'Pack grapplers storm through Rochester invitational, take first place
If this squad ever struggled with injuries, its opponents last week sure couldn't tell.
Park High School's wrestling team tore past New Richmond (Wis.) 46-26 last Tuesday, then beat Mounds View 35-30 last Thursday in Suburban East Conference play before rolling to a first-place finish at the Rochester Century Panther Invite last Saturday.
Five Wolfpack wrestlers won their weight classes, helping Park win the nine-team individual meet with 197.5 points ahead of runner up Cannon Falls (192) and third-place finisher Henry Sibley (183).
"It was a good tournament for us," said Park coach Jim LaBrosse. "We avenged a couple losses from earlier in the year. ... It's just good to see our team coming together. The big thing was having seven kids in the finals."
Matt Van Horn (140 pounds), Jared Flaata (160), Chris Schilling (171), Tyler Kennedy (189) and Cole Allery (215) each went undefeated at their respective weight classes and claimed championships. Carson Pederson (135) and Zach Gehrman (152) each suffered one loss on the day and took second place, while Mitch Yaritz (145) was third. Nick Arrigoni (119), Jake Holton (130) and Kevin Pattain (275) each took fifth.
The victory came after a five-point win over Mounds View -- an SEC must-beat, as Park improved to 13-8 (5-2 SEC) and is tied with the Bears for second place in the league race.
Mounds View collected wins at the first six weight classes before Van Horn's 15-4 major decision over Andrew Balzer at 140 pounds gave the Wolfpack its first win of the evening.
"Matt had lost to him in the placing round at the Minnesota Christmas tournament, 7-6," LaBrosse said. "It was a great win for Matt and it jump- started the team as well."
Yaritz followed at 145 pounds, pinning Jeremy Van Tassel at 1:47. Gehrman beat Terry Mulvaney 19-8 by major decision at 152 pounds and Flaata lost in the last seconds to Connor Finn, 14-12, making the 160-pound match one of the best of the night, LaBrosse said.
Schilling pinned John Thompson at 3:15 at 171 pounds, Kennedy pinned Jeremy Hill in 50 seconds at 189, Allery pinned C.J. Reim at 1:00 at 215 and Pattain beat Diego Vega 4-1 at heavyweight.
The meet came after an inter-state dual with New Richmond (Wis.), where the night began at 152 pounds. (Wisconsin draws for the starting weight class.) Gehrman came away with a 17-1 win, followed by an 18-1 victory by Flaata at 160. Schilling (171) earned a pin at 1:00, Kennedy (189) won by fall in 19 seconds and Allery (215) claimed a 5-4 decision.
Pederson won 12-6 at 135 pounds, while Van Horn and Yaritz won by fall at 140 and 145, respectively.
Rochester Century Panther Invite
1, Park 197.5 points; 2, Cannon Falls 192; 3, Henry Sibley 183; 4, Southland 140.5; 5, Rochester Century 131; 6, Farmington 126; 7, Eden Prairie 106.5; 8, Minneapolis Southwest 41.5; 9, Fairmont 26
Park individual results
119, Nick Arrigoni (2-2) fifth place
125, Jeremy Simmons (0-2)
130, Jake Holton (2 -2) fifth place
135, Carson Pederson (2-1) second place
140, Matt Van Horn (3-0) first place
145, Mitch Yaritz (3-1) third place
152, Zach Gehrman (2-1) second place
160, Jared Flaata (3-0) first place
171, Chris Schilling (2-0) first place
189, Tyler Kennedy (2-0) first place
215, Cole Allery (3-0) first place
275, Kevin Pattain (1-2) fifth place
PARK 35, MOUNDS VIEW 30
103, Blake Fosness (Mounds View) fall Kenny Gerhardt, 3:54
112, Paul Holt (Mounds View) forfeit
119, Brandon Bigelbach (Mounds View) maj Alex Hansen, 9-0
125, Richard Carlson (Mounds View) dec Jeremy Simmons, 9-2
130, Sam Louwagie (Mounds View) dec Jake Holton, 5-2
135, Matt Piersak (Mounds View) maj Carson Pederson, 10-2
140, Matt Van Horn (Park) maj Andrew Balzer, 15-4
145, Mitch Yaritz (Park) fall Jeremy Van Tassel, 1:47
152, Zach Gehrman (Park) maj Terry Mulvaney, 19-8
160, Connor Finn (Mounds View) dec Jared Flaata, 14-12
171, Chris Schilling (Park) fall John Thompson, 3:15
189, Tyler Kennedy (Park) fall Jeremy Hill, :50
215, Cole Allery (Park) fall CJ Reim, 1:00
Hwt, Kevin Pattain (Park) dec Diego Vega, 4-1