State Wrestlers

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Prairie du Chien’s Traeton Saint applies pressure in the quarterfinal match against Erthum of Lodi at the Richland Center Sectional Saturday. Saint would win by decision 14-9. Saint went on to take third to advance to the Division 2 State Wrestling Tournament at 132 pounds. (Photo by Susan Herreid Curtis)

Prairie du Chien’s Stephen Ronnfeldt toes the line against Arneson of Monroe in the 195-pound quarterfinal match at the Richland Center Sectional. Ronnfeldt finished third to earn a trip to the Division 2 State Wrestling Tournament. (Photo by Susan Herreid Curtis)

Ben Wheeler of River Ridge-Cassville pins his Lancaster opponent at regionals on Feb. 11. Wheeler won the championship at 285 pounds on Saturday, Feb. 18 at the Mineral Point Sectional to advance to the Division 3 State Tournament. (Courier Press file photo)


Three area wrestlers, from Prairie du Chien

and RR-C, advance to state wrestling meet

Three area wrestlers advanced to the state wrestling tournament following their sectionals Saturday. Traeton Saint and Stephen Ronnfeldt, of Prairie du Chien, advanced to the Division 2 state tournament. Ben Wheeler, of River Ridge-Cassville, advanced in Division 3.

Richland Center played host to one of the four WIAA Division 2 sectional wrestling tournaments on Saturday, Feb. 18. Prairie du Chien was represented by six individuals (Reid Koenig 120#, Blake Garcia 126#, Traeton Saint 132#, Nick Rogge 152#, Ethan Swiggum 170#, and Stephen Ronnfeldt 195#) who had advanced from the River Valley Regional the week before. There are eight-man brackets and the top three place winners qualify for the state tournament in Madison, Thursday, Feb. 23 through Saturday, Feb. 25.

Reid Koenig (Soph.) 120#: In the quarterfinal match, Koenig was defeated by decision 10-3 to Bivens (Beloit Turner). In the consolation semifinals Koenig was defeated by major decision 18-9 to Leer (Viroqua). Koenig would end his season with a 34-12 record.

Blake Garcia (Jr.) 126#: In the quarterfinal match, Garcia was defeated by Bahr (West Salem/Bangor) by fall in 2:42. Garcia would end his season with a 32-11 record.

Traeton Saint (Fr.) 132#: In the quarterfinal match, Saint would defeat Erthum (Lodi) by decision 14-9. In the semifinals,Saint was defeated by Hauri (Brodhead/Juda) by decision 7-2. In the consolation semifinals, Saint would win by fall in 4:32 over Hess (West Salem/Bangor). In the consolation finals, Saint would defeat Dach (Viroqua) by decision 6-3 to secure third place and punch his ticket to the state tournament. 

Nick Rogge (Jr.) 152#: In the quarterfinal match, Rogge would win by fall in 1:18 over Helmbrecht (Lodi). In the semifinals, Rogge would lose by fall in 0:47 to eventual Sectional Champion Bahr (West Salem/Bangor). In the consolation semifinals, Rogge would win by decision over Erb (Brodhead Juda) by a score of 8-2. In the consolation finals, Rogge was defeated by decision 8-6 in sudden victory to Phelan (Dodgeville). Rogge would end his season with a 39-9 record.

Ethan Swiggum (Sr.) 170#: In the quarterfinal match, Swiggum would lose by decision 6-4 to eventual Sectional Champion Hannah (Viroqua). In the consolation semifinals, Swiggum would lose by fall in 4:48 to Heyroth (Lodi). Swiggum would end his season with a 30-15 record. Swiggum finished his career with 85 wins, good for 15th in school history.

Stephen Ronnfeldt (Jr.) 195#: In the quarterfinal match, Ronnfeldt would lose by major decision 14-1 to Arneson (Monroe). In the consolation semifinals, Ronnfeldt would win by fall in 2:23 over Walterscheidt (Lodi). In the consolation finals, Ronnfeldt would defeat Hudack (Wisconsin Dells) by decision 11-9 to earn third place and secure a berth at the state tournament.

Saint, 40-9 on the season, and Ronnfeldt, 39-8 on the season, will wrestle Thursday evening at the Kohl Center in the preliminary round of the WIAA state tournament. This round begins at 7:15 p.m. Saint’s opening opponent will be Tanner Deist (Wautoma/Wild Rose). Deist is a junior with a 38-9 record. Ronnfeldt will open with Chris Storandt (East Troy). Storandt is a junior with a 37-9 record. Should either of these young men win Thursday they will wrestle in Friday’s quarterfinals that start at 11:15 a.m. 

Junior Ben Wheeler, of River Ridge-Cassville, was the champion at 285 pounds at the Division 3 Mineral Point Sectional Saturday to earn a trip to the state wrestling tournament.

Wheeler (35-10) pinned Carson McCauley, of Ithaca-Weston, in his opening match in 5:44. Wheeler then pinned Jacob Tuescher, of Darlington, in 5:09. In the 285-pound championship match, Wheeler pinned Brandon Kimek, of Cashton, in 2:08 to punch his ticket to state. 

At state, Wheeler will wrestle on Friday at 11:15 a.m. He will wrestle the winner of Ben Drenski (21-7), of Random Lake, and Caleb Gearhart (10-3), of Saint Croix Falls.

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