by Steve Peterson
Akron-Westfield’s wrestling team had two wrestlers make the championship bout in their respective weight classes and finished runner-up at the A-W Westerner Invitational Dec. 14.
Freshman Dylan Irizarry made it to the final match at 152 pounds but lost to Isaac Reis of Kingsley-Pierson in a pin in 1:52. Irizarry had downed Blythe Anderson of Westwood by a pin in 1:12 and Eddie Armenta of West Sioux in 4:26. Irizarry totaled 20 team points for the Westerners.
Sophomore Tommy Toben was runner-up at 160 pounds as he fell to Seth Hoogendoorn of Boyden-Hull-Rock Valley by a close 3-2 decision in the final. Toben beat Sawyer Van Maanen of Sioux Center by pin in 0:48 in his first match and beat Ean Stacken of Creighton-Verdigre in a 12-4 major decision. Toben chalked up 19 team points.
“Tommy making the finals is good progress for him,” said A-W Coach Dustin Meinen. “A majority of our wrestlers made progress from last weekend (at Sergeant Bluff-Luton.) We’re making progress; it won’t come overnight.”
A-W ended with a sixth place out of the 10-team meet with 97 points.
Dylan Blinde took third place at 145 pounds as he ended his day on a strong note with an overtime win over Zach Konz of Boyden- Hull-Rock Valley, 11-9. The two were tied at 7-7 after Blinde had a one-point lead. It was 9-9 in the final seconds of regulation, forcing the overtime format that Blinde won. Earlier Blinde beat Tucker Sitzmann of Lawton-Bronson by pin in 3:03; lost to Jake Ripp of Creighton-Verdigre in the semifinals in a pin in 2:19.
Freshman Montana Jackson won fifth place at 182 pounds. He lost to CJ Geary of Elk Point-Jefferson by pin in 1:43; had a bye the next round and then lost to Marcus Jones of Boyden-Hull-Rock Valley in a pin in 2:45 and then beat Drake MacArthur of Lawton-Bronson in a fall in 2:47 for fifth. Jackson won seven team points for A-W.
One weight class, 113 pounds, featured two A-W freshmen duking it out for a place. Skyler Briggs beat Daniel Martinsen, 12-7, for the fifth place medal. Briggs had lost to Samuel Klarenbeek of Boyden-Hull-Rock Valley by a pin in 3:16; won by pin over Ethan Marx of Elk Point-Jefferson in 1:59; lost to Jose Montes of West Sioux by pin in 0:47. Martinsen, technically unattached this day, had lost to Garret Zimmerer of Creighton-Verdigre, Neb., by pin in 1:11; lost to Markes Meyers of Westwood in a pin in 1:14.
At 120 pounds, freshman Zac Eyer placed sixth for the Westerners. He lost to Misael Topete of West Sioux in a pin in 1:11; beat Keaton Wynia of Sioux Center in a pin in 4:39:lost to Matt Ambrose, wrestling independently, in a pin in 15 seconds.
Freshman Sebastian Berg took fifth place at 138 pounds. He lost to Dakotah York of Creighton-Verdigre by a pin in 1:30; he beat Alex Lund, wrestling independently, by pin in 3:22 and won by an injury default in the fifth place match over York.
Sophomore Spenser Wardrip finished sixth for A-W at 195 pounds. He lost to Ryan Mulvuhill of Westwood, in a pin in 1:33; beat Landon Wold of Lawton-Bronson in a pin in 2:12; lost to Ko Kieft of Sioux Center in a pin in 0:54 and lost to Ashton Kooiker, wrestling independently, in a 7-4 decision.
Junior Gage Tomlinson won sixth place at 285 pounds. He beat Mitch Trejo of Kingsley-Pierson in an 8-4 decision; lost to Ricardo Topete of West Sioux in a pin in 0:54.
Senior Trevor Hansen had a 0-1 record for A-W at 220 pounds as he lost to Ricardo Rodriguez of West Sioux in a pin in 3:05.
Westwood won the meet with a total of 223 points; Boyden-Hull-Rock Valley, 195.5; Elk Point-Jefferson, 183; West Sioux, 137; Creighton-Verdigre, 120; Akron-Westfield, 97; Lawton-Bronson, 76; Sioux Center, 65; Kingsley-Pierson 54; and Ponca, 23.
The Westerners are at the Elk Point Jefferson meet, starting at 10 a.m., Dec. 21.
“We don’t have time to lick our wounds from today; we have to go back at it,” said Meinen.