Wrestling Sees Threes at State: 3rd Place, 3 Finalists, and a 3-Timer
It was a season of threes for the Jesuit wrestling team. After finishing third in the District Championships behind Holy Cross and district champion Brother Martin, the Blue Jays battled St. Paul’s and Catholic to take third on February 8-9 at the 2019 LHSAA Division I State Championships in Bossier City, La. The Catholic League once again dominated the state tournament as Brother Martin took the title and Holy Cross won the runner-up trophy.
Senior co-captains Sam Dreuil (106), Luke Eccles (126), and Perry Ganci (285) advanced to the semifinals, and all three won their matches to give Jesuit three finalists. Eccles and Ganci won their finals matches with Ganci becoming the 9th wrestler in Jesuit history to win three individual state titles. Eccles, who made the finals in 2018, earned his first gold medal in arguably the most talented weight class of the tournament—126—that included two defending state champions from Brother Martin and Holy Cross. Dreuil, who finished 4th in 2018, earned his first silver medal after falling 7-3 in the finals.
Senior Colby Queyrouze (145) fought for third in the consolation rounds and came up just short of his Day 2 goal, finishing fourth. Senior co-captain DJ Ferrier (170) advanced to the consolation semifinals with a win in his first match Saturday morning. Ferrier finished 5th by defeating a St. Paul’s wrestler, 3-2, in the 170-lb. 5th place match.
Top 5 Division I Team Scores:
Through the Lens…
By the Numbers…
The following are results for the five placing wrestlers who advanced to Day 2:
- Quarterfinal – Sam Dreuil (Jesuit) 28-9 won by fall over JW Fuller (C.E. Byrd) 39-14 (Fall 1:58)
- Semifinal – Sam Dreuil (Jesuit) 28-9 won by decision over Chase Scott (Brother Martin) 36-12 (Dec 6-0)
- 1st Place Match – Evan Frost (Holy Cross) 38-0 won by decision over Sam Dreuil (Jesuit) 28-9 (Dec 7-3)
- Quarterfinal – Luke Eccles (Jesuit) 41-6 won by major decision over Martin Helouin (Catholic, BR) 28-16 (MD 11-3)
- Semifinal – Luke Eccles (Jesuit) 41-6 won by decision over Connor Hoffman (Brother Martin) 31-9 (Dec 5-1)
- 1st Place Match – Luke Eccles (Jesuit) 41-6 won by major decision over Peyton Bass (Airline) 46-7 (MD 10-2)
- Quarterfinal – Tucker Almond (Airline) 24-5 won by decision over Colby Queyrouze (Jesuit) 42-14 (Dec 9-3)
- Cons. Round 4 – Colby Queyrouze (Jesuit) 42-14 won by fall over Elijah Lanigan (John Ehret) 11-13 (Fall 2:02)
- Cons. Round 5 – Colby Queyrouze (Jesuit) 42-14 won by decision over Jarreth Wheeler (Covington) 34-14 (Dec 11-5)
- Cons. Semi – Colby Queyrouze (Jesuit) 42-14 won by major decision over Hunter Gustin (Sulphur) 30-13 (MD 9-0)
- 3rd Place Match – Tucker Almond (Airline) 24-5 won by decision over Colby Queyrouze (Jesuit) 42-14 (Dec 7-4)
- Cons. Round 2 – Darren Ferrier (Jesuit) 32-17 won by fall over Logan Lewis (C.E. Byrd) 33-17 (Fall 1:54)
- Cons. Round 3 – Darren Ferrier (Jesuit) 32-17 won by decision over Andrew Evans (Catholic, BR) 38-24 (Dec 12-7)
- Cons. Round 4 – Darren Ferrier (Jesuit) 32-17 won by major decision over Kaleb Cavalier (Acadiana) 16-13 (MD 10-2)
- Cons. Round 5 – Darren Ferrier (Jesuit) 32-17 won by decision over Austin Reason (Central BR) 25-15 (Dec 6-3)
- Cons. Semi – Jarin Meyer (Baton Rouge) 27-11 won by decision over Darren Ferrier (Jesuit) 32-17 (Dec 5-2)
- 5th Place Match – Darren Ferrier (Jesuit) 32-17 won by decision over Evan Ulfers (St. Pauls) 27-15 (Dec 3-2)
- Quarterfinal – Perry Ganci (Jesuit) 40-0 won by fall over Alejandro Nunez (Bonnabel) 30-19 (Fall 2:49)
- Semifinal – Perry Ganci (Jesuit) 40-0 won by fall over Connor Finucane (Catholic, BR) 27-7 (Fall 1:17)
- 1st Place Match – Perry Ganci (Jesuit) 40-0 won by fall over Mack Brown (Brother Martin) 34-5 (Fall 5:32)
They Said It…
The last Jesuit wrestler to win three individual state titles was Marshall Delesdernier ’02 (2000-2002). This year, Perry Ganci pinned his way to and through the finals in order to join Delesdernier as the second Jesuit wrestler in this century to win three titles. But unlike his earlier matches in the state tournament, Ganci’s last match did not come easy for him.
“When I went to my back, I just knew this wasn’t how it was supposed to end,” Perry Ganci said, replaying the finals match in his head. “From that point on, I fought off my back and had to show everyone that I could overcome this…to show everyone that I am a winner. My coaches were in my ear the whole time, saying, ‘you need to wrestle like a champion.’ So, my mindset was not only to win, but to pin. And once I got the opportunity, I took it. I pinned him and got the job done, and I have my coaches to thank for that.”
On becoming Jesuit’s ninth 3-time state champion, Ganci added, “It’s a lot harder than people think. Obviously, when I won my sophomore year, becoming a 3-timer was the goal. But the turning point for me was actually in the Louisiana Classic that year, before the state tournament, when I lost to the guy I eventually upset in the finals.”
After the state tournament, head coach Sheridan Moran told his team, “Every wrestler scored points to help us finish third. Yes, we only had five placers, but let me tell you something. I don’t know if I’ve ever heard of a team in Louisiana, Division I, to place just five people and still take third. That’s a pretty impressive feat.”