Bucs go 2-0 against conference Saints
Sports cliches. A real nail-biter; you can throw the records out when these two teams meet; it came down to the wire.
That was the case Thursday night when wrestling rivals Blue Earth Area and St. James tangled in a conference dual in Blue Earth.
The Saints entered the dual listed in the “Lean and Mean” category of the latest Guillotine Class A team rankings, but the Bucs pulled off a 32-27 upset win.
“I think they had their tournament team out there tonight. I felt good about that,” Buc head coach Randy Wirtjes said about his team’s victory.
Going into the heavyweight match, St. James had won seven matches to BEA’s six and led 27-26.
Taking the mat for the Bucs was Jake Lee and for the Saints it was Anthony Lenz.
“I felt pretty good about our chances with Jake out there. Down by just one point, I was pretty confident,” said Wirtjes.
The Buc junior heavyweight did not disappoint the hometown fans. With 42 seconds left in the second period the referee slapped the mat, giving Lee a pin and the Bucs a five-point victory.
BEA jumped out to a 14-0 lead with Jake Wirtjes (103) getting a tech fall, D.J. Gronewald (112) a decision and Joe Franta pinning his opponent.
St. James got on the scoreboard when Ethan Hildebrandt, ranked No. 7 at 125 pounds, earned a tech fall win.
Senior Mark Bartley (130) answered with a 13-10 decision to build the Bucs lead to 17-5.
“Our lower weights were great. They gave us a quick start,” Wirtjes said.
The Saints inched closer to BEA with decision wins at 135 and 140. But, Dan Eckhardt took 2:41 to put his Saint opponent’s shoulders to the mat to give his team a 23-11 lead.
In the next five matches, only Cody Eckhardt was able to earn an 8-6 win at 160 pounds.
That set the stage for Lee.
“You have to give yourself a chance to win, and we did tonight. The big thing is we stayed off our backs. We didn’t give up many pins,” says Wirtjes.
BEA 32, St. James 27
103: Jake Wirtjes (BEA) tech fall Justin Miest, 17-0.
112: D.J Gronewald (BEA) dec. Matthew Tachelke, 3-0.
119: Joe Franta (BEA) pinned Brady Stauffer, 2:42.
125: Ethan Hildebrandt (St. James) tech fall Jared Resutek, 25-10.
130: Mark Bartley (BEA) dec. Ethan Pierson, 13-10.
135: Matt Westman (St. James) dec. Collin Nienhaus, 9-3.
140: Sam Koch (St. James) dec. Tyler Johnsrud, 7-3.
145: Dan Eckhardt (BEA) pinned Anthony Anderson, 2:41.
152: Hilaria Alvarado (St. James) maj. dec. Sinjin Bell, 11-3.
160: Cody Eckhardt (BEA) dec. Tayler Swanson, 8-6.
171: Rhys Tiedeken (St. James) pinned Clinton Nienhaus, 1:43.
189: Julio Zelaya (St. James) dec. Taylor Andrews, 3-1.
215: Ethan Hoppe (St. James) dec. Mat Willner, 11-8.
285: Jake Lee (BEA) pinned Anthony Lenz, 3:18.
BEA 46, St. Peter 25
St. Peter built a big lead, however, the Bucs rallied in the upper weights for a 46-25 conference win over the Saints on Jan. 25 in St. Peter.
BEA led 9-4 after a 6-3 decision from D.J. Gronewald at 112 pounds and Joe Franta’s pin at 119.
The Saints answered with a pin at 125, but Mark Bartley followed with a pin at 130 to put six points on the scoreboard for BEA and a 15-10 lead.
A decision, pin and a forfeit in the next three weights gave St. Peter a 25-15 lead.
The Bucs wouldn’t lose another match and dominated the dual in the last six matches.
After choosing to give up a forfeit at 145, Buc head coach Randy Wirtjes’ strategy of bumping up four wrestlers a weight class paid off.
Dan Eckhardt (152), Sinjin Bell (160), Taylor Andrews (189) all won by way of a fall and Cody Eckhardt (171) earned a major decision
Mat Willner added a pin at 215 and heavyweight Jake Lee posted a 5-3 win.
BEA 46, St. Peter 25
103: Nick Rybell (St. Peter) maj. dec. Jake Wirtjes, 10-0.
112: D.J. Gronewald (BEA) dec. Andy Bushell, 6-3.
119: Joe Franta (BEA) pinned Cody Keller, 4:43.
125: Ryan Timmerman (St. Peter) pinned Jared Resutek, 3:12.
130: Mark Bartley (BEA) pinned Cody Riebel, 4:43.
135: Brian Zabel (St. Peter) dec. Collin Nienhaus, 5-0.
140: Dustin Connor (St. Peter) pinned Tyler Johnsrud, 1:13.
145: Jim Wilkins (St. Peter) wins by forfeit.
152: Dan Eckhardt (BEA) pinned Tim Wilking, 2:36.
160: Sinjin Bell (BEA) pinned Tanner McLain, 1:45.
171: Cody Eckhardt (BEA) maj. dec. Tyler Chouanard, 12-4.
189: Taylor Andrews (BEA) pinned Alex Long, 5:04.
215: Mat Willner (BEA) pinned Cassidy Sanford, 2:47.
285: Jake Lee (BEA) dec. Brandon Zabel, 5-3.
Buc wrestlers won two of three dual meets at the Janesville/Waldorf/Pemberton Duals held Jan. 26 in Janesville.
BEA defeated River Valley and JWP 60-12 before losing 42-35 to Grand Meadow-LeRoy-Ostrander-Kingsland.
For the day, Buc 103-pounder Jake Wirtjes was 2-1 in his matches with two major decision for his wins. Mark Bartley had two pins for a 2-1 record at 130 and Cody Eckhardt was 2-1 with a tech fall and a pin at 171 pounds. Mat Willner also went 2-1 with a pin and a decision.
BEA 43, River Valley 23
103: Jake Wirtjes (BEA) maj. dec. Jacob Anderson, 13-3.
112: Zach Streich (River Valley) dec. D.J. Gronewald, 5-3.
119: Tony Vaske (River Valley) maj. dec. Joe Franta, 13-1.
125: Mitch Johnson (River Valley) dec. Jared Resutek, 7-5.
130: Collin Nienhaus (BEA) wins by forfeit.
135: Andy Kish (River Valley) dec. Mark Bartley, 7-6.
140: Bill Krueger (River Valley) pinned Tyler Johnsrud, 5:02.
145: Dan Eckhardt (BEA) wins by forfeit.
152: Sinjin Bell (BEA) wins by forfeit.
160: Cody Klinksiek (BEA) wins by forfeit.
171: Jared Roiger (River Valley) maj. dec. Cody Eckhardt, 9-1.
189: Taylor Andrews (BEA) wins by forfeit.
215: Mat Willner (BEA) dec. Jakoo Deberg, 10-4.
285: Jake Lee (BEA) wins by forfeit.
GMLOK 42, BEA 35
103: Noah Schlee (GMLOK) tech fall Wirtjes, 15-0.
112: Tyler Jennings (GMLOK) pinned Grone-wald, 5:41.
119: Franta (BEA) wins by forfeit.
125: Resutek (BEA) wins by forfeit.
130: Bartley (BEA) pinned Anthony McClinon, :42.
135: Caleb Leichtnam (GMLOK) maj. dec. Collin Nienhaus, 9-1.
140: Dylan Buchanan (GMLOK) pinned Johnsrud, 1:35.
145: Brennen Mensink (GMLOK) dec. D. Eckhardt, 4-3.
152: Mitchell Wolfgram (GMLOK) pinned Bell, :49.
160: Carter Brandt (GMLOK) pinned Klinksiek, :42.
171: C. Eckhardt (BEA) tech fall James Roe, 18-2.
189: Jacob Hamlin (GMLOK) pinned Andrews, 3:17.
215: Willner (BEA) pinned Scott Wilson, 4:34.
285: Lee (BEA) wins by forfeit.