Most Outstanding Wrestler: Jackson Morse, Lowell (2010)
Morse began his senior season in epic fashion, defeating 4X D2 state champion Taylor Massa of St Johns in an all Michigan final at Super 32. He finished the season at 43-1 and was untouched at the state tournament, recording 2 falls and a tech before winning 7-0 over 2X state finalist Jake Johnson of Rockford in the finals. After the season Morse was invited to the Dapper Dan Classic where he defeated 3X Pennsylvania state champ Dylan Alton of Central Mountain to earn a #1 ranking in the country at his weight class. Finally, Morse was the only D1 wrestler of the half-decade to be named to Michigan Grappler’s Prep Wrestler of the Year.
103lbs: Ben Freeman, Walled Lake Central (2014)
Freeman’s freshman season was among the best in state history. He started by earning AA honors at the GFC and Super 32 challenge in the preseason, and then followed up with an absolutely dominant high school campaign. Freeman won all of his matches by tech-fall at the state tournament to finish off a 43-1 season where his only loss came via default. To cap it all off, Freeman won a Cadet Folkstyle national title at 113lbs and was first freshman named to the Dream Team since 2012.
112lbs: Lincoln Olson, Davison (2013)
As a sophomore Olson followed up on a spectacular debut season, moving up a weight and maintaining his dominance. He won his second consecutive state title, recording 2 decisions, a tech, and a fall in the process. Olson completed the season with a record of 46-2 and was named to the Dream Team for a second straight year.
119lbs: Freddie Rodriguez, Grand Ledge (2011)
Rodriguez was one of the most dominant wrestlers at the Palace in his junior season, recording 3 tech’s and a major to claim his third consecutive state title. He also had a dominant preseason, winning a national title at the inaugural GFC and earning AA honors at Super 32. Rodriguez finished the year ranked #2 in the postseason Power 15 behind only 3X D2 state champ Conor Youtsey of Mason.
125lbs: Alex Calandrino, Howell (2012)
After three consecutive top-3 finishes Calandrino finally got his title as a senior. He wrestled well at the state tournament, opening up with a couple of falls followed by decisions in the semis and finals. In the postseason Power 15 Calandrino was ranked #2 behind only 3X D2 state champ Jacob Schmitt of St Johns.
130lbs: Ken Bade, Detroit CC (2012)
After winning his first state title in exhilarating fashion the year prior, Bade dominated the field as a junior. He opened up the state tournament with a pair of tech’s and fall before recording a convincing 6-1 decision in the finals. Bade ended the season at 50-1 with his most notable win coming over 3X D2 state champ Jacob Schmitt. He was equally impressive in the pre/post-season, earning runner-up honors at the GFC and placing 5th at Flonationals. To cap it all off, Bade was named to his first Dream Team.
135lbs: Alec Mooradian, Detroit CC (2011)
Mooradian captured his third straight state championship as a junior, recording a fall, a major, and a decision before winning by default in the finals. At 55-0 he also completed the second undefeated season of his career, and was subsequently named to his second Dream Team.
140lbs: Myles Amine, Detroit CC (2014)
As a junior Amine hit a new level, winning arguably the toughest weight class of the state tournament. After recording falls in his opening 2 matches, Amine beat GFC runner-up Tevin Machart of Utica Ford in the semis, and then followed up by winning a 2OT classic over 2X state champ Justin Oliver of Davison. He finished the season with a record of 42-6, earning preseason AA honors at the GFC (5th), and postseason AA honors at Flonationals (3rd). Amine would finish the year ranked #4 in the Power 15, but all of those ahead of him were seniors with multiple state titles to their name and no high school losses in at least 2 years.
145lbs: Malik Amine, Detroit CC (2014)
Amine kicked off his senior year in grand fashion, finishing runner-up at the GFC and 6th at Super 32. He then proceeded to accrue a record of 34-3 en route to his second consecutive state championship. At the state tournament he advanced to the finals for a third consecutive year with 2 falls and dominant 8-1 decision. In the finals Amine matched up with Alec Pantaleo of Canton who beat him in the 2012 state finals. It was one of the tourney’s most anticipated matches, but Amine ended it almost immediately with a 34 second fall. He finished the year ranked #2 in the postseason Power 15 for the second consecutive season.
152lbs: Nick Bennett, Detroit CC (2014)
After beginning his career in Texas, Bennett’s lone season in Michigan was one of the most impressive in state history. He kicked it off by winning a national title at the GFC and followed up with a 3rd place finish. From there, Bennett went on to post a record of 43-0 wrestling against arguably the toughest schedule of any team in the state. At the state tournament he was unstoppable, recording a pair of falls and a pair of major decisions. Bennett narrowly missed out on Dream Team honors, finishing #2 in the postseason Power 15 behind 2X D2 state champ Logan Massa of St Johns.
160lbs – Jordan Cooks, Davison (2013)
In his junior season Cooks repeated as state champion and solidified his status as one of the country’s best at his weight class. His chart was loaded at the state tournament, but he took care of business with a fall and 3 decisions. In the finals he met former state champion Logan Marcicki of DCC. They had split their previous 2 matches of the season, and Cooks won the series with a convincing 8-5 decision. He finished the year with a record 43-1 and was named to the Dream Team.
171lbs: Drew Garcia, Detroit CC (2014)
Garcia capped off one of the best careers in MHSAA history as a senior, posting a record of 41-1 while claiming his third consecutive state title. He was undefeated against in-state opponents, losing only to Davonte Mahomes of Oak Park River Forest, IL. At the state tournament Garcia recorded a fall and a tech followed by decisions in the semis and finals. His most notable match came in the semis where Garcia defeated 2X D1 state champ and fellow Half-Decade Team member Jordan Cooks of Davison in overtime for the second time in under a week. Also a Super 32 AA in the preseason, Garcia was named to his third consecutive Dream Team.
189lbs: Kevin Beazley, Detroit CC (2012)
To kick off his senior season Beazley won a national title at the GFC, which he shortly followed up with AA honors at Super 32. During the season he posted a record 44-1, which included a signature win over defending D2 state champ Gabe Dean of Lowell. Beazley was dominant at the state tournament, recording 2 falls and a major to make the finals where he won via a 6-0 decision. After the season Beazley earned runner-up honors at Flonationals for the second consecutive year, and was ranked #2 in the postseason Power 15 behind only 3X D2 state champ Jordan Thomas.
215lbs: Nick McDiarmid, Hartland (2010)
After spending the first 3 years of his career in D2, McDiarmid absolutely tore through D1 in his senior season. He won his second state title, posting 2 techs, a major, and a 7-0 decision in the process. McDiarmid finished the season with a record of 57-0, then went on to win an NHSCA Senior National title and was featured on the Dream Team for a second straight season.
285lbs: Nick Gajdzik, Rochester Hills Stoney Creek (2012)
A runner-up at 215lbs as junior, Gajdzik moved up to heavyweight as a senior and the results were excellent. He was unbeaten on the season, and won states with 1 fall and 3 decisions. In the finals, he controlled a low-scoring bout with NHSCA Senior All-American and 2X state finalist Logan Rimmer of Temperance Bedford. Gajdzik was ranked #2 in the postseason Power 15 behind 4X D2 state champ Adam Coon.
Please login to comment.
Could you do a hypothetical dual meet between these half decade teams? I think that would be very interesting, and would create quite the debate.
Please LOGIN to reply.