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Carey comeback in semifinals clears way for Nixa junior to claim state championship

NIXA'S BRENNAN CAREY receives congrats for his Class 4 215-pound state championship.
NIXA'S BRENNAN CAREY receives congrats for his Class 4 215-pound state championship.

COLUMBIA — Nixa’s Brennan Carey rode a late comeback win in the semifinal round at the State Wrestling Championships to being crowned the Class 4 215 champion.

Carey pulled out a 3-2 semifinal win Saturday against Staley’s Jack Stoffel, thanks to a reversal in the final seconds. He was trailing 2-1, after Stoffel posted a takedown with :30 remaining.

“When I got taken down, I wasn't really affected emotionally about it,” Carey said. “I think that's what (allowed) me to get the mindset to get the reversal for the win. I had the mindset that the match isn't over until (the clock) hits zero.

“The match itself wasn't too stressful,” he added. “But before the match, it was stressful, because I knew Jack was coming for me. I had been sitting at the number one spot (in the MissouriWrestling.com rankings) all year and he had been at two or three.”

In the title tilt, Carey (44-6) won 5-1 against Jackson’s Tyler Beyatte. He finished his junior season with a 15-match winning streak.

Carey showed off a new look at State. Two weeks after having shoulder-length hair and one week after having his hair in cornrows, he sported a buzz cut after having much of his hair shaved off earlier in the week.

“I didn't really know what to do with my hair. But I'm going to be doing a lot of traveling, getting ready for World Team Trials. It's hard to take care of long hair on the road,” Carey said. “(With long hair), every now and then I'd get some hair in my face and my coaches would like to joke around with me and grab my hair and take me down with it.

“I thought I'd change it up,” he added. “I feel lighter now and it's not as hot.”