Crusaders capture seventh consecutive Louisiana Classic championship
January 22nd, 2022| Written by: Mildly Determined



The Brother Martin Crusaders won their seventh consecutive Louisiana Classic championship on Saturday, January 15th, at the Lamar-Dixon EXPO Center in Gonzales, Louisiana.  Leading after the end of the first day and placing second were the Rebels of Teurlings Catholic High School.  Jesuit placed third, followed by Catholic and Shaw.

Taking nothing away from the Crusaders win, it should be noted that 2nd place is the highest finish by a non-Division I school in the tournament’s 49-year history.  Prior to that, St. Michael tied Brother Martin for fourth place in 2010 and Buras placed fourth alone in 1989.  The Rebels had three finalists and six other placers. 

As for two non-Division I schools placing in the top-five, as Teurlings Catholic and Shaw did last weekend, in 2014 Division II's St. Michael placed 4th and Division III's Brusly placed fifth.

Speaking of Division III schools, Basile bolstered their status as the team to beat in Division III at the state championships.  The Bearcats, actually, were the most prolific scorers at the event, averaging 21 points per wrestler.  OK...that is akin to how political campaigns skew numbers.  Brother Martin's 14 entrants averaged 18.9 points apiece.  The 21 points per wrestler for Basile is due to their only entering three in the event.  They did finish 2nd, 3rd and 6th, though.  Division III team title contenders De la Salle, who entered 11, and Hannan, who entered 12, each only had two placers.  A 4th spot and a 6th spot went to Cavaliers.  A 5th and 6th spot went to Hannan wrestlers.  I only mention this because I picked Division III to finish Basile, DLS and Hannan.  This event, however, is more than likely a poor predictor of how things will pan out at the River Center.

Ten Crusaders placed in the top six spots.  Richie Clementi, Mason Elsensohn and Rocco Mediate won championships.  Jacob Elsensohn and Ryan Corca received runner-up honors and Ken Burandt placed third.  Luke Ohler placed fourth.  Placing fifth were Ty Duncan and Nick Cusimano.  Julian Tapia placed sixth.  I do not think anyone mentioned to Corca and Tapia, seeded 8th and 7th respectively, that they were not supposed to score placing points.  Kids these days...
Of the individual champions (photo right) Clementi, Airline's Ernie Perry, III, Shaw's Glenn Price, Elsensohn the Elder, Jacob Houser of St. Paul, Live Oak's Rayden Ingram, Santos Ramos of East Ascension, Horvath, Corey Hyatt of Sulphur, Holy Cross' Cole Baiamonte and Jesuit's Spencer Lanosga remained undefeated overall or against Louisiana competition.

Outstanding Wrestler Santos Ramos of East Ascension Jacob Elsensohn with the championship team trophy. Joel Lanclos with the team runner-up trophy. Reid Bergeron with the Ketelsen Team  Sportsmanship trophy. Morgan Chabert displays pride in her Crusaders.

Pinning his way through the tournament in 1:52, 2:28, 1:38, 5:14 and 0:45 (in the finals), East Ascension senior Santos Ramos was recognized as the tournament's Outstanding Wrestler.  The Dale Ketelsen Team Sportsmanship Award went to Teurlings Catholic.

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The finals were bookended with the best matches of the afternoon.

At 106 lbs. the two top seeds, Tyson Roach of Sam Houston and Landon Reaux of Southside, met for the second time this season.  In their first meeting on December 1st, Roach moved up to 113 lbs. to square-off against the 2021 106 lbs. Division I state champion and Division I Outstanding Wrestler winner.  The challenge worked in his favor as he had a lead in the third period before scoring a fall in 5:45.  That was, however, Reaux's first match of the season.  By January 8th Reaux had made 106 lbs.  In the rematch Roach led 4-2 after the first two minutes.  After four minutes had elapsed Reaux had cut the lead to one point, 6-5.  When 1:20 had elapsed in the third period Reaux took a one-point lead with a reversal.  Roach answered with his own reversal with 30 seconds remaining.  But Reaux does not give up.  He scored the final two points on his fourth reversal of the match with 13 seconds remaining and contained Roach to merit a 9-8 win and a second Louisiana Classic title.

On the other end of the weight spectrum was top seed and defending Division I 220 lbs. state champion Ashton Freeman of Zachary.  His opponent was second seed Spencer Lanosga of Jesuit.  The Blue Jay, who placed second as a freshman at the 2021 state championships, had yet to wrestle a match this season until Friday.  Lanosga scored a takedown with 30 seconds remaining in the first period, which often is a harbinger of a match between the big guys not ending 3-2 UTB.  UTB was not in Lanosga’ s plans.  He escaped to start the second period, and then, with under a minute remaining in the period, he bent over a little and just snatched Freeman's leg up by the knee.  More than a few spectators were surprised by the efficiency and speed with which Lanosga snatched the knee.  That led to a takedown, although with 20 second left Freeman got on the scoreboard with a reversal.  Unfazed, Lanosga escaped with 15 seconds left and took a 6-2 lead into the third period.  This time Freeman escaped and managed his own takedown with 1:25 remaining.  Lanosga almost immediately escaped to increase his lead by one, 7-5.  Not one to stall, with 10 seconds remaining Lanosga did it again - he just snatched Freeman's knee up and tossed the Bronco to the mat, this time managing two nearfall points before time ran out.  Freeman won the 285 lbs. Louisiana Classic in 2021 by advancing to the finals over Lanosga in a 6-5 UTB match.  During the hiatus after the LACL in 2021, Freeman cut to 220 for the state championships.  In 2021 LACL finals he defeated East Ascension's Gavin Soniat in 7:53, but if one can compete at 220 lbs., is not that like 65 lbs. easier?

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2022 Top 10 Team Scores

Place Team Points
1 Brother Martin 264.5
2 Teurlings Catholic 219
3 Jesuit 175
4 Catholic 163
5 Shaw 152
6 East Ascension 145.5
7 Holy Cross 141
8 St. Paul 137
9 Rockwall Heath, TX 121
10 Rummel 100.5

2022 Louisiana Classic Individual Champions

106 lbs. 113 lbs. 120 lbs. 126 lbs. 132 lbs. 138 lbs. 145 lbs.
Landon Reaux
Richie Clementi
Brother Martin
Ernie Perry, III
Glenn Price
Mason Elsensohn
Brother Martin
Jacob Houser
St. Paul
Rayden Ingram
Live Oak

152 lbs. 160 lbs. 170 lbs. 182 lbs. 195 lbs. 220 lbs. 285 lbs.
Nick DiGeralamo
Holy Cross
Santos Ramos
East Ascension
Rocco Horvath
Brother Martin
Bryce Mister
Rockwall Heath
Corey Hyatt
Cole Baiamonte
Holy Cross
Spencer Lanosga

NOTE: This recap was intentionally published in the wee hours of January 22nd so as the writer would not be influenced by the Ken Cole results, which will be known later in the day.  Reaux vs. Roach III and Lanosga vs. Freeman II are expected to happen in the finals.  Those matches may have significant influence on the state championships seedings in Division I.  Plus, were those results known, it would be days until this article was deemed completed.

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