Story and photo by: Scott Emigh, Editor-in-Chief
Charles Page High School sophomore Blake Sargent (36-11) won his first Regional Championship by a single point, earning the #3 ranking in 6A. In the first round he pinned Garett Koss (Owasso) in 0:46, then defeated Grant Fox (Jenks) 3-2. Next to go down was #5 Justin Gundlach (Moore) by 6-3 decision, and Sargent was pitted against #4 TaJuan Daniels for the third time this season.
It's tough to beat an incredible wrestler three times in a season, especially one so close to you in talent. In the Broken Arrow dual the two ended the third period tied 2-2 and Sargent narrowly got the win with a sudden victory takedown. They next met at the Sand Springs Invitational in the finals round where it came down to a 3-2 decision for the Championship. Once more the crucial matchup was decided by a single point as the Sandite won his second tournament of the season with a 1-0 decision.
Sargent got to see a fair bit of action his freshman year, placing 3rd at both the Perry Tournament of Champions and the Jay Hancock Memorial Invitational. This year he repeated his 3rd place finish at Perry, came in 9th at the Kansas City Stampede, and finished 5th at Yukon.
This year he went undefeated in regular season duals before finally falling 9-8 to Wesley Hardin (30-11) during the Dual State Quarterfinals against Westmoore, then getting majored 10-1 by Garrett Rowe (37-5) during the Championship dual against Choctaw. He also gave up a 12-3 major to Rowe at Perry. Hardin will be wrestling at 113 at State.
Rowe is the #1 seed in 120 going into State and is the biggest obstacle in Sargent's path. The two are on opposite sides of the bracket, though, and first Sargent must overcome #8 Zackery Bibb (23-5) of Capitol Hill in the opening round. This will be the first time the two have met. Bibb was last year's 5A State Runner-Up whose only losses were to the State Champ.
From there he will either get a rematch against Gundlach, or meet #2 Tanner Cole (34-1) of Deer Creek for the first time this season. That match will be every bit as difficult as Rowe. Cole was undefeated in the season till he met Rowe in the West Regional finals and was pinned. He also pulled off a one-loss season last year en route to a 5A State Championship title. Cole and Sargent have met once before, at the OK USA Freestyle State Tournament last May. Cole walked away with a 10-0 major decision that time.
Other opponents that the Sandite could encounter include #7 Cordney Chairs (17-17) of Union, #6 Josh Suter (28-8) of Norman, and #4 TaJuan Daniels (24-11) of Broken Arrow.
Sargent has yet to encounter Suter, but he has 3-0 records against both Daniels and Chairs. His most recent matchup with Chairs wasn't even close as he recorded an 11-0 major decision at Dual State. He also posted a 7-1 regular season dual victory, and defeated him at the Sand Springs Invitational semifinals. That one was a lot closer however, at 1-0.