Egli earns bronze
DES MOINES – Class 3A state wrestling action ended with a split for Fort Dodge here Saturday inside Wells Fargo Arena.
Top-ranked senior Duke Egli (170 pounds) prevailed in each of his matches for a third-place finish, while No. 10 sophomore Erik Birnbaum (106) and ninth-ranked junior Riley Prescott (195) both placed eighth with 0-1 marks.
“It was a good state tournament overall for Fort Dodge,” FDSH head coach Bobby Thompson said. “I was happy for our three guys that were able to medal.”
After blanking Pleasant Valley’s No. 6 Brady Lettney by a 6-0 count in the consolation semifinals, Egli (41-1 overall) then won by an injury default 25 seconds into his bout against second-ranked Dustin Fuller of Sioux City North.
Egli, a three-time state qualifier, previously halted Fuller’s perfect season with a 9-0 shutout in the quarterfinals. Fuller appeared to re-aggravate a right leg injury suffered in his other battle with Egli.
“Duke left a lasting legacy for Fort Dodge wrestling,” said Thompson. “To come back after having your dreams dashed, and get what I consider two huge wins against tough opponents – shows a lot of character.”
Egli, who was eighth here a year ago, wrapped up his standout career with 111 triumphs.
Birnbaum (37-9) was pinned by Cedar Rapids Prairie’s No. 5 Sam Uthoff in 4:55. Prescott (30-17), a two-time state participant, also dropped a 12-0 major decision to Casey Becker from Cedar Rapids Prairie.
“Now, that our underclassmen (Birnbaum, Prescott, freshman Cole Detmering and junior Kole Evans) all have a taste of (state experience), they need to stay hungry and keep pushing hard in the weight room,” Thompson said. “Those guys can look to Duke as a positive role model.”