Albert Lea welcomes Westerlund, Chan back to lineup

Published 5:00am Friday, February 7, 2014

Two starters returned to the Albert Lea wrestling team’s starting lineup, and the Tigers thrashed three Big Nine Conference foes Thursday at a quad at Mankato West.

The No. 8 Class AA Tigers beat Mankato East 68-10, Mankato West 67-9 and Winona 64-10.

“It was a nice little confidence booster,” said Albert Lea head coach Larry Goodnature. “All of the kids wrestled well. We got a lot of falls, and that’s the name of the game in team competition. Bonus points are big.”

Triston Westerland, the defending state runner-up and the No. 1-ranked wrestler at 182 pounds, saw his first action after recovering from an injury. He pinned both opponents from the Mankato schools and won by forfeit against Winona at 195 pounds.

Westerlund earned the fastest fall of the day by pinning Mankato West’s Jacob Viehwheg in 17 seconds.

Bany Chan also returned to the Tigers’ lineup after recovering from an injury. He earned a 2-1 record at 152 pounds by pinning Mankato West’s Garrett Block in 39 seconds and Mankato East’s Kaunu Rodriguez in 47 seconds. His loss was a 14-5 major-decision loss against Jake Timm of Winona.

“It was great having those two back,” Goodnature said.

Albert Lea’s Garrett Aldrich, the No. 7-ranked wrestler at 106 pounds, dominated his weight class with three pins. Devin Nelson did the same at 138 pounds.

Beau Johnsrud, the No. 4-ranked wrestler at 120 pounds, pinned Mankato East’s Eric Jaster, beat Charlie Dundas of Mankato West with a 14-7 decision and won by forfeit against Winona.

Mason Hammer, Santana Acosta, Derek Samudio, Nick Kromminga and Tim Christianson went undefeated.

Albert Lea will compete next at the team portion of the Section 1AA tournament Feb. 21 and 22 at the Mayo Civic Center in Rochester. Times have not been determined.

Statistics are in the Scoreboard: Feb. 6 post.