Aquinas wrestling put on a show for its home fans during the Aquinas Invite on Saturday, taking home three gold medals and finishing second as a team. The Monarchs were one point shy of winning the invite over Pierce.
In total, Aquinas had 12 wrestlers win medals.
"The Aquinas Invitational was extremely tough this year," Co-head coach Roy Emory said. "Twin River, Conestoga, Milford and Pierce all have outstanding coaching staffs that have made huge strides in only a short amount of time with their programs, and I have a ton of respect for them and their wrestlers. Broken Bow has also been a powerhouse lately and still has a very good team.
"I thought at times we wrestled well, but also, we allowed the pressure of some matches to get to us. We were not the aggressors in a number of key matches early, and when you are wrestling some of the best in the state, they will make you pay for that. We will need to work on a few positions and some mental aspects of wrestling and we will be ready to go."
Class C No. 2 at 120, sophomore Hunter Vandenberg, No. 2 (138) sophomore Christopher Nickolite and heavyweight senior Owen Schramm were the three gold medalists for Aquinas.
Four Monarchs won bronze medals - No. 4 (126) Zach Zitek, Ben Kment (170), No. 3 (195) Nolan Schultz and Coy Meysenburg (220).
Zander Kavan (113), Ethan Schmid (120), No. 2 (152) Nolan Eller, Michael Andel (160) and Reilly Miller (182) all placed fourth.
Grady Romshek (106) and Cameron Schrad (145) both scored points for Aquinas but fell short of meddling.
Vandenberg pinned three of his four opponents and defeated No. 4 Braden Ruffner of Conestoga 11-2 in the championship match.
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Nickolite pinned one of his three opponents and defeated No. 7 Austin Cole of Broke Bow in the championship match 6-1.
Schramm pinned all three of his opponents.
Zitek went 3-1 with his only loss coming against No. 5 Ethan Zegers of Milford. He defeated No. 8 Keaghon Chini of Conestoga in the third-place match. He finished with two pins.
Kment went 4-1, pinning his opponent in all four wins. His lone defeat came against Class B No. 4 Brett Tinker of Pierce.
Schultz also went 3-1 with his only loss coming to Class C No. 6 Hunter Thonen of Conestoga. He defeated No. 5 Tucker Alexander of Twin River and pinned two of his opponents.
Coy Meysenburg finished 3-1 with two pinfalls. His one loss came against No. 7 Keifer Anderson of Broken Bow. He defeated Milford's Lorenzo Temple 6-0 in the championship match.
Aquinas is in action next at 6:30 p.m. on Thursday at home in the Butler County Triangular against Class C No. 2 David City and East Butler.
Peter Huguenin is a sports reporter for The Banner-Press. Reach him via email at SCHsports@lee.net