The Free Press, Mankato, MN


January 16, 2012

Top-ranked wrestling team lives up to its billing

LAKE CRYSTAL — It was a matchup of two of the top Class A wrestling teams in the state and, for awhile at least, it looked as if it could go either way.

But No. 1-ranked Jackson County Central dominated the middle weights to score 24 straight points. The result was a rather lopsided 42-16 win for the Huskies over sixth-ranked Lake Crystal Wellcome Memorial.

“Well, we know they were a tough team and they showed it tonight,” LCWM’s top-ranked Nate Meixell said. “We learned we still have a lot of work to do.”

The Knights jumped to a quick 9-0 lead after two bouts as Levi Marsh earned a 6-0 decision at 106 pounds and Louie Sanders got a first-period pin at 113.

JCC began to take over from there, getting two consecutive pins to grab a 12-9 lead. At 132 pounds, LCWM’s Taner Trembley locked horns with Ryan Timko and escaped with a 1-0 decision. That tied the meet at 12 before the Huskies went on their middle-weight run.

Three pins and two decisions later, Jackson County Central held an all but insurmountable 36-12 lead. Among the decisions was a 9-8 verdict for JCC’s 10th-ranked Keegan Moore over LCWM’s fifth-ranked Dakota Yarger.

“There were some good matches in there” JCC coach Randy Baker said. It started out at 106 where that Marsh kid got a good win for them. I think we beat him the last time we wrestled so he’s improved.

The 132 and 138-pound matches were good and even the 220 and heavyweight matches were tough. There was some good wrestling going on out there tonight.”

Marsh, a freshman, said he’s been off-and-on this season and Monday was one of his on nights.

“My coaches call it peaks and valleys,” he said. “You try to be consistent and a lot of that comes with experience.

“I’m the first match of the meet so I like to get a win and sort of set the tone for the other guys. It gives them something to get excited about.”

LCWM’s final win came at 195 pounds. Fans were hoping to see a match between two No. 1-ranked wrestlers in Meixell (182) and JCC’s Cooper Moore (170), but LCWM coach Andre Harnitz elected to avoid Moore and match Meixell up against Pat Hanson. Meixell ended up with an 11-1 victory.

The win improves JCC to 12-0 and drops LCWM to 11-2. The Knights are back in action Thursday against St. Clair/Mankato Loyola in Lake Crystal.


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