DES MOINES – Newton High senior Blayden Rhone didn’t enter the Iowa High School State Wrestling Championships as a ranked wrestler. But he showed in his quarterfinal match that he belonged in the conversation.
Rhone went toe-to-toe with Class 3A third-ranked Brandon Tessau of Waukee. The difference in the 182-pound match was a third-period escape point by Tessau as he advanced to the semifinals with a 3-2 win.
Unfortunately for Newton’s trio of wrestlers, there won’t be any state medals in 2018. After Rhone’s quarterfinal loss to Tessau, the Cardinals went 0-3 in their wrestleback matches.
Seventh-ranked Prairie City-Monroe sits eighth in the team standings after the early session. A pair of Mustangs were eliminated, but junior Lucas Roland advanced to the 2A semifinals at 170 and freshman Colby Tool (138) and Wes Cummings (160) both won their wrestleback consolation matches to stay alive.
Rhone (31-15) was defeated 5-2 by ninth-ranked Braxton Bolden (13-3) of Cedar Rapids Jefferson in his consolation wrestleback.
“He was right there in both matches,” Newton wrestling coach Andy Swedenhjelm said. “He knows his game plan and knows what he wants todo.”
Before Rhone’s match with Bolden was complete, Newton junior Jaise Gulling got eliminated by fall on another mat. Gulling (32-12) was pinned by seventh-ranked Triston Licht (18-7) of Fort Dodge.
Sophomore Gage Linahon needed a win at 220 to avoid the 0-4 round, but he suffered an overtime loss to LeMars’ Travis Theisen. The match was 1-1 early in third period after both wrestlers scored escape points.
Ninth-ranked Linahon (35-11) nearly pulled off the win when he scored a takedown in the final 15 seconds. Unfortunately, Theisen rolled him over for the reversal with 1 second left on the clock.
Theisen (37-11) got a takedown early in Sudden Victory and put Linahon to his back for the pin.
“That’s a young guy mistake. That’s something he’ll learn from,” Swedenhjelm said. "Next time he’s in that spot and he feels pressure,he’ll just push him away and win the match.
“He had a fantastic season. He took a big step forward.”
Swedenhjelm says goodbye to Rhone but both Gulling andLinahon return.
“All these kids mean the world to me. Blayden has been in that room for four years and did everything he could for us,” Swedenhjelm said.“He’s been a great kid that does everything you ask. It was great to see him finish his career down here.
“Jaise took another step forward and getting here was huge for him,” Swedenhjelm said. “I am really excited to get the two returners back in the room, doing some freestyle and see what they can do next year.”
The Mustangs had 25.5 points and remained in the hunt in the 2A standings. They were a half-point back of Centerville and ninth-ranked Davenport Assumption.
No. 1 New Hampton and No. 2 Dubuque Wahlert are out in front, tied for the lead with 40 points. Sixth-ranked South Tama County was two points back in second followed by third-ranked West Liberty (31) and fourth-ranked Ballard (26.5).
Roland grabbed his third career state medal in Friday’s early session. He won his quarterfinal match 8-3 over West Delaware’s Jack Neuhaus.
Roland grabbed a quick lead in his quarterfinal match and never trailed. He led 4-1 after one and 6-2 after two. His takedown with 24seconds left sealed the victory.
PCM went 2-2 in its consolation wrestlebacks.
Tool won his 138-pound wrestleback 7-0 over ninth-ranked Adam Hansen of Center Point-Urbana. Tool is now 34-9 on the season.
Cummings was even more dominant in his consolation win over No. 8 Cale Reicks of New Hampton. Cummings took Reicks to the mat early and scored a first-period fall to add to his school-record pin total. Second-ranked Cummings improved to 48-3 on the season.
It was the first state medal earned by both Tool and Cummings.
The day didn’t go as well for freshman Landon Fenton and junior Jarron Trausch.
Fenton lost his only match, a 106-pound wrestleback, 7-0, to sixth-ranked Jacob Mielke of Pocahontas Area. He caps his first high school season at 39-10.
Seventh-ranked Trausch started the day on the front side of the bracket. He moved to the backside after being pinned in the first period by sixth-ranked Thomas Bentley of Red Oak. He was eliminated later in the day when third-ranked Ben Lee of Ballard pinned him in the second period. The three-time state qualifier ended his season at 44-6.
Roland faces Paul Ryan of Mount Vernon in a 2A semifinal in the next session. Ryan (38-7) is ranked fifth at 160.
Cummings’ next consolation match at 160 is against seventh-ranked Colter Bye of Crestwood. Tool faces unranked Cam Rice of Columbus/Winfield-Mount Union in his consolation match at 138. A win guarantees Cummings and Tool at least sixth. A loss would push the wrestler straight to the seventh-place match.
Contact Troy Hyde at email@example.com