Richmond scores last 12 points, upsets Dundee in Division 3 final, 27-25
PHOTO CREDIT: Courtesy of MHSAA (Geoff Kimberly)
Battle Creek – Comebacks come in all forms in the arena of sports. Richmond’s vaunted comeback Saturday was one for the ages.
Richmond toppled top-seeded Dundee Saturday at Battle Creek’s Kellogg Arena to earn the Division 3 state championship. And it ended in dramatic fashion.
Richmond (32-5) lost to Dundee in the last two finals and trailed 25-15 with two weight classes to go. But the Blue Devils picked up back-to-back pins for 12 points and a come-from-behind, 27-25 victory over the eight-time state champion Vikings.
“What an unbelievable comeback,” Richmond coach Brandon Day said. “We knew we had to have pins the last two matches to beat them and our guys came through.”
Roy Costello pinned Dan Jaworski in only 31 seconds at 103 and Connor Behem stuck Dundee’s Harry Wallace to the mat in 1:07 in the meet-closing 112-pound match to cap the improbable comeback and give the Blue Devils their seventh state title and first since 2012.
“I can’t say enough about Connor Behem,” Day said. “He weighed around 130 pounds during the soccer season and he dropped all that weight down to 112 for us this season. To come in here and getting a pin in the very last match for us to win the state championship says a lot of the type of kid that he is. It says a lot about the character of the kids on this team. We were down 13 points with three matches to go. If we lose one of those matches, Dundee wins the state championship.”
Veteran Dundee coach Tim Roberts knew that no lead is safe against an opponent like Richmond.
“We would love to blow them out and not have it go down to the last couple matches, but that’s never going to happen. Every time we wrestle each other, it’s going to be a close match,” offered Roberts. “We needed to get more bonus points today and we didn’t do it. We needed another pin. We won eight of the 14 weight classes and Richmond won six, but they got more bonus points and were able to beat us and become state champions.”
Dundee (25-6), ranked the top team in this division the whole season, was going for their third straight crown. The Vikings never trailed the Blue Devils until the end, coming one match short of a three-peat.
After being tied early 3-3, Dundee built a 16-6 advantage through seven matches and built a 25-12 lead with three matches to go.
EDITORS NOTE: Highlights of Richmond’s State Championship can be seen on the State Champs! High School Sports Show, Sunday at 9 am on Fox Sports Detroit