Diekel wins Ken Baker Classic; picks up 200th win

Wrestling John with balloonsJohn Diekel officially picked up his 200th win last Saturday at the Coach Ken Baker Classic at Cambridge High School and then put an exclamation point on the milestone by winning the tournament.

Diekel pinned Hadley-Luzerne/Lake George’s Jason Hoffman in the third period of the championship match to win the tournament at 138 pounds.

He recorded his 200th varsity win in his first match of the day, the second consecutive year a wrestler from Whitehall has reached the milestone. Diekel’s cousin, Zach, recorded his 200th win a season ago.

Diekel wasn’t the only wrestler from Whitehall to have a successful weekend.

Austin Rich finished second at 106 pounds and Dominic Gregory finished fourth at 195 pounds. And Zach Rozell had perhaps the finest performance of his varsity tenure, earning a 7-0 victory in the consolation finals to finish third at 285 pounds.

His only loss came to eventual champion Adam Agresta.

“Zach wrestled very well. He used his weight well and wrestled very well on his feet,” head coach Bob Diekel said.

Whitehall finished sixth as a team and could have fared better if not for several injuries. Al Aubin and Julian Barber were both injured, the latter on an illegal throw, and a few other wrestlers were too ill to perform.

“We’ve wrestled in some tough tournaments and it caught up with us this weekend,” Bob Diekel said.

Fortunately he expects most of the wrestlers to be ready for the postseason tournaments, which begin this week with the Class D Sectional tournament at Warrensburg High School.

This weekend’s tournament will feature 13 teams. The top four individuals in each weight class advance to the Super Sectional Tournament at the Glens Falls Civic Center next week.

If they perform well, a number of Whitehall wrestlers have a legitimate chance to qualify for that tournament.

“This is what we prepare for all season,” Bob Diekel said.








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