[Gary Duncan Sr]
Downers South’s other qualifiers were second-place junior Joe Davison (170) and sophomore Jimmy Nugent (120) and third-place seniors Cole Gantner (182) and Brendan Richardson (220) and sophomore Will Schuessler (152).
Major’s only loss is out of state. Last season at 145, Major only lost four matches but that included his decisive sectional backdraw match 7-6. The three Illinois wrestlers to defeat Major were 1-2-3 at state.
“(Sometimes) I think about how some people make it to state when I deserved to be there,” Major said. “I feel good. I feel confident. I know I’ve worked really hard so I’m ready to put it on the mat.”
Downers North’s qualifiers finished second – seniors Josh Reams (285), Roberto Castro (113) and Brad Rosen (132), juniors Kai Tadena (106) and Drew Bielawski (195) and freshman Ben Bielawski (182).
Last season, Reams was fourth at regionals.
“It’s definitely an awesome experience to get ready with my brothers, really,” Reams said. “I feel like I have a solid chance. I feel like I’ve gotten a lot tougher mentally speaking.”