STATE WRESTLING: 11 wrestlers advance after first day of individual tournament
Six wrestlers will compete in the semifinal round today
ST. PAUL – Six area wrestlers are just two wins away from ultimate glory today at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul.
The individual state wrestling tournament started Friday with 27 local wrestlers competing. At the end, 11 were still standing for the second day today, including six semifinalists.
Among the guys who went 2-0 on the first day was Marshall’s 170-pounder, Wyatt Martin. That means he has a date in the semifinals Saturday, and a win there puts him in the championship match.
This is Martin’s second trip to state after making a “one-and-done” appearance two years ago as a sophomore. Although he didn’t win a match on that trip, he learned from it and used that experience to motivate him yesterday.
“I felt great, determined and everything,” Wyatt said about his matches Friday. “I knew I wanted this. I’ve been working for it all season.”
He didn’t have an easy road, either. After winning his first match he went up against the No. 1 seed, Dawson Kellogg of Perham. The ranking didn’t worry him, though, as Martin won both of his matches with pins.
“The funny thing about me is I don’t really get nervous,” he said. “I focus and I pray before every match. Everyone supporting me helps a lot.”
Martin’s next match is against Foley’s Justin Henry.
Also moving on to semifinals in Class AA is Dawson-Boyd/Lac qui Parle Valley/Montevideo’s 160-pound wrestler, Peyton Mortenson. He won a pair of close but comfortable decisions in his first two matches, and his semifinal opponent is Braydon Ortloff of Detroit Lakes.
In Class A action there were four more individuals who went undefeated Friday to move on to semifinals.
Tracy-Milroy-Balaton/Westbrook-Walnut Grove’s Dereck Ellingson, a 126-pound junior, is another guy who went 0-1 at his first state appearance last year. He used that frustration as his fuel for this year.
“It motivated me a lot. I was very upset I couldn’t go on and get a medal, get on the podium,” he said about last year. “So I worked hard, worked on my offense, I was lacking that.”
The extra work paid off right away in his opening match as he upset the No. 3 guy with a narrow 4-3 victory. After that, he was able to coast to a comfortable win in his second match.
“It was a little easier,” Ellingson admitted about his quarterfinal. “I played it conservative. I wasn’t trying to go out there and get caught doing something dumb. I just went out there and got the win.”
He’s in brand new territory now and will face United South Central’s Blake Legred today in the semis.
In keeping with the theme of Friday’s tournament, Wabasso/Red Rock Central’s 170-pounder, Nick Altermatt, was yet another guy who channeled his past state experience to help him Friday. He, too, suffered an 0-1 trip to state last year, but wasn’t about to let that happen again.
“We always set goals at the beginning of the year, mine was to make it to the state tournament and do something up here,” he said. “This is one step forward for what I need to do, and I just have to keep moving forward.”
Altermatt scored a second-round pin in his first match then won by injury default in his second. He said the opening pin was a big boost to confidence.
“You always have those first-match butterflies. So it’s good to go out there and get a pin, get all those nerves out of the way,” he said.
Altermatt’s opponent in the semifinal is a familiar one as Canby’s Jaden Kindopp will be on the mat with him Saturday. Kindopp won handily in his opening match and then pulled off a narrow 3-2 decision in the quarterfinal.
Kindopp and Altermatt have faced each other, most recently in the Section 3 finals a week ago. Altermatt won that round 4-2, but all bets are off today with a spot in the final on the line.
Joining Kindopp in the finals Saturday is his teammate, heavyweight Josh Hansen. Hansen is the top seed in his bracket and blew through his first two matches with a pair of pins. He’s set to face Tanner Tappe of Frazee in the semifinal today.
Also returning for the second day of the tournament by way of wrestleback wins Friday night are five others: 113-pounder Hsa Khee Lar of Marshall, 160-pounder Zach Stahl of Marshall, 132-pounder Teddy Pesch of Minneota, 145-pounder Anthony Axford of TMB and 152-pounder Cole Vanoverbeke of Minneota. Those wrestlers can finish no better than third place, but they need one more win to guarantee themselves a spot on the medal podium.
The second day of the the individual state tournament starts at 9 a.m. today with the consolation quarterfinals, followed by the championship semifinals.
CLASS AA STATE TOURNAMENT
Hsa Khee Lar (Marshall) lost 11-2 to Nate Garceau (Foley); won 6-3 against Zack Wells (Princeton)
Hsa La Eh (Marshall) lost 14-12 to Jake Fitzpatrick (Mahtomedi)
Trevon Johnson (United) pinned by Josh Holm (Grand Rapids) at 3:34; lost injury default to Ezra Kaping (Litchfield)
Zach Stahl (Marshall) lost 16-6 to Braydon Ortloff (Detroit Lakes); won 5-0 against Brett Kirchner (St. Cloud Apollo)
Peyton Mortenson (United) won 6-1 against Sage Loredo (St. Peter); won 5-2 over Kole Platt (NKG)
Wyatt Martin (Marshall) pinned Ethan Shea (Kasson-Mantorville) at 5:16; pinned Dawson Kellogg (Perham) at 3:55
Austin Schmitt (United) lost 6-4 to Gabe Zierden (Albany)
Jaiden Bahr (Marshall) pinned by Saylor Schmit (Foley) at 3:02; pinned by Jacob Schmitz (Dassel-Cokato)
Sam Henriksen (United) pinned Alex Ranta (Virginia) at 1:06; lost 9-7 to Mitch Trigg (Foley); lost 5-1 to Zach Carlson (Chisago Lakes)
CLASS A STATE TOURNAMENT
Ayden Horner (TMB) won 5-1 against Trevor Michienzi (Deer River); lost 2-1 to Seth Goetzinger (Chatfield); lost 4-3 to Drayden Morton (Sibley East)
Eric Carrasco (Minneota) pinned by Michael Majerus (Zumbrota-Mazeppa) at 3:03
Dereck Ellingson (TMB) won 4-3 against Jamaal Baird (Deer River); won 6-0 against Kaleb Gets (West Central)
Teddy Pesch (Minneota) won 6-4 against Dillon McGee (Walker-Hackensack); lost 3-2 to Nate Hart (Ottertail Central); won 14-2 against Cody Walters (Maple River).
Kalib Greenman (Canby) lost 5-0 to Owen Novacek (Badger/Greenbush)
Ayden Friese (Quad County) lost 12-1 to Jake Mandt (Chatfield); lost 2-1 to Anthony Axford (TMB)
Anthony Axford (TMB) won 7-3 against Devin Dean (Bertha-Hewitt); lost 7-2 to Jake Mandt (Chatfield); won 2-1 against Ayden Friese (Quad County)
Cole Vanoverbeke (Minneota) lost 3-0 too Mason Huemann (Goodhue); won 5-4 against Toby Hintzman (United North Central)
Nash Mayer (TMB) lost 9-0 to Kelby O’Reilly (Goodhue); lost 9-1 to Ian Frenzel (Blackduck)
Jared Schroepfer (Wabasso) lost 14-10 to Matt Ziebell (Pelican Rapids)
Jaden Kindopp (Canby) won 13-1 against Hayden Voxland (Zumbrota-Mazeppa); won 3-2 over Dalton Mielke (Rush City)
Nick Altermatt (Wabasso) pinned Tim Lewis (Sibley East) at 3:42; won injury default Tim Lewis (Sibley East)
Shawn Buysse (Minneota) lost 4-3 to Michael Nelson (Dover-Eyota)
Austin Buchholz (TMB) pinned by Tyler VanLuik (Minnewaska) at 1:02
Tyler Timm (TMB) pinned by Will Storch (Waterville) at 1:55; pinned by Luke Tweeton (Frazee) at 3:46
Bryce Schmidt (Quad County) lost 2-1 to Luke Tweeton (Frazee)
Denver Noyes (Canby) lost 1-0 Tanner Berghuis (ACGC)
Josh Hansen (Canby) pinned Braden Willis (ML) at 4:33; pinned RJ Ehlert (Ottertail Central) at 3:36