Half-dozen area wrestlers going to state
The wrestling teams from Irondale and Mounds View high schools emerged from Saturday’s Section 5AAA individual tournament with three state entrants each. All six will compete starting Friday at Xcel Energy Center.
The Knights’ three state qualifiers all got there by winning individual section championships. Senior twin brothers Ryan and Dustin Weinmann and junior Eriq Smith all went 3-0 in their respective weight classes.
Ryan Weinmann won the 120-pound title via two falls and a major decision in the final. Weinmann (34-6) pinned Isaiah Roufs of Spring Lake Park/St. Anthony Village in the quarterfinals and Maple Grove’s Logan Dick in the semis. He then clinched his state berth with a 10-0 decision over Centennial’s Matt Mulberry in the finals.
Weinmann entered Saturday ranked No. 8 in the state in Class AAA at 120 pounds.
Dustin Weinmann, wrestling one weight class higher at 126 pounds, scored points early and often in the first two rounds as he scored technical falls over Zach Savageua of Spring Lake Park/St. Anthony Village and Jack Herbes of Maple Grove. Weinmann (38-2) then wrapped up the section crown with a first-period fall over Osseo’s Ferhan Abdisa.
Weinmann is the No. 2-ranked 126-pounder in Class AAA.
Smith, a heavyweight, moved into the rankings at No. 10 right before sections and lived up to that ranking by scoring a pair of falls and a major decision. It took Smith exactly one minute to pin Champlin Park’s Tim Warren in the first round and he went the point route in the semifinals as he beat Mounds View’s Paul Sharkey 10-0. In the finals, Smith (34-6) made it another first-period fall, this time over Osseoís AJ Dehn.
A fourth Irondale wrestler came up one victory shy of going to state. Senior Lance Chevre lost in the semifinals but battled back to win the third-place bracket at 152 pounds and force a true-second place bout against Champlin Parkís Adam Cottrell. Chevre came up short, however, and suffered a fall with 24 seconds left in the third period.
Other section placewinners for Irondale included eighth-grader Lucas Janecek, who was fifth at 106; sophomore Nicholaus Harelson, who was sixth at 145; senior Matt Do, who took sixth at 182; and senior Thomas Budd, who placed fourth at 195.
The Mustangs wrangled up one section title and got their two other state entries the hard way.
Senior Jeremy Redmond was the lone Mustang to ascend all the way to the top spot on the medals platform by winning the section crown at 170 pounds. Redmond scored lots of points in his three section victories, starting with a 17-5 major decision over Irondale’s Chris Knudson.
Redmond (30-4) needed overtime to win in the semifinals as he bested Jordan Lemcke of Rogers 12-10. In the finals, he beat Park Center’s Rico Lester 8-6.
Redmond is ranked No. 10 in Class AAA.
Seniors Jack O’Brien and Mick Nelson also wrestled in the finals of their respective weight classes but were unable to come up with section titles. On top of that, O’Brien was forced to wrestle one more match to get to state.
O’Brien, wrestling at 132, lost to Osseoís Carson Brolsma in the finals as Brolsma scored a fall with 23 seconds left in the third period. O’Brien then had to wrestle the true-second match against Champlin Park’s Andrew Ockuly to get to state. O’Brien (24-12) came through on his second try and pinned Ockuly with a second left in the second period.
Nelson’s trip to the finals at 220 ended in disappointment as he lost 6-4 in overtime to Centennial’s Andrew Gustafson. Despite the loss, Nelson had already secured his state berth because he had previously beaten the wrestler who finished third.
Nelson (28-6) is ranked ninth in the state in Class AAA.
Other Mounds View placewinnners included freshman Tanner Day, who took sixth at 106; sophomore Karl Keeler, who was sixth at 113; sophomore Sam McGinnity, who finished sixth at 120; eighth-grader Jack Graham, who placed fifth at 138; junior Vincent Belsito, who ended up fourth at 160; junior Jimmy Kaiser, who was fifth at 182; freshman Thomas Klotz, who took sixth at 195; and senior Paul Sharkey, who finished fourth at heavyweight.
The individual portion of the state tournament runs Friday and Saturday at Xcel Energy Center in downtown St. Paul. The Class AAA first round is set for Friday at 11 a.m. with the second round going that night at 6 p.m. On Saturday, the semifinals are at 11:15 a.m. with the championship round set to start at 7:30 p.m.
Brian Meyers can be reached at email@example.com.