Olentangy Liberty’s Carson Kharchla didn’t have a single state win to his credit when he walked into the Schottenstein Center for last year’s Individual State Wrestling Tournament.
That was his junior season.
Now, thanks to a dominant 7-1 win over Shaker Heights’ Najee Lockett in Saturday’s state final, he leaves as a two-time state champ.
The win was Kharchla’s eighth straight at the Individual State Wrestling Tournament (four last year, four this year) with Saturday’s giving him his second straight Division I title in the 170-pound division.
Kharchla finished the year, and his career as a Patriot, with a perfect 31-0 record in his senior season … and he made things look easy during his march to his second straight title. The senior cruised past West Clermont’s Matt Lewis 18-3 in Thursday’s first round, pinned Wadsworth’s Jon List in 1:37 in Friday’s quarterfinal and handled Kettering Fairmont’s Nevan Snodgrass 5-1 in the semifinal later in the day to set up the championship match against Lockett, who was a perfect 41-0 before getting into the circle against Kharchla.
Liberty’s Connor Brady, competing at 160, was also wrestling for a championship Saturday. He came up a point short, though, falling to Lakewood St. Edward’s Padraic Gallagher by a slim 7-6 margin. Brady finished his career at Liberty as a three-time state placer, with this weekend’s runner-up finish his best.
Other area state placers included Olentangy Liberty’s Lucas Uliano (126), who finished up his sophomore season with a 9-4 win over Fairfield’s Jabari Thomas in Saturday’s seventh-place match; Delaware Hayes junior Corbin May (182), who finished seventh after pinning Cincinnati Elder’s Austin Belcher in 4:43; and Hayes’ Jacob McCloskey (195), who finished eighth in the state to cap a stellar high school career.