The Vermillion wrestling team competed in the Region 2A Tournament in Brandon Valley Friday. The top four wrestlers in each bracket punched their ticket to state. The Tanagers had one win the gold, one earned the silver, three placed third and two were fourth.
“We wrestled really well at regions,” said Vermillion head coach Joe Delvaux. “Our kids showed that they are physically and mentally prepared for the postseason. It is relatively easy to have wrestlers physically prepared for the postseason, the difficult thing is helping them understand that they have the skills to handle the pressure and the intensity of regions and state.”
Three seniors, Nick Roob, Hunter Lavin and Tyson Hage competed a final time at the region tournament.
“My thoughts going into regions were that I had to stay focused,” said N. Roob. “It felt nice to qualify again, but my real goal is to finally get on the podium. I know I can do it. I just need to work hard and wrestle to the level my coaches have coached me to.”
No. 2 in the 106-pound weight division at Class A, freshman Hayden Schroeder earned the gold. He received a bye in the quarterfinals and pinned Ramsey Williams of Lennox in the semis. In the championship, Schroeder pinned Turner Gordon of Sioux Falls Lincoln for the title.
At 113, #7 eighth-grader Michael Roob placed third. He pinned Bennett Lukken of Dakota Valley. M. Roob lost to #4 Carter Ractliffe of Harrisburg 2-6 in the semis. He went on the defeated Dylan Sloan of Yankton 6-2. In the third-place match, M. Roob defeated Eliot Ellenbecker of Lincoln by an 18-4 major decision.
Eighth-grader Connor Peterson (120) finished fourth. He won in the quarterfinals over Jayce Dornbusch of Harrisburg via technical fall 15-0. Peterson fell to #3 Jordon Oehme of Brandon Valley by a 1-12 major decision in the semis. Peterson pinned Lincoln Ford in the consolation semis to advance to the match for third. Peterson lost 1-5 to Bentley Williams of Lincoln to finish fourth.
In the 126 division, Lavin forfeited to Jovey Christensen of Beresford/Alcester-Hudson and Lane Knutson of Sioux Falls Washington.
N. Roob (132) earned the bronze. He pinned Easton Monical of Dakota Valley. N. Roob fell to Peyton Tryon of Harrisburg 2-4 in the semis. N. Roob pinned Ashton Bach of Lennox in the consolation semis to advance to the third-place match. N. Roob finished third after defeating Will Pavlish 8-1.
At 138, eighth-grader Rollie French finished fourth. After a first-round bye, French defeated Dawson Wallen of Lincoln 6-0. French fell to #4 Logan O’Connor of Harrisburg via technical fall 3-18 in the semis. French came back to top Joshua George of Washington by a 13-5 major decision. In the match for third, French fell via major decision 5-15 to Teygan Harstad of Brandon Valley.
Junior Felix Perez (145) finished sixth. He lost via technical fall 2-18 against #8 Blessing Taniah of Washington. Perez received a bye before being pinned by Cayden Langeng of Brandon Valley. Perez was pinned by Zach Rosenkrans of Dakota Valley to place sixth.
In the 152 weight class, sophomore Caleb Emerson fell via an injury-time to Asher Eidem of Washington. Emerson lost 3-6 to Greyson Bortnem of Brandon Valley.
Hage (160) defeated Colton Bechard of Lincoln 2-0. Hage fell 4-9 to #1 Isaac Klinkhammer of Brandon Valley in the semis. Hage went on the pin Dawson Anderson. In the third-place match, Hage defeated Kamren McCubbin of Washington 3-4 for the bronze.
At 170, #2 junior Jack Kratz placed second. He pinned Asa Swensen of Yankton. Kratz won the semis over #5 Ryan Hirschkorn of Harrisburg via sudden victory 3-1. In the championship, Kratz lost to #4 Lucas Slack of Brandon Valley 1-6 for the silver.
At 195, freshman Connor Mattson was pinned by Bryce Kwiecinski of Lincoln. Mattson defeated Myles Yitagesu of Washington 8-3. In the consolation semis, Mattson was pinned by Landon Schurch of Beresford/Alcester-Hudson. For fifth place, Kwiecinski pinned Mattson to hand him sixth.
Sophomore Roz Baylor, wrestling at 220, placed sixth. He was pinned by #8 Zavier Leonard of Yankton. Baylor came back to pin Samson Do of Dakota Valley. In the consolation semis, Baylor was pinned by Abraham Myers of Washington and pinned by Bryce Kwiecinski of Lincoln to finish sixth.
Wrestling in the 285 division, #5 junior Zack Brady placed second. He pinned Brady Kwiecinski of Lincoln. Brady pinned Michael Vroman of Washington in the semis. In the championship, Brady was pinned by #1 Navarro Schunke of Brandon Valley to finish second.
“The fact that so many of our wrestlers are young and relatively new to this level of competition says a lot about them, the Vermillion wrestling community and the outstanding coaches assisting our program,” said coach Delvaux.
Vermillion competes at the State Tournament Thursday, Friday and Saturday at the Rushmore Plaza Civic Center in Rapid City.
“We always hope to place every single wrestler we qualify for state,” said coach Delvaux. “This year is no different. The staff of this program believes that anything can happen at state, and I think our wrestlers believe it too. We will be ready on Thursday.”