Rootstown's Linton, Moore reach podium at Ironman

By Michael Leonard | Record Publishing co. Published:

By Michael Leonard | Record Publishing Co.

A year ago, Rootstown's Garrett Linton announced his presence as a player for the state wrestling title at the Walsh Ironman Tournament.

Linton took eighth place at the Ironman and didn't lose again all of last season.

Thus, when the Rovers' Travis Linton and Jake Moore hit the mats at the Ironman this past weekend, they knew a good result could jumpstart their respective seasons.

Consider the Rovers duo launched.

Moore took fifth place in the heavyweight bracket at the Ironman, while Linton, Garrett's younger brother, took seventh at 182 pounds.

Their combined efforts allowed Rootstown to finished tied for 33rd place with Dayton Christian with 27 points. Blair Academy from New Jersey won the team title with 240.5 points.

"They wrestled great," said Rootstown head coach Craig Wise. "They both have the ability to do a lot this week."

Despite wrestling at only 240 pounds, Moore reached the semifinals in the 285-pound bracket.

After a bye, Moore pinned Archbishop Moeller's Max Swoboda in 3:14, then defeated Good Counsel's Jemal Averette 3-1 in overtime to reach the semifinals.

In the semifinals, however, Moore ran into Brooks Black of Blair Academy, who is ranked as the No. 1 heavyweight in the country, according to Amateur Wrestling News. Moore got pinned in 51 seconds.

Moore then was pinned in 3:45 by Pittsburgh Central Catholic's Zach Deluca, but salvaged fifth place by winning a rematch with Averette 2-1.

"Jake lost to the No. 1 kid in the nation," Wise said. "He looked really good besides that match. There's a good chance he could stay at heavyweight. We'll have to see what happens."

Meanwhile, Linton ran through his first three matches, pinning Jake Hartman of Padua in 55 seconds, sticking Ben Cray of St. Ignatius in 34 seconds and dominating Garret Conner of Centerville, 11-0.

In the quarterfinals, however, Linton ran into Troy Christian's BJ Toal, the defending Division III state champion at 182 pounds. Toal won the match 7-4.

"BJ controlled the match," Wise said. "We've got to figure out how to not let him keep control like that."

Linton rebounded with a 6-2 decision over Colonial Forge's Zach Martinez to land a spot on the podium. However, he was then beaten 4-0 by Canyon Spring's Immanuel Barber.

In the seventh-place match, Linton won a rematch with Conner 6-3.

Wise said he wasn't certain if he Linton would stay at 182 or move down in the future.

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E-mail: mleonard@recordpub.com

Phone: 330-541-9442

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