SPASH’s Groshek reaches awards podium at State Tournament
Stevens Point Area Senior High School (SPASH) freshman Justin Groshek placed sixth at
Tournament at the
Thursday through Saturday, Feb. 23-25.
Groshek went 3-3 at state to finish his season with a 39-5 record.
“It’s pretty great making it here and placing,” said Groshek.
“I’m just excited to be here, and then next year, I just hope get as far or do
“He was the only freshman on the stand at
head coach Rob King. “He’ll be back down there again.”
Sixth-ranked Groshek opened with a 13-7 win over freshman
Randall Hunt of Oak Creek (29-15) in the opening round Thursday, before he lost
by a 10-1 major decision to top-ranked sophomore and eventual Division 1 State
Champion Eric Barnett of Hortonville (45-0) in the second round.
Groshek stayed alive in wrestlebacks with a 2-1 win over freshman
Nate Carerros of Pewaukee (32-20), and then won 10-3 over fifth-ranked junior
Beau LaDu of Lake Geneva Badger (46-3) to guarantee a spot on the awards
“(Against Carerros), I wasn’t very aggressive but I still
got the win,” said Groshek. “I made it a little close, but it felt great
winning that one, and then coming back and winning the next one.
“After that match I think my whole team was fired up just as
much as I was, and knowing that I placed as a freshman,” he said.
Groshek followed with a 6-3 loss to fourth-ranked junior and
eventual third-place finisher Tom Dineen of Milwaukee Marquette (40-2), before
he dropped a 5-3 decision to sophomore Parker Bevilacqua of Muskego (41-12) to
Along with Groshek, senior Brady Koontz finished second at 113 and senior Dylan Koontz placed third at 120, as each of SPASH’s three wrestlers at state made the awards podium.
“He’s undersized (around 95 pounds), you just look at him on the mat next to these other guys, but that’s the lightest weight class, so that’s where he is,” said King of Groshek. “And it’s just fun to watch him next to some of those other guys, you can see the size difference, and he lost a couple of matches (Saturday), but he’s still on the stand, went 3-3 in the tournament.
“But he’s so quick and you never know where he’s coming from
or what angle he’s going to hit,” he said. “So I’m very proud of him as a
freshman, and definitely looking forward to three more years with him and
hopefully getting him to the top of that podium like Brady and Dylan were.
“We came here to win three State Championships this weekend,”
said King. “We didn’t, but we got three guys on the stand, and that’s something
that they should be proud of, that’s something our club should be proud of and our
community should be proud of. Just three class-act kids.”