QUINCY -- The first period of the 138-pound title match couldn't have gone much worse for Quincy High School wrestler Matthew Peters.
He was taken down early by Belleville Althoff's Max Kristoff, and Kristoff scored two more points in the final seconds on a near fall to lead 4-0 heading to the second period.
That's when Peters knew he had to change his strategy.
"I knew if I can't outmuscle him, I had to out technique him," Peters said. "Going into that second period, I couldn't give myself up. I had to go into the mindset that I was going to win."
Peters started from the top position and saw an opening to get Kristoff, ranked No. 3 in Class 1A according to Illinoismatmen.com and with a 34-5 record, in a cradle. Peters executed the move and pinned Kristoff 26 seconds into the second period to win the title bout of the 49th annual Quincy Invitational Saturday at the QHS gym.
Peters' pin was followed by a roar from the crowd.
"I committed to it, I went for it and I got it," Peters said. "I just had to hold on for dear life."
Peters (29-10) had the only title for the Blue Devils in the tournament, but two others reached the finals and five grapplers competed in the semifinals. QHS finished fourth with 341.5 points. Cahokia won the team title with 487 points.
"I'm pleased with everyone's performance," QHS coach Phil Neally said. "We grew up a little bit this weekend as a whole team. We realized some of the hard work is paying off."
The Blue Devils' Blake Peter went to overtime against Althoff's Matthew Minick in the 106-pound title match. Minick scored a takedown 11 seconds into the extra session to score the 5-3 victory.
The match was stopped several times as Peter (27-10) needed attention to a nosebleed. He felt that gave Minick (30-9) an advantage.
"It let him catch his breath," Peter said. "I don't think he would have made it if he didn't have that time to catch his breath."
At 160 pounds, QHS's Hunter Yohn suffered a technical fall defeat to Althoff's Danny Braunagel, who's ranked No. 1 in the state and the reigning 152-pound champion, halfway through the second period.
Yohn (31-5) knew he had a tough matchup.
"I just had to try and score," Yohn said. "If I couldn't, I just had to try and throw him and get some major points. It was kind of all-or-nothing."
Quincy Notre Dame's Zach Haley won a championship for the second straight year after beating Waterloo's Dalton Viglasky 6-4 in overtime in the 145-pound title bout.
Haley (25-0) fell behind early when Viglasky (28-3) scored a takedown in the first 30 seconds. Haley, however, escaped to trail 2-1 heading to the second period. He started the next period from the down position and escaped to tie the match.
"I've been slow starting matches a couple times," Haley said. "I wasn't going to let myself be down."
Viglasky, however, started the third period down and escaped to take a 3-2 lead. Haley scored a takedown with 32 seconds remaining to take a 4-3 lead, but Viglasky escaped in the final second of regulation to force overtime.
Haley scored a takedown with 3.9 seconds remaining in overtime to capture the title.
"I wasn't really paying attention to the score and thought I was up two," Haley said. "I realized that wasn't the case, but I can't let that get me down because I had to move onto the next period, and I could tell (Viglasky) was gassed."
Central's Evan Myers reached the championship of the 126-pound bracket but was pinned in 15 seconds by Althoff's Chase Bittle.
Myers (26-3) knew he was an underdog against Bittle (36-2), who's ranked No. 1 in Class 1A.
"I knew I was probably going to lose at some point," Myers said with a smirk. "You just have to treat every match the same and go out there trying to win. It just didn't go my way."
49th annual Quincy Invitational
1. Cahokia 487
2. Belleville Althoff 442.5
3. Pekin 361
4. Quincy 341.5
5. Rock Falls 338
6. East Peoria 322.5
7. Jacksonville 300.5
8. Triad 269
9. Mascoutah 248
10. Mehlville 244.5
11. Central 217
12. Lutheran 205
13. Macomb 183
14. Illini West 180
15. Waterloo 163.5
16. Quincy Notre Dame 147
17. Oakville 81
18. West Hancock 49
106--Matthew Minick (B) d. Blake Peter (QHS), 5-3
113--Ryan Haynes (P) maj. dec Isaiah Bernal (B), 8-0
120--Tim Welsh (J) p. Drake Hawins (P), 2:55
126--Chase Bittle (B) p. Evan Myers (Cen), 0:15
132--Anthony Federico (B), d. Evans Rodney (Cah), 4-3
138--Matthew Peters (QHS) p. Max Kristoff (B), 2:26
145--Zach Haley (QND) d. Dalton Viglasky (W), 6-4
152--Martell Boone (Cah) p. Joe Stegall (Meh), 2:43
160--Danny Braunagel (B) tech fall Hunter Yohn (QHS), 3:28
170--Rozell Baker (Cah) p. Aric Crehan (T), 3:45
182--Zac Braunagel (B) tech fall Arnold Edwards (Cah), 3:10
195--Tyler Siddles (P) p. Lucas Raynor (E), 3:23
220--Jacob Bullock (Cah) p. John Groves (Meh), 3:30
285--Caleb Collins (E) d. Zach Knapp (J), 3-1