116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
INDEPENDENCE — Every program needs an Isaac Fettkether.
A hard worker with a team-first mentality who’s ready to compete when his number is called. The type of wrestler who presses his nose to the grindstone without much of the fanfare or accolades.
For the second straight season, Fettkether has stepped in and contributed to West Delaware’s championship lineup. The senior 160-pounder secured the Class 2A top-ranked Hawks’ 48-24 over No. 3 Independence in a Wamac Conference dual Thursday night at Independence.
The Hawks (18-3, 9-0 Wamac) claimed the conference dual title and maintained the “Del-Buc: Highway 20 Clash Trophy” for the fourth straight season. Fettkether’s 9-2 decision over Caden Larson put the dual out of reach with three matches left.
“It was fun,” Fettkether said. “When it’s done, it’s going to be a hard thing to miss. They’re one of the better teams in 2A that we’re going to have to wrestle. It’s a good time.”
Fettkether has replaced two-time state medalist second-ranked Jadyn Peyton, who has seen limited action after suffering a knee injury in football. The Hawks relied on him last season when state qualifier Kyle Cole was injured. Fettkether was a takedown away from reaching the state tournament.
“This year he’s behind some tough guys again, but he comes every weekend and wrestles in tournaments for us,” West Delaware Coach Jeff Voss said. “He stepped up tonight again. That’s just the type of kid he is. He’s a three-sport athlete and gives his all to his teammates.”
Fettkether described the season as “gritty.” He was unsure where he would end up this season, battling for a starting spot. His focus was solely on getting better and being prepared to do whatever the team needed.
“I tried to put myself in position to where I didn’t make the starting lineup, I would be in good position as a backup and help this team the best as I could,” Fettkether said. “I just put my head down and was grinding as much as I could.”
The end of last season was a turning point in his career, according to Fettkether. He was dejected that he did not earn a traditional state berth — one of only three Hawks who did not qualify — and thought he let the team down. Teammates rallied around him, demonstrating support and encouragement.
Instead of wallowing in the loss, he pushed to be his best for the state duals tournament. Fettkether beat a couple state qualifiers, helping the Hawks win their third straight state duals title.
“He’s a great example for kids that aren’t necessarily the No. 1 guy but can still be part of something special,” Voss said. “You can still have a value to the team and teammates. If you want to be a part of something special, stick with it. Just keep making yourself better. Isaac is a good example of that.”
Fettkether scored four takedowns in his win, which was indicative of the Hawks’ dominance. West Delaware tallied a 27-5 takedown advantage and finished with a 72-33 edge in total match points.
“When you’re in big matches you have to put yourself in positions where you’re at your best, Voss said. “Our kids are pretty good on their feet.”
The Hawks never trailed. Top-ranked 195-pounder and defending state champion Wyatt Voelker bumped to 220 to open the match with a first-period fall over Brady McDonald. Heavyweight Cam Geuther’s pin of Tono Cornell gave the Hawks a 12-0 lead.
Independence (24-6, 10-1) pulled within three after a pin from Tanner Wilson at 106 and Kaden Kremer beat Ryan Hilby, 9-5, at 113. Wilson trailed fourth-ranked Brayden Maury, 8-3, when he scored a takedown and cinched up a cradle for a fall in 3:48.
West Delaware pulled away with seven wins in the next nine matches. Carson Less (120), Blake Engel (132), Brent Yonkovic (138), 152-pounder Logan Peyton and Cole at 170 each posted pins. Will Ward added a decision at 182 for the Hawks’ final win. Less, ranked third, dominated his way to a 16-4 lead over No. 7 Kale Wieland before getting the fall in 5:56.
“We wanted to keep the paces of the matches high and fast,” Voss said. “Our game plan coming in, and it will be this way the rest of the year, is to keep the pace of the matches high and score as many points as we can.”
Independence three-time state finalist and defending state champion Isaiah Weber had a pin, needing just 21 seconds to stop Carson Turnis. The Mustangs’ Tyler Wieland used a late takedown for a 4-2 decision over No. 12 Jax Miller.
Both teams return to the mat Saturday for the Wamac Conference tournament at Solon.
West Delaware 48, Independence 24
(Individual takedowns in parentheses)
220 pounds – Wyatt Voelker (WD) pinned Brady McDonald, 1:56 (3,0); Hwt. – Cam Geuther (WD) pinned Tono Cornell, 3:16 (3,0); 106 – Tanner Wilson (I) pinned Brayden Maury, 3:48 (1,4); 113 – Kaden Kremer (I) dec. Ryan Hilby, 9-5 (2,1); 120 – Carson Less (WD) pinned Kale Wieland, 5:56 (5,0); 126 – Tyler Wieland (I) dec. Jax Miller, 4-2 (1,1); 132 – Blake Engel (WD) pinned Luke Johnson, 1:35 (1,0); 138 – Brent Yonkovic (WD) pinned Carter Straw, 1:46 (1,0); 145 – Isaiah Weber (I) pinned Carson Turnis, :21 (1,0); 152 – Logan Peyton (WD) pinned Dalton Hoover, :30 (1,0); 160 – Isaac Fettkether (WD) dec. Caden Larson, 9-2 (4,0); 170 – Kyle Cole (WD) pinned Teegan McEnany, 2:40 (1,0); 182 – Will Ward (WD) dec. Mitch Johnson, 5-3 (2,0); 195 – Marcus Beatty (I) won by forfeit.
Takedowns – West Delaware 27, Independence 5. Reversals – West Delaware 1, Independence 0. Escapes – West Delaware 3, Independence 17. Nearfall points – West Delaware 11, Independence 5. Penalty points (awarded) – West Delaware 2, Independence 1. Total match points – West Delaware 72, Independence 33.