DES MOINES -- Spirit Lake Park brought a good contingent to the Class 2A state tournament at Wells Fargo Arena.
The Indians brought six wrestlers and out of six of them, five are ranked. SLP has some of the most wrestlers at the state tournament, too, with six. West Delaware leads the way with eight wrestlers.
After the first day, SLP put itself in the mix for a team trophy by advancing five of its six wrestlers to the quarterfinals on Thursday.
West Delaware does lead with 19 points, but SLP isn’t far behind with 13.5 points for sixth place. Solon is in second with 18 and PCM is in third with 15.5 points.
SLP 152-pounder Kyler Rieck feels his team can come home with a top-three trophy.
“I just feel like everyone just has to focus on themselves, one match at a time and wrestle to the best of our ability,” Rieck said. “We know the work we’ve put in and hopefully that will pay off for us. This is a really important round and once we take care of this round, there’s no telling what we could do.”
Rieck, ranked third at 152 by IAwrestle.com, was happy with how he started the tournament. He pinned Charles City’s Carter Proffitt in 3:35.
“The first round can go one of two ways. Last year I overlooked my first guy and overlooked him almost,” Rieck said. “I made sure I didn’t do that this year. Just stayed patient. Let him make mistakes and just capitalized on them. One match at a time. Having fun, scoring points.”
Seventh-ranked Jonathon Burnette won his 106-pound match 5-3 over seventh-ranked Lincoln Mehlert of Union.
Eighth-ranked Kyler Dunn won by a 7-6 decision at 120 over 10th-ranked Walker Ikerd of Washington.
Seventh-ranked Joe Waters dominated in his first-round match at 126 with an 18-2 tech fall.
Second-ranked Dakoda Powell edged West Liberty’s Kobe Simon 5-3 to move to the 220 quarterfinals.
Spirit Lake Park did have one wrestler knocked out as Nate Cornwall lost both of his matches. The senior ends his season with a 24-11 record.
Sergeant Bluff-Luton has four of its six wrestlers alive and the Warriors are only three points out of third place with 12.5 points.
Freshman Braden Graff won his first-ever state tournament match. Graff, ranked No. 3 at 113 by IAwrestle.com, faced PCM’s Landon Fenton, ranked sixth, and jumped out to a 2-0 lead. He later won by injury default to advance to the quarterfinals.
Jack Gaukel won his match at 132 by a 19-2 tech fall. Easton Graff got a late takedown to defeat Gilbert’s Carson Johnson to advance to the 152 quarterfinals.
Isaac Bryan was pinned in his first match but he came back with a pin in 2:54 on the backside to stay alive at 138.
Junior Nate Curry lost both of his matches at 120 and his season ends at 39-11. Junior Blake Liebe lost both of his matches at 160 and ends the season with a 32-14 record.
“Anytime you can have guys alive to the next day, it’s a good thing. You always want to have them alive in the quarters because coming back after a loss is tough to do,” SB-L coach Clint Koedam said. “We are very proud of Isaac for getting it down. The other two guys did their best, it just wasn’t in the cards for them. Overall, it’s less about who is front, who is back, who is alive. It boils down to the effort. If the effort is there, wherever they are at is where they need to be.”
Central Lyon/George-Little Rock brought five wrestlers to the state tournament and three remain alive going into Friday.
Senior Kolton Bus, ranked No. 7 by IAwrestle, is the only Lion in the quarterfinals. In his first trip to the state tournament, Bus pinned Ballard’s Joseph Hofbauer, ranked 10th, in 1:20 at 195.
“That really got my blood pumping. He was strong. He hit my head a couple of times and I knew I had to do something,” Bus said. “Even being here is the biggest thing and I’ve been busting my butt to get here. Then I come out and get a pin to start, I am going to keep working my way because I’ve been working for this my whole career.”
Jarrett Meyer was pinned in his first-round match but bounced back with a pin in 3:21 on the backside at 220.
After getting pinned in the first round, Jarrett Fastert stayed alive at 285 with a pin in 1:34 in a consolation match.
Kalen Meyer, a sophomore, did lose both of his matches at 152 and ends the season with a 33-9 record. Junior Bryce Vande Weerd lost both of his matches at 170 and ends the season with a 29-9 record.
CL/GLR sits in 13th place with 10 points.
“Kolton is on the frontside yet and a couple of guys on the backside and now we just have to wrestle all the way back and get to the podium if we can,” CL/GLR coach Curtis Eben said. “I am proud of the guys. Kalen, tough draw, loses an overtime match and loses to the number three guy. He’s come a long ways. Then Bryce, he lost a close one. They wrestled hard, they left it on the mat and that’s all we can ask for.”
Bishop Heelan brought seven wrestlers to state, the second most in 2A, and four are still alive after the first round. Brennan Todd (138) and Kobe Clayborne (285) are the only two on the front side. Todd won by a 12-8 decision to advance to the quarterfinals and Clayborne won by a 3-1 decision.
Luke Martin lost his first-round match 7-0 but bounced back with a 10-6 decision on the backside at 160. Frank Vondrak lost his first-round match 10-1 but stayed alive with a pin in 3:59 in his next match at 170.
Freshman Jacob McGowan lost both of his matches and ends the season with a 28-22 record at 106. Sophomore Mitchell Joines lost both of his matches at 132 and finishes the season with a 28-12 record. Junior Colby Wilmesherr lost both of his matches at 182 and finishes the season with a 35-16 record.
Heelan scored eight points in the first round.
“I am proud of how those guys went out and wrestled. We had tough draws and that’s part of it. We can’t take a second off,” Heelan co-head coach Jordan Langley said. “In a couple of matches, we wrestled a little hesitant and it cost us. But the good thing is the guys who were eliminated will be back next year and that’s a big motivation going into next year. It leaves a little sour taste in their mouth.”
MOC-Floyd Valley’s Johnny Hua advanced to the 113 quarterfinals with a 10-9 decision.
Spencer’s Luke Jenness won by fall in 1:45 to advance to the 182 quarterfinals.
Spencer’s Isaiah Spencer lost his first match at 145 but stayed alive with a pin in 5:41 on the backside.
Boyden-Hull/Rock Valley freshman Jaxson Rozeboom lost both of his 113-pound matches and ends the season with a 22-18 record.
Okoboji junior Blake Abrahamson lost both of his matches at 126 and ends the season with a 38-8 record.
Okoboji junior Hunter Abrahamson lost both of his matches at 132 and ends the season with a 38-12 record.
Cherokee senior Hunter Shaw lost both of his matches at 138 and ends the season with a 20-16 record.
Sioux Center senior Roberto Cardenas lost both of his matches at 145 and ends the season with a 21-7 record.
Sioux Center senior Chayce Hooyer lost both of his matches at 195 and ends the season with a 27-11 record.