CEDAR FALLS, IA — Boyceville’s Garrett Joles continues to add to his collection of wrestling medals.
Just two months removed from a Division 3, 170-pound state runner-up finish in the 2015 WIAA state wrestling championships, the Bulldogs’ freshman finished with the bronze medal in the same weight at the Cliff Keen USA Wrestling Folkstyle Nationals held April 2-4 at the UNI Dome on the University of Northern Iowa campus in Cedar Falls, Iowa.
Joles, who competed in the Cadet Division (for wrestlers born in 1999 and 2000), decisioned Sam Greco of the Grandville, Michigan Wrestling Club, 8 to 3, in the third-place match. It was the second time that Joles had beaten Greco in the tournament.
Joles finished 6-1 in the three-day tournament that featured 1,500 Cadet (high school freshmen and sophomores) and Junior (high school juniors and seniors) division wrestlers from 38 states that competed on 28 mats inside the UNI Dome.
As a top eight finisher in his divisional weight bracket, Garrett earned the status of All-American.
Joles opened the Cadet Folkstyle Nationals with a first round bye in a bracket that had 22 wrestlers competing.
Joles’ first opponent of Nationals happened to be Greco, whom he defeated 9-3 in the second-round match.
That win sent the Boyceville wrestler into a quarterfinal’s match against Jacob Gray of Albany, Indiana. Gray prevailed 10-3.
That loss would be Joles’ one and only of the tournament.
He swept through the consolation bracket and claimed four straight wins including a pair of pins to finish in third place.
Joles recorded his first pin of Nationals with a 3:55 fall against Dylan Jolley-Little, another Hoosier state wrestler, in his opening match of consolations.
He then followed it with a 12-1 major decision over Kobe Murphy of Standing Rock, North Dakota and another second-period fall, this one against Isaac Bartel of Nora Spring, Iowa in 2:36.
The pin-fall over Bartel put Joles in the third-place match-up with a familiar foe, Sam Greco, who had earned his way through the consolation bracket with five consecutive wins which included three pins.
But much like their first meeting, Joles controlled the match and claimed the Cadet 170-pound bronze medal.
Top-ranked Jack Jessen of Villa Park, Illinois (a suburb of Chicago) claimed the championship with an 11-4 win over Jacob Gray in the title match. Jessen went a perfect 5-0, with a pair of pins and 11-4 decisions, to claim the Cadet Nationals’ crown at 170 pounds.
Joles, who wrestled under the Boyceville Weigh-in Club banner, is the son of Harry Jr. and Kathy Joles.