Adrian claims third place at state

After falling to the St. Michael-Albertville Knights 48-18 in the team semifinals, the Adrian Dragons rallied from 25-6 down to post a 27-25 victory over Little Falls Saturday morning to claim third place at the state wrestling tournament in the ...

After falling to the St. Michael-Albertville Knights 48-18 in the team semifinals, the Adrian Dragons rallied from 25-6 down to post a 27-25 victory over Little Falls Saturday morning to claim third place at the state wrestling tournament in the Xcel Energy Center.

Losing six of the first seven matches of the dual, the Dragons split the 145- and 152-pound matches, before winning the final five to collect the third place trophy.

"We matched up well with Little Falls," Adrian head coach Gregg Nelson said. "We held on down low and put the hammer down on top, and got it done."

Trailing 25-6 following the 152-pound tussle, Clint Metz earned four points for Adrian with an 11-3 major decision over the Flyers' Josh Jendro. Adrian 171-pounder Tyler Wagner followed with a 7-2 decision over Andy Hegna, cutting the deficit to 25-13.

Nate Engelkes was next to take the mat for the Dragons, facing Mike Lodermeier. Engelkes quickly threw Lodermeier to the floor and gained control. Just 32 seconds later, Engelkes had the Flyer junior pinned -- cutting the deficit to 25-19 heading into the final two matches.


Cody Reverts, who later placed second in the 215 pound individual championship match, was relentless against Little Falls' Luke Lien. Reverts scored at will to earn an 18-3 technical fall at 4:57 of the match, setting up a dramatic heavyweight match for all the marbles.

Adrian junior Will Lutmer, who placed fourth as an individual later that afternoon, squared off against Flyer heavyweight Dylan Bue. Lutmer was awarded a point in the first period when Bue was called for stalling. In the third period, Lutmer earned another point for an escape to win the match and give the Dragons third place honors.

"Wagner's match was big for us," Nelson said. "If he had lost, the best we could do would be a tie and we would have lost because they would have won more (individual) matches."

The dual started off well for the Dragons, as 103-pounder Brock Bullerman put Adrian on the board with a 6-2 decision over Sam Marcus. But that the last time points would be posted for the Dragons until the 145-pound tilt.

The Flyers' Jason Brill tied the dual with a 9-5 decision over Adrian's Stephen Loosbrock. Josh Groshong, the Flyers' 112-pounder, put Little Falls ahead 6-3, with an 8-4 decision over Camron Bullerman.

In one of the most entertaining matches of the dual, Little Falls' Randy Przybilla went toe-to-toe with Adrian's Matt Gades at 125 pounds. The match went back and forth, with each wrestler holding the lead several times. But in the end, Przybilla outlasted Gades for a 14-10 decision and a 9-3 Flyers advantage.

Tony Thier was strong for the Dragons at 130, but couldn't get the takedowns he needed -- dropping a 9--5 decision to Ted Wilczek. The Flyers' Troy Biermeier followed with a pin of Tanner Loosbrock at 3:21 of the 135-pound bout.

Adrian's Brandon Bullerman, who was slated to compete for fifth place as an individual, lost a tight match, 6-2, to Chris Roach. Bullerman was just a point down early in the second period when Roach put him to the mat on a takedown attempt. Bullerman's right knee took all the pressure in the fall and the senior had to take several injury minutes before he could return. But a visibly hobbled Bullerman was wrestling at half strength and couldn't keep pace.


In another exciting match, which Nelson said was a key in the victory, Adrian's Andy Heitkamp edged the Flyers' Steve Strack, 11-9, at 145 pounds.

Although the match ended in Adrian's favor, the Dragon junior never pulled away from his opponent. Heitkamp led 5-2 after the first period and 9-6 after two, but Strack kept answering each of the Dragon grapplers' scores. With 42 seconds remaining in the match, Heitkamp delivered the final blow with a stellar takedown.

"Heitkamp was big at 145 for us," Nelson said. "Heck, they were all big today."

A physically impaired (hand injury) Zach Reker battled the Flyers' Josh Bue in the 152-pound match. While Reker hung tough, it was apparent the sophomore wasn't at full strength. Bue posted a 16-5 major decision, giving Little Falls their commanding 25-6 lead -- setting up Adrian's comeback victory.

"The team wrestled well all tournament," Nelson said. "If you would have told me in November that we'd be standing here with a third place trophy, I'd have said you're nuts. So, I'm pleased. The kids did an excellent job."

Adrian 27, Little Falls 25

103 Bro. Bullerman (A) dec. S. Marcus 6-2 3-0

112 J. Brill (LF) dec. S. Loosbrock 9-5 3-3


119 J. Groshong (LF) dec. C. Bullerman 8-4 3-6

125 R. Przybilla (LF) dec. M. Gades 14-10 3-9

130 T. Wilczek (LF) dec. T. Thier 9-5 3-12

135 T. Biermeier (LF) fall T. Loosbrock 3:21 3-18

140 C. Roach (LF) dec. Bra. Bullerman 6-2 3-21

145 A. Heitkamp (A) dec. S. Strack 11-9 6-21

152 J. Bue (LF) maj. dec. Z. Reker 16-5 6-25

160 C. Metz (A) maj. dec. J. Jendro 11-3 10-25


171 T. Wagner (A) dec. A. Hegna 7-2 13-25

189 N. Engelkes (A) fall M. Lodermeier :32 19-25

215 C. Reverts (A) tech. fall L. Lien 4:57 24-25

Hwt. W. Lutmer (A) dec. D. Bue 2-0 27-25

What To Read Next
Get Local