Park wrestling: Wolfpack ousted from postseason by BlazeDespite earning a school-record 21 dual meet wins this season, the Park wrestling team’s season came to a premature end at the Section 3AAA tournament on Friday, Feb. 17, at Apple Valley High School.
By: Patrick Johnson, Sports Editor, South Washington County Bulletin
Despite earning a school-record 21 dual meet wins this season, the Park wrestling team’s season came to a premature end at the Section 3AAA tournament on Friday, Feb. 17, at Apple Valley High School.
The fourth-seeded Wolfpack fell 34-29 to fifth-seeded Burnsville in the opening round, ending the team-portion of the year.
Park fell behind 22-0 to open the match with the Blaze. At 138 pounds, the Wolfpack began to make its run, but came up just short as senior heavyweight Craig Sargent lost a must-win decision with Park down 31-29.
Down 22-0, Park sophomore David Giadyu earned the Wolfpack’s first win of the match with a 16-15 come-from-behind victory to cut the deficit to 22-3. Then, at 145 pounds, Park senior Kenny Gerhardt won 11-3 to make it a 22-7 score. After losses at 152 pounds and 160 pounds, Park was down 31-7 and needed five wins in the final five matches, with at least three pins, to steal a victory. At 170 pounds, senior Scott Johnston did his job, earning a 13-3 major decision to cut the Blaze’s advantage to 31-11, then Park reeled off three straight pins – by senior Nate Baumann, by sophomore Cody Linssen and by senior Tyler Liljedahl – to make it 31-29. But, that’s as close as Park would get.
Next, Park will hope to take out its frustrations from the loss at the Section 3AAA individual tournament on Feb. 24 and 25 at Eastview High School. At sections, the top two placewinners at each weight advance to the state tournament at Xcel Energy Center.