Knights Advance Seven To 1A District Meet, Second In Sectional Tourney
MILFORD – For the Graettinger/Terril Knights, the Class 1A Sectional wrestling tournament at Okoboji High School was a battle down to the wire on Saturday. Coach Cody Alesch’s wrestlers finished in second place by a point and a half to Okoboji, and in the process, captured two championships and five runner-up finishes.
The Knights got titles at 145 pounds from Michael Jensen and at 189 pounds from Nate Howard. Second place finishes came from Tyler Dalen at 103, Austin Thompson at 112, Tyler Manning at 119, Connor Tonderum at 125 and Trent Lundgren at 130.
At 145, Jensen earned a :07 win by fall over Tayler Coombs of Marcus-Meriden-Cleghorn, and then won the title with a 5:17 win by fall over Wyatt Towne of Hartley-Melvin-Sanborn.
In action at 189, Nate Howard opened with a :15 win by fall over Tyler Fox of Sibley-Ocheyedan, and then pinned Garret VanHouten of Alta in :52, before winning the title with a 1:28 win by fall over Shan Vanderpool of Okoboji.
At 103, Tyler Dalen got an :18 fall over Ernesto Dominquez of Alta and pinned Ryan Clark of Okoboji in 2:59 before he was pinned in 5:51 of the finals by Heath Nagel of Hartley-Melvin-Sanborn. Dalen then wrestled back for the true second place and pinned Brent Reed of Sibley-Ocheyedan in 3:18.
Austin Thompson finished second at 112 pounds with a 10-5 decision over Corey Becker of Kingsley-Pierson, but had to settle for second place after losing a 6-2 decision to Nick Drenth of Hartley-Melvin-Sanborn.
At 119, Tyler Manning opened with a 1:19 pin of Jon Mitchell of Okoboji and then earned a 5-4 decision win over Tyler Nielsen of Marcus-Meriden-Cleghorn in the finals, Manning lost a 9-7 decision to Hank Voss of Hartley-Melvin-Sanborn to take the second place finish.
Connor Tonderum earned second at 125 after starting out with a 9-7 decision win over AJ Huebner of Hartley-Melvin-Sanborn, but was pinned in :39 of the title match by Josh Kirstensen of Alta to take the second place finish.
In the 130 pound match, the Knights got a second place from Trent Lundgren. Lundgren scored a 1:50 win by fall over Brody Linn of Okoboji, but lost a 4-3 decision to Tyler Pearson of Marcus-Meriden-Cleghorn to settle for the runner-up finish.
Other placings for the Knights included Ryan Schany with a fourth at 135 pounds. Schany won a 5-2 decision over Alex Hamann of HMS, but had to forfeit to Tanner Taylor of Okoboji. Schany then met Taylor Stevicks of Alta, but had to forfeit, settling for the fourth place finish.
At 140 pounds, Graettinger/Terril got a fourth from Heath Marchand. Marchand opened with a 17-1 Technical Fall over Jesse Glade of Sibley-Ocheyedan, but was pinned by Matt Finch of Hartley-Melvin-Sanborn in 1:32. Marchand then lost a 4-1 decision to Jacob Meehan of Marcus-Meriden-Cleg-horn to settle for the fourth place finish.
Tymthy Hart lost his first match to Kris Kaufman of Okoboji by a fall in 3:50, and finished in fifth place automatically.
It was the same situation for Palo Lazo at 160 pounds, as Palo was pinned in 2:51 of his first round match with Dylan Niswander of Sibley-Ocheyedan and automatically placed fifth.
At 215, Mitch McGrauth was pinned in 2:31 of his opening round match with Dillon Mugge of Marcus-Meriden-Cleghorn and finished fifth.
Quinn Parker, wrestling at heavyweight for the Knights, would be pinned in 3:01 of his match with Levin Lebsche of Marcus-Meriden-Cleghorn and settled for the fifth place finish to round out the G/T effort.
“We wrestled good the first round, but in the finals round, we wrestled very poorly,” admitted G/T Head?Coach Cody Alesch. “We are better than that and have to get back to the level we are capable of by next Saturday. I am proud to get seven wretslers through and even though we didn’t wrestle well, they still have the opportunity ot get to Des Moines.”