DENVILLE, NJ- Going into the final day of the NJSIAA Region 1 Tournament, Morris Knolls did not come in with the strongest numbers, as they had just four wrestlers still alive. However, the Eagles showed that quality is better than quantity as Morris Knolls went on to win one regional title and advanced three wrestlers to the state tournament.
The star wrestler for the Eagles was senior Dean Drugac, who was the top seed in the 195-pound weight class. He cruised through his first two matches with them lasting 1:24 combined and then went on to win the title match 3-1 to earn his spot in the state tournament.
“It took a lot to get here but I know there’s a lot to work on,” said Drugac.
On top of winning the regional title, Drugac is also carrying an undefeated season going into the state tournament but he does not let that get in the way of his preparation on the mat.
“It’s great and all but it only gets you to this point and everything can change,” noted Drugac. “It’s only half of it. I have to keep up with the undefeated record.”
Drugac’s twin brother Luke also competed in the regional tournament as the second seed in the 182-pound weight class. He made the state tournament with ease by winning in a 1:39 fall and 5-1 in his first two rounds. However, he went on to lose the regional title match to Brandon Kui of Depaul 11-5.
Not only did the twins make the tournament, fellow senior Jayson Parisi joined them as well by winning the consolation finals of the 138-pound weight class after losing 7-0 in the semi-finals.
“We’re all so close and a tight knit,” said Drugac. “If something happens to one of us, it happens to all of us. I feel honored to wrestle next to all of them.”
The three seniors now have the state tournament on their minds and will have one last chance to make some noise in it.
“We’ve been doing all the right things so far,” added Drugac. “We have to work out hard this week, condition, and make sure things that didn’t work will work next week.”