Western Brown senior reaches end to what has been a remarkable wrestling career –
By Wade Linville –
Not only did Western Brown High School’s wrestling standout, Brandon Lucas, finish off an outstanding senior season of wrestling last weekend, but he would reach an end to what has been a remarkable high school career on the mats. Lucas ventured to Ohio State University’s Jerome Schottenstein Center once again, capping off his high school wrestling career with a fifth place finish in the 113-pound class of the Ohio High School Athletic Association Division I State Wrestling Tournament with an 8-7 decision win over Fairfield High School’s Moustapha Bal in the fifth place finals. Lucas’ first two matches of the state tourney each went approximately 8.5 minutes, both ending with the ultimate tiebreaker as he wrestled his way to an exciting 3-2 win over Lancaster’s Jacob Reed in the state championship preliminaries, and captured a hard-earned 3-2 decision win over Copley’s Kyren Butler in the championship quarterfinals. Lucas suffered a 5-1 loss by decision to Elyria’s Dylan Shawver in the state championship semifinals and was suffered a narrow 5-4 loss by decision to Lewis Center Olentangy’s Jacob Sherman in the consolation semifinals before going on to win the fifth place finals. “I think I did okay,” Lucas said of his performance in this year’s individual state tournament. “I could have done better. I whiffed my last one, not the placement one, the one before that. Things happen, I guess.” In the end, Lucas was able to finish off his outstanding high school wrestling career with a victory, a victory that earned him a spot on the podium among the top five Division I 113-pounders in the state. “He’s on the podium,” said Western Brown head coach Wendel Donathan following Lucas’ fifth place state finish. “The last thing I told him before he went on the mat was to end it with a win. Your career is over, so no matter where you place…obviously the goal is to get higher, but to place and to win the last match of your high school career, that’s pretty cool.” Lucas faced some of the toughest opponents of his career on his way to a fifth place finish, displaying how his years of hard work on the mats paid off. When competing for a state wrestling title against such worthy competitors, just about anything can happen. “It’s a dogfight,” Donathan said. “You could wrestle this tournament every weekend of the year, you’re going to have different results every weekend.” Lucas ends his career with 164 career wins, the second most in Western Brown High School wrestling history, and he would wrap up his senior season with an overall record of 50 wins and just seven losses. “He had a great career,” Donathan said. “Once it’s all said and done, he’s going to have some records once I get everything tabulated. If you ask him if he could make some changes to do things differently, I think he’d agree to it. Now he’s got to move on to the rest of his life, he’s going to be wrestling in college and that’s exciting to see.” Lucas finished fourth in the OHSAA Division II State Wrestling Tournament as a junior last year before Western Brown made the jump to Division I for the 2017-18 school year. He was named this year’s Southern Buckeye Athletic/Academic Conference American Division Wrestler of the Year to top off a successful regular season on the mats. He has not yet officially announced where he will be attending college after high school graduation, but the talk around town is that Bellarmine University in Louisville has caught his eye.