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Wadena-Deer Creek's Devin Barthel competes against Staples-Motley's Jeremy Miller during the Section 6A individual tournament Friday at Wadena-Deer Creek middle/high school. Barthel defeated Miller on a technical fall and went on to capture top honors in the 145-pound weight class.

WDC's Barthel earns trip to state wrestling tournament

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Wadena-Deer Creek senior Devin Barthel was joined by six Bertha-Hewitt/Verndale wrestlers Saturday as he secured a trip to the Class A state individual wrestling tournament in St. Paul.

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Barthel made his last bid for a state berth count as he won Section 6A's 145-pound championship by defeating Bertha-Hewitt/Verndale's Ethan Kimber 4-1. Barthel reached the finals by defeating Staples-Motley's Jeremy Miller 17-2 on a technical fall and pinning New York Mills' Taylor Ericksrud at the 3:38 mark. The three victories gave Barthel a 24-8 season mark. Barthel will face Kerkhoven-Murdock-Sunburg's Nicholas Meyer in the opening round of the Class A state individual tournament Friday at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul. Meyer brings a 16-10 record into the state tourney.

"He's definitely earned this," WDC head coach Norm Gallant said. "He's always had a lot of talent and potential. The difference this year has been his maturity. He's had a bad temper and lost his cool at critical times when he was a young wrestler. This year he has been outstanding."

Brandon and Caleb Monson and Lee Hotakainen joined Barthel in placing at the section tournament. Brandon posted two pins in finishing fourth in the heavyweight bracket. Caleb ended his prep career by pinning New York Mills' Cole Grabow with seven seconds left in their fifth place match at 220. Hotakainen went 3-3 in the 126-pound weight class and lost the fifth place match to Mills' Austin Haman on an injury default.

Qualifying for the Class A individual tournament from Bertha-Hewitt/Verndale's Section 6A championship team were Anthony Kern at 106, Zack Waln at 132, Kimber at 145, Nick Bennett at 170, Dillon Card at 220 and Dalton Baker at 285.

Kern, who was ranked third in the state in the final Guillotine poll, earned his second straight trip to the state meet by winning the 106-pound title. Kern pinned West Central Area's Jake Nohre with six seconds left on the clock in the championship match. Kern will pit a 39-2 record against Badger-Greenbush-Middle River's Isaak Isane's 20-9 mark in the first round of the state tournament.

Waln pushed his record to 29-15 by taking runner-up honors at 132. The BHV grappler lost to Barnesville's Kyler Votava 13-4 but pinned Pelican Rapids' Dakota Pixley at the 2:54 mark.

After Kimber lost to Barthel in the 145 finals he faced a true second challenge from Staples-Motley's Jeremy Miller and won by fall at 1:31. Kimber will take a 31-8 record into the state tournament against United South Central's Dylan Herman who is 37-4.

Bennett reached the 170 finals where he fell to Border West's Austin Maanum 21-5 on a technical fall. Bennett takes a 25-7 record into the state against Blackduck/Cass Lake-Bena's Daven Staples, 32-2.

Card, who was rated No. 2 in the final Guillotine poll, earned a return trip to state by pinning Eddie Ramos of Pelican Rapids in just 37 seconds. Card will be going after his 40th win of the season Friday when he meets New Richland-Hartland-Ellendale-Geneva's Todd Erickson, 23-9.

Baker, ranked 10th in the final Guillotine poll, lost a tough 3-2 decision in the 285 finals to Prairie Valley's Logan Nibbe but topped Barnesville's Alex Settlemeyer 2:25 in a true second challenge. Baker will take a 34-9 record into the state tournament against Lake Crystal-Wellcome Memorial's Nick Meixell, 28-6.

The Raiders wrestled 13 of the 14 weight classes at the section tournament and saw all of their athletes place. Holt Truax (138)Hayden Truax 160), Andrew Cihlar (152) and Andy Bounds (195) all placed third. Justin Gordon (126) finished fourth. Placing sixth were Jarret Kveton (113) and John French (182).

Section 6A Individual

State Tournament Qualifiers

106 Anthony Kern (BHV) pinned Jake Nohre (WCA) 5:54

113 Danny Franco (PR) dec. Levi Larkin (WCA) 4-3

120 Cameron Sykora (BW) dec. Conrad Kondos (Breck) 6-4

126 Alex Erpelding (SM) pinned Tracer Lee (BW) 2:34

132 Kyler Votava (Barn) maj. dec. Zack Waln (BHV) 13-4

True Second Waln (BHV) pinned Dakota Pixley (PR) 2:54

138 Rylee Anderson (Barn) dec. Jake Larkin (WCA) 4-0

145 Devin Barthel (WDC) dec. Ethan Kimber (BHV) 4-1

True Second Kimber (BHV) pinned Jeremy Miller (SM) 1:31

152 Dylan Pullis (BW) dec. Royal Crow (WCA) 6-4

True Second Crow (WCA) dec. Cihlar (BHV) 5-0

160 Kyle Schlosser (PV) dec. Hobet Diaz (PR) 8-3

True Second Diaz (PR) maj. dec. Hayden Truax (BHV) 13-5

170 Austin Maanum (BW) tech. fall Nick Bennett (BHV) 21-5

182 Drew Peterson (SM) dec. Josh McKeown (PV) 8-2

True Second McKeown (PV) dec. Sam Erckenbrack (NYM) 17-10

195 Tyler Patron (NYM) pinned Hunter Fick (WCA) 3:14

220 Dillon Card (BHV) pinned Eddie Ramos (PR) :37

285 Logan Nibbe (PV) dec. Dalton Baker (BHV) 3-2

True Second Baker (BHV) pinned Alex Settlemeyer (Barn) 2:25

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