WASHINGTON — Washington earned one for the second thumb Saturday at the Mid-Illini Conference wrestling tournament.

The host Panthers made it a clean sweep of the 2010s with their 10th consecutive league title, scoring 240.5 points and grabbing seven individual championships along the way.

Canton, just 2-4 in league duals, had two champs and five others in the top three to finish second with 129.5 points, 21.5 more than third-place Morton.

“I hadn’t really thought about it until about mid-day and somebody said something,” Washington coach Nick Miller said of winning 10 in a row. “In the end, the talk of a decade of conference championships is cool, but probably the reason I missed it was I wanted to make sure our guys were ready to go.”

The three-time defending Class 2A state champs, ranked No. 1 again this year, now have 66 individual titles in the 10-year run.

“For us at Washington, we just try to create a legacy, so every year we try to raise the bar,” said senior 195-pounder Jace Punke (36-1), who won his fourth title. “We’re just giving it all we’ve got every day we go in the room, picking up new stuff and bringing it out here and displaying it.”

Sophomores Abe Hinrichsen (15-0 technical fall at 113) and No. 1 ranked Joey Cape (15-0 tech fall at 120) are halfway to fourpeats with their second titles, starting a string of four Washington champions. Juniors Brody Norman and Zeke Hulet each won their second titles with identical 9-1 major decisions at 126 and 132, respectively.

Top-ranked senior Jared Head claimed the 160-pound crown with a 12-3 major decision, before Punke (4:16) and  third-seeded junior Dylan Cooper (3:49 at 285) capped the day with pins.

“It just means all my hard work is paying off and everything in the room that coach (Matt) Webster and coach Miller are telling me to do is working,” Punke, ranked No. 1 in the state and No. 5 in the nation, said of his fourth crown.

Canton’s runner-up finish was led by titles from senior Kameron Oatman (13-1 major at 182) and junior Jacob Waskow (3-2 decision at 220). Waskow flipped top seed Gabe Robison of Washington just as Robison looked on the way to a takedown, to get the winning points with 25 seconds left in the title bout.

“It just took a lot of dedication then, because I was tired, he was tired,” Waskow said. ”I thought he had me for a little bit. It means a whole lot. It allows me to build up my future even more now.”

The second-place tourney finish vaulted the Little Giants to a tie with Metamora for second in the overall league standings. Metamora came in with a 5-1 dual record, but placed fourth in the league meet.

“Great performance,” Canton coach Zach Crawford said. “We kept the intensity up and won in a lot of different positions. We’ve been hit by the sickness and injury bug and it cost us some dual meets, but it’s really good to bounce back here on a bad weather day and come in here and get second place overall.”

Metamora received titles from freshman Sam Ohl (5:00 pin at 106), junior Brayden Smith (9-6 at 152) and junior Vinny Querciagrossa (4-2 at 170). Ohl trailed Zane Ely 8-0 in the third period, before putting the Morton freshman on his back and getting the pin with a minute left.

Other titles came from East Peoria junior Tristan Westbay (3:16 pin at 138) and Morton senior Drew Greenwood (7-2 decision at 145).

Stan Morris can be reached at 686-3214 or smorris@pjstar.com. Follow him on Twitter @stanmorrispjs.

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