Six local wrestlers compete at state tournament

Jonathan Alder junior Anthony Kroninger wrestles his way to a 4-2 win over senior Cohen Bunting of New Concord John Glenn. Kroninger ended up finishing fourth in the Div. II 165-pound weight class.

(Posted March 13, 2024)

By Pat Donahue, Staff Photographer

Six wrestlers from Madison County competed in the Ohio High School Athletic Association’s (OHSAA) state wrestling tournament held March 8-10 at the Schottenstein Center in Columbus. This year was the 87th year for the boys’ state tourney and the second year for the girls’ state tourney.

Jonathan Alder junior Anthony Kroninger made it to the podium, placing fourth in the Div. II 165-pound weight class. This marked Kroninger’s second trip to state. Last year, he was held to one win. This year, he started with a win, followed by a loss, then three more wins before falling short in his final match to junior Kalyon McKinney of Sandusky Perkins. Kroninger took three of his four wins by pinning his opponents. He qualified for state by placing second at district. He finished the season with a record of 48-9.

Jonathan Alder senior Ava Ater battles her way to a pin over Chesapeake sophomore Laila Wentz in the girls’ 120-pound weight class.

Jonathan Alder senior Ava Ater is a four-time state qualifier, having competed her first two years in the Ohio High School Wrestling Coaches Association girls’ state tournament and the past two years in the OHSAA girls’ state tournament. She placed fifth at state her sophomore and junior years. This year, she had a different outcome. Competing in the girls’ 120-pound weight class, she won just one match. She qualified for state by finishing fourth at regionals. She finished the season with a record of 33-13 and finished her career with 110 wins. She holds the distinction of being the first female wrestler at Jonathan Alder to break the 100-win mark. She also is the second four-time state qualifier in school history; Alan Clifton was the first.

Jonathan Alder sophomore Ethan Kuhns pins Alliance sophomore Johnny Beltz in the Div. II 144-pound weight class.

In his first appearance at state, Jonathan Alder sophomore Ethan Kuhns won his first match with a pin. It would be his only victory of the weekend. He qualified for state in the Div. II 144-pound weight class by placing third at district. He finished the season with a 42-12 record.

Jonathan Alder senior Dom Kroninger made his second appearance at the state tournament. Last year, he finished sixth. This year, he had a tougher go of it, going winless in the Div. II 285-pound weight class. He qualified for state with a fourth-place finish at district, and he finished the season with a record of 44-12.

Jonathan Alder senior Dom Kroninger, competing in the Div. II 285-pound class, peels off the grasp of senior Garrett Dillon-Rine of New Philadelphia in his first round at the state tournament.

Competing in the 105-pound weight class in the girls’ division, Madison-Plains freshman Mirage Haverfield started off with a win in her first trip to state. It would be her only victory in the tournament. She qualified for state by finishing third at the district level. She ended the season with a record of 30-13.

London junior Chase Payne competed in the Div. II 215-pound weight class. He came away from the tournament with two losses and a final season record of 38-9. He earned his trip to state by placing third in the district tournament.

London junior Chase Payne competes against Andy Vanscoy, a senior from Akron St. Vincent-St. Mary, in the Div. II 215-pound weight class. Payne came up short in the matchup.
The ref raises the arm of Madison-Plains freshman Mirage Haverfield, signaling her victory in her first round matchup against senior Kellie Kennedy of North Olmstead in the girls’ 105-weight pound class.
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