Bulldog grapplers finish third at Ellsworth Invitational

By Kelsie Hoitomt

ELLSWORTH – The Boyceville grapplers had quite the day at the Ellsworth Invitational last Saturday, December 7 as all 13 wrestlers that participated placed in the top seven.

Finishing as champions on the day was junior Austin Wolfe at 106 pounds and freshman James Palmer at 113 pounds.

Wolfe had a pin in 39 seconds for his first match, won on a decision of 7-2 in the second, won by a tech foul in the third of 15-0 and then won by a pin in the championship round for first place.

As for Palmer, he came out strong in his first match with a win by tech foul of 16-0. He then had a pin in his second match in 35 seconds, another fall in 58 seconds and then ended with a pin in the championship round for first.

“Wolfe and Palmer had awesome days and looked very dominating in solid weight classes,” said coach Jamie Olson.

Jake Lake, the Bulldogs’ 220 pounder, was the only wrestler to take second place. He was forfeited from the championship round due to a dislocated elbow and is questionable on his return.

On the day he finished with three pins and a decision of 14-0 to land him in the finals.

“He wrestled a great tournament and this was a disappointing blow to him and our team,” said coach Olson.  “Jake is a special kid with great work ethic and determination, he will do all the right things to get himself back.”

Four Bulldogs finished in third after the day long tournament including; Micah Johnson, Wyatt Hansen, Jon Harnisch and Bryor Hellmann.

Johnson wrestled at 138 pounds and started the morning off with three straight wins by falls with the one at 1:17, the next at 37 seconds and another at after three minutes. He was taken out of the championship round after losing to an opponent from Sparta, but was able to take third on a decision of 9-2.

Hansen competed at 145 pounds and started the day with a bye, then followed with two consecutive falls, one nearly four minutes into the match and another just 36 seconds in. He then lost to Newton of Spring Valley on a 4-2 decision, but bounced back on a close 3-2 decision for third place.

Harnisch placed third at 152 pounds after starting the day with a 8-2 decision. He then had two back to back pins, but then lost on a 20-5 decision to Wright of River Falls. He then won by a forfeit over over Urman of Prescott to place third.

Lastly was Hellmann at 160 pounds. He finished in similar fashion with three straight victories before losing in the fourth round on a 13-2 decision. He then beat Anderson from Unity on a 6-0 decision for third.

An additional four wrestlers finished in fifth place for the Bulldogs including Brock Swenson at 120 pounds, James Lindo at 132 pounds, Logan McAbee-Thomas at 170 pounds and Alex Lovett at 182 pounds.

Swenson started with a pin in 1:42 and then lost on a quick fall in under a minute. In the third round he won by pin again, but then lost on a 9-0 decision. In the running for fifth place, he beat Marcellus of Sparta by fall in 5:28.

As for Lindo, he was pinned in his first match and then received two bye rounds before facing off against Gillett of Cadott, who he pinned in 2:16 for fifth place.

McAbee-Thomas received a bye his first round and then had a pin his second match. However, he was pinned in his next two matches, which pushed him into the fifth place bracket. He pinned Bremer of Lake City in 3:14 to end his day with a win.

Lovett started the day with a loss after being pinned in the final round. He received a bye in the second round and then won by a decision of 15-4 before being pinned. He beat Hanson of St. Croix Falls by a pin in 54 seconds to take fifth place.

Rounding out the rest of the roster in seventh place was Tyler Stroo at 126 pounds and Jake Erickson at 285 pounds.

Stroo was pinned in his first match and then tech fouled in the second round. He won his first match on an 8-2 decision and then pinned Cote of Cadott to take seventh.

Finishing for the Bulldogs was then Erickson who pinned in the first round, then received a bye, was pinned again, then lost on a 3-0 decision. He finished with a bye to take seventh place.

Despite having to forfeit the 195 pound weight class, the Bulldogs placed third out of 10 teams with a total of 236 points. First place went to Ellsworth with 296 points and in second was Spring Valley/ Elmwood with 289.

“Our overall record on the day was 41-15. We had some matches that we lost that we were right there to win,” explained coach Olson. “We went 11-2 in the placement round with eight pins. That was an important stat for me, in that we finished strong.”

The Bulldogs will now switch gears and mentally prepare themselves for the always competitive, Dells Duals Classic in Wisconsin Dells, which features 26 total teams. This will take place at the Chula Vista Resort this Saturday, December 14 at 9:00 a.m.