Marysville High School senior Jacob Marsh is grabbing for an “assassin” against an opponent in this file photo. Marsh will compete in the 152-pound weight class during this week’s Division I state tournament.
(Journal-Tribune photo by Kevin Behrens)
There is a fierce feeling that drives Marysville High School senior Jacob Marsh as he prepares for this week’s Division I state wrestling tournament.
It’s a sense of payback.
Marsh placed sixth as a sophomore at the state tournament and was expecting even bigger things during the 2017 competition.
It did not work out as he expected.
“I got caught up in bracket-watching and got ahead of myself,” said Marsh, who failed to earn a top eight spot in his weight class as a junior. “I felt I would have a walk to the finals and it didn’t go well.
“It left a bad taste in my mouth and I’m not going to do that this year.”
There are 15 other D-I 152-pounders, however, who may want to catch a glimpse or two of how Marsh is progressing during the three-day event at The Ohio State University’s Schottenstein Center.
The Monarch standout will take an impressive 41-2 record into Thursday evening’s opening battle against Boston Dubocq, a Findlay High School senior who sports a 38-12 mark.
Marsh earned his state tournament berth by capturing top honors in his weight class during last Saturday’s district competition at Hilliard Darby High School.
“I felt good about all of my district matches,” he said. “I felt I wrestled well and I know that coach (Shawn) Andrews puts all of us in the best possible position to have success.”
His first-place district finish was one of four championships he has captured this season.
He took top honors at Dublin Scioto (also named Outstanding Wrestler), at Top Gun (Outstanding Wrestler) and at Watkins Memorial.
Marsh, who will continue his mat career at Princeton University, also placed fourth at the highly-competitive Ironman Classic.
The veteran grappler said his strongest asset during matches this season has been an ability to control his emotions.
“I’ve been able to stay calm in difficult situations,” he said.
Marsh said he doesn’t panic if he can’t get a takedown during the opening two-minute period.
“If that doesn’t happen, I know I’ll get him (an opponent) sometime during the six-minute match,” he said.
The Monarch grappler said he is using the final three days of practice (Monday through Wednesday) this week to shore up what he plans to do during the state tournament.
“I’m taking these final days of practice to tune up some things,” he said. “I realize this is it for me as a Monarch athlete.”
Wrestling has been in Marsh’s blood for a long time.
He remembers “rolling around” on a wrestling mat when he was just a couple of years old.
He began competing in the sport by the time he was “five or six.”
“I also played football and baseball when I was younger,” he said. “Since seventh grade, though, I’ve stuck with wrestling.”
Marsh said he has to keep his concentration level at a high rate over the length of the state tournament.
“It’s a long three days and I have to stay focused the entire time,” he said. “I went into last year’s state tournament a little over-confident and I can’t do that this year.
“The other guys (in his weight division) want to win just as badly as I do,” he said. “I have to go out there and wrestle and not take anything for granted.”
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