Wrestling: Sandburg cruises to Wheeling title

Updated: December 10, 2011 10:42PM

Sebastian Pique appeared a little the worse for wear Saturday with his head wrapped with tape to protect seven stitches.

But Sandburg looks pretty good indeed with Pique and fellow newcomer Ricky Robertson joining an already strong lineup. Pique and Robertson were among seven champs for the top-ranked Eagles, who beat runner-up Lane 248-163 to win the Wildcat Invitational at Wheeling.

“It changes the tempo in the room,” Sandburg 152-pounder Colin Holler said of adding transfers like Pique (a state champ last year for Hinsdale South) and Robertson (a state qualifier at Mount Carmel). “They bring the energy up.”

Pique took an accidental elbow to the head in a Friday night dual, which led to the stitches. But he had little trouble improving to 12-0 Saturday, getting a pin and a major decision en route to winning the 120-pound title. “It’s cool,” he said. “I have a lot of teammates that share the same determination I have.”

Robertson (13-0) had a pin, a technical fall and a 4-1 title-bout win over Wheaton Warrenville South’s Evan Welsh at 182. “Going to Sandburg was a great move,” Robertson said. “I have good practice partners. We battle and help each other out.”

One of those partners is Holler (13-0), who had a fall and two major decisions at 152. The Eagles’ other champs were Jim Pellegrino (11-1 at 106), Jim Panozzo (11-2 at 113), John Pellegrino (13-0 at 132) and Bill Gore (13-0), who beat Wheeling’s Brandon Jagielski 4-2 in overtime in the 195 final.

Holler and Lane’s Max Schneider are both state-ranked in Class 3A at 152 by Illinois Best Weekly, but Schneider (12-0) dropped to 145 and had three falls in 45 seconds or faster to earn tourney MVP honors. Whether Schneider will stay down remains to be seen. “(It’s) wherever the team needs me,” he said. “If they need me at ‘45, I’ll make it. If they need me at ‘52, that’s where I’m at.”

The Indians were the only team besides Sandburg to get more than one champ, as Nick Jankowski (11-1) won at 126 and Danny Murray (13-2) took first at 220.

Also winning titles were Maine West’s Jake Korbecki (15-1 at 138), Lake Zurich’s Scott Hoff (13-3 at 160), WW South’s Steven Franke (12-1 at 170) and Wheeling’s Igor Romanowski (10-0 at 285).

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