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Wrestling: K-W dominates depleted Goodhue

Kenyon-Wanamingo's Jeron Matson tries to get Goodhue's John Altendorf to his back during the Knights' 50-17 victory over the Wildcats on Tuesday. Matson won the 120-pound match, 15-0. (Republican Eagle photo by Kyle Stevens)1 / 2
Goodhue's Bjorn Otterness works on Kenyon-Wanamingo's Tyler Craig during the Knights' 50-17 victory on Friday. Otterness had a 2-0 lead in the 126-pound match, but Craig scored a fall at the buzzer to win the bout. (Republican Eagle photo by Kyle Stevens)2 / 2

GOODHUE – The new Class 1A rankings were released on Friday, and defending state champion Kenyon-Wanamingo held on to its top spot. Goodhue just missed the top 12, coming in first in the Lean and Mean portion of The Guillotine list.

Friday was also the date of a Hiawatha Valley League dual between the two teams. It was supposed to be a good, early-season chance to see if the Knights, despite losing more than half their lineup from last year, are still the top team in the state. And to see if the Wildcats are ready to make the leap into the next level of Section 1A competition, where three teams are ranked in the top 11.

But injury and illness submarined Goodhue's lineup, and K-W pinned its way to a 50-17 victory.

“We've got a different team this year, which is the situation every year. Everyone is asking about last year's team, and, yeah, last year was awesome. But we lost seven starters from that team,” said Knights head coach Matt Ryan. “What that does it create opportunities for more guys to get into the lineup.”

The match started with back-to-back decisions, first from Goodhue's Maddox O'Reilly and then from K-W's Bray Olson. Then the Knights started to pick up bonus points, and fast. Jeron Matson won by technical fall at 120 pounds with Tyler Craig, Bradley Kish, Seth Brossard and Nathan Bauer all consecutively winning by fall before Daniel Kish picked up a forfeit victory.

That all but sealed a victory for K-W as it led 38-3 with six weights left and still with solid wrestlers waiting matside.

“We need to develop and get up to that varsity level of competition,” Ryan said. “We've got some guys that are ready for that that just haven't had the experience at the varsity level. That's part of what we're trying to build every day here, to get some of those new guys in. I think they're doing a nice job, but we have a ways to go.”

Kaleb O'Reilly (160), Mason Huemann (170), Bailee O'Reilly (182) and Kodee O'Reilly (195) all won their bouts, with Bailee winning with a workman-like 26-11 technical fall. Kaya Lindell and Jesse Jackson closed with pins for K-W.

Goodhue will be participating in a tournament on Saturday hosted by Kasson-Mantorville, and K-W will have a few practices before seeing fifth-ranked Zumbrota-Mazeppa in Pine Island for an HVL triangular on Thursday.

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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