Another preview article which means absolutely nothing
February 15th, 2018| Written by: Editor



BOSSIER CITY, LA - Seventy-seven teams will converge at the Bossier City CenturyLink Center for the 2018 LHSAA State Wrestling Championships, held on Friday, February 16th, and Saturday, February 17th.

#1 Seeds by Teams Returning State Champions Seeding Pondering and Notes in General

Team Strength Estimates via Seeding

Below is just an exercise in mathematics the editor forgot years ago.  Algebra is involved, as is, as units are involved, physics.  Yet neither algebra nor physics used the units the editor attempted to decipher from his equations.  Point of fact, the editor is not quite sure what the units should be called.

For the purposes of the table below, consider the numbers to mean the inverse of relative team strength via the top-six seeds in each weight class.  It is inverted as the lower numbers represents the strongest teams.  The editor relied on the KISS method until the numbers started looking as he believed they should.

Brother Martin in Division I, Teurlings Catholic in Division II and St. Louis in Division III have the seeding advantages to win the team titles in their respective divisions.

(This page should self-destruct at 9 a.m. on Friday.)

Division I
Estimated Team Strength
Rank School Strength
1 Brother Martin 0.21
2 St. Paul's 0.24
3 Jesuit 0.41
4 Holy Cross 0.44
5 Airline 0.55
T-6 Catholic 0.64
T-6 East Ascension 0.64
8 St. Amant 1.06
Division II
Estimated Team Strength
Rank School Strength
1 Teurlings Catholic 0.24
2 Parkway 0.28
3 Live Oak 0.45
4 Shaw 0.48
5 Carencro 0.61
6 Rayne 0.63
7 Belle Chasse 0.72
8 Rummel 0.78
Division III
Estimated Team Strength
Rank School Strength
1 St. Louis 0.25
T-2 Basile 0.31
T-2 De la Salle 0.31
4 Ouachita Christian 0.41
5 Brusly 0.50
6 John Curtis 0.55
7 Church Point 0.63
8 Hannan 0.65

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Division I
#1 Seeds
School #1 Seeds Wrestler
Brother Martin 4 106, 120, 145, 285
St. Paul's 3 138, 145, 160
Airline 2 182, 195
Catholic 2 113, 170
Jesuit 1 220
Holy Cross 1 120
East Ascension 1 132
Division II
#1 Seeds
School #1 Seeds Wrestler
Teurlings Catholic 3 113, 132, 285
Shaw 2 160, 170
Rummel 2 120, 126
Carencro 1 145
Haughton 1 220
Live Oak 1 152
Parkway 1 138
North Desoto 1 106
Rayne 1 195
St. Michael 1 182
Division III
#1 Seeds
School #1 Seeds Wrestler
St. Louis 3 106, 113, 152
Ouachita Christian 3 126, 145, 160
Church Point 2 132, 182
De la Salle 2 170, 220
North Vermillion 1 120
Basile 1 138
Dunham 1 195
Evangel 1 285

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Division I Returning State Champions

Returning state champions for the Crusaders are Daniel Croy at 126 lbs. and Luke Cotton at 132 lbs. (Cotton's championship was in 2016).  St. Paul's has Cole Houser at 138 lbs. and Jared Theiler at 160 lbs.  For Jesuit they are Adam Larriviere (Larrirviere's state championship was in 2016), Nathan Koenig at 152 lbs. and Perry Ganci at 220 lbs.  Airline has Matt Salinas at 195 lbs.

Division II Returning State Champions

Parkway returns Trey Fontenot at 132 lbs. and Trevor Tamburo at 138 lbs.  Cooper Simon and Tyler Carriere are returning for Rayne.  Blake Mateu of Rummel will be seeking his third Division II title.  (For reasons unknown to the editor at this time, defending Raider state champion Dawson Mire will not participate in the event.)  Martin Garrett returns for Shaw at 160 lbs. and Anthony Ingram will attempt to repeat at 285 lbs.

Division III Returning State Champions

Basile junior Gavin Christ, at 138 lbs., will be seeking his third consecutive Division III title.  So will South Plaquemines' senior Brandon Turner.  Alex Yokubaitis at 113 lbs. and Robert Christman at 152 lbs. will be seeking their second titles for St. Louis, as will Eric Hamrick at 220 lbs. and Jeremiah James at 285 lbs. for the Cavaliers of De la Salle.  North Vermillion's Justin Theall at 120 lbs. and Ouachita Christian's Sam Pitts at 126 lbs. will attempt to defend their 2017 titles.

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Seeding Pondering and Notes in General

The editor is sure that the seeding of wrestlers was done per the current LHSAA seeding criteria.  However, a few seeds were not as some readers might have expected, and at least one for some bizarre reason.

Division I

Luke Romano of Catholic was probably not everyone's guess for the top spot at 113 lbs., but it makes perfect sense.  At 113 lbs. he has only lost to a Division II opponent.  A forfeit and a better placement at the Louisiana Classic put him ahead of Holy Cross' defending runner-up Caruso Signorelli, who is 3rd behind Connor Oviedo of St. Paul's, re Oviedo winning the fifth-place match against Signorelli in the Louisiana Classic.  Ethan Castex of Brother Martin is 1-1 with Signorelli, but Signorelli placed higher at the Louisiana Classic.  Castex is not wrestling like a #4 seed, and opponents should be very wary of the freshman, as he could start another Crusader run for four consecutive titles.

The 132 lbs. weight class is the bizarre one.  East Ascension's Trent Mahoney and Brother Martin's Luke Cotton have not met this season, and Mahoney is seeded higher than Cotton because he only lost to Basile's Gavin Christ once, while Cotton lost to Christ twice.  Hence, by virtue of more experience against the best 132 lbs. wrestler in the state, Cotton got the second spot.  Had Mahoney lost to Christ twice, Cotton would be the top-seed due to his finish at the 2017 state championships.  More than a few wrestlers cannot wait for the Basile junior to graduate.

The 160 lbs. weight class is a little odd.  Jared Thieler, a returning state champion for St. Paul's, is the #1 seed.  Thieler is very capable of winning, but he has been off of the mats since the end of December.  Prior to that he owned 152 lbs. and went down to 145 lbs., losing his only match against a Louisiana opponent to Brother Martin''s Patrick Evans, but he has never competed at 160 lbs.  Jesuit's Paul Treuting, the Louisiana Classic champion, has not lost at 160 lbs.

Division II

Just for the record, with Brett Schneider of Teurlings Catholic, Morgan Manuel of Rayne and defending state champion Trey Fontenot of Parkway, the Division II 132 lbs. weight class will be brutal.

Division III

Dunham junior Robert Rabel may be a surprising name to see atop the Division III 195 lbs. weight class. The editor was not fooled, though, as this is the Grant Rabel who won a state championship as an eighth-grader in 2015 and was a runner-up as a freshman in 2016.  He was injured throughout the entire 2017 season, and now tries to sneak back into the fray with a different name.  What, pray tell, might he do next season as a senior? 

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