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8 more Albert Lea wrestlers headed to state to compete in individuals tournament

Feb. 25—Thirteen Tigers started the day on Saturday with hopes of earning a trip to the individual state tournament next weekend. At the end of the day, eight Albert Lea wrestlers had outlasted their opponents punching their tickets and advancing their season.

Taking place at the Mayo Civic Center in Rochester, schools from all over south central Minnesota gathered for the Section 1AAA tournament.

In order to qualify for the state tournament, wrestlers had to finish as either the champion or runner-up in their respective weight classes. Here's a rundown of how each wrestler fared at the tournament:

Dylan Groess, freshman (First place, 114 pounds)

Groess wrestled in two matches at 114 pounds after receiving a bye in both the first and quarterfinal rounds. In the semifinals, he dominated in a 9-1 major decision win over Owatonna's Jacob Wilson before winning by pinfall in the championship match. Groess pinned Fariabult's Chase Vargo in the second period at the 3:08 mark in the match.

Ryan Collins, freshman (Second place, 121 pounds)

Like Groess, Collins received a bye through the first two rounds of his bracket. In the semifinals, he met up with Keegan Thoma of Rochester Century who he beat in a second-period fall at the 3:31 mark.

In the championship, Collins lost a close matchup against the No. 9-ranked Caden Staab from Northfield, 5-2. However, Collins, who is actually ranked No. 8 in the 114 pounds weight class, won his wrestleback match with a fall in the first period over Owatonna's Donoven Sorenson.

Logan Davis, junior (First place, 127 pounds)

Ranked No. 3 in the 127-pound weight class, Davis made quick work of his opponents in the semifinals and championship matches. In the semis, he beat Adam Buenger in a first-period pinfall, and in the finals he defeated No. 10 ranked JT Hausen of Faribault in a 9-4 decision.

Michael Olson, senior (First place, 133 pounds)

Michael Olson comes in as the No. 2-ranked wrestler at 133 pounds. He dominated the competition earning pinfalls in both the quarterfinal and semifinal matches, followed by a 23-8 technical fall in the championship final.

He defeated Winona's Michael Burke in the quarterfinal, Cameron Werneburg of Rochester Mayo in the semifinal and Keith Harner from Northfield in the finals.

Brody Ignaszewski, junior (First place, 139 pounds)

Coming in unranked at 139 pounds, Ignaszewski went through the first and quarterfinal rounds with byes before matching up with Rochester Century's Gabrien Callies in the semifinals. Ignaszewski easily won the match with a first period pinfall at the 1:16 mark.

He then defeated Trey Hiatt of Owatonna in the championship final, coming out on top of a narrow 5-4 decision victory.

Nick Korman, junior (Second place, 145 pounds)

Korman also received byes in the first and quarterfinal round, then meeting Owatonna's Colton Glende in the semifinals. No. 4-ranked Korman won with a second-round pinfall at the 2:56 mark, before matching up with No. 3-ranked Calder Sheehan from Rochester Mayo in the championship.

In the championship clash, Korman came up just short, losing in a 3-1 sudden victory. Korman then won the wrestleback via a no contest because he had defeated Sheehan who had finished third.

Brecken Wacholz, freshman (Second place, 160 pounds)

Wacholz wrestled in four matches at the tournament. The first two, he won by 6-0 and 7-1 decisions over Cooper Sheeran of Rochester Century and Darius Jordan of Rocchester John Marshall, respectively.

In the finals, he ran into Rochester Mayo's Carter Funk, where he lost a 8-1 final. However, Wacholz battled in the wrestleback where he earned a 6-5 decision win over Northfield's Colin Staab to finish as the runner-up.

Evan Schroeder, junior (Second place, 215 pounds)

Schroeder won his first two matches by pinfall and decision, respectively. In the quarterfinals, he met Winona's Lane Praxel and defeated him at the 5:19 mark in the third-period. Schroeder then matched up with Justin Sanoja of Faribault in the semis where he won an 8-2 decision.

He lost to Owatonna's Blake Fitcher in the championship, getting pinned in the second period, However he won via no contest in the wrestleback to finish second place.

Maggie Olson, freshman (First place, girls 100 pounds)

Maggie Olson is the ninth Tiger that will wrestle in the individual state tournament. However, she earned her trip two weeks back at the Section 1 and 3 combined tournament in Redwood Falls.

She won her bracket with two pinfalls in the quarterfinal and semifinal rounds, before winning the championship final in a 10-3 decision.

Other wrestlers who competed at the section tournament but just missed out on advancing to the state tournament include, Devon Groess (third place, 107 pounds), Mason Attig (third place, 152 pounds), Triton Cox (third place, 172 pounds), Teaghan Tolbers (fourth place, 189 pounds) and William Velasquez (third place, 285 pounds).

On top of the nine competing in the individual tournament, the entire team will have the opportunity to compete again as the Tigers also won the team section tournament and will compete in the state dual tournament.

Their first matchup will be at 9 a.m. Thursday when they take on Hastings. The individual tournament starts on Friday at 9 a.m. and continues into Saturday.