It's hard enough to advance one wrestler to the championship round at any given tournament.
But, it's definitely not every day that a team can advance a pair of wrestlers to the championship match in the exact same weight class.
Such was the case for Port Clinton this past weekend at the 32nd annual Knights of Columbus Wrestling Tournament at Avon Lake High School. The Redskins finished seventh in the 15-team event with 141 points and three wrestlers reaching the championship finals.
Due to the K of C running an 'A' and 'B' bracket and using Friday's round-robin results to pick out the wrestlers in each, the chances of a team advancing two wrestlers in the same class are pretty good.
The 220-pound weight class was set up perfectly for the Redskins, as senior Chris Overfield, who finished second at the K of C last year and third two seasons ago, and junior Michael Kirkpatrick navigated through Saturday's tournament to wind up wrestling each other for the championship.
Overfield and Kirkpatrick, who are not only best friends but also drilling partners in the Redskin wrestling room, engaged in an awkward dance for most of the championship bout. Finally, with Overfield leading 3-0, he caught Kirkpatrick on his back and pinned him with seven seconds remaining.
"It was kind of rewarding, because you see how hard they push each other in the practice room," Port Clinton coach Michael Cuevas said. "To see Chris actually make it to the finals and Kirkpatrick make it to the finals as an extra, it just shows that both work hard in the practice room.
"Without Michael, Chris wouldn't be our only district qualifier (last year). And without Chris, Michael wouldn't have been able to do what he did today. I'm just proud of both of them."
Overfield had a feeling that he would have to wrestle his good friend in the finals when the brackets were released Saturday morning.
"I've gotten third-place, second-place and now first-place here," he said. "I've (won a championship) a couple of times before, so this is just another win to me. Overall, we've got a lot of new kids and I think we did relatively well at this tournament.
"I really didn't think I was going to get the pin. I heard there was 10 seconds left, and then I heard the ref blow the whistle and I thought time was already out. I got up and saw there was still seven seconds left."
Overfield said all the drilling and knowledge of each other's skills made it a tough match.
"It's different," he said. "We're best friends and we're drill partners and we know each other's move. It really is more different than any other match I've had. It's more challenging.
"We knew each other's offense, so we were kind of holding back from each other. We can predict each other's set ups. It kind of came down to who can ride, and I was able to do it."
Kirkpatrick, who was giving up 20 points to compete in the 220-pound weight class, was pleased that he was able to reach the finals in his first tournament.
"We both kind of knew that this was going to be a tough match when we found out we were going for first and second," said Kirkpatrick, who is aiming to wrestle the season at 195 pounds. "But, we really wanted to each reach the finals. He told me if I'm going to make it, you're going to make, so we really had faith in each other to do well here.
"It was hard wrestling one of your own teammates, especially when he's your best friend and drill partner. You both know what you're going to do. But I'm going to push him the best I can and he's going to push me and hopefully we both go as far we did here this weekend for the rest of the season."
Nick Pope also reached the finals for the Redskins. However, Pope was defeated, 8-0, by Avon Lake freshman Joe Bernosky in the 126-pound finals.
"It was good to see Nick healthy," Cuevas said. "Last year, he tore his shoulder up midway through the season, so this was really his first live activity that we've had all season long for him. We went to a couple of scrimmages, but this was our first real test. He did very well.
"He kind of got out of his gameplan in the final match and really didn't wrestle that smart of a match, but all in all for him, I thought he wrestled extremely well the whole tournament."
The 220-pound championship wasn't the only All-Port Clinton matchup in the final round. Robbie Peterman and Aaron Smith both advanced to the fifth-place match at 145. Smith, however, bowed out of the match with an injury, giving Peterman the fifth-place win by default.
"It was good to get another extra like Aaron Smith into the top six," Cuevas said. "Robbie Peterman is wrestling up a weight class and he should be able to drop down earlier in the season. Aaron had a real rough year last year and didn't get a lot of wins under his belt. He's won quite a few matches here this week, which is good for his confidence."
Caleb Cuevas and Tristian Mallory were the only other Port Clinton wrestlers to advance to a placement match. Cuevas beat North Ridgeville's Brent Ningard, 17-7, to finish fifth at 138, while Mallory was pinned by Avon's Paul Sturm in the 195-pound fifth-place match.
"Caleb had a real tough weight class with Lakewood's (Yassir) Abdel-Salam and (Amherst's Alex) Funderburg," Cuevas said. "He really did some good battling and finished fifth.
"We had a lot to cram in these last two to three weeks with the (Thanksgiving) holiday in there and everything. For the most part, I thought this team wrestled extremely well. We just need to keep on getting better and work on the positive things. We don't have a very big team, but I think we should do halfway decent at tournaments."