Quick start for MNW, C-G
DES MOINES – Payton Rice wasted little time imposing his will at the Class 1A state wrestling tournament Thursday night.
In his opening match inside Wells Fargo Arena, Manson Northwest Webster’s fourth-ranked 145-pound senior registered a 17-0 technical fall in 1:33 over AHST’s Kyle Bauerkuemper.
Rice, who has accumulated 176 career wins, will now face No. 2 Caleb Wedeking (39-1 overall) of North Butler in the quarterfinals. Rice is the son of MNW head coach Stacey Rice.
“I just expected a good match. You can’t take anything for granted, or that’s when you get in trouble,” said Payton Rice, who previously placed sixth, second and fifth here. “I don’t necessarily know if my gameplan is going to work, but I feel a lot better this year.
“(A state crown) is what everyone is shooting for.”
Sophomore Tim Butcher (285 pounds) also edged Logan-Magnolia’s Joe Graf in a 1-0 decision. Butcher (44-6) will now clash with third-ranked Luke Kuennen (36-1) from Turkey Valley.
No. 9 freshman Kaleb Simacek (132) and senior Lucas Dolder (182) each went 0-2 for the Cougars.
Fresh off their first-ever state duals championship, the No. 3 Cowboys received quarterfinal bids from second-ranked sophomore Justin Portillo (106), No. 2 sophomore Josh Portillo (113), fifth-ranked junior Joel Haberman (126), No. 5 senior Taylor Lehman (138) and fourth-ranked senior Mitch Gambrill (285).
Junior Ryan Anderson (182) advanced on the consolation side, while classmate Logan Nelson (152) was ousted with an 0-2 mark.
Justin Portillo (23-2) rolled to a 13-3 major decision against Wilton’s Tanner Greenwald, Josh Portillo (25-0) stayed unbeaten with an 18-3 technical fall over Jeremy Schmitz from Don Bosco, Haberman (33-7) downed Alburnett’s Jacob Koch by a 4-1 count, Lehman (33-5) earned a 5-1 decision over Lane Rummelhart of Guthrie Center, and Gambrill (35-6) beat East Mills’ David Howell, 4-2.
Anderson (22-15) pinned Josh Ramos from Cardinal of Eldon in 4:47 for his lone win.
Gambrill is a four-time state qualifier, who was fifth here last year. Haberman and Lehman also made trips to Des Moines in 2013.
Following the first session of 1A competition, Clarion-Goldfield sits in fourth place with 15.5 points. No. 1 Alburnett (31) paces the field.
South Central Calhoun
Fifth-ranked senior Cody Schoop (220) and No. 8 sophomore Rylan Richardson (195) each won their openers for the Titans. Schoop (26-4) pinned Guthrie Center’s No. 8 Cale Crowder in 3:33. Schoop will be paired in the quarterfinals against top-ranked Ryan Parmely (49-1) of Maquoketa Valley.
Richardson (41-6) bested Matt Naig from Sibley-Ocheyedan in a 9-3 decision. Richardson will next meet Exira/EHK’s No. 3 Trey Sander.
Ninth-ranked Tyler Kutz (170) went 1-1 for the Titans. After falling in his opener, 6-1, to Eddyville-Blakesburg/Fremont’s No. 5 Dillon Pigsley. Kutz rebounded with a 10-6 decision over Trevor Pagel of Sumner-Fredericksburg.
For the Indians, senior Tyler Hubrich (170) fell short in both of his matches. Hubrich (38-13) was pinned by West Marshall’s No. 3 Dale Hilleman in 1:42, while suffering an 8-3 setback to sixth-ranked Payton Housman from Riverside.
Senior Spencer Fluckiger (160) was eliminated from medal contention for the Eagles. Fluckiger (29-8) was pinned by Aplington-Parkersburg’s No. 9 Blake Pruisner in 5:22. He also lost by fall in 4:34 to Bryce Oveson of Wilton.
Tanner Lundgren (106) went 0-2 for the E-Hawks. Lundgren wrapped up his freshman season at 27-18.
Quarterfinal action in 1A starts at 3:30 p.m. this afternoon. Semifinals will take place at 9:35 p.m.