So far, video evidence of Quinn McCarthy’s walk-off win Saturday at the Class 3A Glenbrook South Regional is nowhere to be found.
In a way, that makes the feat much more mythological.
Down by one point late in the third period of his semifinal match at 138 pounds, McCarthy seized control and pinned Rolling Meadows senior Dulguun Tungalag with 0.7 seconds remaining. The win earned McCarthy his first trip to sectionals after narrowly missing out the previous two seasons.
“I like to keep it interesting,” said McCarthy, laughing.
He added: “It was one of the most exciting matches I’ve ever been in.”
Although he lost in the finals, McCarthy qualified for the sectional tournament at Barrington this weekend by finishing in the top three in his weight class. He finished fourth at regionals as a sophomore and junior.
Loyola head coach Joe Haney said it’s rare a match is won by fall as time expires in the third period.
“I can’t remember seeing one in high school,” he said. “It was awesome. I haven’t been that amped in a while. I wanted him to get to sectionals so badly.”
McCarthy admitted it would have been to easy to give up in the final minute.
At that point, one of us was going to break, so I kept pounding,” he said. “Once I locked in on him, I knew it was over.”
Haney said McCarthy is capable of competing for a spot at the state tournament. McCarthy wrestles Cary-Grove senior Parker Suyko in the first round at Barrington on Friday. The top four in each weight class advance to the State Farm Center in Champaign Feb. 15-17.
“If he’s on, he has a good shot,” Haney said. “He can’t let the moment be too big for him.”
Senior Sean Cloherty will be Loyola’s other representative at the sectional. He took third at 145 pounds at Glenbrook South. Looking for to qualify for his first state meet, Cloherty wrestles DeKalb freshman Tucker Ikens in the first round.
Photo credit: Melissa Krein/Loyola