Batavia's Perry caps perfect season with state title

Batavia's Perry caps perfect season with state title

  • Batavia's Sydney Perry wins with a fall against West Aurora Dyani Rivera in the 145 pound championship match at Grossinger Motor Arena in Bloomington. Saturday, Feb. 26, 2022, in Champaign.

    Batavia's Sydney Perry wins with a fall against West Aurora Dyani Rivera in the 145 pound championship match at Grossinger Motor Arena in Bloomington. Saturday, Feb. 26, 2022, in Champaign. Gary Middendorf/gmiddendorf@shawmedia.com

  • Glenbard North's Gabriella Gomez beat Lincoln-Way Central's Gracie Guarino 5-3 to win the 105-pound state championship Saturday at Grossinger Motor Arena in Bloomington.

    Glenbard North's Gabriella Gomez beat Lincoln-Way Central's Gracie Guarino 5-3 to win the 105-pound state championship Saturday at Grossinger Motor Arena in Bloomington. Gary Middendorf/gmiddendorf@shawmedia.com

  • Glenbard North's Gabriella Gomez, left, faces off against Lincoln-Way Central's Gracie Guarino n the 105 pound championship match at Grossinger Motor Arena in Bloomington. Saturday, Feb. 26, 2022, in Champaign.

    Glenbard North's Gabriella Gomez, left, faces off against Lincoln-Way Central's Gracie Guarino n the 105 pound championship match at Grossinger Motor Arena in Bloomington. Saturday, Feb. 26, 2022, in Champaign. Gary Middendorf/gmiddendorf@shawmedia.com

  • Lincoln-Way Central's Gracie Guarino looks to roll Glenbard North's Gabriella Gomez in the 105 pound championship match at Grossinger Motor Arena in Bloomington. Saturday, Feb. 26, 2022, in Champaign.

    Lincoln-Way Central's Gracie Guarino looks to roll Glenbard North's Gabriella Gomez in the 105 pound championship match at Grossinger Motor Arena in Bloomington. Saturday, Feb. 26, 2022, in Champaign. Gary Middendorf/gmiddendorf@shawmedia.com

  • Batavia's Sydney Perry poses with her 1st place medal for the 145 pound class at Grossinger Motor Arena in Bloomington. Saturday, Feb. 26, 2022, in Champaign.

    Batavia's Sydney Perry poses with her 1st place medal for the 145 pound class at Grossinger Motor Arena in Bloomington. Saturday, Feb. 26, 2022, in Champaign. Gary Middendorf/gmiddendorf@shawmedia.com

  • Batavia's Sydney Perry defeated West Aurora's Dyani Rivera in the 145-pound state championship match Saturday at Grossinger Motor Arena in Bloomington.

    Batavia's Sydney Perry defeated West Aurora's Dyani Rivera in the 145-pound state championship match Saturday at Grossinger Motor Arena in Bloomington. Gary Middendorf/gmiddendorf@shawmedia.com

  • Batavia's Sydney Perry works over West Aurora Dyani Rivera in the 145 pound championship match at Grossinger Motor Arena in Bloomington. Saturday, Feb. 26, 2022, in Champaign.

    Batavia's Sydney Perry works over West Aurora Dyani Rivera in the 145 pound championship match at Grossinger Motor Arena in Bloomington. Saturday, Feb. 26, 2022, in Champaign. Gary Middendorf/gmiddendorf@shawmedia.com

 
By Kevin McGavin
Daily Herald Correspondent
Updated 2/28/2022 12:16 PM

Fourteen girls indelibly left their mark on Illinois' prep athletic landscape on Saturday afternoon at the Grossinger Motors Arena in Bloomington.

The first state-championship match at the single-class two-day state tournament featured athletes from neighboring schools.

 

Sydney Perry, a Batavia sophomore who has never lost a match against a female opponent, pinned West Aurora senior Dyani Rivera late in the third period of their 145-pound title match.

Perry, who won all four of her matches by fall, finished the season with a flawless 21-0 record; Rivera ended her campaign at 21-5.

"She was literally the first official state champion in history," Batavia coach Scott Bayer said of Perry. "She was dominant. She blew through her bracket. It means a lot to our community. It means a lot to the girls in the program to have an IHSA-sanctioned state champion."

Rivera felt the same sense of historical precedent.

'It was great to be the first girl at my school to make the state finals," Rivera said. "I wanted to do what I needed to do. I almost had (Perry) pinned but she reversed it."

West Aurora and Larkin were the only local programs with multiple all-state athletes.

The former also had Brittney Moran, a freshman 190-pounder, conclude her season with a 6-4 loss at the hands of Homewood-Flossmoor sophomore Ini Odumosu in the fifth-place match.

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Larkin seniors Giselle Ayala and Maria Ferrer each recorded two pins on Friday in consecutive weight classes, 155 and 170 pounds, to advance to the Saturday semifinals.

But Ayala and Ferrer had to settle for fourth place after winning third-place semifinal wrestle-back matches following their championship-bracket defeats to start the day.

"I thought it was an out-of-body experience," said Ayala, who fell to Vandalia 32-match winner Valeria Rodriguez by fall in the major-consolation final at 155. "It was incredible to be at such a big function. I am just glad I got to experience it for my last year."

Ferrer, like Perry, captured a coaches' association-sponsored (IWCOA) state championship last spring.

But the Royals' star severely injured her left ankle during her semifinal loss.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

"I could barely walk on (my left foot)," Ferrer said.

But Ferrer soldiered on to win her third-place semifinal match before being pinned in her final prep match.

"I want to commit to a Division-I wrestling program," Ferrer said. "I am kind of disappointed (with fourth) but didn't give up. (Starting for the boys varsity) was a way for me to get prepared for state."

Burlington Central freshman Tori Macias was the last of five local athletes to reach the semifinals.

Like her counterparts from Larkin, though, Macias had her final match of the season in the third-place match after splitting her two morning matches.

Macias' first season came to an end at 23-6 when she suffered a second-period fall against Lawrenceville senior Shaina Hyre.

"Being a freshman and down there for the first time, I was kind of scared," Macias said. "But I thought it was a cool experience. I just had to push toward the end (of my third-place semifinal match) and wanted a high finish."

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