Junior’s perseverance helps him secure 6th place in his first state tournament
Quentin Lueck isn’t the biggest, strongest member of the Port Washington High School wrestling team, nor did he have the best record among the Pirates this season.
But the junior showed that he has as much mat mettle as anyone when he earned a medal at last week’s WIAA Division 1 state individual tournament in Madison.
After a tough first-round loss in the 152-pound weight class, Lueck won two of his next four matches to place sixth at the Kohl Center.
In the fifth-place final, he was edged by Oconomowoc’s Logan Ballering, 7-5.
“Quentin wrestled smart throughout the tournament. He has a very high mat IQ,” Port coach Angelo LaRosa said.
“He’s undersized at 152, but he has great technique and just worked so hard. He wrestled within himself, and it paid off.”
Lueck, who was making his first state appearance, faced a difficult test in Thursday’s opening round against Pulaski’s Kasey Caelwaerts, who came to Madison with a 42-2 record.
Caelwaerts dominated the match, scoring a 16-0 technical fall and went on to finish second in the tournament.
“The Pulaski boy was really tough on top. We knew he would be a hand full,” LaRosa said.
Lueck (28-15) bounced back in the consolation bracket Friday and Saturday.
After scoring a 3-2 decision over Sauk Prairie’s Brandon Sprecher, he defeated Mouhmed Fall of Milwaukee Bradley Tech/Carmen, 6-4. Fall finished the season 46-8.
Lueck ended the tournament with two close losses. In the third-place semifinals, he fell to Lake Geneva Badger’s Rory Shine, 7-2.
The match against Ballering on Saturday afternoon could have gone either way, according to his coach.
“Every match Quentin had (after the first round) was tight,” LaRosa said. “He was just a move or two away.”
Port’s other state qualifier was freshman Manny Rosado, who was eliminated by a first-round loss in the 106-pound weight class. He finished the season 38-11.
Rosado was edged, 10-9, by Patrick Spray of Wisconsin Rapids Lincoln. Because Spray (44-9) lost in the next round, he moved into the consolation bracket, denying Rosado a chance to keep wrestling.
“Manny is a freshman and made some mistakes. He had Spray but gave up some points and let him back in the match,” LaRosa said.
“You can’t simulate that state atmosphere, and sometimes wrestlers lose their focus a little bit when they get there for the first time,” LaRosa said.
“Manny had a great season. He knows what he has to work on. He’ll be back to Madison again.”
Image Information: PORT WASHINGTON’S Quentin Lueck (left) squared off against Logan Ballering of Oconomowoc in the fifth-place final at the WIAA Division 1 state wrestling tournament Saturday. Lueck lost, 7-5, giving him sixth place in his first state appearance. Photo by Mitch Maersch