By Mark Gregory
Trevell Timmons never really got to show the state what kind of wrestler he truly is – until now.
After placing sixth last season and fifth the year before, Timmons capped off his career with a Class 3A state title at 160 pounds, defeating Nate Jimenez of Marmion Academy3-2 with a third-period takedown.
“I am excited I won and I still can’t believe it happened,” said Timmons, who let four years of emotion pour out after the win with a pose and an ear-to-ear grin. “When I won, It still wasn’t true to me and it just all came out and I had to flex. My seventh and eighth grade year, I won state and my first year I won, it was just like this – I won right at the end.”
This year marked the third season Timmons won his first two matches of the tournament and reached the semifinal round, but that was where something always seemed to go wrong.
“Every year it was something. My sophomore year in the semifinals I had [Walter] White, who was No. 1 in the country,” he said. “My junior year, I got injured in the semis when I was leading 7-1. So, this year – I know there is nobody in this weight that worked harder than me and now I can say it and not be cocky because I am state champ. My coach told me if I wrestle my way, I am unstoppable.”
Unstoppable he was.
Timmons opened the tournament with a 12-3 major decision over Cormac Kane of Conant and then defeated Jack Mulay of Mt. Carmel 5-3.
In the semifinal – where Timmons had been tripped up in the past – he defeated Wheaton North’s Devin Donovan 5-3.
Timmons claimed the 10th title in Lockport history and is the ninth different state champion. He is the first champion since Shayne Oster in 2015.
With his medal, Timmons became only the fifth three-time state placer in Lockport history and he was joined in that select group two weight classes later when senior Abdullah Assaf (27-3) placed second at 132 pounds, falling 16-10 to Jason Renteria of Oak Park-River Forest.
“It is hard for Abdullah to see it now because he has been working so hard, but he will look back and be proud of what he has done,” said Lockport coach Josh Oster. “He held himself to high standards. He has three medals and we only have one four-time medalist. We only have six three-time medalists in the 60 year history, so that is pretty [darn] impressive.”
Five other Porters joined Timmons and Assaf on the medal stand, giving Lockport the most medalists it has ever had in a state tournament.
Matt Ramos (5th, 106) Anthony Molton (4th, 113), Baylor Fernandes (4th, 145), Payton Fernandes (4th, 182) and Ronald Tucker (5th, 285) all earned their first state medals.
“Every year I say this and I will probably say it every year until I retire, but I have never walked out of a state tournament satisfied and then I have to sit back and look at the big picture,” Josh Oster said. “Seven medalists is great. The most state qualifiers we have ever had before was seven and now we are coming home with that many medals and that is the most medals in Class 3A. It is pretty easy to say we had a good tournament, but I don’t think we wrestled our best.”
James Pierandozzi (120), Brendan Ramsey (126), Brandon Ramos (138), Zach Reese (152) and Nicholas Dado (170) also competed for the Porters, but did not medal.
Joliet West’s Austin Poch (120) was the lone Tiger to qualify, but he also did not place.
Another amazing showing for the area was Lockport resident Austin O`Connor (46-0), who wrestles for St. Rita who finished his career with his fourth high school state title, by beating Cole Smith of Providence by a 20-7 major decision at 152 pounds.
It was the second-straight undefeated state championship for O`Connor, who finished his career with a combined record of 180-4.