ALHS matmen dominate Big Nine dual, 63-6

Published 12:00 am Saturday, February 1, 2003

Apparently, the Albert Lea Tigers didn’t take kindly to the fact they dropped from No. 7 to No. 10 in the most recent Associated Press Class AAA state wrestling ratings.

And they took it out on Winona.

The Tigers dropped only two narrow decisions while overwhelming the Winhawks 63-6 in a Big Nine Conference dual meet at Albert Lea High School Friday night.

Email newsletter signup

Afterward, head coach Larry Goodnature admitted he was a bit puzzled by the ratings, compiled by the publication, The Guillotine. The Tigers haven’t lost since the previous ratings, and last weekend won the always-tough Hayfield Invitational. They’re 7-1 in the Big Nine and 16-2 overall.

“I tell you what, no one can believe it,” said Goodnature. “People all around the state are asking how they put together those AAA ratings. We beat Cambridge, and they’re rated sixth. And Cambridge beat Anoka, and they’re ranked above us.”

So there was no way the Tigers were going to look past the Winhawks despite Winona’s struggles this season.

“Winona had seven or eight good wrestlers, and we beat all of them,” said Goodnature. “As a whole, we wrestled well.”

They also had an easy start, with Zach Hansen, Josh Hansen and Alex Hansen getting forfeits at 103, 112 and 119 pounds to put Albert Lea up 18-0.

Taylor Ignaszewski made it 24-0 with a second-period fall at 125.

Winona picked up a win at 130, where the Tigers’ Neal Underdahl wrestled tough against a state veteran while dropping a 3-1 decision.

Adam Elseth rolled to a 10-3 win at 135, putting the Tigers on top 27-3.

Adam Morreim registered an impressive 5-4 victory at 140.

At 145, Brandon Klukow went to overtime before giving up a last-second takedown and losing a 5-3 decision. That made it 30-6.

The Tigers followed with a pinning clinic.

Corey Frerk started it at 152 with a fall in 3:20. Jared Butler and Derek Goodnature scored first-period falls at 160 and 171, respectively, and Mike Honeycutt needed only 39 seconds to pin his opponent at 189.

Randy Larson won 6-4 at 215. Heavyweight Chris Hable received a forfeit.

“I still don’t think we’ve peaked yet,” said Coach Goodnature. “We have another week and a half of practice for the section team tournament, and that’s when we want to be our best.”

The Tigers finish the regular season Thursday at home against Rochester Century.