Punching tickets: Dickinson qualifies 15 wrestlers at West Region

The final matches didn't result in a West Region championship for Dickinson senior Devin Berger or junior Austin Hutzenbiler. However, the main goal at the West Region Tournament was accomplished -- qualify for the state tournament. "The only pla...

Austin Hutzenbiler
Press Photo by Royal McGregor Dickinson junior Austin Hutzenbiler, right, wrestles against Kael Knowlen of Bismarck High during the 120-pound championship of the West Region Tournament on Saturday at DHS gymnasium.

The final matches didn’t result in a West Region championship for Dickinson senior Devin Berger or junior Austin Hutzenbiler.
However, the main goal at the West Region Tournament was accomplished - qualify for the state tournament.
“The only place that really matters is state,” said Berger, who finished runner-up at 126 pounds. “I’d rather lose here than lose at state. I’m content with how I wrestled today, besides maybe my finals match. Overall, it was a good day.”
The Midgets punched 15 tickets to the state tournament during the West Region Tournament on Saturday at DHS gymnasium.
“Today was kind of a love-hate day,” Dickinson co-head coach Adam Orton said. “We have 15 qualify and fourth in the region. That was some high points. As far as matches went, there were a lot of heartbreakers and also some good stuff we saw. It was give and take.”
Berger and Hutzenbiler placed runner-up at 120 and 126 pounds, respectively. As a team, the Midgets finished fourth with 125 points.
“It’s always your goal to win,” Hutzenbiler said. “You never want to lose. It doesn’t matter what match it is. You always want to win.”
Bismarck High led the way with 277 points, while Turtle Mountain came in runner up with 217.5 points.
Leading the way for the Demons was senior Ryan Blees. The Oklahoma State bound wrestler is a three-time state champion. Blees, who was named West Region senior of the year, collected first-period pins in all four matches en route to claiming the 160-pound title.

“I felt great,” said Blees, who is the No. 1-ranked wrestler in the nation at 160 pounds. “We’ve had some great training coming into this tournament. We’ve really tone in peaking at this time. I was ready to go, but more importantly our team was ready to go. We wrestled very well and came out dominated like we wanted to.”
Blees believes the Demons have a chance to break West Fargo’s streak of back-to-back state and team titles. In the previous two years, Bismarck has finished runner-up.
“It’s going to be a showdown this year,” he said. “The last two years they beat us, so we are kind of looking for some revenge. We are going to go out and wrestle tough. We truly believe we have a shot this year.”
The Midgets qualified at least one wrestler in every weight classes except for 160. The Midgets qualified a pair of wrestlers at 120 and 126 pounds. Hutzenbiler and Jaret Lee qualified at 120 and Berger and Brian Rodriguez qualified at 126.
“We’ve all been working hard this year,” Berger said. “It was nice to see it finally show. It’s a pretty good feeling when your full team makes to state for individuals and duals.”
One Dickinson wrestler, which saw peaks and valleys at the West Region Tournament was Clayton Tangen. The junior was 12 seconds away from reaching the finals at 152 pounds. Tangen held a 5-2 lead, but in the next 12 seconds lost 8-5 to Bismarck Century’s Jacob Rader.
Tangen dropped his next match in a 3-0 to Dale Spilman of Mandan. He said the thoughts from the semifinal match were still lingering. Tangen managed to put the past aside and take a 13-0 major decision over Jason Moore to finish in fifth place.
“It really carried over to my next match,” he said. “My mindset just wasn’t in the right place. I just wasn’t thinking clearly. It opens your mind up that you can’t keep thinking about stuff like that. You just have to let it go.”
Out of the 15 qualifiers, 13 can score points for the Midgets at the North Dakota Class state tournament which begins on Thursday at the Bismarck Civic Center.
“It just kind of a bummer that only one of them can score of us when we are at state,” Orton said of the two unattached wrestlers. “But the (unattached) wrestlers keeps other teams from scoring. We can hoarder them up. It’s pretty cool that we got them both in there.”

West Region Tournament
At DHS gymnasium
Team scores: 1, Bismarck High 277; 2, Turtle Mountain 217.5; 3, Bismarck Century 201; 4, Dickinson 125; 5, Bismarck St. Mary’s 121; 6, Mandan 119.5; 7, Minot 98; 8, Jamestown 91; Williston 62.
First round: Eric Spilman, unattached, dec. Layton Lambert, unattached, 4-1. Brody Armstrong, Minot, pin. Lucas Wetsch, BC, 1:34. Easton Crissler, TM, dec. Todd Irwin, D, 9-4.
Quarterfinals: Dillon Spaulding, B, pin. Spilman, 2:58. Parker Nein, unattached, maj. dec. Austin Luther, W, 12-1. Armstrong, Minot, maj. dec. Matthew Leier, unattached, 8-0. Ryan Zachmeier, Mandan, tech. fall Crissler, 20-5.
Consolation second round: Crissler maj. dec. Lambert, 13-0. Luther, pin. Wetsch, :25. Irwin, dec. Spilman, 5-2.
Consolation quarterfinals: Luther pin. Irwin, 1:34. Leier pin. Crissler, 2:12.
Semifinals: Spaulding, B, pin. Nein, unattached, 3:19. Zachmeier, Mandan, maj. dec. Armstrong, Minot, 13-1.
Consolation semifinals: Nein maj. dec. Leier, 10-0. Armstrong maj. dec. Luther, 13-1.
Seventh place: Crissler dec. Irwin, 6-2.
Fifth place: Luther dec. Leier, 9-2.
Third place: Armstrong medical forfeit Nein.
Championship: Spaulding, B, pin. Zachmeier, Mandan, 5:35.
First round: Nathan Humann, BC, tech. fall Casey Loeks, SM, 21-6. Jaksen Perrin, unattached, pin. Kane Barnick, J, 2:00.
Quarterfinals: Humann tech. fall Patrick Farrell, W, 16-1. Caden Haugen, D, pin. Jordan Eli, TM, 5:26. Perrin pin. Trevis LaRocque, unattached, :36. Taylor Nein, B, tech. fall Peter Folk, Minot, 15-0.
Consolation second round: Folk dec. Loeks, 5-4 OT. Eli pin. Barnick, :40.
Consolation quarterfinals: LaRocque dec. Folk, 5-2. Eli maj. dec. Farrell, 10-2.
Semifinals: Humann pin. Haugen, 1:07. Nein maj. dec. Perrin, 10-0.
Consolation semifinals: Haugen pin. LaRocque, 2:34. Perrin dec. Eli, 12-5.
Seventh place: Farrell dec. Folk, 6-2.
Fifth place: Eli pin. LaRocque, :47.
Third place: Perrin dec. Haugen, 6-1.
Championship: Nein dec. Humann, 4-2.
First round: Kael Knowlen, B, pin. Gage Vega, 2:31.
Quarterfinals: Austin Hutzenbiler, D, maj. dec. Roy Isom, W, 20-8. Christopher Longie, TM, dec. Tyler Stranberg, 6-4 OT. Clay Roberts, BC, dec. Jaret Lee, unattached, 6-3. Knowlen tech. fall Matthew Schafner, SM, 18-2.
Consolation second round: Isom dec. Vega, 8-1.
Consolation quarterfinals: Stranberg dec. Isom, 2-1. Lee maj. dec. Schafner, 10-2.
Semifinals: Hutzenbiler dec. Longie, 10-3. Knowlen pin. Roberts, 2:52.
Consolation semifinals: Longie dec. Lee, 9-4. Roberts maj. dec. Stranberg, 12-3.
Seventh place: Schafner dec. Isom, 9-2.
Fifth place: Lee pin. Stranberg, :54.
Third place: Longie dec. Roberts, 10-7.
Championship: Knowlen maj. dec. Hutzenbiler, 12-1.
First round: Devin Stein, unattached, pin. Austin Barchenger, 1:02.
Quarterfinals: Tate Barnhardt, SM, pin. Stein, 1:47. Clifton Vivier, TM, pin. Carson Mosser, Minot, 4:26. Alex Hoffman, B, dec. Bobby Edick, BC, 4-0. Devin Berger, D, pin. Brian Rodriguez, unattached, 1:50.
Consolation second round: Rodriguez pin. Barchenger, 4:21.
Consolation quarterfinals: Edick dec. Rodriguez, 13-11, OT. Mosser maj. dec. Stein, 14-0.
Semifinals: Barnhardt pin. Vivier, 3:15. Berger dec. Hoffman, 3-1.
Consolation semifinals: Edick dec. Vivier, 8-7. Hoffman maj. dec. Mosser, 11-2.
Seventh place: Stein pin. Rodriguez, 4:46.
Fifth place: Vivier maj. dec. Mosser, 9-1.
Third place: Hoffman dec. Edick, 4-1.
Championship: Barnhardt pin. Berger, 1:42.
First round: Collin Grumann, SM, dec. Raif Horswill, 10-9. Brandon Zachmeier, Mandan, pin. Kyle Dupre, 1:44.
Quarterfinals: Lane Kaseman, B, pin. Grumann, :46. Ethan Benham, Minot, medical forfeit Chris Willits, BC. Zachmeier pin. Austin Huck, SM, 5:07. Grant Laducer, TM, tech. fall Thomas Irwin, 17-0.
Consolation second round: Irwin dec. Horswill, 7-0. Dupre medical forfeit Willits.
Consolation quarterfinals: Huck pin. Irwin, 4:55. Grumann dec. Dupre, 15-10.
Semifinals: Kaseman pin. Benham, 2:46. Laducer maj. dec. Zachmeier, 9-0.
Consolation semifinals: Huck pin. Benham, 4:17. Zachmeier pin. Grumann, 2:04.
Seventh place: Irwin pin. Dupre, :20.
Fifth place: Benham pin. Grumann, :27.
Third place: Zachmeier pin. Huck, 4:04.
Championship: Laducer dec. Kaseman, 9-4.
First round: Hunter Eckert, BC, pin. Justin Herz, :56. Tanner Crissler, TM, pin. Ethan Cermak, 1:26.
Quarterfinals: Cut Zachmeier, Mandan, pin. Austin Wetsch, unattached, 2:43. Eckert dec. Logan Boese, B, 6-1. Paxton Mewes, J, dec. Creighton Rudoph, Minot, 6-0. Crissler pin. Michael Cherwinski, D, 1:17.
Consolation second round: Rudoph maj. dec. Herz, 12-3. Wetsch pin. Cermak, :56.
Consolation quarterfinals: Rudoph pin. Cherwinski, 3:43. Wetsch medical forfeit Boese.
Semifinals: Zachmeier dec. Eckert, 8-6, OT. Crissler dec. Mewes, 4-0.
Consolation semifinals: Eckert maj. dec. Rudoph, 12-1. Mewes dec. Wetsch, 7-0.
Seventh place: Cherwinski medical forfeit Boese.
Fifth place: Rudoph dec. Wetsch, 5-4.
Third place: Eckert dec. Mewes, 2-0.
Championship: Zachmeier dec. Crissler, 8-6, OT.
First round: Dane Fischer, SM, pin. Lucas Shirley, unattached, 1:30. Jakob Browning, J, dec. Tyler Norpel, W, 11-5.
Quarterfinals: Fischer, SM, pin. Isaac Fleck, M, 2:49. Samuel Solbert, unattached, dec. Tanner Bickford, TM, 7-3. Brandon Domagala, BC, pin. Browning, 3:21. Adam Blees, B, tech. fall Jose Dimas, 16-1.
Consolation second round: Dimas pin. Shirley, 4:25. Bickford pin. Norpel, 2:07.
Consolation quarterfinals: Dimas maj. dec. Browning, 17-7. Fleck dec. Bickford, 4-3.
Semifinals: Fischer pin. Solberg, 2:45. Blees tech. fall, Domagala, 16-1.
Consolation semifinals: Solberg dec. Dimas, 8-3. Domagala dec. Fleck, 7-2.
Seventh place: Bickford maj. dec. Browning, 8-0.
Fifth place: Fleck dec. Dimas, 5-3, OT.
Third place: Domagala dec. Solberg, 4-3.
Championship: Fischer dec. Blees, 5-2.
First round: Dale Spilman, Mandan, pin. Austin Arneson, unattached, 1:37. Jacob Rader, BC, pin. Drew Topp, J, 1:26.
Quarterfinals: Ricky Galindo, B, pin. Matthew Rabe, Minot, 2:45. Eugene Fleetwood Jr., pin. Spilman, 1:07. Clayton Tangen, D, dec. Rowman Horswill, W, 6-2. Rader pin. Jason Moore, unattached, 1:29.
Consolation second round: Horswill pin. Arneson, 2:05. Rabe dec. Topp, 13-10.
Consolation quarterfinals: Moore dec. Horswill, 10-6. Spilman maj. dec. Rabe, 10-0.
Semifinals: Galindo maj. dec. Fleetwood, 13-5. Rader dec. Tangen, 8-5.
Consolation semifinals: Fleetwood pin. Moore, 1:42. Spilman, dec. Tangen, 3-0.
Seventh place: Horswill pin. Rabe, 1:00.
Fifth place: Tangen maj. dec. Moore, 13-0.
Third place: Fleetwood dec. Spilman, 3-2.
Championship: Galindo maj. dec. Rader, 15-6.
First round: Ryan Blees, B, pin. Brett Doeden, unattached, :40. Cameron Rants, BC, pin. Sam England, D, 1:16.
Quarterfinals: Blees, pin. Derek Frantsvog, Minot, 1:40. Ian Brown, SM, medical forfeit Matt Elder, unattached. Samuel Ravnass, Mandan, pin. Royce Horswill, W, 2:39. Geraldo Fox, TM, pin. Rants, :49.
Consolation second round: Rants pin. Doeden, 2:24. Frantsvog pin. England, 1:43.
Consolation quarterfinals: Rants pin. Horswill, 2:44. Frantsvog medical forfeit Elder.
Semifinals: Blees pin. Brown, 1:41. Fox pin. Ravnass, 4:32.
Consolation semifinals: Rants dec. Brown, 14-7. Ravnass dec. Frantsvog, 5-0.
Seventh place: Horswill medical forfeit Elder.
Fifth place: Brown dec. Frantsvog, 3-2.
Third place: Ravnass pin. Rants, :37.
Championship: Blees pin. Fox, 1:58.
Quarterfinals: Hunter Babeck, BC, pin. Hunter Swartwout, unattached, :30. Ahren Gwynn, W, dec. Rafael Lopez, D, 3-0. Jake Sanders, B, pin. Brek Laducer, TM, 4:43. Caleb Ellingson, J, pin. Tyler Kolobakken, Minot, 1:28.
Consolation quarterfinals: Laducer dec. Kolobakken, 10-8, OT. Lopez dec. Swartwout, 9-2.
Semifinals: Babeck pin. Gwynn, 4:22. Ellingson dec. Sanders, 11-4.
Consolation semifinals: Gwynn pin. Laducer, 4:30. Lopez dec. Sanders, 1-0.
Seventh place: Swartwout maj. dec. Kolobakken, 15-2.
Fifth place: Sanders pin. Laducer, 3:58.
Third place: Gwynn dec. Lopez, 5-3.
Championship: Babeck dec. Ellingson, 3-1.
First round: Brandon Rodriguez, TM, pin. Mason Schlosser, Mandan, 3:39.
Quarterfinals: Rodriguez pin. Nathan Sandy, SM, 1:21. Coy Turnquist, W, pin. Chandler Aarfor, BC, 2:41. Triston Shipley, J, pin. James Hamilton, Minot, 1:51. Josh Brilz, B, pin. Justin Meyer, D, 2:00.
Consolation second round: Meyer dec. Schlosser, 3-2.
Consolation quarterfinals: Meyer dec. Hamilton, 3-1. Aarfor pin. Sandy, 4:38.
Semifinals: Rodriguez dec. Turnquist, 8-3. Shipley dec. Brilz, 9-5.
Consolation semifinals: Turnquist maj. dec. Meyer, 10-1. Brilz pin. Aarfor, 2:58.
Seventh place: Sandy dec. Hamilton, 3-1.
Fifth place: Aarfor medical forfeit by Meyer.
Third place: Turnquist pin. Brilz, 4:50.
Championship: Shipley dec. Rodriguez, 10-6.
First round: Tommy Sease, B, pin. Eli Wickum, Minot, 2:37.
Quarterfinals: Eathan Gumke, J. pin. Benaiah Simburger, Mandan, 1:38. Jesse Rodriguez, TM, pin. Steven Charboneau, unattached, 2:22. Sease dec. Bret Sandberg, 3-2, OT. Trace Moravec, BC, pin. Sterling Quintanilla, D, 4:54.
Consolation second round: Charboneau pin. Wickum, 1:41.
Consolation quarterfinals: Quintanilla medical forfeit by Sandberg. Simburger maj. dec. Charboneau, 12-2.
Semifinals: Gumke pin. Rodriguez, 5:08. Moravec dec. Sease, 5-3.
Consolation semifinals: Rodriguez dec. Quintanilla, 3-2. Sease dec. Simburger, 5-2.
Seventh place: Charboneau medical forfeit by Sandberg.
Fifth place: Quintanilla pin. Simburger, 3:13.
Third place: Rodriguez dec. Sease, 5-0.
Championship: Gumke dec. Moravec, 6-2.
First round: James Dancing Bull, Minot, dec. Jaron Olson, 8-5.
Quarterfinals: Shawn Greenwood, BC, pin. Matt Gunsch, :36. Austin Braunagel, SM, dec. Dual Keck, D, 3-1. Willie Sam, B, dec. Kyle Anderson, J, 11-6. Waylon DeCoteau, TM, pin. Dancing Bull 3:59.
Consolation second round: Olson dec. Gunsch, 9-6.
Consolation quarterfinals: Dancing Bull pin. Anderson, 2:39. Keck dec. Olson, 6-5, OT.
Semifinals: Greenwood dec. Braunagel, 7-0. DeCoteau pin. Sam, 2:55.
Consolation semifinals: Dancing Bull pin. Braunagel, 2:48. Sam pin. Keck, 2:25.
Seventh place: Olson dec. Anderson, 5-1.
Fifth place: Keck dec. Braunagel, 11-6, OT.
Third place: Dancing Bull dec. Sam, 9-4, OT.
Championship: Greenwood dec. DeCoteau, 7-6.
First round: Jackson Grad, SM, pin. Skylar Ford, unattached, 1:07. Chris Poitra, unattached, pin. Austin Schwandt, J, 2:45.
Quarterfinals: Grad pin. Tanner Krefting, BC, 1:06. Chris Sickler, D, dec. Tyson Keplin, TM, 3-2. Tristan Hall, B, pin. Poitra, 5:00. Isaiah Crowe, Minot, pin. Mikael Fetch, Mandan, 4:15.
Consolation second round: Keplin medical forfeit by Schwandt.
Consolation quarterfinals: Poitra pin. Fetch, 1:16. Keplin pin. Krefting, :53.
Semifinals: Grad dec. Sickler, 11-6. Hall dec. Crowe, 4-1.
Consolation semifinals: Poitra pin. Sickler, :40. Keplin dec. Crowe, 3-1, OT.
Seventh place: Fetch pin. Krefting, 2:49.
Fifth place: Crowe dec. Sickler, 3-2, OT.
Third place: Keplin dec. Poitra, 10-3.
Championship: Hall dec. Grad, 3-2.

Devin Berger
Press Photo by Royal McGregor Dickinson senior Devin Berger, left, wrestles Bismarck St. Mary’s Tate Barnhardt during the 126-pound championship of the West Region Tournament on Saturday at DHS gymnasium.

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