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CUMBERLAND — It not how you start but how you finish that counts.
A year ago, the Boyceville wrestling team opened the season with an 0-4 performance in Cumberland only to finish with yet another conference and regional championship and a second-place showing in the team sectional.
The Bulldogs once again trekked north to Cumberland to partake in the 2019 edition of the Island City Duals last Friday evening, December 6 and came away with a 1-2 mark in their 2019-20 season-opening performance.
Be assured that head coach Jamie Olson and assistants Corey Day and Allen Lain will blend and mold this year’s mix of young and returning talent into a formidable force come tournament time in February.
Boyceville dropped its first two duals of the tournament, falling 44-29 to Stanley-Boyd/Owen-Withee and 47-26 to Tomahawk. The Bulldogs rallied in the final dual of the night as they easily dispatched Shell Lake by a final count of 57-18.
Although team success was muted, several of the Bulldogs individual grapplers enjoyed outstanding starts to the new season.
Six finished with winning records headlined by undefeated state champion Trett Joles who went an unblemished 3-0 in the tournament. The junior registered a technical fall and major decision while wrestling at 220 pounds and also picked up a forfeit win at 195 pounds.
Sophomore Brice Evenson went 2-0 with five other Bulldogs copped 2-1 records in Cumberland including freshmen Emma Gruenhagen and Bash Nielson, sophomores Josiah Berg and Ira Bialzik and junior Nate Stuart.
Evenson earned a decision and forfeit at 120 pounds.
Gruenhagen’s wins came via a pair of pins in her first varsity outing at 113 pounds while Nielson earned a fall and forfeit wrestling at 170 pounds.
Bialzik and Berg both picked up where they left off last season as they both delivered impressive performances in the Island City Duals. Bialzik posted a pair of pins wrestling at 138 pounds and Berg scored a major decision at 120 pounds and a tight 2-1 decision at 126 pounds for his wins.
Nate Stuart picked up a decision and forfeit at 152.
Jared Hatch, a junior, split a pair of matches at 145. Dante Butler (106), Peyton Ponath (132), Preston Coombs (160), Nick Hillman (182) and Josh Marzofka (220/285) all finished 1-2. Filup Nelson lost his only match at 126.
Coach Olson said Kegan Plemon suffered a broken wrist during the tournament and will be out for awhile. The Bulldogs were also missing Tyler Dormanen and Greg Moore, who are recovering from injures suffered during the football season.
Boyceville will be on the road this week with a dual in Clear Lake this Thursday before heading to Wisconsin Dells to compete in the Dells Duals at Chula Vista Resort on Saturday, December 14.
“We started off with Stanley-Boyd/Owen-Withee and lost a hard fought battle”, said Olson
Olson admitted that his squad definitely had some first-match jitters, but overall the team didn’t back down in any match which he was glad to see with a young team.
“I bumped Josiah up against Blaine Brenner (defending state champ), it was a great match. We had chances to score a couple of different times and didn’t capitalize,” stated Olson.
“The score doesn’t indicate the battle that took place, but we found out what we have to work on”, added Olson.
“We sent out 8 kids that had very little or no varsity experience. I was happy with the fight in our kids.”
Stanley-Boyd/Owen-Withee 44, Boyceville 29
113 – Alexander Nitz (S-B/O-W) pinned Emma Gruenhagen (BV), 1:32; 120 – Brice Evenson (BV) dec. Trey Schoezel (S-B/O-W), 5-2; 126 – Blaine Brenner (S-B/O-W) majored Josiah Berg (BV), 10-0; 132 – Trystan Christoph (S-B/O-W) pinned Peyton Ponath (BV), 3:13; 138 – Dustin Bergman (S-B/O-W) majored Ira Bialzik (BV), 11-3; 145 – Russel Dorn (S-B/O-W) pinned Jared Hatch (BV), 1:41; 152 – Nate Stuart (BV) dec. Joseph McDermond (S-B/O-W), 9-6; 160 – Preston Potaczek (S-B/O-W) pinned Preston Coombs (BV), 0:35; 170 – Bash Nielson (BV) pinned Anthony Nicpon (S-B/O-W), 3:05; 182 – Nick Hillman (BV) pinned Evan Meeker (S-B/O-W), 3:38; 195 – Caden Koepl (S-B/O-W) pinned Tylor Bowell (BV), 1:30; 220 – Trett Joles (BV) tech falled Tyler Krizan (S-B/O-W), 19-2; 285 – Josh Marzofka (BV) pinned Dylan Kaae (S-B/O-W), 2:00; 106 – Justin McManus (S-B/O-W) pinned Dante Butler (BV), 1:43.
Olson said that the Bulldogs match against Tomahawk was very similar to the opener against S-B/O-W in that they competed well but came up short.
“Nate Stuart and Bash Nielson wrestled tough and lost close decisions,” stated Olson. “Emma Gruenhagen got her first varsity win, she is very experienced and it was fun to watch her dominate. Bialzik, Joles, Berg also dominated.”
Tomahawk 47, Boyceville 26
120 – Josiah Berg (BV) majored Lance Knight (T), 13-4; 126 – Luke Knight (T) pinned Filup Nelson (BV), 1:17; 132 – Mason Evans (T) pinned Peyton Ponath (BV), 0:56; 138 – Ira Bialzik (BV) pinned Micah Arnott (T), 0:53; 145 – Alex Bishop (T) dec. Nate Stuart (BV), 10-6; 152 – Tom Rigney (T) received forfeit; 160 – Logan Bishop (T) pinned Preston Coombs (BV), 0:37; 170 – Marcus Matti (T) dec. Bash Nielson (BV), 1-0; 182 – Kade Wenninger (T) pinned Nick Hillman (BV), 5:43; 195 – Tylor Bowell (BV) received forfeit; 220 – Trett Joles (BV) majored Erik Decker (T), 22-9; 285 – Antonio Matti (T) pinned Josh Marzofka (BV), 0:25; 106 – Addison Peissig (T) tech falled Dante Butler (BV), 15-0
113 – Emma Gruenhagen (BV) pinned Isiah Ristau (T), 2:22.
Boyceville wrestled tough and dominated a Shell Lake squad that had some forfeits in the final dual of the tourney.
“I want to mention Dante Butler 106, Preston Coombs 160, Peyton Ponath 132, Filup Nelson 126, Jared Hatch 138, Tyler Bowell 182 and Aitor Lopez Fernandes 126 for competing hard with very little experience,” Olson said. “Some of these guys picked up forfeits and gained valuable experience against tough competition. These guys will be the difference in our season.”
Boyceville 57, Shell Lake 18
126 – Josiah Berg (BV) dec. Tyler Schunck (SL), 2-1; 132 – Cody Swan (SL) pinned Peyton Ponath (BV), 2:00; 138 – Ira Bialzik (BV) pinned Benjamin Coen (SL), 0:59; 145 – Jared Hatch (BV) received forfeit; 152 – Nate Stuart (BV) received forfeit; 160 – Preston Coombs (BV) received forfeit; 170 – Bash Nielson (BV) received forfeit; 182 – Blake Flach (SL) pinned Nick Hillman (BV), 0:59; 195 – Trett Joles (BV) pinned Noah Ciesieski (SL), 0:12; 220 – Seth Symond (SL) pinned Josh Marzofka (BV), 3:01; 285 – Dante Butler (BV) received forfeit; 106 – Double Forfeit; 113 – Emma Gruenhagen (BV) pinned Ethan Lyga (SL), 1:36; 120 – Brice Evenson (BV) received forfeit.