Crusaders take fifth straight Culotta title
Undefeated list loses three
December 24th, 2015 | Written by: Editor



The host Brother Martin Crusaders won their fifth straight Trey Culotta Invitational team championship on Wednesday, outpacing runner-up St. Paul's and third-place finisher Vestavia Hills, Alabama.  The Crusaders, however, did not dominate the event as they did in 2014, 2013 and 2012.  In those three events the Crusaders won by an average margin of 137 points.  More importantly, they averaged 218 points more than their closest Louisiana competition in those years.  Their 59 point margin over St. Paul's is their lowest since 2011 when the Crusaders outscored Jesuit by 53 points.

Nevertheless, the Crusaders are still the favorites to win a fifth consecutive Division I team championship as St. Paul's is arguably the second strongest team in Louisiana.  Add to that the fact that since 2010 the winner of the Trey Culotta Invitational has won the Division I team championship all but one time.  In 2011 Rummel won the Division I team title but did not participate in the Culotta. 

More good news for the Crusaders is that Seth Gambill, the 132 lbs. champion, did not score a single point for Brother Martin.  Patrick Evans was the point-scorer for the Crusaders and with a fourth-place finish scored 30.5 points.  Had Gambill been the starter, he would have scored somewhere in the mid-40's, as he did lose one pool match and scored only three falls in his four pool wins.

Daniel Varnado, Gambill and Pierce Williams won championships for the Crusaders, who amassed a total of 475 points.  St. Paul's Hunter Bourgeois won a second consecutive Culotta championship to help the Wolves place second with 416.5 points.  Vestavia Hills, with championships by Bowman Hill and James Edwards, score 350 points to place third.

Eight wrestlers entered the event undefeated, but only five remained so after the event.  Rummel's Blake Mateu and Josh Ramirez, Nicholas Lirette of Hahnville, Christian Walden of Airline and Shaw's Matthew Blair kept their records spotless.  Falling from that group were Brother Martin's Steven Shields and Stephen Rumney, and Teurlings Catholic's Brock Bonin.  Shields lost in Wednesday's semifinals to Comeaux's Seth Oubre and Rumney fell in the finals to Airline's Javarious Jones.  Bonin, after beating Taylor Gambill on Tuesday 5-3, lost a semifinals rematch 7-3.

Oubre was the most remarkable story of the tournament.  In Tuesday's pool round he was 3-2 and qualified as the fifth seed on Wednesday.  His losses were to Shields, who defeated him 13-8, and St. Paul's Jared Thieler, who pinned him in 4:00.  Oubre rebounded on Wednesday with a semifinals pin over Shields in 4:50 and a come-from-behind 6-5 win over Thieler in the finals.  For his accomplishment Oubre was chosen as the tournament's Outstanding Wrestler. 

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2015 Trey Culotta Invitational Individual Champions and Awards

106 Pounds
Daniel Varnado
Brother Martin
Pool Record: 5-0
Championship Wins
Goldsmith (CAT) Forfeit
Sonnier (TC) 10-1
Croy (BM) 8-4
113 Pounds
Blake Mateu
Pool Record: 5-0
Championship Wins
Leal (BM) 0:42
Cotton (BM) 5-0
Houser (StP) 1:08
120 Pounds
Seth Oubre
Pool Record: 3-2
Championship Wins
Oliver (BM) 1:45
Shields (BM) 4:50
Thieler (StP) 6-5

126 Pounds
Javarious Jones
Pool Record: 5-0
Championship Wins
Hebert (TC) 12-4
Ulfers (StP) 10-3
Rumney (BM) 4:40
132 Pounds
Seth Gambill
Brother Martin
Pool Record: 4-1
Championship Wins
Partin (AIR) 0:36
Evans (BM) 9-4
Wheat (EA) 10-4
138 Pounds
Nicholas Lirette
Pool Record: 5-0
Championship Wins
Mire (RUM) 1:59
Stoves (VH) 13-7
T. Gambill (BM) 3:11

145 Pounds
Hunter Bourgeois
St. Paul's
Pool Record: 5-0
Championship Wins
Haddock (VH) Forfeit
Hezeau (RUM) 0:45
Richards (COM) 5-0
152 Pounds
Bowman Hill
Vestavia Hills
Pool Record: 4-0
Championship Wins
Messina (CAT) 2:55
Palermo (BM) 3:40
Albarado (SHW) 10-4
160 Pounds
Christian Walden
Pool Record: 4-0
Championship Wins
Dawson (HOU) 1:31
Dufour (StP) 4-2
H. Hill (VH)

170 Pounds
Pierce Williams
Brother Martin
Pool Record: 5-0
Championship Wins
Fleming (HOU) 0:27
Huff (StP) 3:34
Miller (COM) 12-6
182 Pounds
Josh Ramirez
Pool Record: 5-0
Championship Wins
Nelson (VH) 2:25
Viener (BM) 3:30
Gilligan (AIR) 18-7
195 Pounds
Kynan Sonnier
Teurlings Catholic
Pool Record: 4-0
Championship Wins
Price (CAT) 1:02
Long (VH) 6-0
Honor (HNV) 10-4

220 Pounds
James Edwards
Vestavia Hills
Pool Record: 5-0
Championship Wins
Bagnell (StP) 0:46
Perdue (BM) 4:41
Cloud (HNV) 4-2 TB-1
285 Pounds
Matt Blair
Pool Record: 5-0
Championship Wins
Tappan (HNV) 0:40
Edwards (VH) 9-0
Wilson (CAT) 2-1 TB-1

Outstanding Wrestler Award
Comeaux's 120 lbs. champion Seth Oubre won the Outstanding Wrestler Award for avenging pool losses to undefeated Steven Shields (BM) and Jared Thieler (StP).
Trey Culotta Heavyweight Award
Matt Blair of Shaw remained undefeated on the season by winning the 285 lbs. championship, and accordingly was presented the Trey Culotta Award.
My Mother Does Not Dress Me for School Award
Pierce Williams of the Crusaders won this inaugural honor for initially showing the back of his championship sweatshirt for his LWN champion photo. 

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