March 9, 2019 Columbus, OH – Among the most thrilling moments an athlete in Ohio High School sports can experience is stepping out into the bright lights and electric atmosphere of Value City Arena at the OHSAA State Wrestling Tournament.
This year, walking through the wall of fame tunnel of past State wrestling champions were North Royalton’s 152lb. Senior Paul Twarog and 220lb Junior Lazar Gasic. Both contestants earned the right to take to the mats and compete to raise a banner for school, friends, and family at the Jerome Schottenstein Center in Columbus.
Twarog stunned his first round opponent Dane Fenice of Franklin Heights in a 7-1 decision, before falling to Sam Dover of St. Edward 11-4 in the quarterfinal round. Rebounding, Twarog would skillfully manage a 2-1 wrestleback victory over Derek Spears of Mount Orab. The victory would ensure an 8th Place finish for Paul despite battling through injury in two other consolation round losses.
Gasic would also rebound with an 8-2 win over Worthington-Kilbourn’s Jay Thompson after a preliminary round loss to this year’s State Runner-up Seamus O’Malley of St. Edward. His second loss came in an 3-1 overtime tie-breaker to Paul Zentiska of Barberton. The season-ending loss was a rematch from the Hoover District championship final in which Gasic fell 6-3. Zentiska finished the State Tournament in 5th Place.
Twarog’s 8th Place finish is the highest placement for a North Royalton wrestler since Alec Benedetti’s (126lbs) and Garrett Snyder’s (220lbs) 7th & 8th place victories in 2014, and Dan Bartinelli’s (120lbs) 6th Place finish in 2013.
Congratulations Paul Twarog and the 2019 North Royalton Wrestling Team on an accomplished and memorable season! Go Bears!