Ridout gets taste for finals
East Marshall/GMG junior edged out by reigning champ for 126-pound crown
DES MOINES — East Marshall/GMG standout Dominik Ridout waited and worked for this moment all season long. Not just a shot at a state title, but a chance to beat the state’s No. 1 wrestler at 126 pounds in Class 2A — Crestwood’s Carter Fousek.
The junior got his chance Saturday night at Wells Fargo Arena, giving the two-time state champion a tough match before losing via a 6-4 decision to finish second place in his weight class.
While he wasn’t thrilled with the outcome, Ridout (25-2) said it was a great opportunity.
“I felt like I gave it my all,” Ridout said. “I got caught up in his duck-unders and he was getting to his ties and stuff. I knew it was coming half the time but I think in my head I was trying to go for a big move.
“That last takedown felt great, especially in the finals.”
Fousek (30-0) scored three takedowns — two in the first period and one in the second period — to take a 6-2 lead heading into the final two minutes.
But in the third period, Ridout fought back and got a takedown of his own, getting back within two with less than a minute left. It led to a tense finish which didn’t go in the Mustang wrestler’s favor, but did provide him with ample motivation for 2021-22.
“That takedown really gave me motivation for next year, knowing that I just scored four points on a three-time state champ,” Ridout said.
It was the end of a good weekend for East Marshall/GMG: senior Conner Murty finished in third place in Class 2A at 220 pounds after ending the season ranked fourth in the state at his weight class.
Murty won his consolation semifinal match in the morning against No. 10 Gage Marty of Solon via a 6-3 decision. In the early afternoon against third-ranked Crew Howard of Clarinda, Murty took an early lead and was up 5-3 in the third period. Howard scored two points and then had Murty trying to hang on during the match’s closing stages.
In sudden victory, Murty said he wanted to attack and put Howard on his back foot.
“I wanted to end my senior year with a win, so I did,” Murty said. “The hard work paid off.”
Murty (34-2) said he went 12-24 his freshman season, and was proud of the improvements he made to not just reach state but make it onto the podium. Murty was a state qualifier a year ago at 195 pounds, going 1-2 in his first of two trips to state.
SOUTH TAMA COUNTY
Logan Arp finished his junior season with an impressive display Saturday, winning via pin in his consolation semifinal against ninth-ranked Reily Dolan of West Delaware and taking less than three minutes to do it.
He then faced off against fifth-ranked Brock Moore of Forest City in the third-place match. There was no pin, but Arp (22-7) put on a clinical performance to score first and then pace the match on his way to a 7-4 decision and a third-place finish in his weight class. He ended the year ranked No. 4 at 132 pounds in Class 2A and with just one loss over state tournament weekend.
Arp said his strategy at the beginning of each match is to be aggressive and get on the board first,
“It was tough, I tried to stay on my offense,” Arp said. “Control the pace and just wrestle smart and I knew I could win. I just love scoring first, I love getting the first points. It puts the match in my pace and how I want to do it, so I love scoring points and scoring fast.”
Arp wasn’t the only Trojan to take part in the placewinner matches Saturday. His teammate, Brayden Smith, finished off his senior year with a sixth-place finish at 195.
Smith went 0-2 on Saturday, losing in the consolation semifinals to fourth-ranked Reese Moore of Forest City via a 6-4 decision.
In the fifth-place match, Smith went up against seventh-ranked Matthew Wirtz of Emmetsburg. Fighting hard throughout the match, neither opponent was able to take a commanding lead on the board or on the mat. Smith was one point behind with less than 10 seconds left and was close to making a move to get the takedown needed to win before time ran out.
Smith (28-9) was frustrated with the defeat but was happy to find his way to the medal stand in what was his final wrestling competition.
“I was just happy to be on the podium this year since last year I didn’t win a match down here,” Smith said. “It didn’t really go my way, but I think I should have probably turned him in the first when I had a chance. I came a long way.”