SYCAMORE – The opponent was the same, the venue was the same and – although the stage was much bigger – the match was much, much shorter.
Hampshire's Casey Allen turned a tough battle with Washington's Jared Head into a second-period pin to claim first in the 160-pound class on Saturday at the Class 2A Sycamore Sectional.
Allen and Head battled in overtime earlier in the year at the Sycamore tournament, with Allen coming out on top there.
"We wrestled before in Sycamore, went to overtime, so I just kind of learned from that match," Allen said. "I trained to counter what he did."
Allen was the only Hampshire wrestler to qualify for state. Marengo will send Landen Pfeiffer, who was second at 106, and Kenny Reed, who was third at 145.
Allen had an early takedown, but Head responded with a reverse to tie things up. Allen got an early escape in the second period, and ended up with the pin 58 seconds into the second frame.
"I just had to get him flat, and then it was just about overpowering him and getting him over," Allen said. "That's my favorite move."
Reed battled back through the consolation bracket, winning four times on Saturday after losing Friday to eventual champ Blaize Punke of Washington in the quarterfinals.
One of those wins was an injury default in the semifinals, giving Reed some rest heading into the final against Streator's Mike Dunkleberger.
Reed and Dunkleberger battled early, but eventually the Marengo senior made his move to earn a pin in 3:41 to take third.
"Getting rest was probably a big thing going into that last match," Reed said. "The Streator kid definitely overpowered me during the match. I'm wrestling up-weight, so a lot of the kids are stronger than me, and he was stronger than me. But a lot of muscles, you get tired more quickly. So he got tired and I was still going. He went for a move and I capitalized on it."
Marengo coach Tim Keefer said Reed never gives up.
"He goes 100 percent all the time," Keefer said. "He kept his composure and waited for the right moment. He just tried to wear him out because the kid was strong, evidently."
Pfeiffer (38-3) was pinned in the first period by Dean Hamiti (38-4) after a semifinal win, 6-2, over Ottawa's Luke Flemming.
"This is supposed to be the toughest sectional for 106-pounders, so taking second is real good for him," Keefer said. "So we'll go forward to state and maybe get some revenge there."
The state tournament begins Thursday at the State Farm Center in Champaign.