The Copley Indians fielded two wrestlers at this past weekend’s OHSAA Division I State Wrestling Championships and came away with a champion.
Senior Sam Wheeler (H.M. @ 189), a University of Oklahoma recruit, won the 189-pound event with a narrow 1-0 win over Cincinnati Elder’s Kevin Hyland. Wheeler’s eventual road to the title was paved with pins in his first two matches. In his opening match, Wheeler pinned Paul Winkler of Clayton Northmont at 1:24, then stopped Willoughby South’s Mario Palmisano at 5:17 to advance to the championship semifinals.
In the semifinals, Wheeler edged Jo Jo Tayse of Massillon Perry, 5-4, to advance to the finals against Hyland.
Wheeler now joins Dave Wenger (1977) and Dave Smith (1998) as the only Copley state wrestling champions.