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E-Hawks Edged For Lakes Conference Title

By Staff | Jan 31, 2012

SPENCER – Could have, should have, might have.

For Emmetsburg’s E-Hawks, the Lakes Conference Tournament title was theirs for the taking into the final round Friday night, but Spencer would catch the E-Hawks and steal the crown by two points, 198.5 to 196.5.

The E-Hawks would end up with four champions, a pair of second places, two third places, a fourth, a fifth and two sixth place finishes.

Earning championships and All-Conference honors were Brady Bailey, Nick Schany, Andrew Wellik and Austin McCartan.

Tyler Leuer and Tayler Wegner would both finish second, while Justin Studer and Andrew Garrelts earned third place finishes.

Nick Merwald would finish fourth for the E-Hawks, while Brett Steinkamp finished in fifth place. Earning sixth place finishes were Joey Lowman and Tanner Dahm.

Emmetsburg’s Caige Elbert did not place to round out the team effort, as the E-Hawks were open at 138 pounds.

The E-Hawks would lead the team scoring through the first three rounds, going into the final s with an eight-point lead over Spencer, 168.5 to 160.5.

With six wrestlers in the finals, the E-Hawks were poised for a championship.

At 132 pounds, Tyler Leuer had started the day with a 2:55 fall over Anthony Segura of ELC, and then earned a 12-2 Major Decision over Mason Cook of LeMars in the semis. In the finals, Leuer met Levi Gilmore of Spencer and came up short in a 7-3 decision to place second.

At 152 pounds, Brady Bailey drew an opening round bye to set up a semi-final match with Juan Torres of Storm Lake. Bailey earned his finals opportunity with a 4:21 win by fall over Torres. In the title match, Bailey wrestled Aaron Howing of ELC and would win his title with a 6-3 decision victory.

Nick Schany would start his quest at 160 pounds with a 13-1 Major Decision over Adrian Castillo of Storm Lake. It only took 1:29 for Schany to advance with a pin of Luke Zieman of Cherokee in the semi-finals to meet Rick Maris of Spirit Lake Park in the title match. Schany would go on to win the Conference title at 160 with an 8-6 decision win over Maris.

For Andrew Wellik, the tournament began with a 3:13 win by fall over Jacob Johnson of LeMars. In the semis, Wellik pinned Drew Hoekstra of Western Christian in :22 to advance to the finals, where he won a 9-3 decision over Lee Bates of ELC for the 170 pound championship.

Austin McCartan stepped up in a big way in his first tournament of the season at 182, as he started with a 20-3 Technical Fall in 2:00 over Ben Pingel. In the semi-final round, McCartan pinned Jacob Jeness of Spirit Lake Park in :29 to earn a finals match. Meeting Gabe Conley of Cherokee, McCartan won the 182 pound crown with a 14-3 Major Decision victory.

Tayler Wegner started his day with a 1:10 win by fall over Chris Hiserote of LeMars and then won an 8-3 decision over Cole Mace of ELC?in the semi-finals. Moving into the championship match, Wegner wrestled Sam VanGinkel of Western Christian, and would lose a 5-0 decision to place second.

At 145 pounds, Justin Studer started his day with a :32 win by fall over Austin Patrick of Storm Lake, but would be pinned by Spencer’s Alex Doppenberg in :59 to move into consolation brackets. Studer then pinned Evan Howing of ELC?in 3:22 in the consolation semi-final and earned third place overall by pinning Cherokee’s Rick Weaver in :38.

Andrew Garrelts collected a :20 win by fall over Dustin Meyeraan of Spencer to open the 285 pound class, but fell victim to Cherokee’s Miah Back, being pinned in 5:14 of the semi-final match. Garrelts shook off the loss and pinned Cody Norton of Spirit Lake Park in :38 to move to the consolation final, where he pinned Alex Hermes of LeMars in 1:32 to earn third place.

Nick Merwald, wrestling at 120 pounds, was the victim of a 3:56 pin at the hands of Oscar Ramirez of ELC, but rebounded to pin Cody Sherlock of LeMars in :30 in the Consolation quarterfinal. Merwald then won a 6-0 decision over Nick Gross of Spencer, but lost a 17-2 Technical Fall in 6:00 Juan Figueroa of Storm Lake to settle for a fourth place finish.

At 106 pounds, Brett Steinkamp opened with a :24 win by fall over Joel McCoy of ELC, but was pinned in 1:59 by Nic Madsen of LeMars in the semi-finals. Steinkamp would be pinned in 1:41 of the consolation semi-finals by Matt Henning of Western Christian. Wrestling for fifth place, Steinkamp was paired with his first-round opponent, McCoy, and promptly pinned the ELC?grappler in :44 to earn fifth place honors.

Joey Lowman moved into the lineup at 113 after Alex Clark sustained a concussion last Tuesday at Pocahontas. Lowman would be pinned in 1:11 of his first round match with Doug Miner of Spirit Lake Park, but drew a bye in the consolation quarterfinals. Meeting Bailey Hawn of Spencer in the consolation semis, Lowman was pinned in 1:23. Wrestling for fifth, Lowman was pinned in 4:27 by Cole Budach of ELC to finish sixth.

At 220 pounds, Tanner Dahm would fall victim to Chase Bonner of ELC in a :52 pin, before he earned a 1:49 win by fall over Jose Morales of Cherokee in the consolation quarterfinals. Dahm would meet Nathan Kyle of Spirit Lake Park in the consolation semis, but was pinned in 3:01. Wrestling for fifth place, Dahm was pinned by Spencer’s Austin Adams in 1:07. In frustration, Dahm pounded the mat, and was penalized for unsportsmanlike conduct, deducting one team point from the E-Hawks.

Emmetsburg’s Caige Elbert wrestled at 126 pounds and was pinned in :43 by Spencer’s John Christopherson in the first round. In the consolation quarterfinal, Elbert was pinned in 2:53 by Hunter Morrow of Cherokee to end his opportunity to place.

The E-Hawks will take a few days off as they prepare to start the post-season this Friday, Feb. 4 and the Class 1A Sectional Tournament at Okoboji High School in Milford. Schools participating will include Emmetsburg, Okoboji, West Lyon, Graettinger-Terril/Ruthven-Ayrshire, Hartley-Melvin-Sanborn, West Sioux, Sibley-Ocheyedan and Western Christian.

First and second place finishers advance to the District meet on Saturday, Feb. 11 at Sibley-Ocheyedan. Team winner from the Sectionals advances to the Regional Team Dual on Tuesday, Feb. 7.