In every sport every year, teams and individuals all look at the State
Tournament as a new season.
Chesterton freshman wrestler Anthony Quiroz epitomizes the concept.
His stellar four-week roll culminated in a runner-up finish in the 152-pound
weight class at the IHSAA State Wrestling Tournament in Indianapolis.
“The last two weeks especially, he finally had his confidence match his
athleticisim,” Chesterton coach Chris Joll said. “He did some things that
I’ve never seen him do before, but I knew he was capable.”
In the State Final, Quiroz fell 8-5 to Portage’s Sean McMurray.
“That match was kind of like how he’s been since last Saturday,” Joll said.
“We started a little unsure of ourselves and won some little battles to gain
confidence. We felt pretty good about our self and the last two minutes, I
don’t think the kid was better than we were.”
McMurray started the match with a takedown for 2-0 lead, but Quiroz reversed
it for a 2-2 score. After McMurray escaped for a 3-2 lead, he immediately
shot and took down Qurioz for a 5-2 lead after one period.
“In the beginning, I did a few sloppy things because I didn’t stay basic,”
Quiroz said. “I didn’t move my feet and he got those two takedowns early on.
If it’s not for that, it’s an even closer match.”
Quiroz chose down to start the second period, but was unable to get out and
the score held. McMurray took bottom in the third period and reversed Quiroz
for a 7-3 lead.
Quiroz escaped with 1:11 to go and took down McMurray with 20 seconds to go,
but it was too little too late.
“I put it all out on the mat and I think I can still do better,” Quiroz said.
“As a freshman, I think it’s pretty remarkable to get second.”
Quiroz started his run to the State Final with a 9-2 victory over Prairie
Heights’ Quinn Kurtz.
“He said it was a whole new year when the State Tournament started and he’s
wrestling like it,” Joll said. “What’s different about him from the beginning
of the year is the confidence he has. He did some things tonight we didn’t
need to do because we were going to win anyway.
“He did it just proving that he’s better than that guy.”
Quiroz set the tone for the match with an immediate takedown and then got a
reversal with :08 left in the second period for a 4-1 lead. Back points and
another takedown in the third period set the final score.
“I was looking for that first takedown,” Quiroz said. “I set it up for about
30 seconds before I finally took it. I felt pretty good tonight. My goal was
to come down here and place and now I want to be an overachiever.”
On Saturday morning in the quarterfinals, Quiroz built a 5-2 lead before an
injury default by previously undefeated Drake Stein put him into the
In the semi’s, Quiroz jumped on Munster’s Aaron Estrada with an opening round
takedown and back points for a 4-0 lead.
Another tilt in the second period pushed the score to 7-0 before Estrada
finally scored on an escape.
“The guys he beat to get into the final weren’t a cakewalk,” Joll said. “He
just went out and beat those guys.”
“I think I beat everybody but Sean (McMurray) pretty solidly,” Quiroz said.
“I never felt like I was going to lose.”
Quiroz finished the season 37-12 overall.
“At the beginning of the season, I was just wrestling like a freshman,”
Quiroz said. “At Mishawaka, I think that was really the turning point for me.
I started listening to the coaches and fixing my mistakes.”