Lisbon wins 1A state wrestling title

Coach Brad Smith ties all-time mark with 11th championship

DES MOINES — Lisbon knew it had clinched the team title before its two state finalists even wrestled.

There wasn’t a whole lot of fanfare. In fact, the whole process seemed businesslike. After all, the Lions had won the Class 1A State Duals title on Wednesday night, so perhaps to them, winning the traditional part of the tournament was just something to be expected.

Or maybe it was the mindset drilled into them by their coach, Brad Smith, whose 11th traditional state title tied the mark set by Waterloo West’s legendary coach Bob Siddens.

“It was kind of nice that we already had it tied up,” Smith said. “Not as much pressure on the kids, they could go out and relax and just wrestle.”

Lisbon finished with 97 1/2 points, while second-place Don Bosco tallied 76. Sibley-Ocheyedan (75), Underwood (62) and Alburnett (57 1/2) rounded out the top five.

The Lions split their two individual championship matches, losing the first and winning the second. Cobe Siebrecht fell in a tough 5-2 decision to West Sioux’s Adam Allard at 106 pounds after giving up three nearfall points in the third period.

A win, however, came in the very next match from 113-pounder Cael Happel. A freshman, Happel’s older brother, Carter, was a four-time state champion, but this wasn’t about trying to step out of his brother’s shadow — it’s for himself.

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“He’s his own soul,” Smith said. “He knows what he wants to do as an individual.”

 

 

Happel, who beat Wapello’s Devon Meeker in a tad over four minutes via a 21-6 technical fall, dominated from the start, getting five takedowns in the first period alone.

It wasn’t the first time the pair had met and Meeker lost to Happel — also by technical fall — in a district meet.

“If I can set up my takedowns right I can execute on anyone,” Happel said. “I figured if I could go out, hand fight and do what I do best, I could get to my takedowns.”

Like Lisbon, Wapsie Valley also split its two finals matches. Danny Schmit (126) was beat 24-9 by Underwood’s Alex Thomsen, who was top-ranked and undefeated at the weight.

The Warriors 138-pounder Kaleb Krall, however, won his first state title, beating West Sioux’s Kory Van Oort in a narrow 1-0 decision.

“It was tight, hard, tough, whatever you want to say,” Krall said. “I was trying to get the single leg, trying to get him moving, just trying to get to my offense.”

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Krall wasn’t the only one to make the top of the podium for the first time. English Valleys’ Zach Axmear and Maquoketa Valley’s Alec McDowell both picked up their first titles.

Axmear, after finishing in the top five each of his previous three seasons, managed to fight off Mediapolis’ Brennan Swafford in a tough 7-4 decision. McDowell had a little more breathing room, as he topped Martensdale-St. Marys’ Logan Schumacher 6-1 in a bout he always seemed to be in control of.

No team had multiple champions, though North Linn did get close. Brock Henderson won his second title by 3-0 decision, while heavyweight Kyler Schott dropped a close 5-2 decision to Regina’s Jared Brinkman.

l Comments: jordan.hansen@thegazette.com

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