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Ranweiler, Drill, Kamm advance to state semifinals for NUA

Photo courtesy of Kyle McAreavy/Fairmont Sentinel New Ulm Area’s Parker Kamm wrestles during the 2021 state prelims at Redwood Valley High School in Redwood Falls on Saturday.

REDWOOD FALLS — New Ulm Area senior Cole Ranweiler, junior Jaden Drill and freshman Parker Kamm all gave New Ulm wrestling fans something to cheer about Saturday at the 2021 State Individual Wrestling Preliminaries.

As a result of their performances on Saturday at Redwood Valley High School, Ranweiler, Drill and Kamm each punched their ticket to the state semifinals/finals in Class AA on Friday at St. Michael-Albertville High School.

Ranweiler (182) overpowered Waseca’s Payton Garza to start his day and pinned him in 42 seconds before moving on to take on Nate Drumm of Mankato East. Against Drumm, Ranweiler took just 10 seconds longer to secure a pin and move on to the preliminary finals against Tri-City United’s Brody Rud.

In that first-place match, Ranweiler got an early takedown for a 2-0 lead after the opening period.

Ranweiler and Rud then remained on their feet for more than a minute to start the second before Ranweiler exploded for a takedown and got it with 46 seconds left in the period. In the third, Ranweiler got an early escape and held off Rud the rest of the way for a 5-0 decision, giving him a 3-0 record on Saturday and moving him on to Friday.

Photo courtesy of Kyle McAreavy/Fairmont Sentinel New Ulm Area’s Logan Lee works to fend off a takedown during the 2021 state prelims at Redwood Valley High School in Redwood Falls on Saturday.

“I thought that I came out and did my stuff,” Ranweiler said. “The last kid was pretty good, but I feel like because I came out and trusted what I was taught, I came out on top.”

Ranweiler also said that he’s happy to be advancing to Friday alongside Kamm and Drill.

“I’m really happy for the kids on this team that advanced,” Ranweiler said. “I feel for Parker Kamm because he’s going as a ninth-grader, and I went as a ninth-grader for my first time. It was just the best experience I ever had.”

Drill (285) had a tough matchup right out of the gate, taking on Mankato East’s Rieley Fleming, who was 28-2 coming into Saturday. Drill scored a takedown on Fleming in the first period before a slam that led to a DQ on Fleming ended the bout in the second period (2:11), giving Drill the win.

“First round kind of caught me off guard,” Drill said. “I got slammed and then he got disqualified, so I moved on. … But otherwise, every other match went kind of how I expected.”

Photo courtesy of Kyle McAreavy/Fairmont Sentinel New Ulm Area’s Jaden Drill wrestles during the 2021 state prelims at Redwood Valley High School in Redwood Falls on Saturday.

Drill then took on Carson Schoenbauer of Scott West. Drill got a takedown 30 seconds in before being penalized late for clasping. He led 2-1 after the first period.

Drill then cradled Schoenbauer for a 3-point near fall and led 5-1 after two periods. In the third, Drill got an escape before being taken down and allowed back up late as Schoenbauer looked to score in a hurry. Drill took Schoenbauer’s back after a takedown in the closing seconds, though, to put things away with a 9-3 decision.

In the prelim finals, Drill took on New London-Spicer senior Nick McKenzie, who had a 31-1 record coming into Saturday. McKenzie got a takedown in the first period before Drill closed the period with an escape to trail 2-1.

McKenzie got an escape early in the second and led 3-1 entering the third. Drill got an escape early in the third and then worked for an underhook in the final minute. With seconds to go, Drill was unable to get a takedown and fell by a 3-2 decision.

That loss knocked him down to a true-second match. The match didn’t happen, however, because Fleming won the third-place match and had already lost to Drill earlier. That led to Drill moving on after a no contest.

Photo courtesy of Kyle McAreavy/Fairmont Sentinel New Ulm Area’s Cole Ranweiler wrestles during the 2021 state prelims at Redwood Valley High School in Redwood Falls on Saturday.

Drill said that he’ll look to continue being strong with his escapes on Friday.

“My bottom position, I’ve been doing pretty solid on escapes and stuff,” Drill said. “I just need to keep that up, and conditioning could get a little better.”

Kamm advanced to Friday after securing a dramatic upset win over Redwood Valley’s Carter Brandt in a true-second match. Brandt, the No. 2-ranked 106-pounder in Class A coming into Saturday, made Kamm quite the underdog.

Kamm, who hasn’t been ranked in the Top 10 all season, fell to Brandt earlier on March 2 by a 7-4 decision at New Ulm High School.

In the rematch, Kamm scrambled for a takedown and got it early on for a 2-0 lead. Brandt got a quick reversal, however, after a reset in the middle for a 2-all tie. Kamm then answered that reversal with one of his own for a 4-2 lead before quickly cradling Brandt for the pin in 1:37.

“It was a good time,” Kamm said of his win over Brandt. “He came off a loss, he was down in the dumps — you know, it’s a good time to strike. It was a fun time wrestling him again. But my thought going into that was, ‘Let’s just have a good match here,’ and everything like that. And after the match, I was happy.”

Kamm (106) started his Saturday off by taking on Tri-City United’s Ayden Balma. Balma eked out a 2-1 decision over Kamm, dropping Kamm to the consolation bracket.

Kamm then took on Waseca’s John Feeley. After being taken down early by Feeley, Kamm collected 13 consecutive points to lead 13-2. Kamm ended up with a 17-9 major decision and moved on to a meeting with Dawson-Boyd-Lac Qui Parle Valley-Montevideo United’s Daniel Gunlogson.

Gunlogson held a 2-0 lead over Kamm with less than 10 seconds to go in the third period before Kamm managed a last-second reversal to tie it up and force an extra period. In the overtime period, Kamm got a takedown for the 4-2 win.

Kamm then took on Balma in a rematch from earlier in the day, this time in a third-place match. After a scoreless first period, Balma got a reversal in the second for a 2-0 lead.

Kamm got a reversal back late in the period to tie things at 2-all. In the third, Kamm got an escape, quickly followed it up with a takedown and held on from there for a 5-2 decision to advance to the true-second match with Brandt.

While the state experience ended for five other Eagles that made it to state prelims on Saturday, the NUA wrestling team can still be proud that it advanced a program-record eight wrestlers to state.

Also wrestling for the Eagles on Saturday were Logan Lee (113), Winsten Nienhaus (120), Marqavian Haefner (132), Wyatt Pollard (138) and Julian Hernandez (220).

Nienhaus was first pinned by Waseca’s Mason Gehloff in 1:41, dropping him to a consolation match with Tri-City United’s Zach Balma. Zach Balma got an escape in the first period before Nienhaus got an escape of his own in the third period.

A late takedown by Zach Balma was enough to pick up a 3-1 decision, however, and eliminate Nienhaus from the tournament.

Haefner had his hands full right away when he took on Watertown Mayer-Mayer Lutheran’s Austin Gabbert, who entered Saturday with a 30-1 record. Gabbert picked up a 16-1 tech fall after multiple late near-fall points in the second period. Haefner was then eliminated after being pinned in 23 seconds by St. Peter’s Noah Hunt.

Pollard first fell to Waseca’s Oliver O’Brien by a 15-3 major decision before Delano’s Wally Scherer eliminated him from the tournament after a pin in 55 seconds.

Hernandez started his day off impressively, pinning Hutchinson’s Brady Andersen in 2:15. He was then defeated by Marshall’s Grant Louwagie with a 7-0 decision, knocking him into the consolation bracket and a meeting with WMML’s Hunter Stein.

Hernandez got an early takedown in the opening minute but was quickly reversed to tie things up at 2-all. Less than a minute later, Stein secured a pin in 1:37 to advance in the consolation round and eliminate Hernandez.

CLASS A RESULTS FROM THE AREA

Springfield 145-pound senior Joe Anderson entered Saturday’s Section 2A/3A prelims in Windom with a perfect 31-0 record. While his unbeaten streak ended Saturday, his strong day still moved him on to this coming Saturday’s Class A semifinals/finals.

Anderson rolled to a 2-0 start early on Saturday. He first defeated Blue Earth Area’s Parker Meyers by an 8-2 decision before beating Jackson County Central’s Coltan Bents by a 6-3 decision.

That moved him to a prelim finals match, where he took on Minneota sophomore Zack Fier. Fier ended up with 5-4 decision win.

Anderson then ended his day against United South Central’s Micah Hamson in a true-second match and cruised to a 17-9 major decision. That win allowed Anderson to advance to next Saturday.

Also competing for the Tigers on Saturday was 170-pound senior Kadin Johnson. Johnson dropped his first match of the day to Cooper Oschendorf of Maple River by pin in 3:21.

Johnson then beat Kenyon-Wanamingo’s Dillon Bartel (12-1 major dec.) and Red Rock Central’s Vander Mathiowetz (fall, 3:49) to move on to a third-place match and rematch with Oschendorf. Oschendorf then earned a 13-0 major decision to eliminate Johnson.

For Wabasso, Tyler Bliss (182) and Hunter Taylor (220) were eliminated from the tournament after going 1-2 each. Bliss’s win came in the consolation bracket against Preston Nelson of Adrian Area (fall, 5:57), while Taylor’s win came over Adrian Area’s Roberto Hernandez (fall, 0:28) in the consolation bracket.

Also on Saturday, Sibley East’s Derek Steele (126) and Drayden Morton (132) earned themselves a trip to next weekend’s Class A semifinals/finals.

Derek Steele went 3-0, beating Kimball Area’s Gavin Winter by a 10-3 decision in the finals. Morton went 3-0 also, pinning Caledonia-Houston’s Isaac Blocker in 1:10 in the finals.

Also competing for the Wolverines on Saturday were Benito Diaz (106), Logan Steele (113), Josh Sotelo (138), Jacob Hernandez (195) and Omar Martinez (285).

Diaz dropped his first match to Dover-Eyota’s Damon Bye before beating Howard Lake-Waverly-Winsted’s Raydon Graham (fall, 0:39) and Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City’s Edwyn Gonzalez (9-5 dec.) to advance to a third-place match. The third-place match ended up being a rematch with Bye, and Bye picked up a 10-8 decision to eliminate Diaz.

Logan Steele went 1-1 before falling to Kimball Area’s Jack Bollman by a 7-4 decision in the consolation semifinals and being eliminated. His win came in the consolation round over Grand Meadow/LeRoy-Ostrander/Southland’s Aiden Quintata by an 11-3 major decision.

Sotelo also went 1-1 before being eliminated in the consolation semifinals by pin in 1:35 against Caledonia-Houston’s Tucker Ginther. Sotelo’s win came against Alex Nelson of Kimball Area due to injury default.

Hernandez and Martinez each went 2-1 with a pin apiece to move on to third-place matches. Hernandez, who defeated Mason Barker of Triton (fall, 3:20) and Colton Long of Howard Lake-Waverly-Winsted (5-4 dec.), fell to Chatfield’s Campbell Berge by pin in 2:27 to be eliminated from the tourney.

Martinez defeated Blake Carlson of Goodhue (5-1 dec.) in a quarterfinal match and Spencer Walsh of Dover-Eyota (fall, 3:16) in a consolation semifinals match to advance to his third-place match. In the third-place match, Martinez picked up an 8-0 major decision over Kimball Area’s Ace Meyer.

Martinez’s time at state ended after a true-second match with Eden Valley-Watkins’ Austin Schlangen when Schlangen earned a 5-1 decision.

The state semifinals/finals begin Thursday at St. Michael-Albertville High School with Class AAA. Class AA follows that up on Friday, while Class A wraps up the tournament on Saturday.

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