Sibley East wrestlers win Section 4A team tournament

NORWOOD YOUNG AMERICA – The Sibley East wrestling team defeated St. James and Windom Area in the Section 4A team tournament on Saturday to qualify for the team portion of state tournament.

The No. 2 ranked Wolverines defeated No. 3 St. James 42-20 in the semifinals and then followed with a 38-23 victory against No. 4 Windom Area in the final. Windom Area reached the final with a 33-22 upset of No. 1 Lake Crystal Area in the semifinals.

The Wolverines and Cobras wrestled a competitive matchup in the final, with Sibley East gaining an advantage by minimizing the damage in the matches that it lost. Overall Sibley East won eight matches in the final compared to six wins for the Cobras.

Tanner Pasvogel and Mitch Heibel earned crucial victories in the first two matches for Sibley East to set the tone early on. Pasvogel earned a narrow 3-2 decision against No. 5 ranked Wyatt Stevens at 106 pounds and Heibel defeated Hunter Quiring by a 2-0 decision at 113 pounds.

Windom Area rebounded with a major decision by Joe Fischenich at 120 pounds against Nathan Thomas and a 4-3 decision by Jared Willaby at 126 against No. 7 ranked Jason Meyer to take a 7-6 lead.

However, Sibley East won the following three matches to take the lead for good. No. 7 ranked Austin Brockhoff began the stretch with a technical fall at 132 and Hunter Retzlaff (138) and Mitch Wentzlaff (145) followed with first-period pins to put the Wolverines ahead 23-7.

Windom Area’s Ben Matter earned a major decision at 152 and teammate Andrew Larson eked out a 4-2 decision against Austin Kube at 160, but a pair of Sibley East seniors followed with wins to clinch victory for the Wolverines.

Sibley East senior Aaron Bates lived up to his No. 3 ranking by pinning Gavin Mutz in 1:45 at 170 pounds. Fellow senior Brandon Ashton earned a 5-2 decision against Jacob Junker at 182 to give Sibley East a 32-14 lead.

Sibley East junior Nathan Rose, ranked No. 1 at 195, added an exclamation point to the victory with a pin in 1:15 at 220 against Aaron Flatgard.

Windom Area received a 6-1 decision by No. 5 ranked Vince Johnson at 195 and a pin in 1:15 by Neil Litfin at 285.

Sibley East will now compete in the Class A team state tournament on Feb. 28 at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul.

Sibley East 38, Windom Area 23

106 – Tanner Pasvogel (SE) dec. Wyatt Stevens 3-2; 113 – Mitch Heibel (SE) dec. Hunter Quiring 2-0; 120 – Joe Fischenich (WA) major dec. Nathan Thomas 12-4; 126 – Jared Willaby (WA) dec. Jason Meyer 4-3; 132 – Austin Brockhoff (SE) tech. fall Luis Ramirez 15-0; 138 – Hunter Retzlaff (SE) pinned Jacob Suess 1:03; 145 – Mitch Wentzlaff (SE) pinned Clay Hockel 1:55; 152 – Jake Wentzlaff (SE) major dec. Ben Matter 18-6; 160 – Andrew Larson (WA) dec. Austin Kube 4-2; 170 – Aaron Bates (SE) pinned Gavin Mutz 1:45; 182 – Brandon Ashton (SE) dec. Jacob Junker 5-2; 195 – Vince Johnson (WA) dec. Miah DuFrane 6-1; 220 – Nathan Rose (SE) pinned Aaron Flatgard 1:15; 285 – Neil Litfin (WA) pinned Clay Mogard 1:15.

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