CHAMPAIGN -- For most of their match to launch the Class 2A individual state finals at 106 pounds, it appeared Rich Central junior Nkosi Moody was going to avenge his only defeat of the season.
But Montini junior Tommy Pawelski had other ideas, using a takedown in the final five seconds to secure the 6-5 decision.
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"It was a similar situation at the (Lemont) sectional," Pawelski said of his late takedown and 3-point near fall to win the week before 8-4. "I knew I had to score off his shot."
Fenton's Ray Bunker was seeking redemption after his quarterfinal loss to eventual state champion Zane Richards of Carbondale at 132 pounds in the middle-tier class.
"After that there was no way I was going to lose another match," Bunker said. "That was the worst feeling in the world -- (losing) in front of everybody."
Bunker survived Rock Island senior Demetrius Henderson in the third-place semifinals and handed Lemont senior Glen Malecki 5-2 for top consolation honors.
Lions making the cut:
As the lone Class 1A program in the area, Lisle had three athletes make the state cut.
Ryan Kilroy, the Plano sectional champion at 120 pounds for the Lions, was the only medal-winner for Lisle over the weekend.
"I thought Ryan had a good tournament," Lisle coach John Davis said. "He had a bit of a brain cramp in the quarterfinals. He learned from it."
Kilroy bounced back to reach the third-place final.
But meeting Plano senior Jose Villareal for the fourth time in as many weeks was not the solution for Kilroy.
"(Villareal) kind of has his number," Davis said of their encounters at the Interestate Eight Conference meet, the Sandwich regional and Plano sectional final. "(Kilroy) was 1-3 against him.
Brian Czyl and Brad Blechschmidt were the Lions' other state qualifiers; the former lost both of his matches, and the latter was one match shy of the medal round with his 2-2 performance.
"We're in a pretty tough conference for single-A," Davis said. "Thirty-eight out of the possible 56 (state berths) came out of our conference."