By Brady Ambrose
The quote from a Wabasha-Kellogg wrestling fan pretty much wrapped up the sentiment after the Falcons made the 75 mile, hour and 20 minute drive to Caledonia for Thursday night’s conference meet. “It took longer to get here than the match lasted,” the fan said after watching the Warriors steam-roll the Falcons 57-21 in a match that took approximately 35 minutes to complete.
The Warriors led 36-0 before the Falcons got on the board as Caledonia improved their dual-meet record to 11-6 on the season. “The kids looked good,” coach Dan Goergen said. “We told them this was their last home match for a while and they wrestled really well.”
The first six matches of the night were over before most fans had settled into their seats. At 106, 7th grader Kyle Cavanaugh pinned Jamie Hewitt 32 seconds into the first period to get things rolling. At 113, Justin Stemper took just 26 seconds to pin Tagen Miller, and the Warriors picked up six more points when W-K forfeited the 120 pound match.
Hunter Hauser-Caldwell then recorded the third straight pin when he stuck Bradley Schmalzriedt with a minute left in the first period, and the Falcons forfeited two more matches at 132 and 138 pounds to give Caledonia a 36-0 lead.
Sam Stemper squared off against Ryan Lager at 145 and ran into a buzzsaw as Lager won a 15-0 technical decision. At 152 pounds, Blaine Knutson lost to Bryton Miller 12-2, but Caledonia got rolling again at 160 when Mitchell Schmitz pinned Zane Lehnartz with 19.5 seconds remaining in the first period.
Eli Craig pulled out a tough, 5-2 decision over Paul Novak with an escape and takedown in the final 1:25 of the match to push the Warriors’ lead to 45-9. The night then ended quickly as Alex Goergen pinned Dolan Miller in 1:18 in the 182 pound match, and Case McCormick pinned Ben Tentis in just 35 seconds at 195 pounds.
The Warriors then forfeited the matches at 220 and 285 but still won easily, 57-21. “Sam (Stemper) is one of the guys that’s been battling all year,” Goergen said of Stemper in his first year of wrestling. “He’s working his tail off and it’s unfortunate he got into that weight class – it’s just a stud group.”
The team then traveled to GMLOK Friday and came home with a 40-30 win over the Bulldogs. The Warriors will open up the section 1AA tournament later this week after Monday’s seeding meeting. “We could be four, five or six; it just comes down to the vote,” Goergen said.
Kasson-Mantorville is already the #1 seed in the section.
106: Kyle Cavanaugh (C) pinned Jamie Hewitt;
113: Justin Stemper (C) pinned Tagan Miller;
120: Jacob Winjum (C) won by forfeit;
126: Hunter Hauser-Caldwell (C) pinned Bradley Schmalzriedt;
132: Dylan Lee (C) won by forfeit; 138: Drew Stemper (C) won by forfeit;
145: Ryan Lager (WK) tech. fall Sam Stemper 15-0;
152: Bryton Miller (WK) maj. dec Blain Knutson 12-2;
160: Mitchell Schmitz (C) pinned Zane Lehnartz
170: Eli Craig (C) dec. Paul Novak 5-2;
182: Alex Goergen (C) pinned Dolan Miller;
195: Case McCormick (C) pinned Ben Pentis;
220: Erik Norgrant (WK) won by forfeit;
285: Mike Schively (WK) won by forfeit;
Record: C 11-6.