Prep Wrestling

Iowa 2A state wrestling: Jadyn Peyton celebrates birthday with pin in state wrestling debut

Hawks grab first-day lead by 1 point over rival Solon; Maquoketa's Michel posts notable upset

DES MOINES — Jadyn Peyton celebrated his birthday in grand fashion.

Not only did he gift himself an exciting present, but he applied an extra layer of icing to the cake as well.

Peyton’s 16th birthday was highlighted by a first-period fall in his debut at the Class 2A state wrestling tournament Thursday night at Wells Fargo Arena. He was one of five West Delaware quarterfinalists and his pin helped the Hawks take a 19-18 lead over Wamac rival Solon in the team race.

The freshman 138-pounder decked Osage’s Brody Roll in 1:44.

“It feels awesome,” Peyton said. “I’m excited to be here. Just wrestle and give it my all for one last weekend.”

Peyton was walking to leave the arena floor when he heard West Delaware fans serenade him with a version of “Happy Birthday.” The song made it a little more special.

“About halfway back to the tunnel I started hearing them,” Peyton said. “It is something I will probably never forget. It was pretty cool.”

West Delaware overcame the emotional drain of winning a state duals title Wednesday. It finished the first day with an 8-3 record and all of its qualifiers left in a field that had the top 16 teams separated by a mere nine points.

“It’s about advancing to the next day,” West Delaware coach Jeff Voss said. “We have eight guys alive in the tournament and have an opportunity to medal. We just need to go back, regroup, get rested up and get focused on (Friday).”

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The Hawks received a pin from 132-pound senior Ryan Phillips. Freshman Wyatt Voelker (170), Jordan Bries at 195 and heavyweight Carson Petlon added decisions. Ninth-ranked Petlon scored the only takedown in a 3-2 victory over Van Meter/Earlham’s No. 6 Derrin Sesker.

“I think our younger guys handled the environment,” Voss said. “It wasn’t too big for them.

“Our senior leadership and our juniors led our team all year and are doing it again down here.”

Solon matched West Delaware with five in the quarters and all of its six wrestlers remaining.

Freshman Hayden Taylor (126), Jax Flynn (170) and Mike Hoyle at 220 recorded falls. Zack Bevans had a major at 152, while Zeb Gnida advanced at 132.

“We said score and score often,” Williams said. “That’s what we have to do. Down here, obviously, a win is a win but if you can get win with bonus points it is better yet.”

The Spartans finished second to the Hawks in dual competition. Two years ago, Solon did the same to New Hampton only to rebound, winning the traditional team title by a half-point. Williams said the Spartans are setting their individual and team goals high, looking for another trophy.

“I think the combination of being in the duals the last three years and four of our guys having (state) experience I think it’s huge,” Williams said. “We talked about the importance of getting bonus points, if you can.

“Good start. I think we just need to keep it up.”

The Wamac Conference had a stellar showing on the first day. Twenty-eight conference wrestlers advanced to the quarterfinals, including 25 in 2A, two in 1A and one in 3A. The Wamac boasts three of the top four teams in the standings.

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Independence went 4-0 and pushed all of its qualifiers into the quarters. The Mustangs are fourth with 15 points, trailing Monroe PCM by a half-point.

A Wamac wrestler produced one of the top upsets of the session. Maquoketa’s Abraham Michel reached the quarterfinals with a 13-10 victory over PCM’s returning state champion and fourth-ranked Lucas Roland at 182.

Roland’s credentials didn’t faze Michel.

“I don’t even know who I wrestle most of the time,” Michel said, “I like going into matches knowing they are just another guy across from me.”

Maquoketa Coach Brendan Schott verified that Michel doesn’t look at brackets and isn’t concerned with opponents. He just wrestles.

“I believe it,” Schott said with a laugh. “The coaches do the scouting. We give him the scouting report, but I don’t know if he listens or not. That is seriously his mentality.”

Michel trailed 8-5 late in the second when he hit a reversal and transitioned into a leg-turk for three nearfall, taking a 10-8 lead.

“He didn’t quit,” Schott said. “He kept wrestling. Anytime you knock off the returning state champ I’d say that’s a pretty good job.”

Michel was at 170 for the regular season, but bumped up for the postseason. He feels good and on full-feed, using his skill against bigger opponents.

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“I get to eat but I’m giving up a lot of my strength, because they’re bigger,” Michel said. “So, it becomes a big technique game.”

Michel was joined by heavyweight teammate Taven Rich in the quarterfinals.

Union Community and Monticello each advanced three into the quarterfinals. Kain Luensman (126) and 220-pounder Lake Stahlberg recorded pins of 1:12 and 0:25, respectively, for the Panthers. Teammate Chase Luensman posted a technical fall in 145.

Top-ranked Jack Thomsen (138) and Adam Ahrendsen (152) won by technical fall and pin for Union. The Knights’ ninth-ranked Kolten Crawford pinned Van Meter/Earlham’s No. 6 Zane Dodson at 113.

Mount Vernon, Center Point-Urbana, Vinton-Shellsburg, West Liberty and Williamsburg each had two quarterfinalists.

Mount Vernon’s Ryan Clark (120) and top-ranked 170-pounder Paul Ryan advanced. Cole Whitehead (113) and third-ranked Caleb Fuessley (120) moved on for the Stormin’ Pointers.

Vinton-Shellsburg’s sixth-ranked Luke Radeke (138) and No. 5 Scott Betterton (152) reached the quarterfinals. West Liberty duo Will Esmoil (145) and Austin Beaver (160) won first-round matches. Williamsburg’s third-ranked Jalen Schropp (132) and heavyweight Cole Cremeens advanced.

l Comments: (319) 368-8679; kj.pilcher@thegazette.com

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