Sand Springs is no stranger to the national forum when it comes to wrestling. The sport is undeniably the Sandites' best subject in recent memory, and not only are we considered to be part of the "Top Three" in Oklahoma, but our wrestlers are making headlines nation-wide as part of Team Oklahoma. With the scholastic season on hold, many of our wrestlers are competing in Freestyle and Greco-Roman tournaments across the country as part of "Team BIG," a wrestling club started by Sandite assistant coach Derek Fix. Here's what our boys have been up to since placing third in state last school year.
Jack Karstetter took no time off whatsoever when scholastic wrestling came to a close, quickly adding to his resume and gaining some serious experience. Ending his school season as a state qualifier and regional champion at 113, Jack already had quite a bit of steam behind him as he headed into the summer.
At the OK USA National Team Qualifier, Jack wrestled heavy at 132 in Cadet Freestyle, landing four straight techs and five straight wins to take 1st place over 20 other wrestlers. He defeated 3A state qualifier Dalton Harvey 16-4, Carson Berryhill of Tiger Wrestling 11-0, Ponca City's Jacob Swenson 12-2, Jake Smith of Threestyle Wrestling 11-0, then wrapped things up with a narrow 9-7 decision over Lawton's Hunter Jump to seal the title.
A week later, Jack competed at the Sand Springs Freestyle/Greco Tournament in the Cadet Freestyle 132 division. He kicked the tournament off with a 12-2 tech fall against Threestyle Wrestling's Ky Allen, followed by a 13-2 tech on Ponca City Wildcat Noah Burdick, and finished the tournament with an 18-8 tech over Hunter Perigo of Threestyle Wrestling, taking 1st place of 6 competitors.
In mid-May Jack traveled to Cushing for the OK USA FS/GR State Tournament and competed in the Cadet Freestyle division at 132lbs. Once again Jack defeated Carson Berryhill by an 11-0 tech fall, then took on Owasso's Seth Osborne, whom he pinned in 2:01. Wildcat Dylan Schickram also proved to be no match, losing in a 13-3 tech, then Jack put the icing on the cake with an 11-0 tech fall over Guthrie's 5A state qualifier, Kurgan Cornwell, and took 1st place of 13 wrestlers.
The end of the month heralded the 2015 Southern Plains Regional Freestyle and Greco tournaments, where Jack competed at 126lbs. In Greco, Jack defeated Minnesota's Alex Kern by 15-4 tech fall, then teched two-time Missouri state qualifier Colin Valdiviez 14-2. Colorado state champion Wyatt Pfau also proved no match for Jack, getting teched 10-0. Finally, Jack defeated Texan David Reyes in a 6-2 decision to secure the 1st place medal over 13 other wrestlers.
Moving to the Freestyle competition, Jack started things off with a pin against two-time Missouri state placer Nikolas Chavez in 3:59, then teched fellow Okie Broc Bailey 10-0, and Colorado's Jerzie Estrada 10-0 as well. Once again the final matchup was against David Reyes, and once again Jack came out on top, this time in a 9-3 decision, securing Jack's fifth consecutive 1st place medal, this time over 16 other wrestlers.
As mid-June arrived, Jack returned to the big leagues, representing Team Oklahoma for the third time, moving up from Schoolboy Nationals to Cadet Nationals. In the Greco Duals, Oklahoma started out in the C Pool. Match #1 saw a 60-15 victory over California, despite Jack starting with a 14-4 tech fall to Ruben Gonzalez. It would, however, be Jack's only defeat of the tournament. Oklahoma suffered a narrow 37-36 defeat to Ohio1 in the semifinals, with Jack teching Austin Murphy 10-0. Jack sat out in Oklahoma's round three 68-14 slaughter of Delaware, but aided in their 44-29 victory over Indiana for 3rd place with a 34 second pin over state-qualifier Jonathan Moran. In the 2nd place match against Kansas1, Oklahoma was defeated 46-30, as Jack again sat out at 126, sharing the mat with Lawton's Hunter Jump.
Moving to the Bronze/Copper Pool, Oklahoma handily defeated Michigan1 54-21 with a 10-0 tech fall by Jack over Michigan state champion and 2014 Flo National Runner-Up Cameron Amine. Hunter Jump stepped in for a round 2 defeat of Ohio2 44-32, then Jack returned to hand an 11-0 tech fall to New Jersey's Ray Wetzel as Oklahoma narrowly defeated them 39-36. Oklahoma once again confronted Indiana, but this time the Hoosiers had the upper hand and won the first place spot 39-37, despite Jack's 10-0 tech fall against Jonathan Moran. Oklahoma settled for 2nd in Bronze/Copper, 10th overall.
Oklahoma fared slightly better in the Freestyle competition, with Jack once again losing only one match. OK slaughtered Delaware 70-7 as Jack kicked things off with a 10-0 tech over state-placer Niko Chilson. Ohio1 defeated Oklahoma 51-21 in the semifinal, with Jack narrowly defeating Drew Fairbanks 17-12. Hunter Jump came in for a round to help Oklahoma defeat Kansas2 48-27, then Jack returned for the 3rd place match to register his fastest pin of the tournament in 22 seconds against Jared Clark as Oklahoma narrowly defeated Indiana 41-38. OK advanced to the 2nd place match where they came out on top of a 39-37 contest against Missouri1, and Jack gave a 10-0 tech to state and national placer Taylor Brown to finish things off in the C Pool.
This time Oklahoma advanced to the Gold/Silver pool, where they only managed to win one match. Jack accepted a forfeit in a round one 40-36 defeat by New Jersey1, then let Hunter Jump wrestle in round two's 67-9 slaughter by Illinois. In round three, Jack suffered his first loss of the tournament in a 15-4 tech by 2014 ASICS National Champion Mason Phillips, as Oklahoma was defeated 46-33 by Washington. Finally, Oklahoma managed a 45-29 win over Kansas1 in the 7th place match, and Jack finished things off with a 10-0 tech against Joey Hancock.
Jack took a month long break after his travels with team Oklahoma, and then entered in the 2015 USAW Cadet Nationals a little over a week ago. Competing at 120 in Greco, Jack started off with a pin in 1:35 over Pennsylvania's Mark Sallot, then suffered his first loss in an 18-12 decision to Kansas State Runner-Up Conner Ward. Moving to the consolation bracket, Jack registered five straight wins, teching Colorado state-placer Kyle Cisneros 15-4, pinning Minnesota's Jackson Stauffacher in 2:26, and teching Florida state-placer Luis Hernandez 10-0. His next matches were closer, scoring a 9-3 decision over Mel Ortiz of Connecticut, then narrowly beating Missouri state-placer Cameron Valdiviez 20-19, whom he's previously beaten 3 times and has lost 4 matches to, thus tying their series. His streak finally came to an end with a 12-2 tech loss to Alex Thomsen, Iowa State Champion and National Runner-Up. Jack was eliminated from contention in the next round with a 6-4 loss to Pennsylvania's Jack Davis and claimed 8th place out of 83 contenders.
The Cadet Freestyle Nationals began soon after and Jack moved up to 126lbs. He teched New Yorker Richard Gomez 14-3 in round one, then lost 14-7 in round two to 2012 ASICS Folkstyle National Runner-Up Markus Hartman of Illinois. In the consolation bracket, Jack scored a narrow 9-7 decision over Illinois' Kenneth Kerstein, then teched two-time Arizona State-Qualifier Stone Crooks, before finally being eliminated by Illinois State-Qualifier Abdullah Assaf in a 14-2 tech. While he failed to place, he advanced five rounds in a crowded bracket of 103 of the nation's best wrestlers, which is, in itself, something to be proud of.
So far, Jack has a non-scholastic record of 39-7 for 2015. He's claimed the titles of Sand Springs Freestyle Champion, and Southern Plains Freestyle and Greco Champion, as well as won two other tournaments and competed in National Championships both individually and as part of Team Oklahoma. He's registered 6 pins and 26 tech falls, and will be a Junior at Charles Page this upcoming school year.