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METRO PACESETTER: Alleman's Patting eyeing state title

METRO PACESETTER: Alleman's Patting eyeing state title

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Alleman junior Jack Patting is this week’s Dispatch-Argus-QCOnline Metro Pacesetter. Patting was named the Most Outstanding Wrestler at the Muddy Water Duals last weekend.

ROCK ISLAND — When the clock hit all zeros in his match against Pleasant Valley's Eli Loyd at the Muddy Water Duals on Saturday, Jack Patting couldn't help but celebrate.

"That was something that I told myself I didn't want to do, but I was very excited," Patting said. "I couldn't help but celebrate in that moment with what I had just accomplished."

It was a battle of top-ranked wrestlers — Patting is the top-ranked grappler in Class 1A at 152 pounds in Illinois according to the IWCOA and Loyd was the Class 3A champion last season in Iowa and is ranked No. 1 again early this season.

The win helped the Alleman junior earn this week's Dispatch-Argus-QCOnline Metro Pacesetter honor, but there are plenty of other reasons why Patting deserves recognition.

Midway through his junior year, Patting is 28-0 and has faced tough competition on both the eastern and western borders. He went up against Jorden Douglass, who sported a 40-2 record last season and is currently ranked No. 1 in the state of Indiana, at the St. Thomas More New Year's Rumble on Dec. 28.

Patting is also second on the career pins chart at 63 (just seven behind first) and third in career wins with 115 (23 behind first) in Alleman history. 

"I'm so proud of his accomplishments and how hard he works to achieve his goals," said Alleman coach James Ealy. "He's not only really talented but is a top-of-the-line hard worker and just a genuinely good kid."

Athletes often take pride in their various accomplishments in the sport in which they compete, and Patting has many of those. But he takes the most pride in helping his teammates succeed.

"Being one of the captains of the team is something I take very seriously," Patting said. "As a sophomore last year, I was still just learning the ropes. This year I've been focusing on leaving things with the team better than where I found them, something that coach has told us a lot."

Patting is one of four captains, all juniors, who help Ealy keep the team motivated and working hard.

"Jack elevates the entire room when he's in it," Ealy said. "He brings kids up to his level and helps them succeed. He's not very vocal about teaching, but his actions and efforts say everything."

Patting has made many friends and acquaintances in wrestling through the years, but his relationship with former rival Nolan Throne of Rockridge is perhaps the most interesting.

Throne and Patting went head to head last year in the Princeton Invitational 145-pound championship, with Throne securing a 5-3 decision. 

Patting moved up a weight class this season and Throne stayed at 145, where he is also ranked No. 1. The two are friends and have similar goals.

"We've trained together for a while now and have a friendly rivalry," Patting said. "We both have the motivation to win state together."  

Motivation is easy for Patting, as he has one goal on his mind for this season.

"I want to be the state champion," Patting said. "Last year I was really gunning for it and was heart broken when I lost in the first round. All of that fuels the fire for this season, though."

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