Ivan Korske is the pride of Lennings, a rural town tucked away in the farmlands of western Jersey, and the odds-on favorite to be crowned state champion in the 129-pound weight class. For Ivan, the stakes are impossibly high. A state championship fulfills a promise he made to his mother before she passed away nine months earlier and will, perhaps, stem his father's continued withdrawal from life. But mostly, Ivan dreams of getting a scholarship to a college far from his dreary hometown. To him, anything short of the title is failure.
In Short Hills, a wealthy town on the other side of the state, Bobby Zane protects his younger brother Christopher from the fallout of their parents' impending divorce, while searching for comfort from Carmelina Carrillo, a girl from a depressed part of Newark. Despite the distractions from the intense pressures of adolescent love and the family's breakup, Bobby realizes his quest for the coveted 129-pound state title may be his only hope for salvation.
Pinned chronicles Ivan and Bobby's season-long efforts toward overcoming forces within and beyond their control toward a title that only one of them can capture.