By Josh Brown
Troy Daily News
TIPP CITY — Siblings Olivia and Max Shore not only get to wrestle together for the Miami East wrestling team this season, Saturday they got to do so literally side by side.
And when, not even 10 seconds after Olivia Shore (106) pinned her opponent in the finals, Max Shore (113) pinned his on adjacent mats, it was just the beginning of a string of six individual champions as the Vikings defended their Red Devil Invitational championship in dominant fashion, winning the tournament for the second straight year with 306.5 points over runner-up Valley View’s 179 Saturday at Tippecanoe High School.
All told, the Vikings had 10 top-four placers, with the two Shores, David Davis (120), Eli Strubler (145), Jarret Winner (195) and Caleb Snyder (285) all winning titles.
“We needed a day like this,” Miami East coach Mark Rose said. “We needed to build some confidence, get our young guys over the hump a little bit — because we’ve got a bear of a schedule for here on out.”
It’s been a busy week already for the Vikings, who had a double-dual against Sidney and Stebbins on Wednesday and a dual against Beavercreek on Thursday. And they follow that with another dual Wednesday against Covington before going to the Medina Invitational after Christmas.
“We weighted three times this week. We were tired,” Rose said. “It’s a grueling three-week period here. And our young guys needed this. They needed to have some success.”
They had plenty of it, too.
Olivia Shore, a sophomore, pinned Oakwood’s Soren Allwerdt in 1:20 during the final round. Soon after, Max Shore, a freshman, pinned Mason’s Noah Lippeatt in 1:36 — but since Max’s match had begun before Olivia’s, the two pins came in a shorter burst than the times suggest.
“It’s definitely a good experience getting to wrestle with my little brother,” Olivia said. “I wish my older brother (graduated state champion Graham Shore) was still on the team, but unfortunately he’s off doing better things,” she added with a chuckle.
And while Olivia narrowly missed qualifying to the state tournament last season, she did get to watch Graham’s match — and now she’s enjoying being the elder sibling on the team.
“I was really nerve-wracking (watching Graham’s match),” Olivia said. “I could barely watch. I had my hands over my eyes, but I was definitely happy for him because he worked so hard.
“I think Max will come out on top this year. He’s a stud. He beats me up in the wrestling room, so I’ve got to give him credit for that.”
And for Max, this season is a chance to prove himself after his brother and sister have already set the bar high.
“I’m really hyped for the season,” he said. “We have a young team, and I think we’re going to do well. I’m ready to show everyone where I’m at.”
Shortly after those two, it was David Davis’ turn. Another freshman, Davis (120) gave the Vikings a third title in the first three weight classes with a pin in 1:34 over Thurgood Marshall’s Saa’lih Muhammed. And freshman Chance Rust gave the Vikings another placer at 120, also, finishing fourth.
The Vikings added three more individual titles, one more by a freshman as Eli Strubler (145) won a 15-6 major decision over Southeastern’s Lane McCombs in the finals. Sophomore Jarret Winner (195) the pinned Ben Logan’s Noak Clark for a title, and senior and first-year wrestler Caleb Snyder (285) pinned Mason’s Doug Farrell in 5:06 to cap off the big day.
And in nearly all of the finals matches, the rest of the Miami East team gathered around whichever mat a teammate was competing on to cheer them on.
“They’re all rooting for each other, and for being young, they’ve pulled together pretty well,” Rose said. “They’re a lot of fun.”
In addition to the champions, sophomore Daniel Davis (132) placed third, senior Michael Miller (170) placed second, senior Matthew Welker (182) placed third and freshman Braeden Beltz (220) placed fourth.
Host Tippecanoe had four top-four placers, including one individual champion, to finish seventh with 119.5 points.
Blake Cyphers (170) gave the Devils their only champion on the day, winning a 9-7 sudden victory decision over Miami East’s Miller in the finals. In addition, freshman Elliot Abrams (106) placed fourth, as did junior Blake Ballard (138) and freshman Evan Stonerock (145).
Josh Brown is the Sports Editor of the Troy Daily News. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org, or follow @TroyDailySports on Twitter.