Bearcats look good to win Basile's second team championship
August 24th, 2018| Written by: Editor



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Division III

On paper one must give the preseason nod to Basile.  Eleven of their 12 wrestlers from the 2018 team, which placed fourth, are returning.  Of those eleven, only four scored less than 10 points.  With three returning state champions and three who placed third in 2018, the Bearcats should field a very strong team.

The main challenges for the Bearcats should be St. Louis De la Salle and Brusly.  During the season, though, Basile should be aware that things written in August can often prove to be wrong.

Returning 2018 Division III State Champions

Alex Menier Alex Yokubaitis Mikey Gordy Gavin Christ Isaac Cortez Robert Rabel D.J. Harvey


2019 could very well be the year that Basile’s Gavin Christ adds a Division III State Champion team patch on his Bearcats letter jacket to go along with his three and most likely four individual Division III championships.  The Bearcats are returning a lot of talent.  Christ was undefeated in the 2017-18 season and, to many younger opponents’ relief, is a senior.   Sophomore Alex Menier and junior Isaac Cortez also won individual championships in 2018.  Blake Menier, Hunter Langley and Logan David placed third, which is a very good stepping-stone to the finals. 

Alex Menier - 1st Gavin Christ - 1st Isaac Cortez - 1st
Blake Menier - 3rd Hunter Langley - 3rd Logan David - 3rd

In all, the Bearcats are returning 12 wrestlers with state championship experience.  Aside from the six mentioned above, three other Bearcats, Ethan Langley, Cole Manuel and Gabe Duplechain made the podium as top-six placers.  Dawson Ashford, Tanner Fontenot and Anthony Guillory round out the Bearcats returning from the 2018 state championships.

They will need two other wrestlers to fill all 14 spots.  Winning a state championship could be quite an incentive for two more Bearcats to go through the rigors of a wrestling season.  The last Basile state championship was in 1991, a Division II title when there were only two state championship divisions.  Christ’s father, Chris Briscoe, was a runner-up on that team.

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 St. Louis Catholic

2018 Division III state champion St. Louis Catholic returns seven starters from last season’s championship team, as they lost six to graduation.  Yes, that makes 13, but the editor just noticed the Saints won the championship lacking an entrant at 120 lbs.

Alex Yokubaitis - 1st John-Patrick Broussard - 2nd William Jicks - 2nd

St. Louis will not cede a second championship easily.  Of the seven returning wrestlers from the 2018 state championships, six made the podium.  One, of course was Alex Yokubaitis, a junior who will be seeking his third Division III state title in 2019.  Junior John-Patrick Broussard and senior William Jicks were runners-up in 2018.  Senior William Gage placed fourth, and seniors Noah Berryhill and Kyle Guidry finished in fifth-place.  Sophomore Wesley Maze was one match away from placing for the Saints. 

De la Salle

Jamar Brown - 2nd
New Cavalier coach Mike Hillman will be starting with a lot of new kids in the 2018-19 season, as seven members of the 2018 Division III runners-up graduated.  That seven accounted for 130.5 of De la Salle’s 204.5 points in 2018.  And like St. Louis, the 2018 Cavalier team only had 13 wrestlers in Bossier City.

Yet the Cavaliers have some strong kids coming back.  Senior Jamar Brown was a runner-up last season, and sophomore Zachary Lauland placed third.  Seniors Grant Gebo and Coedy Fonseca, and junior Fisher Rojas also merited spots on the podium.  Sophomore Jacob Angelo knows what it is like to win and lose close matches in a state tournament.
Zachary Lauland - 3rd


Calep Balcuns - 3rd
Brusly should be a factor, as they are returning 12 wrestlers from the 2018 tournament, but experience is a factor to be reckoned with for the Panthers.  Their highest returning placer, Calep Balcuns, finished in third-place, and only four other returning Panthers, Kaden Gillikin, Kaul Kayser, Andrew Trahan Matthew Anderson found spots on the podium when the tournament was over.

Of the remaining wrestlers returning for the Panthers, only two, Dainta Heard, Jr. and Kade Lang, will be seniors.  Hence, 10 of Brusly’s wrestlers will have at least two state championships “under their belts” come the 2019-2020 season.  Gillikin, Balcuns, Anderson and Matthew Ganaway will be juniors this year.  Kayser, Marc Martinez, Trahan, Joshua Westly, Brison Walker and Brian Amis will be sophomores.  That may be the season when Jimmy Bible’s team starts another Division III streak.

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 Other 2018 Top-10 Schools (in order of placement in the 2018 state championships):

Ouachita Christian

Mikey Gordy - 1st
The Eagles lost 67% of their 2018 team, which finished in third place despite having only nine entrants.  Only Division I champion Brother Martin, at 22.8, scored more points per entrant than the Eagles’ 19.8.  Three Eagles from the 2018 team are returning.  Senior Mikey Gordy will be seeking his second state championship.   Junior Matthew Enlow will look to improve his fifth-place finish in 2018, and sophomore Van Matherne won two matches in 2018. 

Coach David Webre has done a phenomenal job in his five years at Ouachita Christian, which could be the most out-of-the-way team in Louisiana.  The closest school to them, Lakeside, is almost 90 miles away, and the Shreveport/Bossier City area is over 100 miles from Monroe.  In five years Webre’s program has produced five state championships, and if he gets hold of enough younger kids to approach a 14-wrestler roster, the Eagles will become a title contender.

Church Point

Bruce Arceneaux - 2nd
The Black Bears only entered nine combatants in the 2018 state championships yet still finished sixth as a team.  They are only losing one to graduation, even though it is a “big one” in 2018 runner-up Jacob Routon.

Chase Citizen, Bruce Arceneaux, Haven Dominguez and Darenion Gaubert will be seniors, and will be joined by sophomores Timothy Routon, Andrew Lynch, Dylan Stelly and Tony Gibson.  Arceneaux and Dominguez were runners-up in 2018 while Gaubert and Gibson placed fourth.
Haven Dominguez - 2nd


Cade Hontiveros - 3rd Evan Brouillette - 3rd Deionisio Talbot - 3rd

Coach Jay Faucheax had done a great job since starting the Hannan program in 2016.  The Hawks return all 13 wrestlers they entered in the 2018 tournament.  Six of those earned spots on the podium.  Cade Hontiveros, Evan Brouillette and Deionisio Talbot placed third.  James Geiger placed fifth and Cole Bartlett and Frank Bretey placed sixth.  David Diecidue, Brennan Ammari, Wyatt Coffee, Mark Pennison, and David Duplechain all have experience winning at a state championship, and they will be joined by Brendan David and Frederich Rabensteiner who will be seeking their first state championship wins.

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John Curtis

Colton Kendrick - 2nd
The Patriots will return 11 of their 2018 state tournament team.  Of those, senior Colton Kendrick was a runner-up, sophomore John Drake placed third, seniors Tyler Herlache and Joshua Valentine placed fourth and senior Joha Anderson placed fifth.  Sophomores Carson Schlumbrecht and Kolbe Golden did not place but did earn wins at the 2018 state championships, as did senior Eric Bumgarden.  Senior John Baker did not earn a win, but he was in a particularly difficult weight class which included Matthew Matherne, Adam Verrett, Deionisio Talbot, Hunter Richey, Charles Carr and Zachary Biggs.

The Patriots should become considerably stronger when Brendan Wilcox rejoins the team after the Patriot’s football season finishes.
John Drake - 3rd

 North Vermillion

The Patriots will return six of the eleven members of their 2018 state championship roster.  Two of those, seniors Riley Baumgardner and Tyrin Hoover, placed sixth.  Three of the remaining four, Braxton Hebert, Connor Fritsch and Kristopher Breaux won at least one match before they were eliminated (Braxton won two).  Sophomore Devin Martinez did not win a state tournament match in his freshman year, but his loss was a close 10-7 affair.


D.J. Harvey - 1st
The Indians only brought six wrestlers to the 2018 state championships, and had to feel good that two of them, Mason Sparks and D.J. Harvey, won individual state titles.  They will return only four members of that team (two of whom were eighth-graders in 2018), but one of those will be Harvey, seeking his second individual title.  Freshman Kataurio Grigsby and Senior Nathan Willis placed fourth, and freshman Mason Garrett can chalk-up an eighth-grader’s entrance into a state championship tournament as a free lesson.

Other Potential Championship Contenders

Detremecio White - 2nd Skylar Jarvis - 5th Dallin Salve - 6th Ashton Gaspard - 6th
Michael Lotief Alexander Zaunbrecher - 6th Hung Nguyen - 6th Chase Spooner - 6th

Senior Ashton Gaspard place fifth, junior Michael Lotief and sophomore Alexander Zaunbrecher placed sixth for Kaplan.  Dallin Salve, a freshman, placed sixth for South Plaquemines.  Hung Nguyen place sixth for Thomas Jefferson.  Chase Spooner place sixth for South Beauregard.  For Evangel, Junior Detremecio White was a runner-up and Junior Skylar Davis placed fifth.

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