4 area wrestlers set to represent their schools at state tourney

Published 6:10 am Monday, February 26, 2024

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Three wrestlers from NRHEG and one from Maple River/United South Central punched their tickets to the state tournament over the weekend by finishing either first or second in their respective weight classes. 

The Panthers competed in the Section 2A tournament in Blue Earth and advanced freshman Ryan Schlaak, senior George Roessler and senior Annabelle Petsinger. 

Schlaak dominated his way to the championship match in the 160-pound weight class. He defeated Kael Steele from Westfield in the quarterfinals and Chase Bade from St. Clair in the semis. 

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In the championship final he ran into a tough opponent in Medford’s Tommy Elwood. Schlaak lost the match via a 9-0 major decision, but took second place via a no contest due to a wrestleback not being needed. 

Roessler took care of business handily at the 172-pound weight class pinning his way to a first place finish. In the semifinals he pinned St. Clair’s Lucas Vaughn in the second period and followed that up with a first period fall over Blue Earth Area’s Kade Gaydon. 

Petsinger punched her ticket to state two weeks ago at the girls section tournament where she also pinned her way to the finals where she herself lost via pinfall, but then battled right back with another pin in the wrestleback to earn her spot. 

Maple River/United South Central competed in the Section 2AA tournament in Orono. Only one wrestler made it through to the state tournament, but it was a wrestler who’s not unfamiliar with success. 

Junior Byron Getchell placed second for the team in the 160-pound class, winning via a 6-2 decision in the quarterfinals over Scott West’s Ethan Dvorak. Then beating Shafer Ehmke of Mankato West in the semifinals in a 3-1 tiebreaker. Getchell came up short in the championship final, losing a 7-2 decision but came in second after a no contest in the wrestleback. 

Getchell, Roessler and Schlaak start their tournaments 9 a.m. Friday morning, while Petsinger will get her first round started on Saturday. 

About Tyler Julson

Tyler Julson covers sports for the Albert Lea Tribune.

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