Eight members of the Superior High School wrestling team advanced to the WIAA Division 1 Sectionals with their performances at Saturday’s regional in New Richmond.
Needing to finish in the top four of their respective weight class, the Spartans had two regional champions in Oscar Flaherty at 220 pounds and Branden McClure at 145 pounds.
Gunnar Gronski (195) finished in second place; Wyatt Johnson (106), Jack Androsky (126) and Caden Stone (138) finished in third place; and Logan Stone (152) and Dylan Lowney (285) came in fourth.
Flaherty improved to 35-2 on the season with pins over Hendrick Boese, Eau Claire Memorial; Ryan Muller, New Richmond; and Sam Thompson, Menomonie.
McClure will take a record of 33-6 into sectionals after winning a 6-2 decision over River Falls’ Garrett Borth and pinning Hudson’s Peter Hansen.
Gronski and Johnson were the only other two Spartans to advance to first-place matches.
Gronski advanced to the championship match when he pinned Menomonie’s Isaiah Munoz and won a sudden victory over Hudson’s Alonzo Madsen. He was pinned by River Falls’ Chance Kamrowski in the first-place match, but rebounded to pin Travis Messer of New Richmond in the second-place match.
After receiving a bye, Johnson won a 13-3 major decision over Menomonie’s Zach Evenson, but was pinned by Hudson’s Leo Draveling in the first-place match and by New Richmond’s Matt Harle in the second-place match.
“What a great performance by our wrestlers,” SHS coach Bob Coleman said. “We really pulled together as a team. Everyone contributed today -- even the guys that did not make the trip. We talk all year that we are only as strong as our weakest link so everyone from freshman to varsity works hard to push each other and prepare the team to do their best.
“The seniors have done a nice job leading this team and it is great to see their hard work pay off. Seniors like Sam Oosten, DJ Martin, James Kirchoff and Gabe Anderson have really helped this team get prepared for today. True, we had four guys in the finals, but they owe it to guys like those four seniors and the rest of the team.”
As a team, the Spartans finished in third place with 158 points. Hudson (228.5) finished first and River Falls (213) was second.
“My prayer for the team every time we go to compete is that it is a positive experience for everyone,” Coleman said. “Today was a very positive experience and another big step in Spartan wrestling. They just keep getting better every week and are peaking at the right time of the season.
“I’m so proud of every one of our wrestlers with so many first-year guys, but they just keep working hard by focusing on the process which allows them to learn and grow every day as a wrestler and an athlete.”
The sectional tournament is at 10 a.m. Saturday at Wausau West.
The top two finishers in each class will advance to state Feb. 22-24.
WIAA D1 Reg. 1
Saturday, Feb. 10 at New Richmond
- Hudson, 228.5; 2. River Falls, 213; 3. Superior, 158; 4. New Richmond, 147.5; 5. Menomonie, 118; 6. Eau Claire Mem., 98; 7. Chippewa Falls, 95.5; 8. Eau Claire North, 81.
106 - Wyatt Johnson (13-21), third place: received a bye; def. Zach Evenson (Menomonie), MD 13-3; pinned by Leo Draveling (Hudson), 1:35; pinned by Matt Harle (New Richmond), 2:30.
113 - Tucker Johnson (11-19), fifth place: lost to Tyler Harris (NR), 6-2; received two byes; lost by rule to Harris (NR).
120 - Austin Mills (11-23), did not place: pinned by Michael Rebozo (River Falls), 1:21; lost to Daniel Moucha (Chippewa Falls), 8-3.
126 - Jack Androsky (24-9), third place: def. Bryce Hunsberger (Hudson), MD 13-2; lost to Liam Huset (ECM), 7-0; pinned Cooper Andrea (RF), 3:32; lost by rule to Huset (ECM.
132 - Landon Lathrop (11-20), fifth place: pinned by Leonard Robinson (RF), 5:24; received a bye; def. Tyler Wathke (ECM), 8-3; lost by rule to Robinson (RF).
138 - Caden Stone (22-14), third place: pinned Austin Smith (CF), 3:30; pinned by Mason Phillips (ECM), 2:52; pinned Chris Haviland (Men.), 0:34; lost to Vincent Fanning (Hudson), 6-5).
145 - Branden McClure (33-6), first place: received a bye; def. Garrett Borth (RF), 6-2; pinned Peter Hansen (H), 2:58.
152 - Logan Stone (25-12), fourth place: def. Caleb Hatch (H), 8-3; lost to Sam Skillings (Men.), MD 13-1; lost to Dylan Wachter (NR), 11-6; won by rule over Hatch.
160 - Nathan Anderson (8-14), DNP: pinned by Nathan Fehlen (NR), 0:58; pinned by Zach Crotty (ECM), 1:46.
170 - Joe Carter (16-22), fifth place: pinned by Cody Cicha (H), 3:29; pinned Braeden Gefeke (NR), 0:39; def. Michael Haller (ECN), 12-11; lost to Jacob Haviland (Men.), 6-4.
182 - Lars Root (4-19), DNP: pinned by Evan Sirianni (ECM), pinned by John Hedrington (ECN), 2:42.
195 - Gunnar Gronski (18-6), second place: pinned Isaiah Munoz, (M), 0:46; won sudden victory over Alonzo Madsen (H), 16-14; pinned by Chance Kamrowski (RF), 3:26; pinned Travis Messer (NR), 3:46.
220 - Oscar Flaherty (35-2), first place: pinned Hendrick Boese (ECM), 1:01; pinned Ryan Muller (NR), 3:16; pinned Sam Thompson (M), 2:13.
285 - Dylan Lowney (20-14), fourth place: pinned Dean Nash (ECN), 1:52; pinned by Cole Godbout (H), 0:24; lost to Taylor Pahl (CF), MD 9-1; pinned Anders LeMire (NR), 1:45.