Father Ryan wrestling flexes its muscle as tournament host

Sunday, January 6, 2013 at 4:12pm

Spurred by five individual championships, Father Ryan cruised to the team championship of the 44th annual Father Ryan Invitational wrestling tournament Saturday in the Irish gym.

The Irish finished with 232 points, far ahead of Brentwood Academy (134½) and Montgomery Bell Academy (113) in the 28-team tournament, the oldest wrestling tournament held in Tennessee.

“Besides the five champions, we had two guys who finished second and we put 10 guys in the finals – all in all, a good night for us,” Irish coach Pat Simpson said.

Beech High, with three, was second in terms of individual champions.

Senior Mark Marchetti (145 pounds), Trey Chalifoux (106), Michael Eckhart (120), Mike Akers (132) and Ryan Simpson (138) all won for Ryan, which is ranked fourth – highest of any Nashville team – in the Tennessee high school wrestling poll.

Brentwood Academy’s Amos Mason won at 220 pounds and became the state leader in consecutive victories with 117. He surpassed the mark that Ryan’s Michael Hooker set last year. Mason capped his big night with a 5-0 finals decision over MBA’s Morris Equakun.

Marchetti was named outstanding wrestler in the lower weight classes, and Kenwood’s Hamza Yunis (182) was named outstanding wrestler in the upper weight classes.

Franklin’s Alex Bennett edged Ryan’s Patrick Cosgrove 3-1 in overtime in the finals at 152, voted the tournament’s top match.

Next up for the Irish is the Science Hill Invitational Saturday. In one of the top upcoming dual matches of the season, Ryan hosts rival MBA Jan. 26.