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State Wrestling: Z-M's Majerus still in the hunt, two left in wrestlebacks

Zumbrota-Mazeppa's Joey Majerus tries to spin around Pelican Rapids' Danny Franco during the first round of the Class 1A state wrestling tournament Friday at Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul. Majerus beat Franco by technical fall, 15-0.1 / 2
Lake City's Shane Siewert attempts to take down Border West's Dylan Pullis during the first round of the Class 1A state wrestling tournament Friday. Siewert got the two points, and a 12-3 victory to move into the quarterfinals. (Republican Eagle photos by Kyle Stevens)2 / 2

ST. PAUL – Five area wrestlers made the trip to the Xcel Energy Center Friday for the opening rounds of the Minnesota State High School League state wrestling tournament.

But by 2:30 p.m., just one was still in the hunt for a state championship.

Zumbrota-Mazeppa junior Joey Majerus won twice in the 113-pound bracket, shutting out Danny Franco of Pelican Rapids, 15-0, in the first round before pinning Royalton/Upsala’s Michael Petron in 30 seconds in the quarterfinal.

“He went out there and got busy with his wrestling,” Cougars head coach Link Steffen said of Majerus. “He got a cradle three times, and that got a tech fall, which was great to see. Then he went out and got a reverse cradle and pinned the next guy. We tell the boys if you can get on the mat and off the mat as fast as possible, that’s good.”

Two of Majerus’ teammates were with him in in the tournament, but both Cody Heitman (145) and Hunter Prodzinski (182) were dropped in the first round.

Top-ranked Larry Bomstad of Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City pinned Heitman in 57 seconds, and then beat fourth-ranked Alec Engler of Minneota/Lincoln HI, giving Heitman a spot in the wrestlebacks where he faced Engler. That match would end Heitman’s season as Engler escaped with a 6-3 victory.

Prodzinski lost 7-2 to seventh-ranked Nathan Brinkler of Holdingford, who also won his second match. Prodzinski then beat fourth-ranked Christian Full of Canby, 5-2, in a stacked half of the 182-pound bracket. Up next for Prodzinski is Frazee’s Kody VanDenEykel, who is ranked fifth in the state.

“Cody left it out there,” Steffen said. “He went to the state tournament twice, and that’s a pretty good career for most kids. Hunter went out and was up 2-1 (against Brinkler) with 30 seconds left, but lost 7-2 after the kid rolled through a headlock … Against the Canby kid, Hunter was very smart, and he wrestled with veteran experience.”

Lake City junior Shane Siewert, who is ranked ninth at 160 pounds, beat Border West’s Dylan Pullis in the first round of the 152-pound tournament. Siewert then squared off with No. 1-ranked Logan Peterson of ACGC, falling 11-4 in the quarterfinals.

That set Siewert up in the consolation bracket with Brandon Waage of Badger/Green Bush Middle River, the No. 10-ranked wrestler at 152. Siewert got back to his winning ways, beating Waage 8-0, and setting up a match with sixth-ranked Jerod Novak of Aitkin.

Goodhue’s Matthew Lexvold saw his senior season come to an end at the hands of the top two ranked wrestlers at 126 pounds. Louie Sanders of Lake Crystal-Wellcome Memorial handed Lexvold an opening-round, 11-1 loss. After an upset, second-ranked Blane Tschida of Kimball beat Lexvold 4-0 in the first round of the consolation finals.

Kyle Stevens
Kyle Stevens is a sports reporter for the Red Wing Republican Eagle. Previously, Kyle worked at the Owatonna People’s Press, as well as KWLM and KLFN in Willmar. You can contact Kyle by phone at (651) 301-7879, via e-mail at, and follow him on Twitter @RE_KStevens.
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