Sophomore wrestler Jarell Young is heading to the state meet after his comeback performance at Districts last weekend. Young is the first Saint Ignatius wrestler since Johnny Novak ’20 to qualify for the state meet as Young placed third at Districts.
Young was victorious in his first match-up in Perrysburg on day one with a 15-2 score to advance to the quarter-final round. Young would fall to Maple Heights in his next match 10-4, placing him in the consolation bracket.
“I just had to take one match at a time,” says Young. “The first match took a toll on me, and I saw that in the second match vs. the Maple Heights Kid.”
To wrestle on day two, Young had to win his consolation match-up. “The third match set off a fire in me,” explains Young. That fire raged inside Young as he would win his match in the consolation bracket via pin.
“The first day Jarell wrestled and prepared as a sophomore would,” says Head Wrestling Coach Mark Sullivan. “From day one to day two, he matured pretty quickly, and I was impressed.”
Young began day two in the consolation quarter-final with a chance at qualifying for the state meet. Young kept his dream alive with an 11-3 victory to move on to the consolation semi-final round. “It was aggression, straight aggression,” explains Young. “I wanted to come out ready to go with fierceness.”
Young had a state qualification in his sight heading into the semi-final round. The Sophomore would win his match 5-1, qualifying him for the state meet at Hilliard Darby High School.
“Wrestling is obviously a physical sport, but mentally it is difficult to keep your head in it,” says Associate Head Wrestling Coach Jonathan Polick. “So to come back and win that last match on that first day and string together those wins on the second day shows how mentally tough he is.”
Young would finish day two with one last victory as he would win the consolation final in overtime, 4-2. As only a Sophomore, Young placed third on the podium, which is significantly impressive.
“The fact he had to wrestle three state-ranked kids to get where he’s at,” says Sullivan. “That was pretty impressive.”
There is an impressive amount of wrestling talent that comes out of Northeast Ohio, and coach Sullivan is familiar with how difficult it is to have a wrestler make the state tournament. “Anytime you get anyone out of the district of Northeast Ohio, it is a difficult proposition,” explains Sullivan. “To get one out is huge for the team; you have to have the best weekend of your life to get out of there”
“The whole team did a great job,” says Polick, “it is not an easy district by any means, but there is a lot to build on.”
Young, who wrestles in the 170 weight class, will continue his season this weekend at Hilliard Darby High School. As you can imagine, the Sophomore is thrilled at the chance to prove himself in Columbus. “I’m honestly just happy to be here,” says Young. “I thank all of the coaches for pushing me that extra mile to get me down to states.”
“Coach Sullivan and I are thrilled for him,” says Polick. “We want to get down there and make some noise and get him on the podium.”
“Anytime you get a guy to the state tournament, it is exciting,” explains Sullivan. “Once you get there, anyone can be a state placer; to be a state placer, you need to win two matches.”
It was a record-setting season for the Mat Cats, and Young looks to carry that torch into the state meet on Saturday. The excitement level has risen all week for the Sophomore. Coach Sullivan and Polick are excited to see where the chips fall this weekend.
“The sky’s the limit right now,” says Sullivan. “If nothing else, he can show the young guys what it takes to get there and what it takes to win.”