No. 2 Red Bulls capture Big South wrestling crown

TURNING POINT — Martin County Red Bulls wrestler Nathan Simmonds (top) starts to turn Marshall Tiger opponent Kadin Otto during 170-pound action in the Big South Conference championship dual meet Thursday night in Marshall. Simmonds went on to pin Otto in 51 seconds. (Photo by Kyle McAreavy)

MARSHALL — Undefeated no longer.

The Class AA No. 2-ranked Martin County Red Bulls put together nine consecutive wins to take a 45-19 win over the previously-unbeated No. 6-ranked Marshall Tigers during the Big South Conference wrestling championship Thursday in Marshall.

Martin County head coach Adam Williamson said winning both the Red Bulls’ conferences this week gives the team some momentum heading into the section tournament.

“We’re wrestling at a very good level right now,” Williamson said. “We’re offensive, we’re wrestling to score at the end of every period. We’re scoring to the end, it’s what we’ve instilled in these guys all along, it’s what they work hard for in practice every day and it’s showing on the mat. I feel like we’re in a good place to make a good run this year.”

After winning both the Valley Conference duals and Big South Championship this week, the Red Bulls look ahead to the first day of the two-day (Thursday and Saturday) Section 3AA team tournament next Thursday in Sherburn.

The Red Bulls’ No. 9-ranked 113-pounder Kain Sanders started the string of wins.

Marshall’s Dylan Louwagie built a 2-0 lead going into the final period. The pair started neutral in the final segment before Sanders forced a takedown with 47 seconds remaining to force sudden-victory overtime. Sanders then took down Louwagie with nine seconds left in the overtime period to take a 4-2 decision.

Martin County’s No. 3-ranked 120-pounder Lucas Jagodzinske followed with a 9-1 major decision over Hsa Khee Lar.

Jagodzinske built a 7-0 lead before allowing Lar to reach his feet with under a minute to go, then taking him to the mat to gain the extra team point.

No. 2-ranked 126-pounder Jaxson Rohman then earned five points for the Red Bulls with a 25-8 technical fall of No. 7-ranked 126-pounder Hsa Law Eh. Rohman went for an early pin in the first period, then returned to his catch-and-release strategy in the second period to build his lead, ending the match with 34 seconds left.

Blake Jagodzinske kept the run of extra points going for the Red Bulls at 132 pounds with a 9-1 major decision over Tate Condezo. Blake Jagodzinske used the same move as brother Lucas, releasing Condezo with 10 seconds left, then taking him down just before the final buzzer sounded to gain a fourth team point.

Martin County’s No. 2-ranked 138-pounder Connor Simmonds then quickly pinned Marshall’s No. 10-ranked 132 pounder Connor Roth in 1:04 to give the Red Bulls a 22-3 team advantage after six weights.

Williamson said he was proud of the way all the Red Bulls wrestlers fought through their matches.

“I thought they (Red Bulls) came out and wrestled extremely well right out of the gates,” Williamson said. “All the way through the lineup, everybody gave an awesome effort, a winning effort. Even though we fell short in a few matches, I thought we were in every last one. Our upper classmen pulled us through with some big wins, some big bonus-point victories and I’m really proud of our guys for taking the conference.”

Cale Steuber continued the streak of wins at 145 pounds with a comeback 3-2 decision over Noah Jensen. Jensen led 2-0 going into the final period, then Steuber escaped the down starting position and forced a takedown with 1:06 remaining to take the victory.

The Red Bulls’ No. 2-ranked 152-pounder Payton Anderson forced a quick fall of Tucker Fiene in 48 seconds before Martin County’s No. 2-ranked 160-pounder Miles Fitzgerald worked to an 11-2 major decision over No. 9-ranked 160-pounder Grant Louwagie.

Fitzgerald led 6-2 going into the third period, then forced a reversal from the down starting position into an immediate three-point near fall to take the extra team point for the Red Bulls.

No. 5-ranked 170-pounder Nathan Simmonds then forced Kadin Otto’s shoulders to the mat in 51 seconds for the final win of the Red Bulls’ streak.

No. 5-ranked 195-pounder Jacob Rahn earned the Red Bulls their final points of the matchup with a 14-1 major decision over Cole Felcyn. Rahn used two takedowns, an escape and three three-point near falls to build his advantage.

Brett Regnier started the dual on a high note for the Tigers, earning a 7-1 decision over Cooper Steuber at 106.

Spencer Wambeke ended the Red Bulls’ win streak with a 10-1 major decision over Max Olson at 182 and Ethan Van Hauwaert and Jackson Vierstraet closed the dual with back-to-back pins for the Tigers. Van Hauwaert pinned Shayne Steinbrink in 3:30 at 220 before Vierstraet shoved Everardo Hernandez’s shoulders to the mat in 2:27 in the heavyweight bout.

Red Bulls 45, Marshall 19

106: Brett Regnier (MAR) dec. Cooper Steuber, 7-1.

113: Kain Sanders (MC) dec. Dylan Louwagie, 4-2 OT.

120: Lucas Jagodzinske (MC) major dec. Hsa Khee Lar, 9-1.

126: Jaxson Rohman (MC) tech. fall Hsa Law Eh, 25-8, 5:26.

132: Blake Jagodzinske (MC) major dec. Tate Condezo, 9-1.

138: Connor Simmonds (MC) pinned Connor Roth, 1:04.

145: Cale Steuber (MC) dec. Noah Jensen, 3-2.

152: Payton Anderson (MC) pinned Tucker Fiene, 0:48.

160: Miles Fitzgerald (MC) major dec. Grant Louwagie, 11-2.

170: Nathan Simmonds (MC) pinned Kadin Otto, 0:51.

182: Spencer Wambeke (MAR) major dec. Max Olson, 10-1.

195: Jacob Rahn (MC) major dec. Cole Felcyn, 14-1.

220: Ethan Van Hauwaert (MAR) pinned Shayne Steinbrink, 3:30.

285: Jackson Vierstraete (MAR) pinned Everardo Hernandez, 2:27.


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