Dominance — is not a word often associated with Beckman wrestling in the recent past. But it was a word in everyone’s mind during the Blazers’ home quadrangular, Jan. 27, with Maquoketa Valley, Bellevue and Clayton Ridge.
Of the 16 actual matches wrestled that night by the Blazers, 14 of them went to the green-and-gold. They took out Maquoketa Valley, 72-6, Bellevue, 66-4, and Clayton Ridge, 73-0.
Of the four contested against the Wildcats, Evan Wulfekuhle wrestled up at 195 to pin Carter Kruse (5:47), Jason Koopmann (220) returned to the lineup to make quick work of Devin Smith (1:47) and Nick Hageman (138) took out Michael Schaul (5:13). Tim Harman earned the lone Wildcat points with a pin of Ty Fangman at 170 (3:25).
The next match against Bellevue, the Blazers wrestled several matches, beginning with Wulfekuhle, back at 182, with a 10-3 decision over Luke Giesemann. Nick Schmidt (106) pinned Will Steinbeck (1:00), Danil Wall (120) did the same to Jared Fite (1:07) and Levi Feldman (126) needed little more time to take down Dustyn Talbot (1:33). Hageman got a close 3-2 decision over TyQuan Strowder and Nick Wulfekuhle (160) pinned Jayden Keane (1:19). Conner Grover (152) gave up a major decision to Zach Roeder (14-3) for their only points.
Against Clayton Ridge, Koopmann won by fall over Josh Hertenstein (1:58), as did Fangman over Andrew Mitchell (1:56) and Evan Wulfekuhle over Easton Harber (1:50). Schmidt built a 6-0 decision and Alex Hageman (113) got a major decision over Eric Flores (15-3).
All other Blazer points came from forfeits, 23 of them in total. Both Mason Recker (145) and Bennett English (285) were awarded three of them. Only Evan Wulfekuhle wrestled three matches.
Coach Cody Ortman commented, “We had mixed feelings about the meet, due to the lack of wrestlers the three schools had. When you have a home dual, you want it to be exciting but it was hard to accomplish that when some of our guys never even got a match.
“The guys who did wrestle, though, put on a show for the last home meet of the year. They all looked for bonus points because now it the time we don’t want close matches, we want to build leads that prove to the refs that we are the winners for certain. Only losing two matches in three duals, even though the duals were not that big, speaks volumes about where the kids are mentally and physically. In the matches we lost, we saw some good things. Ty is starting to open up more on his feet and is beginning to learn he has a powerful offense when he executes like we know he can. Conner was really looking forward to getting some redemption tonight, even though the scoreboard doesn’t show it, but he closed the gap on that Bellevue kid and scored in two of three areas. He got a takedown, an escape and just missed a set of backs on top. I believe he can be the victor when those two wrestle next.
“All in all, we are very happy with the way the kids wrestled tonight and feel that we are peaking at the right time, looking forward to this weekend’s WaMaC tournament.
“On another note, we also paid respect to the Tom and Julie Hageman family who have done incredible things for our wrestling program as a whole and during Tom’s time with the Little Blazers program. They have helped me in many ways with the program since I first started as the junior high coach a few years ago. They are some hard workers and there are things in this program that wouldn’t be where they are today if not for them.”