USC’s Carlson is in hunt for state title at 182 pounds

Published 1:30 pm Saturday, March 1, 2014

ST. PAUL — All three state qualifiers from United South Central are still in the hunt for medals after Day 1 at the Xcel Center.

Colten Carlson is fighting for the title, and the Herman brothers, Dylan and Derek, are in the chase for third place.

Carlson advanced to the 182-pound quarterfinals by pinning Ari Harnitz of Lake Crystal-Wellcome Memorial in 3 minutes and 38 seconds.

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He moved to 2-0 on the day by beating Kody VanDenEykel of Frazee with a 10-3 decision to advance to semifinals.

Carlson is two pins away from his 100th career pin, but he said that’s secondary to his goal of winning the state title.

“I want to win,” he said. “That’s all, no matter if it’s a pin or by one point.”

In the semifinals, Carlson will face Nathan Brinker of Holdingford. Carlson is No. 2 in the state polls, and Brinker is No. 7. In the other semifinal, No. 1 Niko Anderson of Filmore Central/Lanesboro/Mabel-Canton will take on No. 6 Tim Krueger of River Valley.

“Colton’s got a good road to the finals,” said USC head coach. “We feel pretty solid about it.”

Dylan won his first-round match at 145 pounds by pinning Ethan Kimber of Bertha-Hewitt/Verndale in 1 minute and 36 seconds.

In the quarterfinals, he dropped to the consolation bracket with a 10-5 loss to Hunter Retzlaff of Sibley East.

“He just didn’t wrestle like his normal self,” USC head coach Marcus Eytcheson said. “He wasn’t doing a very good job of hand-fighting, wasn’t getting inside position and wasn’t heavy on the head. Those are all things that Dylan typically does well.”

However, Dylan will have a chance to make his way through wrestlebacks to third place along with Derek, who lost in the first round at 152 pounds.

Derek won his first-round consolation match with a 6-4 decision over Dietrich Balsbaugh of Trinity.