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PREP WRESTLING: Huskies, Hornets share title

ST. PAUL -- Jordan Phibbs walked over and took the trophy. It said what he wanted on it: State Champions. He just didn't take it from who he expected. The senior on Jackson County Central's wrestling team didn't receive the first-place trophy fro...

JCC's Tewes
Aaron Hagen/Daily Globe Jackson County Central's Alex Tewes (top) controls his match against Frazee's Brett Gildersleeve during the state wrestling tournament on Thursday in St. Paul.

ST. PAUL -- Jordan Phibbs walked over and took the trophy.

It said what he wanted on it: State Champions.

He just didn't take it from who he expected.

The senior on Jackson County Central's wrestling team didn't receive the first-place trophy from a member of the Minnesota State High School League.

Instead, he took it from the hands of the Frazee coaches.

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The Huskies and Hornets wrestled to a 28-28 tie Thursday night, as both were crowned co-champions in the Class A state wrestling tournament at the Xcel Energy Center.

"I actually went over and grabbed it from him," Phibbs said. "It was different. It was rough. But at the same time, it's nice that we were back-to-back state champs."

Top-seeded JCC fell behind early, but rallied with two consecutive victories late, tying the score.

The Hornets were introduced first and took the trophy, then it was the Huskies' turn.

"It's rough," Phibbs said. "We deserve it. It's not nice to share."

But that's what will happen. The two teams are co-champions for the 2011 Class A state tournament.

"We didn't get beat, we just ended up 26-1-1," JCC head coach Randy Baker said. "I imagine we feel like everybody else at those points when you don't get the win. That's what we wanted, we wanted to get the win. We kept thinking we were in it as we started to come back. We'd done a couple scenarios on points and we knew we could get a couple at the end."

Baker had never coached a team to a tie -- before Thursday.

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"It's kind of frustrating," Baker said. "It's too bad there wasn't some way to resolve it. Now all of a sudden, in the program they say 'co-champions.' I suppose down the road we say we won the title and then that year we tied for the title."

Under the tie-breaker criteria, the first three are related to penalties. The fourth is most wins. JCC won nine of the 14 matches. But there no tie breakers in state championship matches.

"I just feel like we got cheated out of something," JCC's Alex Tewes said. "We won nine out of 14 matches. If they would have done it like any other dual, we would have had the win."

Early on, Frazee had all the momentum -- and the lead.

The Hornets earned a fall in each of the first two matches, taking a 12-0 lead.

Eliot Jurries gave the Huskies their first win with a 6-3 victory at 119, before Frazee answered with a major decision at 125.

Of the Hornets' five wins, four were by fall and one was by major decision.

"We won nine matches, that's pretty good," Baker said. "But they had those pins in there. That killed us."

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JCC had eight decisions and one major decision in the match.

Paden Moore picked up a 4-3 decision at 130 before Bronson Steuber won 8-5 at 135, pulling the Huskies within seven points, 16-9.

"The kid was really tough and I had to set up my shots and do well and win for the team," Steuber said. "It's kind of hard, they were just backing up and holding on to your hands."

The Hornets answered with a fall at 130 before four straight wins by the Huskies.

Darick Vancura started the run with a 6-3 decision at 145 before William Baker won 7-3 at 152. Patrick Hanson held on for a 2-1 decision at 160, while Tanner Menke had a 6-3 win at 171.

"My coaches told me to stay fast and get a 'W,"' Menke said. "It wasn't about getting a fall or anything, it was about getting the 'W,' and wrestling for six minutes."

Kody Sorensen, the No. 1-ranked wrestler at 189 pounds, earned a fall against Cooper Moore, the No. 1-ranked wrestler at 160 pounds as the two met at Sorensen's weight.

However, Phibbs responded with a 13-5 major decision at 215, brining the Huskies within three, 28-25.

"I just had to go at it and get some momentum for our next match," said Phibbs, who wrestles the same opponent, Rick Brandt, in the first round of the individual tournament today.

The final match pitted Frazee's Brett Gildersleeve against Tewes. It was the second time the Huskies' fate was on Tewes.

"The second time was probably a little bit easier because I knew what that feeling was like," said Tewes, who had a match-sealing victory in the semifinals against Minneota. "Overall, I had the same outcome."

Tewes came through again, this time with a 4-1 victory, knotting the score at 28-all.

"Coaches just told me to go out and look for corners," he said. "I wanted to just pound on his head and get him a little tired and a little flustered and get him not thinking right. I wanted to keep my mind on the match and just drown out both the crowds so nothing gets in my head."

After a moment where both teams held their breath as the winner was determined, it was announced the two would share the title.

"We thought we had criteria, but I guess not," Steuber said. "It just sucks tying, we wanted to win it straight out.

"I guess we're back-to-back state champs. It will probably feel good pretty soon, but right now it's kind of a salty taste in my mouth."

While the trophy will go home with Frazee -- the Huskies received the medals -- JCC sill won its second consecutive state title, and will soon be given a trophy to place alongside the others already in the case.

"It hasn't really sunk it yet," Menke said. "But it will."

103 I. Schermerhorn (F) fall :48 Rossow, 0-6

112 Stilke (F) fall 3:55 Biehn, 12-0

119 Jurries (J) dec 6-3 Kohler, 12-3

125 Ellenberg (F) maj dec 14-1 K. Moore, 16-3

130 P. Moore (J) dec 4-3 Lemon, 16-6

135 Steuber (J) dec 8-5 M. Schemerhorn, 16-9

140 Koehnen (F) fall 2:24 Norland, 22-9

145 Vancura (J) dec 6-3 Nunn, 22-12

152 Baker (J) dec 7-3 Piper, 22-15

160 Hanson (J) dec 2-1 VanWaterMulen, 22-18

171 Menke (J) dec 6-3 Sandberg, 22-21

189 Sorenson (F) fall 4:56 C. Moore, 28-21

215 Phibbs (J) maj. dec 13-5 Brandt, 28-25

Hwt. Tewes (J) dec 4-1 Gildersleeve, 28-28

Semifinals

JCC 34, Minneota 25

ST. PAUL - Alex Tewes was in a situation he hadn't been in before.

With the outcome of Thursday's Class A semifinal wrestling match resting squarely on his shoulders, Tewes was taking his heavyweight match like any other.

Except this one was for a spot in the finals.

"I was pretty nervous going in," Tewes said. "They never left it up to me before, they always left it up to Jordan (Phibbs). It felt pretty good taking the driver's seat. But otherwise, it was just another match."

With Jackson County Central leading by three points, all the junior needed was a victory.

He delivered more than that.

The way it turned out, it was the first of two times that he would come through in the clutch on the day.

Tewes recorded a fall in 55 seconds over Minneota's Andrew Fadness, sealing the Huskies' nine-point victory and a place in the finals.

"I was feeling pretty confident," Tewes said. "I was thinking about going in and getting him tired and moving him around a lot. Once I got him down, I just figured I'd get him to his belly and keep him down there as long as I could and tire him out some more. Once I got him to his back, he wasn't getting off."

Tewes, who weighs less than 200 pounds, was giving up weight to the 285-pounder. But he had experience on his side.

"Wrestling with the heavyweights in practice, once you get them down, I just knew to go right for that leg and throw that leg over and they are on their side," Tewes said. "You get your chest lower and push him over."

Minneota jumped out to a 16-3 lead after the first five weights, with JCC's only victory coming as Kyle Edlin earned a 7-3 win at 112.

However, the Huskies went on a six-match winning streak to turn the 13-point deficit into a 28-16 lead.

"We moved our lineup around a little bit to try to take care and get guys in situations where we thought we might need them," JCC head coach Randy Baker said. "The kids did a good job. We lost a couple matches and a couple guys didn't do what we wanted them to. Some of the guys did awesome and some of the guys were a little let down. But that's why it's team wrestling, somebody else picks you up.

"If we were completely happy with every match that was wrestled up here, it would be a miracle, and it's not going to happen. The other kids want it and the other teams want it and they are fighting for it, too."

Bronson Steuber started the streak with a 15-6 major decision at 135 and Luke Norland followed with a 5-4 win at 140. Darick Vancura gave the Huskies a 7-3 decision before a pair of quick falls.

William Baker earned a fall in 32 seconds to give JCC its first lead of the night and Patrick Hanson followed with a pin in 33 seconds, pushing the lead to 25-16.

Cooper Moore then recorded the sixth straight win with a 10-6 decision at 171.

Adam Josephson answered with a fall for the Vikings and Josh VanOverbeke had a 7-0 victory against Phibbs at 215, cutting the deficit to 28-25.

"They went back and forth and they split at the Rumble," Randy Baker said of Phibbs and VanOverbeke. "VanOverbeke is very good. We knew that was no guarantee at all and it was going to be a tough match."

But heading into the final match, Tewes has the Huskies' fate in his hands.

And he delivered.

"It felt really good," he said. "I'm still shaking; I'm pretty excited. I never had to do anything like that before. I was super happy that I could help my team get to the next level."

103 L. VanOverbeke (M) fall :45 Rossow, 0-6

112 Edlin (J) dec 7-3 Esping, 3-6

119 Engler (M) dec 5-3 Jurries, 3-9

125 Skillings (M) maj. dec 9-1 K. Moore, 3-13

130 Buysse (M) dec 3-2 P. Moore, 3-16

135 Steuber (J) maj dec 15-6 Swendzinski, 7-16

140 Norland (J) dec 5-4 I. Josephson, 10-16

145 Vancura (J) dec 7-3 Lessman, 13-16

152 Baker (J) fall :32 Longtin, 19-16

160 Hanson (J) fall :33 VanHecke, 25-16

171 C. Moore (J) dec 10-6 Abraham, 28-16

189 A. Josephson (M) fall :55 Menke, 28-22

215 J. VanOverbeke (M) dec 7-0 Phibbs, 28-25

Hwt. Tewes (J) fall :55 Fadness, 34-25

Quarterfinals

JCC 59, Pierz 16

There was a bit of déjà vu for Paden Moore early Thursday.

An eighth-grader on Jackson County Central's wrestling team, Moore was one of 11 Huskies to earn a victory, sending the defending champions into the semifinals with a convincing victory in the quarterfinals of the Class A state wrestling tournament.

"It brings back déjà vu," said Moore, who was a part of JCC's state championship team a year ago. "I'm just remembering this, going through this last year and how we picked it up. Hopefully we can do that again this year."

JCC, which earned the top seed in the tournament, took the first step toward a second consecutive title.

"We're not quite 100 percent, but we wrestled well," JCC head coach Randy Baker said. "They have some good kids and we beat a few of their good kids. It was a good effort."

The Pioneers took a quick 6-0 lead after a fall at 103 pounds, but the Huskies answered with five straight wins to take a 26-6 lead.

Jordan Biehn started the run with a fall in 5:03 at 112 and Eliot Jurries followed with a technical fall in 5:28 at 119.

At 125, Kegan Moore was trailing late, but tied the match at 7-all. However, he let up Brett Brausen, giving the Pioneer an 8-7 advantage. But Kegan answered with a late takedown, giving him the 9-8 decision.

"I was just telling him that the atmosphere is way different than any other tournament you've wrestled," Paden Moore said of his younger brother. "Just don't go out there and be nervous. That's the worst thing you can do. I think he went out there a little bit nervous, but then I think he came back real focused and ended up winning."

Then it was Paden's turn to have a little drama.

Trailing 5-2, he made his move.

"I was going to get on him and he shot a single," he said. "I was telling myself, if he takes me down, I'm just going to work and get back on him. That's what I did. I scrambled a little bit and he had another move. We just kept going."

Paden ended up in good position, turning Bradly Meyer to his back in 3:20.

"Our kids wrestled hard," Baker said. "I think 125 is an example. Kegan Moore was getting beat and he turned the match around and won. Paden got taken down, but he came back and got a win. There were some battles in there. They have a little different style and I talked to the kids about it. But until you wrestle, it's difficult."

Bronson Steuber recorded a fall in 3:04 for the Huskies, giving them a 20-point lead.

After a fall by Pierz, Darick Vancura gave JCC a win by fall in 40 seconds and William Baker won 6-5 at 152, pushing the lead to 35-12.

Pierz then won at 160, cutting the deficit to 35-16.

However, the final matches went so quickly, it was difficult for the public address announcer to keep up.

Cooper Moore (171) won by fall in 1:43, Tanner Menke (2:49) pinned his opponent in 2:49, Alex Tewes (215) had a fall in 1:09 and Brandon Pygman (heavyweight), who was trailing 7-1 at the time, earned a fall in 4:37 as the Huskies cruised to the victory.

"That is huge," Paden Moore said. "It gets the team going and gets us pumped. We just want to wrestle off that and build momentum. It's a good start to a good day."

103 Woitalla (P) fall 4:12 Rossow, 0-6

112 Biehn (J) fall 5:03 Meyer, 6-6

119 Jurries (J) tech fall 5:28 Sullivan, 11-6

125 K. Moore (J) dec 9-8 Brausen, 14-6

130 P. Moore (J) fall 3:20 Beyer, 20-6

135 Steuber (J) fall 3:04 Boser, 26-6

140 Poster (P) fall 3:24 Riggle, 26-12

145 Vancura (J) fall :40 Lanners, 32-12

152 Baker (J) dec 6-5 Tomala, 35-12

160 Huls (J) maj dec 14-1 Hanson, 25-16

171 C. Moore (J) fall 1:43 Lochner, 41-16

189 Menke (J) fall 2:49 Watyashek

215 Tewes (J) fall 1:09 Smude, 53-16

Hwt. Pygman (J) fall 4:37 Johnson, 59-16

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