CHATHAM, NJ - After winning on the road over Cliffside Park on Tuesday, the Chatham High wrestling team fizzled in a 72-3 loss to Montville on Wednesday.
The victory over Cliffside Park put Chatham in contention for a state playoff berth, but the Cougars may have hurt their chances on Wednesday, which marked the cutoff date before seedings for the tournament are determined.
Chatham is hoping to earn one of the eight spots in North Jersey, Section 2, Group 3. No Cougar team has ever competed in the state tournament. Chatham should find out Thursday if it makes the cut.
"We let them bully us, that's the only way I can describe it," Chatham wrestling coach Brian Cassera said of the loss to Montville.
Montville was heavily favored to win the match, but Chatham junior Mike Kellstrom got the Cougars off to a good start when he pulled out a tough match to give his team a 3-0 lead. Kellstrom was down, 1-0, in the last minute of the third period when he received a point for an illegal full Nelson and then escaped to steal the decision.
Chatham captain Brian Weber gained a 3-1 lead in his match at 160 before his Montville opponent scored a reversal to tie it and force overtime. Weber lost the match, 5-3.
Chatham heavyweight Mike Kellstrom pulls out a 2-1 decision in the opening match vs. Montville
Brian Weber scores two points in his overtime loss at 160 pounds for Chatham