14. On the other mat, the Huskies were in a rematch with the Red Devils, a team they defeated earlier in the season en route to a WSC Silver title…but a team that had also defeated Marist, one of the top ranked teams in the state. The weekend prior, OPRF had a successful run in the Individual State Championship Tournament, getting a championship from Sam Brooks at 182lbs, a runner-up at 106lbs by Matt Rundell, and two 3rd place finishes from Larry Early at 120lbs and 152lber Davonte Mahomes. It would be the Huskies 3rd “unofficial” Individual State title in 4 years.

The dual meet started at 182lbs, with OPRF sophomore Andre Lee scoring a fall in 1:46 over Hinsdale Central’s Jack Adams. Wrestling up at 195lbs, Sammy Brooks followed with another pin in just :53 and sophomore Emonte Logan secured the 3rd straight win for OPRF with an 8-4 decision over Justin Katzovitz. Brian Allen slowed the sleigh-ride down temporarily with a 12-2 major decision over Marq Brumant, bringing the score to 15-4 in favor of OPRF. Matt Rundell followed with a pin for the Huskies at 106lbs and then…wait…yes…we had a Darius Henry sighting! The 113lber whom had been MIA since the Iowa City Super Quad stepped in at 113lbs and gained another win for OPRF, a hard fought 5-3 decision over George Tolbert. Larry Early followed with a fall in :52 at 120lbs. Red Devil freshman phenom Juwan Edmond was able to get a win for HC at 126lbs, 7-2 over Johnny Gahagan. At this point the Red Devils were down 30-7. Cam Harris got a major decision on a last second TD over Tommy Ward at 132lbs, and then came the upset of the night. Jake O’Mara, whose last big win came back in November with a fall over Clayton Lutzow of CLC in the Conant finals, faced Ernest Battaglia at 138lbs. Down 1-0, O’Mara scored a 3-point near fall off a tilt and hung on for a 3-2 win. At this point the Husky faithful were going barking mad in the stands…literally. In fact, you couldn’t miss the stuffed husky sporting a singlet and headgear. Colin Rogers defeated Jimmy Grimm at 145lbs, and Zack Pickering stepped in at 152lbs to get a fall over Chris Miller, putting the Huskies up 47-7…with two State Qualifiers, Michael Woulfe (160) and Joey Ariola (170) left for OPRF. At this point Coach Powell decided to call the dogs off…so to speak, and forfeited the last two matches. Final score: 47-19. It was great to see T.J. Sally on the bench…unable to wrestle, but there to cheer his team on. We all pray for his speedy recovery.

The Huskies could look across the mat and see what could be an eventual finals match-up with the Eagles. Both teams had great seasons and sent over half of their teams to the Individual State Championship…and finished #1 and #2 in the “unofficial” tournament score. So the migration south to Bloomington will be this Saturday, and both the Eagles and Huskies will be in familiar territory…but I hear a Panther lurking down there too…



Champ-aign: Sam Brooks titles again as Huskies place four
Lower classmen Matt Rundell (2nd), Larry Early (3rd) and Davonte Mahomes (3rd) also medal · 02/18/2012

For the third time in three years, senior Sam Brooks wrestled in the pinnacle bout in Illinois Class 3A wrestling. For the second time in three years, Sam Brooks entered this bout against an opponent whom he defeated earlier in the season. With very little trouble, Sammy nearly majored Taylor McGiffin of Alton en route the 182 pound Class 3A individual title.

Matthew Rundell, a freshman, also reached the highest of all matches. His, too, was a rematch. Kris Williams, a freshman from Thornton, lost to Matthew a week ago in a frenetically paced match. Unfortunately for Huskie fans, Kris scored an early lead tonight and maintained it throughout. Rundell's record of 44-4, pending this next week, has the most wins by a freshman in OPRF history.

Larry Early, also a freshman, was throttled in his semifinal bout with Jered Cortez of Glenbard North. But then again, who wasn't? Larry showed grit and resolve in two highly competitive consolation bouts to secure the consolation championship, winning third place over Nick Nasenbeny of Plainfield Central. Larry also has 40 wins on the season, 40-8.

Not placing were Johnny Gahagan (126), Cameron Harris (132), Michael Woulfe (160), and Joe Ariola (170). Both Johnny (So.) and Joe (Jr.) will be back next year. To Sam, Cam, and Michael, we wish the best of luck. But....

Next week is the Dual Team State competition, beginning with a home dual against Hinsdale Central on Tuesday night. A win Tuesday would put the Huskies in the 8 team bracket in Bloomington, IL.



Tournament updates
02/16/2012 - 02/18/2012

Matthew Rundell (106) and Sam Brooks (182) will be in the championship bouts on Saturday night.
Larry Early (120) and Davonte Mahomes (152) are guaranteed a medal (TBD).
Michael Woulfe (160) is still in the hunt.

16 Man Brackets
Matthew Rundell (106) - W - W - W - L - 2nd Davonte Mahomes (152) - W - W - L - W - W - 3rd
Larry Early (120) - W - W - L - W - W - 3rd Michael Woulfe (160) - W - L - W - L - eliminated
Johnny Gahagan (126) - L - eliminated Joe Ariola (170) - W - L - L - eliminated
Cameron Harris (132) - L - eliminated Sam Brooks (182) - W - W - W - W - 1st

Follow the IHSA tournament links posted further down on the home page.



State of affairs: Three day tilt to decide IHSA champions
Eight vie for medals in wide open fields · 02/15/2012

Assembly Hall in Champaign-Urbana (Photo by BT)

This extended weekend is the ultimate test in the IHSA wrestling world. Three classes (organized by size) hold each of fourteen bracket challenges to determine the very best in Illinois. To some, just making it to the ground floor in Champaign is reward enough. Others want to leave with some new hardware around the neck. Others still want to stand atop the pinnacle with a bracket board in hand. The Huskies send eight to face off in the largest of classes (3A):

The Young Men The Competition

Matthew Rundell (106)
Larry Early (120)
Johnny Gahagan (126)
Cameron Harris (132)
Davonte Mahomes (152)
Michael Woulfe (160)
Joe Ariola (170)
Sam Brooks (182)

106 bracket
120 bracket
126 bracket
132 bracket
152 bracket
160 bracket
170 bracket
182 bracket

This year's tournament throws a number of wrinkles into the equation. The first is the new weight classes. The second is the dropping of several 3A teams to 2A in order to balance the classes. The third is true wrestlebacks (no walkovers) in the consolation bracket. The fourth is the extra day of wrestling. What's still true is that, in order to advance to the consolation bracket, a wrestler must lose to a semifinalist or finalist. Then again, you can just keep winning and make your own fate.

Here's the 3A time schedule for the event:

Thursday - 6:30 pm (approximate) - preliminaries - six mats
Friday - 8:30 am - quarterfinals - two mats
Friday - 1:00 pm - first round wrestlebacks - six mats
Friday - 7:00 pm - semifinals - two mats
Saturday - 9:00 am - quarterfinal wrestlebacks - two mats
Saturday - 11:00 am - semifinal wrestlebacks - two mats
Saturday 1:00 pm - 5th and 6th place matches - two mats
Saturday 5:30 pm - 3rd and 4th place matches - six mats
Saturday 6:30 pm - grand march followed by championship matches - one mat

Some helpful links if you can't make it down:

IHSA Wrestling Main Page | Time Schedule | Individual Brackets | | Illinois Matmen Forums |
Follow Live on TrackWrestling | Links and Stories via Illinois Matmen

Go get 'em Huskies! State of Illinois, hear us bark!



Eight downstate: OPRF send majority including three champs
Huskies take 3 titles, 2 runner-ups, 2 consolation championships, and 1 fourth place finish · 02/11/2012

De La Salle Sectional in 2010 (Photo by BT)

The OPRF Huskies battled against many elite squads and wrestlers this weekend. For their efforts, they will have eight representatives downstate in Champaign next weekend. In the sectional, Carl Sandburg secured the most state qualifiers (9). OPRF came in second with Marist (8). The Eagles will be in the dual team state tournament; the Redhawks will not. Here is a quick look at the results:

Matthew Rundell (106) - First place
Joe Robles (113) - Did not place
Larry Early (120) - Second place
Johnny Gahagan (126) - Fourth place
Cameron Harris (132) - Third place
Colin Rogers (138) - Did not place
Jake O'Mara (145) - Did not place

Davonte Mahomes (152) - Second place
Michael Woulfe (160) - First place
Joe Ariola (170) - Third place
Sam Brooks (182) - First place
Andre Lee (195) - Did not place
Emonte Logan (220) - Did not place
Marq Brumant (285) - Did not place

Final Results | Jump to final bracket sheets and IHSA results.

Photos | Kevin O'Mara was on his game yet again: OPRF 2012 Sectionals on Flickr



De La Salle Day 2: Eight in the semis

OPRF has fourteen contenders in each of fourteen weight classes, and eight are in the semifinals. The competition is heavy, so don't blink! Wrestling begins again at 10:00 am sharp.

Semifinalists | Must win one of next two bouts to qualify for state

Matthew Rundell (106)
Larry Early (120)
Cameron Harris (132)
Davonte Mahomes (152)
Michael Woulfe (160)
Joe Ariola (170)
Sam Brooks (182)
Marq Brumant (285)

In Consolation Bracket | Must win next three bouts to qualify for state

Joe Robles (113)
Johnny Gahagan (126)
Colin Rogers (138)
Jake O'Mara (145)
Andre Lee (195)
Emonte Lee (220)

Updated Brackets | Take a look before the fun begins

Watch the Finals Live | Illinois Matmen will stream live video

Illinois Matmen Live - Coverage begins at 4 pm


De La Salle dynamite: The toughest sectional calls Chicago home

As we near a love-ly holiday on the 14th, 14 young men now stand with the chance to reach the ultimate arena: Assembly Hall in Champaign, Illinois. Sure, there are plenty of seats in the stands, but this roster desires a chair in Participant Palace: Royalty Row.

Friday's tournament is a collision of four regionals: Mt. Carmel, Lyons Township, Marist, and Leyden. For a list of participating teams (and preliminary pairings), click to view the De La Salle bracket. The competing wrestlers finished 1-3 in their regional. Remember that these brackets may fluctuate before the wrestlers toe the line.

Wrestling begins on Friday night at 4:30 pm and continues on Saturday. The first round on Saturday begins at 10:00 am. The medal round finals are set to begin at 4:00 pm. These four will have punched their tickets to Champaign as the top four advance from the individual sectional. Note that there is an admission fee for the tournament. If you want to glance back before you plunge forward, click here to view a great snapshot of those Fab 14 and Company.

So, come out as you are able and support our beloved: the Orange & Blue Wrecking Crew!



Career years: A look at Varsity records of regional entrants
Sam Brooks has hit one hundred with others eventual possibilities · 02/06/2012

Career record (Varsity only) is through the conclusion of 2011-2012 regular season
(does not include this year's postseason)

Regional Entrant  Class  2011-2012 Record  OPRF Career Record
 Matt Rundell - 106 Freshman 36 - 3 36 - 3
 Joe Robles - 113 Sophomore 9 - 13 9 - 13
 Larry Early - 120 Freshman 33 - 6 33 - 6
 Johnny Gahagan - 126   Sophomore 15 - 12 15 - 12
 Cameron Harris - 132 Senior 26 - 9 80 - 47
 Colin Rogers - 138 Senior 28 - 8 61 - 31
 Jake O'Mara - 145 Junior 12 - 5 15 - 12
 Davonte Mahomes - 152   Sophomore 32 - 3 66 - 14
 Michael Woulfe - 160 Senior 32 - 10 57 - 30
 Joe Ariola - 170 Junior 30 - 6 49 - 18
 Sammy Brooks - 182 Senior 29 - 0 137 - 19
 Andre Lee - 195 Sophomore 8 - 9 8 - 9
 Emonte Logan - 220  Sophomore 18 - 15 18 - 15
 Marq Brumant - 285  Senior 23 - 10 62 - 45


Fabulous fourteen: Huskies advance everyone in Regional win
OPRF win by 60.5; York and Leyden place second and third · 02/04/2012

Photos by Kevin O'Mara - View all of his pictures from the event on Flickr.

The #1 ranked Huskies stormed by the competition on Saturday with eight champions, a pair of runner-ups, and four third-placed winners. OPRF finished with 245.5 points. York (185), Leyden (134), and Proviso West (76.5) rounded out the top half of the eight team tournament. View the complete regional bracket.

Moving Along | The Huskies sent each one of their fourteen entrants along to Individual Sectionals (Friday and Saturday at De La Salle High School in Chicago):

 Matt Rundell - 106 - 1st  

 Matt had little trouble taking his first regional crown.

 Joe Robles - 113 - 3rd    Joe lost his first bout but battled back in two epic bouts to advance.
 Larry Early - 120 - 1st    Larry scored a major and a fall for the talented freshman.
 Johnny Gahagan - 126 - 1st    Johnny titled after a close OT rematch win over Brandon Kupczyk (York).
 Cameron Harris - 132 - 1st    Cameron scored a nice 11-8 victory over #4 ranked Troy Valdez (York).
 Colin Rogers - 138 - 2nd    Colin was 1-1 on OT matches; lost to Jesse McCabe (Leyden).
 Jake O'Mara - 145 - 3rd    Jake returned and scrapped out a consolation title among the big boys.
 Davonte Mahomes - 152 - 1st    Davonte won in convincing fashion in just his second year.
 Michael Woulfe - 160 - 1st     Michael avenged a past loss to Kenard Washington (Proviso West).
 Joe Ariola - 170 - 1st    Joe scored tech fall and pin fall victories en route to the championship.
 Sammy Brooks - 182 - 2nd    Sammy sat out the title bout to rest a few bumps.
 Andre Lee - 195 - 3rd    Andre continued his rise to great potential by persevering in his bracket.
 Emonte Logan - 220 - 3rd    Emonte bounced back from a fall loss to win with two of his own.
 Marq Brumant - 285 - 1st    Marq decisioned Javier Rhoades (Leyden) in the title bout.

Team State | The regional championship is the Huskies' sixth in nine years. They will wrestle Hinsdale Central for the right to go to Bloomington, IL, for the Dual Team State Tournament. OPRF will wrestle the Red Devils on Tuesday, February 21, at Oak Park & River Forest High School. Dual Team State is that Saturday, February 25.



Postseason now: Leyden regional on Saturday

The Varsity Huskies are are at the first step of the postseason journey knows simply as "February." OPRF visits host Leyden to compete in an eight team regional tournament. The other six competing schools are Addison Trail, York, Proviso East, Proviso West, and two Chicago schools: Taft and Foreman. The Huskies are clear favorites for a team regional title.

The tournament is scheduled to begin at 9:00 am. Finals are slated for 3:00 pm. Go Huskies!



Jump to top