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High School Wrestling: Six lakes area individuals capture titles

Cole Kubesh1 / 2
Pierz’s Brandon Ortman celebrates after beating Lee Schmaltz of Mound Westonka Saturday for a Paul Bunyan Invitational title. (Kelly Humphrey, Brainerd Dispatch)2 / 2

Paul Bunyan Invitational

Champions: Cole Kubesh of Brainerd (120), Pierz's Brandon Ortman (138), Koltan Eischens (160), Lane Girtz (170) and Teddy Dehler (220), Dustin Tabatt of Little Falls (285).

Next: Brainerd at Aitkin 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, Little Falls at Mora triangular 5 p.m. Tuesday, Pierz vs. Mille Lacs Raiders at Isle 7:30 p.m. Thursday

Cole Kubesh's goals this winter include going undefeated and standing on the top step of the podium at the Class 3A state tournament.

The Brainerd Warrior junior's dream is alive after he captured the 120-pound championship in the 49th annual Paul Bunyan Invitational at Brainerd High School Saturday.

Kubesh scored a technical fall in the quarterfinals and a pin in the semis before pinning Frazee's Tanner Schermerhorn with seven seconds left for his second Bunyan title. Kubesh has won all three tournaments in which he has wrestled this season and was Bunyan champion in 2014 at 113.

Schermerhorn is ranked fifth at 113 in 1A while Kubesh is seventh at 120 in 3A.

"I knew he was a scrambler," the top-seeded Kubesh said, "so I just tried to stay out of the scramble situations and take what he gives me. I came out on top, then I pinned him at the end."

Brainerd's other finalist, top-seeded Andy Schlosser, was nipped 5-4 by second-seeded Ryan Reid of Mound-Westonka. Schlosser, ranked fourth at 145 and Reid fifth, finished third in the state at 120 last season.

"Andy's having a great season," Warriors co-head coach Mike Boran said. "He's run into some tough kids. His two losses (this season) are losses that he can get back. He's better than that. He's going to be fine. It's early. He's going to keep working.

"It's a bit of an adjustment moving up from 120 to 145 and he's going to work on that adjustment. He'll figure this out. I'm not worried about him."

The Warriors finished fourth in the event which was won by Foley for the sixth time in nine years.

Ortman, Eischens, Girtz,

Dehler Pierz champions

Brandon Ortman (138), Koltan Eischens (160), Lane Girtz (170) and Teddy Dehler (220) won titles for the Pioneers who were runners-up in team competition. Three Pioneers defeated 3A wrestlers for their titles.

• Ortman, ranked second in 1A at 132 this season, pinned top-seeded Lee Schmalz of Mound Westonka in 55 seconds in a battle of unbeatens. Schmalz is ranked sixth at 138 in 3A.

"I was a little concerned because him being a Schmalz I lost to his little brother Neil when I was in ninth grade," the second-seeded Ortman said. "I was looking for a little bit of revenge ... They're a great family, a great bunch of wrestlers, and great kids."

Ortman, who pinned three of his four Bunyan opponents, finished sixth in the state at 120 last season.

• The top-seeded Eischens was trailing 2-1 in the finals when he tipped second-seeded Wyatt Hanson of Moorhead on his back and pinned him at 1:24.

"I was slow on my feet this weekend overall but I set up a shot," Eischens said. "I snapped him down, just hip-tossed him a little bit. I have pretty good balance. I used it in that match."

Eischens, who placed fifth in the state at 152 last season, is ranked third this season. He pinned all four of his Bunyan foes.

"That's what I want to do," he said. "My teammates look at me for bonus points and that's what I'm going to try and do. I think I've pinned everyone but two guys so far this year. That's what I work on, getting bonus points for my team."

• Girtz, seeded second and unbeaten, bumped off top-seeded Tanner Bachman of Frazee 9-7 in a physical, bump and grind match.

"I wanted to score first," Girtz said. "Get ahead, work with the lead, keep going from there. My (semifinal) match I kind of sputtered around at the end. This match I wanted to keep the throttle going."

• Dehler capped the Pioneers' championship run with a 10-6 decision in three overtimes against top-seeded Brody Jerome of Moorhead. Dehler is ranked 10th in 1A, Jerome fourth in 3A.

"These guys are outweighing me by a lot," Dehler said. "If I can take them to overtime, I hope I'm in better shape than them and I can push through like I did.

"I just tried to not let him take me down early. He did but watching him earlier I knew I could do something on the bottom if I kept moving. I knew I could break him flat, keep him down. He got away a couple times but I just outlasted him. That was the key."

• Pierz coach Mark Jensen was pleased how the Pioneers rallied to finish 20 points behind Foley and 22 ahead of defending Bunyan champion Frazee.

"The boys really wrestled well this last round. They wrestled well all weekend honestly," he said. "We're just proud of what they've done. We were in third, we might have slipped to fourth at one time I'm not sure. To come back and have that last round go as well as it did is just a tribute to them."

Eischens, Girtz and Dehler were members of the Pioneers' state championship football team this fall. Jensen believes football and wrestling go hand in hand.

"They just complement each other because of the physicality of the sports, the push and pull of the sports, the feel," he said. "I love to have big kids come in and have the football coach come and tell me how good they are because of wrestling."

Tabatt Flyers' champion

Frazee's Tanner Tappe extended Dustin Tabatt into overtime before the Flyer senior pinned him 1:29 into the extra session.

"It was my longest match of the year," Tabatt said. "I was kind of unconditioned. It was tough but I listened to my coaches. I was going hard and that got me through it.

"I was trying to pin him early. He's in pretty good condition so that didn't happen. I pushed hard, drove beyond my limits."

Tabatt, the second seed, suffered a knee injury in his first Bunyan match last year and missed the rest of the season.

Final Team Scores: 1-Foley 205.5, 2-Pierz 188.5, 3-Frazee 163.5, 4-Brainerd 157.5, 5-Moorhead 136.0, 6-Mound Westonka 117.5, 7-Grand Rapids 112.0, 8-Little Falls 104.0, 9-Sauk Rapids-Rice 88.0, 10-Cloquet-Esko 67.0, 11-Edina 32.0

Final individual results

• 106: Championship-Nathan Garceau (Fol) dec. Jared Spohn (Unattached) 5-3; Third-Jacob Ackerman (SRR) dec. Josh Holm (GR) 4-2; Fifth-Gabe Nagel (LF) dec. Michael Miller (Fra) 5-4; Seventh-Tucker Peterson (Brd) pinned Zeb Wehr (Clo) 3:37

• 113: Championship-Aaron Cashman (MW) maj. dec. Kyle Lundberg (GR) 11-0; Third-Cameron Kowitz (Fol) dec. Kyle Patnode (Brd) 5-2; Fifth-Jake Andres (Prz) dec. Riley Kitchenmaster (Frz) 2-0; Seventh-Brady Vait (SRR) pinned Muhammad Avdil (Moor) 3:03

• 120: Championship-Cole Kubesh (Brd) pinned Tanner Schermerhorn (Fra) 5:53; Third-Zac Spohn (SRR) dec. Kellen Schauer (GR) 5-1; Fifth-Reese Kapsner (Prz) dec. Tate Olson (Clo) 10-7; Seventh-Ryan Dunlap (Fol) pinned Lukas Popp (Unattached) 3:47

• 126: Championship-Cole Jones (GR) inj. default over Tanner Reetz (Fra); Third-Hunter Rajkowski (SRR) by inj. default over Braden Kramer (Brd); Fifth-Drew Breuen (Unattached) dec. Leo Wilczek (LF) 7-6; Seventh-Ben Schmalz (MW) pinned James Allenberg (Ed) 3:42

• 132: Championship-Ethan Byer (Fra) dec. Neil Schmalz (MW) 11-4; Third-Tony Bemboom (SRR) maj. dec. Austin Loeher (Fol) 11-2; Fifth-Drew Robinson (Brd) dec. Scott Jones (GR) 4-1; Seventh-Brandon Tomala (Prz) pinned Jacob Biermaier (LF) 5:24

• 138: Championship-Brandon Ortman (Prz) pinned Lee Schmalz (MW) :55; Third-Joe Tindal (GR) dec. Lane Rutten (LF) 7-5; Fifth-Mitchell Rothfork (Fol) pinned Max Boran (Brd) 1:42; Seventh-Tanner Eischens (Fra) dec. David Nelson (SRR) 11-4

• 145: Championship-Ryan Reid (MW) dec. Andy Schlosser (Brd) 5-4; Third-Mitchell Bourchardt (Clo) dec. Noah Lefevbre (Fol) 4-0; Fifth-Joe Palik (Unattached) dec. Taylor Jurek (Unattached) 5-4; Seventh-Wyatt Lillemoe (LF) by inj. default over David Brenden (GR)

• 152: Championship-Conner Denman (Clo) dec. Jack Lien (Moor) 6-2; Third-Jalen Jansen (Prz) dec. Justin Henry (Fol) 6-3; Fifth-Eli Horn (Brd) by fft. over Charleton Wake (Fra); Seventh-Noah Byers (MW) pinned Dylan Smerillo (Unattached) 4:44

• 160: Championship-Kolton Eischens (Prz) pinned Wyatt Hanson (Moor) 1:24; Third-Simon Bryce (Fol) dec. Logan Leese (Unattached) 7-2; Fifth-Phillip Murphy (GR) maj. dec. Alex Land (Clo) 9-0; Seventh-Kwin Retterath (MW) dec. Zakary Watchorn (Fol) 6-5

• 170: Championship-Lane Girtz (Prz) Tanner Bachmann (Fra) 9-7; Third-Driston Schyma (Fol) dec. Riley Schock (Moor) 5-1; Fifth-Trevin Larson (LF) maj. dec. CJ Wohl (Brd) 9-1; Seventh-Brandon Frisby (GR) dec. Trevor Larson (Unattached) 8-1

• 182: Championship-Spencer Elwell (Fol) dec. Joseph Grove (Moor) 5-1; Third-Brett Kapsner (Prz) maj. dec. Austin Beaty (Fra) 13-0; Fifth-Casey Kulas (Clo) pinned Morgan Gibson (Brd) :50; Seventh-Tristan Meyer (Unattached) dec. Andrew Syvertson (SRR) 2-1

• 195: Championship-Samuel Grove (Moor) dec. Saylor Schmit (Fol) 9-4; Third-Matt Kummet (Prz) dec. Logan Theodore (Brd) 2-0; Fifth-Mickel Schultz (LF) maj. dec. Deshaun Chie-Walker (Ed) 12-1; Seventh-Xander Idrogo Lam (Unattached) inj. default over Daunte Molski (SRR)

• 220: Championship-Teddy Dehler (Prz) dec. Brody Jerome (Moor) 10-6 (3 ot); Third-Rory Drewes (Fra) dec. Billy Winkelman (LF) 4-2; Fifth-Tryston Bemboom (Fol) dec. Mitch McGee (Unattached) 11-4; Seventh-Joe Duffy (MW) dec. Dylan Crandall (Brd) 4-2 (ot)

• 285: Championship-Dustin Tabatt (LF) pinned Tanner Tappe (Fra) 7:29; Third-Devan Hunt (Ed) pinned Mitchell Trigg (Fol) :37; Fifth-Muhamad Abdi (Moor) pinned Will Toomey (Unattached) 2:46; Seventh-Luke Barringer (SRR) dec. Brad Dehler (Prz) 5-3

MIKE BIALKA may be reached at mike.bialka@brainerddispatch.com or 218-855-5861. Follow on Twitter at www.twitter.com/bertsballpark .

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