Clark became the first Cape-Atlantic League wrestler to win a state title since Holy Spirit's Mac Mancuso in 2007 with a 3-1 overtime win over Hunterdon Central's Gary Dinmore.
Clark cruised into the semifinals with a 14-2 major decision over Bergen Catholic's Joe Grello. Clark, ranked No. 4 in the country, turned Grello three times with tilts to pile up points.
Clark qualified for the today's final with a 15-5 major decision over Maaziah Bethea, of Trenton Central. Clark collected six takedowns in the match and added a two-point near fall, escape and stalling point. Bethea, who was undefeated, had five escapes.
Clark made his tournament debut with a 14-5 major decision over Westfield's Nick Velez in the pre-quarterfinals. Clark, a former national prep champion in Maryland, registered six takedowns in the final two periods to pull away.
Jack Clark, St. Augustine Prep, Sr. (22-0)
Seed: Bottom bracket No. 3 seed.
Record vs. state qualifiers: 1-0.
Clark’s road to Atlantic City: Won his first District 32 and Region 8 titles.
Back points: Clark received the bottom bracket No. 3 seed without much state ranking criteria to go from but is still widely considered to be among the favorites to win a state title. Clark is a two-time National Preps champion with more than 150 career wins. The Prep senior opens with Westfield’s Nick Velez in the pre-quarters and could face second-seeded Joe Grello of Bergen Catholic in the quarterfinals.