Division I - 220 pounds: Crusaders' Clapp squeaks through two matches to take 220 lbs. title
March 25th, 2016 | Written by: Editor | * photographs by Dionne Harter


If Brother Martin's Jacob Clapp felt remiss in not placing for the Crusaders in the 2015 state championships, he more than made-up for that with a state championship in 2016.  Clapp won an 8-6 finals match to defeat surprise finalist Darian Mitchell of Barbe, who upset previously undefeated Rodrigo Diaz of Lafayette in the semifinals.  Clapp had come from behind in several of his matches during the year, and this one was no different as Mitchell took the early lead but the Crusader did what he needed in the third period to take a lead and hold onto it until the final whistle blew.


Most of the talk all year about 220 lbs. referred to Lafayette's Rodrigo Diaz.  The senior placed third in 2014, second to undefeated Ethan Eisenhardt of Fontainebleau in 2015, and was undefeated upon entering the state championships in Bossier City.  Diaz, who signed to wrestle for the Missouri Tigers prior to the start of the 2015-16 season, won every tournament he entered, including the Louisiana Classic and the Ken Cole, and he won his third Lafayette Metro championship.

Yet there were some other standouts in the weight class to consider.  Brother Martin's Jacob Clapp had only lost one match all season, a 7-3 tie-breaker-1 match against Hahnville's Stephen Cloud.  Clapp defeated Cloud in a dual meet, which at that time was the Tiger's only loss and would have placed Cloud as the second seed.  A late season loss to St. Paul's Colin Francis in the Dale Ketelsen Memorial finals nixed that and Cloud was seeded third.  Another more overlooked entrant was Barbe junior Darian Mitchell.  Mitchell's only losses during the season were three to Diaz and one to Dunham's Mason Rabel in the Louisiana Classic, which he avenged in the Ken Kole.  Mitchell had defeated some other quality competition during the season including Rummel's Robert Hudgins and Francis of St. Paul's.  And Mitchell seemed to be on a learning curve versus Diaz.  While their first two meetings resulted in first-period falls for Diaz, Mitchell fared much better in the Ken Cole finals, pushing Diaz to the full six minutes in a 4-1 match.

In the state championships Diaz reached the semifinals as expected via falls of 4:35 and 1:45.  Cloud and Mitchell also made the semifinals rather easily, but not so for the second-seeded Clapp.  The Brother Martin senior required a Sudden Victory round in the quarterfinals to get past #7 James DeLee of Catholic 3-1. 

Clapp got past Cloud, winning their season series 2-1, with a fall in 5:34.  In the other semifinal, the upset of the tournament, before the finals, was about to occur.  Mitchell held Diaz in check for most of the match, and just trailed 4-3 with mere seconds remaining.  The two wrestlers however, were on their feet, and it was Mitchell who initiated an upper body drop to the mat from which he was able to slide out from underneath Diaz and end up on top as time ran out.  The takedown gave Mitchell a 6-5 win and a trip to the finals.

Diaz shook off any shock from his first loss of the season in stride and returned like the veteran he is to pin #7 DeLee and then #3 Cloud to place third.  DeLee placed fifth for the Bears with a fall in 1:29 over Francis.

Place Name School Seed Year
1st Jacob Clapp Brother Martin 2 12
2nd Darian Mitchell Barbe 3 11
3rd Rodrigo Diaz Lafayette 1 12
4th Stephen Cloud Hahnville 4 12
5th James DeLee Catholic 7 11
6th Colin Francis St. Paul's 5 12

1st 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th
Jacob Clapp Jacob Clapp Darian Mitchell Rodrigo Diaz Stephen Cloud James DeLee Colin Francis

Friday Early and Consolation Rounds

R1: Clark (EA) over Brady (ZAC) 11-4.

C1: Dale (BYR) over Mires (StA) in 2:43.

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(1) Rodrigo Diaz (LAF) pinned (8) Brennon Broussard (SUL) in 1:45.
(4) Darian Mitchell (BRB) pinned (5) Colin Francis (StP) in 1:50.
(3) Stephen Cloud (HNV) pinned (6) Chase Stuckey (BR) in 2:00.
(2) Jacob Clapp (BM) defeated (7) James DeLee (CAT) 3-1 SV.

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(4) Darian Mitchell (BRB) defeated (1) Rodrigo Diaz (LAF) 6-5.
(Photos with teal borders provided by Dionne Harter.)
(2) Jacob Clapp (BM) pinned (3) Stephen Cloud (HNV) in 5:34.

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Championship Consolation Rounds

(1) Rodrigo Diaz (LAF) pinned (3) Stephen Cloud (HNV) in 2:10 to win 3rd place.
(7) James DeLee (CAT) pinned (5) Colin Francis (StP) in 1:29 to win 5th place.

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(2) Jacob Clapp of Brother Martin defeated (4) Darian Mitchell of Barbe 8-6.

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