SPC Champs!

Sam Chambers
Congratulations to Maverick Wrestling for winning their third SPC Championship in the last four years. St. John's won the 2016 Championships by a margin of 52 points over runner-up St. Mark's School of Dallas.
St. John’s Wrestling was back in a familiar position going into the final stages of the SPC tournament.  The Mavericks were sitting at the top of the heap with St. Mark’s in second place.  St. Mark’s had won every SPC Wrestling title since the tournament’s inception until 2013, when the Mavericks claimed their first championship.  St. John’s followed up with another title in 2014, and finished runner-up to St. Mark’s in 2015.  After three years of neck-and-neck competition between St. John’s and St. Mark’s, the 2016 tournament was anticipated to be just as close. 
However, seven first-round pins by St. John’s changed the meet’s dynamic for a runaway Mavericks victory. Nate Kagan ’19 (106), August Windham ’19 (126), Evan Hammerman ’18 (132), Dani Yan ’18 (145), Yo Akiyama ’16 (152), Wesley Gow ’19 (160), and Peter Chen ’18 (170) all posted pins in the first-round. St. Mark’s was the next familiar contender on the board, but the Mavericks’ lead was insurmountable.  Before the consolation semi-finals began, St. John’s had a 73 point lead with 168 points to St. Mark’s 95.
“We did really well as a team,” said Akiyama.  “We had a lot of people come out to support us and we fed off the energy and got going early on with the great support.”
Before the meet, Coach Alan Paul knew that if St. John’s got close to 170 points, there would be no way the other teams could catch up. This score was surpassed in the consolation semi-finals with pins by Nate Kagan ’19 (106), August Windham ’19 (126), and Dani Yan ’18 (145).
Ben Jacobs ’19 (113), Evan Eisenberg ’17 (120), Evan Hammerman’18 (132), Layo Laniyan ’18 (138), Yo Akiyama ’16 (152), Matthew Mercado ’18 (160), Peter Chen ’18 (170), Michael Meaux ’18 (195), and Josh Thomas ’17 (220) all made the finals.  Akiyama and Thomas were crowned SPC Champions. Jacobs, Eisenberg, Hammerman, Laniyan, Mercado, and Chen were runners-up, while Harrison Fernelius ’19 (HW), Kagan, Windham, and Yan took third.
“Today we performed our team best,” said Coach Paul.  “Everyone did what they were expected to do for the most part, and others went beyond their normal performance expectations.”

For the final SPC Wrestling results please click here. 
Sam Chambers- Athletic News