State Wrestling: Bombers' Fitterer, Wildcats' Tipcke take 3rd at state
ST. PAUL - Along with state champions Will Balow of Lake City and Clay Broze of Cannon Falls/Randolph, five other area wrestlers reached the medal podium during the state wrestling tournament Saturday at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul.
Coming into the tournament with high hopes, Cannon Falls/Randolph's Paul Fitterer's hopes were dashed in the Class 2A 106-pound championship quarterfinals when he lost 6-1 to top-ranked Trevor Schultz of Fairmont/Martin County West. Schultz went on to finish as state runner-up.
Battling his way through the wrestle backs, Fitterer got into the third-place match against Benilde-St. Margaret's Jake Allar, getting the bronze in a 4-2 decision.
"(After the loss) I just had to keep on winning," Fitterer said. "I kept to my stuff and won."
Prior to the third-place match, Fitterer had to get through Kasson-Mantorville's Gabe Shea, who defeated Fitterer in the Section 1AA championship. This time, Fitterer got the best of Shea in a 2-1 decision.
Taking bronze in his first state meet, the Bombers sophomore now knows what it takes to make a return in 2014.
"Next year comes with all new challenges," Fitterer said. "The goal will be the same: try to get to state."
Goodhue senior 220-pounder Ryan Tipcke also brought home a third-place medal, plowing his way through the competition in the Class 1A wrestle backs. In his first two matches Saturday, Tipcke didn't allow a point in a 5-0 decision over Sibley East's Miah DuFrane and a 3-0 win over Pierz' Ryley Smude.
After a disappointing finish against second-ranked Taylor Carlson of United North Central in the championship quarterfinals, Tipcke was heavily motivated to not have that loss define his state experience.
"It was really important that after that loss, I used it as fuel," Tipcke said. "It was important to me not to fall apart because after that loss, it's easy to want to call it quits."
Tipcke persevered and won the third-place match in a 2-1 decision over Barnesville's Kyle Johnson.
After qualifying for state for the first time after three unsuccessful tries, Goodhue's Kyle Drehmel was strong in his state debut, going 2-0 on Friday. But in the 126-pound championship semifinals, Drehmel's chance at a title proved elusive as he fell 3-2 in four overtimes against state runner-up Tyler Tensen of Belgrade-Brooten-Elrosa.
In the first overtime, Drehmel had two chances for a takedown, including one with three seconds left in the extra period. Tensen was able to stay out of bounds to keep Drehmel from scoring.
In top position in the fourth overtime, Drehmel looked as though he would survive the period, but Tensen finally broke free with six seconds left to get the decisive escape point for a 3-2 win.
Drehmel found redemption in overtime against Windom/
Mountain Lake's Jared Willaby, advancing to the third-place match in a 3-1 decision. But Drehmel would have to settle for fourth in his first - and only - state tournament after losing in a 6-4 decision to Medford's Tyler Keller.
For the third straight year, Zumbrota-Mazeppa's Joey Majerus made the medal stand, though it was lower on the podium than he was hoping for.
Going through the Class 1A 113-pound wrestle backs after a 9-1 loss to state runner-up Spencer Jenniges of Wabasso/Red Rock Central, Majerus was strong in his first three wrestle back matches. Heading into the third-place match, Majerus outscored his opponents in the wrestle backs 21-8.
Facing Kimball's Blane Tschida in the third-place match, Majerus was out for revenge after Tschida defeated him in The Clash back in December. Tied 4-4 heading into the third period, Tschida got a takedown with 1:06 remaining, and he avoided a takedown as time expired to defeat Majerus in a 6-5 decision, putting the Cougars sophomore in fourth place. In his two other trips to state, Majerus finished in third place.
In his first state trip, Lake City's Shane Siewert brought home some hardware, taking fifth place at Class 1A 145 pounds.
Facing Breckenridge/Campbell-Tintah's Josh Stuehrenberg in his first match on Saturday, Siewert trailed 1-0 in the third period before Stuehrenberg was called for stalling, tying the match at 1-1. The tie would remain at the end of the third period, forcing overtime. In the extra session, Siewert scored a takedown with 12 seconds left to come away with a 3-1 decision.
"(The stalling call) completely changed the match," Siewert said. "This is the best I've felt all season."
Siewert dropped into the fifth-place match after a 5-1 loss to Wabasso/RRC's Tanner Rohlik. Going head-to-head with Aitkin's Jerod Novak, Siewert clinched fifth place in a 7-1 decision.