Shaw might have finished second to Teurlings Catholic in the Division II team race at the LHSAA wrestling tournament Saturday at the Pontchartrain Center, but senior Mason Mauro won his third consecutive state title.
Mauro won a 15-6 major decision against Teurlings Catholic’s Luke Kilchrist.
“It happened so fast,” Mauro said. “I always want to embrace the moment, but I never really can. It sinks in a little after, it means so much to win three. It means so much to win three and to win it at a different team. It means a lot more to me because I got to help that team out, too.”
Mauro transferred from Brother Martin.
Mauro wasn’t the only top seed for the Eagles in the finals as Cameron Berlot faced Huntington’s D’Anta Anderson in the 182-pound final. Anderson won in a 6-2 decision.
Mauro committed to Notre Dame College in South Euclid, Ohio. The Falcons won the NCAA Division II national title last year.
Despite the Eagles finishing second, Mauro was still upbeat.
“To possibly win a second state championship, we fell short. It still feels good to help them out,” he said.
While Mauro liked that six teammates were also participating Saturday, there was also more.
“It feels great,” he said. “Of course, I had my Shaw people cheering for me, but I had my old Brother Martin friends cheering for me. It feels great.”
Shaw coach Paul Hatty said Mauro certainly added to the team.
“He had a great impact on our team. He wrestled as hard as all of our kids do,” he said. “He came in and wrestled tough.”
Bringing several wrestlers to the last day of competition is not unusual for the Eagles.
“Every year we expect to put a large amount of people, load up the semis, load up the finals,” Hatty said.
Grace King was another New Orleans-area team that had multiple wrestlers competing Saturday.
Sophomore Mauricio Ballesteros reached the semifinals.
“It’s a big deal,” he said. “In my mind, all I’m thinking is I want to do the best I can.”
Despite having struggles, Ballesteros said he enjoys wrestling.
“We have a great team and I’m happy to be a part of it,” he said.