By Pete Temple, Express Sports Editor
Four Monticello Panthers extended the wrestling season with top-two finishes in the Class 2A sectional tournament held Saturday, Feb. 2 in Dyersville.
Logan McQuillen won the championship at 160 pounds. Three others finished second - Dalton Husmann at 120 pounds, Ben Ahlrichs at 126 and Daniel Pike at 285.
All four will wrestle in the district meet Saturday, Feb. 9 at West Delaware in Manchester.
West Delaware dominated the team scoring, with 305 points. Dubuque Wahlert was second with 184, Dyersville Beckman third with 171.5, and Monticello fourth with 151.
“Coming into Saturday, I thought we could get more than four guys in,” Monticello coach Ryan Luensman said. “The team wrestled hard, but we got caught in some bad positions at times. I was pleased with our effort.”
McQuillen, a senior, received a bye, pinned his semifinal opponent and then won the title on a medical default.
“Logan did everything he needed to do,” Luensman said. “One of the toughest wrestlers in our school history, Logan just needs to relax and wrestle Saturday and it will all come together.”
Ahlrichs won a major decision in his semifinal match, lost in the finals, and had to wrestleback for the true second spot, which he secured with a second period pin.
“Moving down to 126 was a great move for Ben,” the coach said. “He did a great job of winning his wrestleback in a tough battle. Ben is known for his running, but is one heck of a wrestler for the limited experience he has.”
Husmann scored a pin in the semifinals to reach the finals, was pinned there, but didn’t have to wrestle back and finished second.
“As a freshman, Dalton has shown he can wrestle at a very high level when he chooses to,” Luensman said. “He fought through a tough semifinal match and made a mistake in the finals. He learns every time he steps on the mat and is always in the match.”
Pike was one of just two wrestlers in the 285 bracket. His only match was a finals loss to the top-ranked heavyweight in the state, Dean Broghammer of West Delaware.
“Playing two sports has been an experience this year for Daniel, and he has had some great wrestling accomplishments throughout the year,” the coach said. “Daniel is a dangerous heavyweight when he is patient and sticks to his game plan.”
Two other Panthers won third place matches but didn’t get a wrestleback opportunity: Anthony Kinley at 113 and Jordan Barker at 138. Peyton Paddock (145) and Devin Arduser (195) were fourth.
“Anthony Kinley has continued to impress us with his progress,” Luensman said. “He lost a tough semifinal match. Jordan Barker had a tough semifinal loss as well. Peyton Paddock continued avenging earlier losses by beating a Beckman wrestler in double overtime. Trent Aitchison had some good matches as well at 152. Seniors Jayson Hebdon, Devin Arduser and Colton Halder finished their seasons. We are proud of these boys for all their commitment and effort throughout the season.”
The district qualifiers will compete Saturday starting at noon. Each weight class will have four wrestlers, and the top two in each weight class will advance to the state tournament.
Class 2A Sectional
1, West Delaware 305; 2, Dubuque Wahlert 184; 3, Dyersville Beckman 171.5; 4, Monticello 151; 5, Cascade 84; 6, Anamosa 73.
(wrestlers in bold advance to district meet)
106 - Olivia Sunlin (fifth place) lost by major dec. to Brad Ertl, DB, 9-1; received two byes.
113 - Anthony Kinley (third) pinned Ted Ehrlich, DB, 1:10; lost to Rees Hauder, DW, 8-2, pinned Jacob Redmond, C, 3:45.
120 - Dalton Husmann (runner-up) received a bye, pinned Matt Wigginton, DW, 5:49; was pinned by Sam Phillips, WD, 1:40.
126 – Ben Ahlrichs (runner-up) received a bye; won by major dec. over Jacob Lange, DW, 10-1; was pinned by Dallyn Putz, WD, 1:10; pinned Ben Hageman, DB, 3:59.
138 – Jordan Barker (third) received a bye; was pinned by Levi Lawrence, DB, 5:27; pinned Curtis Turpin, C, 0:24.
145 – Peyton Paddock (fourth) dec. Nic Reinert, DB, 5-4 (2OT); was pinned by Zach Muller, WD, 1:07; was pinned by Isaac Coohey, C, 2:29.
152 – Trent Aitchison (fifth) was pinned by Tyler Hirsch, DB, 5:38; received a bye; pinned Evan O’Connell, C, 4:29.
160 – Logan McQuillen (champion) received a bye; pinned Logan Kutsch, DB, 2:35; won by medical default.
171 – Jayson Hebdon (sixth) was pinned by Tyler Ries, C; received a bye; was pinned by Liam O’Conner, DB, 1:50.
182 – Luke Knipper (fifth) lost to Quinn Summy, A, 11-5; received two byes.
195 - Devin Arduser (fourth) received a bye; was pinned by Chris Sullivan, DW, 2:38; was pinned by Scott Taylor, WD, 1:43.
285 – Daniel Pike (runner-up) received two byes; was pinned by Dean Broghammer, WD, 1:39.
PHOTO: The four Panthers who will compete in the Class 2A district meet Saturday, from left: Daniel Pike, sectional champion Logan McQuillen, Dalton Husmann and Ben Ahlrichs. (Photo by Pete Temple)