Friday, February 26, 2016

Wrestling: Kobis withdraws from Region 1

HARDYSTON -- After dealing with numerous injuries over a four-year career, High Point senior Jared Kobis, the No. 1 seed at 145 pounds, was forced to withdraw from the Region 1 Tournament on Friday before the quarterfinal round at Wallkill Valley Regional High School.

Kobis (22-0), who won his third District 3 championship this past Saturday, was dealing with shoulder and knee issues this season. A returning Region 1 champion, winning at 138 pounds last season, Kobis finishes 93-6 overall and will go down as one of High Point's top wrestlers.

"You take a look at his losses alone, and that tells you how special he is," said 'Cats coach John Gardner, who said the right knee injury sustained in a dual meet against Kittatinny earlier this month was the one that forced Kobis out of the tournament. "I don't know if we ever saw him healthy. He's right up there with all of the [best] kids I've coached."

The start of Kobis' health issues happened here at Region 1 three seasons ago, when he injured his shoulder during the semifinals at 126. Kobis, who lost to three-time state placewinner Ryan Pomrinca of North Hunterdon in the Hunterdon-Warren-Sussex Tournament finals earlier that year, was forced out of Region 1 Tournament.

As a sophomore, Kobis missed most of that season with a hand injury, going just 4-1. As a junior, Kobis made it through a full season, winning a District 3 and Region 1 title at 138 pounds. He finished one round shy of a medal at the state tournament in Atlantic City.

Of his six career losses, at least five can be directly attributed to injuries.

"He practiced on Wednesday and I told him to take [Thursday] and think about what he wanted to do, and ultimately what was the best decision for him," Gardner said. "I feel bad for him. It's very unfortunate. It was very important to him that this was not a team event. Otherwise, I think he would have wrestled."

Phillipsburg voted No. 1

As expected, Phillipsburg was voted as the No. 1 team in Region 1 by the coaches on Friday prior to the quarterfinals. The Stateliners finished 17-3, winning the North 2, Group 4 sectional title and the Group 4 championship for a third straight season. The sectional title was the program's 35th overall and the Group 4 title was its 20th state championship.

Kittatinny (18-2), which lost to Paulsboro, 28-27, in the Group 1 final, finished No. 2. The Cougars won the North 1, Group 1 title -- the 20th sectional championship under longtime coach John Gill.

Here's the final Top 10 (really 11 since there was a tie for eighth):

1. Phillipsburg
2. Kittatinny
3. DePaul
4. Roxbury
5. Warren Hills
6. Montville
7. High Point
8.(tie). Pope John/Wayne Valley
9. Lenape Valley
10. Sparta

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