LA GRANGE – Nick Bonomo remembers losing in a regional final last year, and that loss helped motivate him to finish the job Saturday.
Bonomo won the 170-pound division at the Lyons Township regional to advance to sectionals in a big way. He pinned Morton’s Adrian Cardenas, the first time Cardenas had been pinned all season, in the final.
“I’m just wrestling with a lot of confidence out there, going out there trying to pin my opponent and keep the energy high,” Bonomo said. “It’s awesome to finally win one. Losing in the finals last year in the last couple seconds was pretty heartbreaking. It was the motivation to get it this year.”
The senior will bring a 39-2 record to the Hinsdale Central sectional. He has a lofty goal for himself the rest of this postseason.
“Win the state tournament,” Bonomo said. “I think that’s the goal you have to go in with. That’s the mindset you have to go in with.
“I only got one shot at it, so I hope to get to the state finals.”
In addition to Bonomo, Pat Walker (106 pounds) and Mike Gastaldello (160) also won regional titles for the Trojans.
The Trojans were third in the team standings behind host Lyons Township and the Mustangs. Diego Rodriguez (132), Milad Abd (152) and Edwin Phillips (285) also got through to the sectional by winning third-place matches.
Downers Grove South
The Mustangs qualified eight wrestlers to the Hinsdale Central sectional and were second to the host Lions in the team standings.
Joe Nugent was South’s only regional champion, winning three matches at 132 pounds. The junior is 27-3.
The Mustangs were 1-4 in championship matches. Tyree Johnson (138), Shawn Jager (160), Ryan Gurski (182) and Michael Hobbs (285) lost in finals. Hobbs, who is now 32-3, lost to Hinsdale Central’s Brian Allen, the defending state champ at 285, 17-4 in the final.
Other sectional qualifiers from DGS were Ahmir Hooks (113), Calum Bonds (120) and Patrick Wilson (195).