By: Daniel Stickradt
WRESTLING: WL Central’s Freeman becomes Michigan’s 23rd four-time state champion
BY DAN STICKRADT
AUBURN HILLS — One.
The only time Ben Freeman lost a match during his four-year career at Walled Lake Central came midway through his freshman year. He had to forfeit out of a match due to injury at the Holt Tournament.
He was unbeatable over the past 3.5 seasons and capped it all off with a fourth state championship in Division 1 with a 24-7, technical fall victory at 135 over Birmingham Groves’ Colin Takata.
The University of Michigan signee was given a standing ovation. He is just the 23rd wrestler in MHSAA Tournament lore to win four state titles — and fourth in Division 1.
“I just kept doing the things I've been doing all along and not worry about (the pressure),” said Freeman. “I’m almost glad it’s all done, a lot of (high) expectations.”
His final match took 3 minutes, 55 seconds to complete. The Mr. Wrestling finalist finished his stellar career with a 163-1 record, including 34-0 this season.
“It’s kind of surreal. It hasn't sunk in just yet,” said Freeman, one of three Walled Lake Central wrestlers to claim state titles Saturday. “I’ve always looked up to those guys. I don’t feel like I should be in that group.”
Contrary, Freeman is one of the state’s all-time best with four crowns and .994 career winning percentage.