CONRAD - Zach Underhill is hoping the third time is the charm. And Jay Reisetter is just doing what he has always done.
Both wrestlers from East Marshall/GMG advanced to districts on Saturday after taking the titles at their respective weight classes during a Class 2A sectional at Conrad.
Underhill and Reisetter were two of four Mustangs who advanced and the entire team will do battle at least one more time Tuesday after finishing second in the team standings.
T-R PHOTO BY TROY HYDE
East Marshall/GMG junior Zach Underhill, top, cruised to another Class 2A sectional championship Saturday in Conrad. The Mustang junior avenged an earlier season loss in the 120-pound championship bout when he pinned Charles City’s Jake Niichel.
"We came in here hoping to get second as a team, but we also thought we could advance five to seven guys," East Marshall/GMG coach Troy Underhill said. "Getting four through is positive though."
The Mustangs scored 181.5 points in second and bested third-place Hampton-Dumont by 12.5. Charles City crowned eight champions and ran away with the team title. scoring 285.5 points. South Hardin-BCLUW was fourth with 159 points, Iowa Falls-Alden took fifth with 138 and GRNT-GC was sixth with 79.
East Marshall/GMG will host the first portion of regional team duals in Le Grand on Tuesday. The unseeded Mustangs will face No. 8 seeded Union Community in Round 1. The other matchup is Bondurant-Farrar and Grinnell.
1. Charles City 285.5; 2. East Marshall/GMG 181.5; 3. Hampton-Dumont 169; 4. BCLUW-South Hardin 159; 5. Iowa Falls-Alden 138; 6. Gladbrook-Reinbeck/Grundy Center/North Tama 79.
District Qualifiers (top two)
106-First: Maxwell Forsyth (CC) maj. dec. Carter Barkema, 10-0; True Second: Barkema pinned Micah Dorow (EM/GMG), 0:48. 113-Johnny Etherington (CC) pinned Ethan Erhardt (GRNT-GC), 3:48. 120-Zach Underhill (EM/GMG) pinned Jake Niichel (CC), 2:51; True Second: Niichel dec. Spencer Wilkenson (H-D), 5-4. 126-Austin Hoeft (CC) pinned Sawyer Anderson (SH-BCLUW), 3:48; True Second: Max Upah (EM/GMG) injury default Anderson. 132-Wyatt Forsyth (CC) maj. dec. Luke Bahr (IF-A), 11-1; True Second: Omar Martinez (GRNT-GC) pinned Bahr, 0:34. 138-Adam Staudt (CC) pinned Luke Asche (SH-BCLUW), 5:50. 145-Alex Mitchell (CC) pinned Mason Eisentrager (IF-A), 1:02. 152-Jesse Etherington (CC) tech. fall Devin Yilek (EM/GMG), 17-1. 160-Tyler Lutes (SH-BCLUW) dec. Grant Lehmann (H-D), 8-5. 170-Josh Bauer (H-D) pinned Dalton Beadle (EM/GMG), 2:18; True Second: Zach Milks (CC) pinned Beadle, 0:46. 182-Jay Reisetter (EM/GMG) pinned Michael Duryee (IF-A), 1:56; True Second: Taylor Cole (CC) maj. dec. Duryee, 19-5. 195-Luke Johnson (CC) pinned Blake Cooper (SH-BCLUW), 1:13. 220-Kendrick Suntken (H-D) maj. dec. Deonce Cushinberry (SH-BCLUW), 11-3. 285-Mario Pena (H-D) dec. Nate Judge (EM/GMG), 3-1; True Second: Dalton Hamm (CC) pinned Judge, 3:32.
The Mustangs' Senior Night was cancelled this year due to inclement weather. Reisetter is excited to have one more chance to wrestle as a team.
"It's going to be cool to have a Senior Night again," he said.
The other Mustangs heading to districts are Max Upah at 126 pounds and Devin Yilek at 152. The biggest surprise was at heavyweight where Mustang senior Nate Judge, ranked No. 7, was ousted 3-1 in the finals and then pinned in the wrestleback, ending his season with a record of 24-8.
"It is tough to lose a match in the finals and then have to come back and wrestle again," Coach Underhill said. "It is hard to get your focus back. He was frustrated and just didn't get re-focused. It is what it is, but it is unfortunate for (Judge)."
SH-BCLUW advanced four to the districts as Tyler Lutes won the 160-pound title and Deonce Cushinberry (220), Blake Cooper (195) and Luke Asche (138) all finished in second.
"It was a good average day," SH-BCLUW co-coach Mike Olson said. "We wrestled hard though. We have nothing to lose moving forward, so we'll try to get ready."
GRNT-GC did not wrestle with a full lineup but still managed to send two to the next level. Both Omar Martinez (132) and Ethan Erhardt (113) were runner-ups at their weights.
"All of our kids got better as the season went on," GRNT-GC co-coach Rick Samuelson said. "We are very young. We need to just see the end of the tunnel and keep fighting. Good things will happen for us eventually, and they did for Omar and Ethan today."
Reisetter, who is ranked No. 7, advanced to the state tournament last year and did not disappoint Saturday despite wrestling a bit under the weather. He won his first match 14-7 and then pinned Michael Duryee of Iowa Falls-Alden in 1:56 in the championship match. He is now 38-3 on the season.
"It feels good to move on again," Reisetter said. "I think I am peaking at the right time. I just need to take it one match at a time and get back down to Des Moines."
Underhill will be in the district tournament for the third straight season. The junior has come up short with two third-place finishes in the first two tries but appears to be peaking at the right time this February.
Underhill, who is ranked No. 9, won both of his matches by fall and was on the mat for less 5 minutes. The junior is now 42-5 on the year.
"I have been wrestling pretty well lately," Zach Underhill said. "It awesome to get through again. Hopefully the third time is the charm."
Underhill was seeded second because of a loss to top-seed Charles City's Jake Niichel at the Hudson Invitational on Jan. 12. He faced Niichel in the finals Saturday and disposed of him in 2:51.
"He got pinned earlier by that guy," Coach Underhill said. "He's getting tougher on his feet, and he is not done."
It is the first trip to districts for Upah and Yilek.
Upah lost his first match at 126 by fall but came all the way back to take second. He advanced into the wrestleback match with a technical fall win and then was given an injury forfeit when SH-BCLUW's Sawyer Anderson was knocked unconscious.
Yilek went 1-1 on the day at 152. He won his opening match 6-5 and then lost to No. 2 ranked Jesse Etherington of Charles City by a 17-1 techincal fall in the final. He did not have to wrestleback.
Lutes had to wrestle just once for the Storm at 160 as just three wrestlers entered the weight class. He beat Grant Lehmann of Hampton-Dumont for the second time this year, winning 8-5 in the finals.
"It is hard to wrestle just once because you usually like to get a few warm up matches in before the finals," said Lutes, who finished third the past two years at sectionals. "You just have to warm up really well. But I was more motivated this time around."
The earlier meeting resulted in a 10-8 win. Lutes is now 42-4 on the season.
"It is tremendously difficult to wrestle just once, but he controlled the match on his feet," Olson said. "He got out quick, but the other guy rallied. He needs to do a better job of wrestling his match."
Cushinberry, Cooper and Asche all went 1-1 but none of them had to wrestleback to advance.
Cushinberry won his first match by fall in 40 seconds but suffered an 11-3 setback in the finals to Kendrick Suntken of Hampton-Dumont. Cushinberry is 39-8 on the year but is 0-2 against Suntken (33-11).
"He has to believe he can do it," Olson said of Cushinberry. "He only weighs 200 pounds though. His weight class will be tough at districts but he always has a chance because of his hips and athleticism."
Cooper won his first match by fall and lost in the finals by fall. He takes a 17-19 record into districts. Asche won his first match by decision and lost his second by fall. He is 35-15 on the year.
Martinez had to wrestle four times for the Rebelhawks. The junior won his first match by fall and then dropped a major decision to the eventual champion Wyatt Forsyth of Charles City in the semifinals.
He bounced back though with back-to-back pins. The first came against East Marshall/GMG's Talon Roseland as he trailed 4-1 before winning by fall in 3:34.
In the wrestleback, Martinez pinned top-seeded Luke Bahr of Iowa Falls-Alden in 34 seconds to advance. He is 35-19 on the year.
"He has had to come from behind all year," Samuelson said of Martinez. "He busts his tail, and we keep telling him if you put in the effort, good things will happen."
Erhardt will be at districts for the second straight season. He only wrestled twice and went 1-1 with a win by fall and loss by fall. He did not have to wrestleback as East Marshall/GMG's Steven Proffitt took third after losing to Erhardt in the semifinals.
"Ethan did what he had to do today," Samuelson said. "Both he and Omar have put in the time. They deserve this."
Judge, Micah Dorow, Rean Webb and Dalton Beadle all came up one spot shy of advancing. Dorow went 2-2 on the day at 106, while Beadle won his first two matches to reach the finals at 170 but then lost two straight, including a wrestleback to now 21-21 Zach Milks of Charles City. Webb was 1-1 at 145.
Judge won his first match by fall in 5:00 but then suffered a 3-1 upset at the hands of Mario Pena of Hampton-Dumont. In the wrestleback, Judge was pinned by Charles City's Dalton Hamm in 3:32.
Judge beat Hamm at the Hudson Invitational on Jan. 12 by fall in 1:26.