By RJ Walters / Daily News Sports Editor
As published in the Hillsdale Daily News on March 16, 2009
At the last second possible Saturday Hillsdale junior Mike Curby proved he was not only among the state’s best in his weight class — he was indeed the best.
With a Division 3 state title hanging in the balance Curby grabbed Allegan junior John Rizgalleh’s left leg, yanked him to the mat and pushed his arm out of the way to earn a takedown with just two seconds remaining in the finals, just enough points for a 3-2 decision in the 171-pound weight class.
It was the sweetest form of revenge for Curby, who actually lost to the Rizgalleh (65-2) in the regional championship bout several weeks ago.
Curby finished the year with a 50-2 record and will have a chance to defend his state crown next season.
Other high-placing area wrestlers
Andrew Barrett, Jonesville Sr.
Barrett was second overall in the 125-pound weight class in Division 4 Saturday, falling 13-0 to New Lothrup’s Allen Krupp in the championship bout. Barrett was 48-4 overall this year and was two positions better than his fourth placer state finals finish in 2008.
Payden Armstrong, Jonesville Sr.
Armstrong took a 3-2 decision over Bill Krisch in the 152-pound consolation match, earning a third place medal.
Armstrong ends his senior year with a 48-3 record.
Chase Weber, Pittsford Sr.
Despite a second-round loss Saturday the Wildcat senior fought back to make it all the way to the consolation match. In that match he lost a 3-2 decision to Luke Jones. He ends the season 52-7.
Ben Wines, Pittsford Sr.
Hudson’s Gabe Elliott took down Wines 11-3 in the third round Saturday, but he bounced back to make the 189-pound consolation match, which he dropped 16-10 to Taylor Trim of Dansville. His final record for the season is 57-9.
Trent Morris, Reading Sr.
Grant Cook of Dansville ended Morris’ title hopes with an 11-3 second round win in the 171-pound weight class. Morris took fifth place with a 9-2 victory to end his career. His season record was 43-5.
Buddy Poljan, Hillsdale Sr.
At 285-pounds Poljan fell 6-3 in the semifinals before losing 5-2 to Onsted’s Gauge Aebersold in the fifth place match. He ends the year at 35-7.