Whitehall wrestling team defeats Birch Run, advances to D3 state semifinals


The Whitehall wrestling team is returning to the state semifinals, with a chance to win a state championship on Saturday.

The Vikings earned that right with a 38-34 victory over Birch Run on Friday in the Division 3 quarterfinals at Wings Event Center in Kalamazoo.

Whitehall, which last made the semifinals in 2016 and lost to Dundee, will get a rematch with Dundee at noon tomorrow in Kalamazoo.

The winner will advance to the state title match at 3:30 p.m.

On Friday, Whitehall jumped out to a quick 11-0 lead when Trenton Blanchard (160) won via technical fall and Derek McCollom (171) pinned his opponent at 1:22 into his match.

The two teams split the next four matches, with Birch Run winning two via pin, while Whitehall’s Allen Powers (215) pinned his opponent at 3:13 and Matthew Goodrich (103) won by forfeit, giving the Vikings a 23-12 lead.

After Birch Run cut its deficit to 23-22, Whitehall’s Hunter Bower (125), Mitch White (130), and Tom Balaskovitz (135) all won via decision to give the Vikings a 32-22 lead.

Kyle Honore (140) clinched the victory for Whitehall with a pin at the 4:00 mark of his match.

Birch Run won the final two matches by forfeit and pin to close the final margin to four points.


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