Wrestlers take on Mid Dakota Monster

Nathan Steele

The Custer High School wrestling team faced off with Chamberlain and Winner in duals last Thursday and then competed the next day in the  Mid Dakota Monster at Presho. And “Monster” is a good way to put it—teams from across the state are represented in the huge tournament.
“Every team there was a solid team, which is good to see,” said head coach Jared Webster. “It’s like going to the state meet.”
The boys team placed seventh altogether, with many making the podium, and the girls earned 14th with some place winners too.
Jackson Trant, Memphis Morgan and Aiden Dooley wrestled in the 106-pound weight class but none placed. Morgan won two matches by pin and Dooley won one by decision.
Relic Bailey and Tyler Trant wrestled in the 113-pound weight class. Trant had two quick pins to put him in the quarterfinal match, which he lost in sudden victory to Kayden Tchida of Sisseton. Trant then won the next three matches to put him in the third place match with Tchida again. In that match, Trant won by 3-0 decision.
Bailey did not place.
Trey Weiss and Connor Owens wrestled at 120 pounds, with Weiss earning third and Owens not placing. Weiss received a bye and got two wins going into the semifinal, where he faced off with Kasen Konstanz of Kimall-White Lake-Platte-Geddes and lost by 8-5 decision. Weiss then won his next two matches to secure third place.
Also placing for the Wildcats was Riley Scott, who took second in the 132-pound weight class. Scott had a bye going into his first matchup against Faith’s David Fees, which he won by pin in two minutes, and then won by pin again against Pierre’s Rowdy Manning in 4:14. In the next match, he won over Winner’s Konner Osborn by 7-2 decision. In the championship, he faced off with Ashton Keller of Canton and lost by pin in 12 seconds.
Kai Rusch wrestled in the 150-pound weight class, earning eighth place. In his first match, he pinned Aja Middletent of Lymann in 48 seconds, and lost his next match by 6-3 decision. Rusch made up for that loss by winning three straight—two by pin and one decision. In the last two matches, Rusch lost by decision to August Bartels of Winner (2-0) and Brock Moser of Pierre (3-1).
Parker Noem wrestled his way to second place in the 190-pound weight class. He won each of his four matches leading up to the championship by pin, but lost in that final match by major decision to Pierre’s Chance Carda (11-2).
Zayne Severyn wrestled at 215 pounds and won fourth place, with his only two losses in the tournament being to Caleb Rickenbach of Hot Springs, who he faced in the quarterfinal match (8-1 decision) and the third place match (2-1 decision). Severyn won two others matches by pin and two by decision in the tournament.
Ethan O’Connor, Kian Rusch, Leighton Sander, Blaise Arp, Lane Geisner and Lincoln Golder also wrestled in the meet but did not place.
The girls team also had some placers at the tournament.
Essah Syverson wrestled at 107 pounds and won sixth place. She won her first match over Haven Baker of Spearfish by pin in 3:46 and her second over Susu Kamara of Harrisburg by 4-3 decision. She then lost her next two matches, including two to Baker and Kamara later in the tournament to end her run at sixth place.
Wrestling at 114 pounds, Addie Sander placed fifth. She lost her first match to Hadley Bryant of Harrisburg by pin in 45 seconds, but Sander came back strong with two wins in a row, including over teammate Mattea Marshall. After another loss by 1-0 decision, Sander won the fifth place match over Brandy Marshall of Lakota Tech 6-3 decision.
Marshall did not place.  
Jessica Hite placed third in the tournament. She won her first matches by pin; first, over Spearfish’s Caroline Ploeckl in 30 seconds, then over Viborg-Hurley/Irene-Wakonda’s Claire Campbell in 1:16. She lost in the semifinal to Paola Vergara of O’Neill by pin in 5:59. She then won over Marlee Heltzel of Spearfish and then over Kori Wallner of Canton—both by pin to get third at the tournament.
Kiera Thorp, River Bailey and Kayli Morgan also wrestled but did not place.
In the daul against Chamberlain, the boys won by a good margin, more than doubling their opponents’ score (58-24).
At 106, Ayden Dooley lost by pin.
Memphis Morgan won by forfeit at 113.
At 120, Trant won over Owen Engel by pin.
At 126, Weiss pinned Mario Oliva-Gayton.
O’Connor lost his match at 132 by pin to Devyn Anderson by pin in 5:38.
Scott won over Xavier Donovan at 138 by pin in 1:58.
At 144, Kian Rusch won over Kruse Brennan by pointing in 1:53.
Sander at 150 won over Jerrod Larsen by 13-1 major decision.
Kai Rusch lost by by pin to Bryce Reuer at 150.
Arp won by forfeit at 165.
At 175, Dusty Rose of Chamberlain won by forfeit.
Then, it was a series of quick pins for the Wildcats with Noem winning in 19 seconds, Geisner winning in 31 seconds and Severyn winning in 17.
The girls also had a dual with chamberlain, which ended in a 9-9 tie. Syverson earned three points for the team by beating Alexandra Schmiedt by 4-0 decision, and that was matched by Chamberlain when Aine Graesser beat Marshall 6-1. River Bailey earned six points, beating Shelby Shrake by pin, which Chamberlain matched again when Evelyn Olson pinned Kayli Morgan.
Marshall also won in an extra match over Zoey Donovan by pin.
Against Winner, the team didn’t see the same success, losing 42-24.
“We had some tough matches and key matches where we ended up coming on top of some really good ones. Some matches were not so good for us, but the kids have to understand how team points work and how not to give up pins. We have to learn if we want to be on top for duals,” said Webster.
Weiss and Scott won the first two matches, Weiss by sudden victory and Scott by decision.
The next two matches marked losses for the ’Cats, one by forfeit and one by decision over Kian Rusch at 144 pounds.
Sander got a win by decision over Breven Bolander at 150 pounds before another set of three losses for the team.
At 190 pounds, Noem won over Mason Curtis by pin in 23 seconds.
At 285, Severyn won by pin in just under two minutes.
Trant won by decision at 113 pounds.
Webster said the team’s struggle was in giving up too many points in the form of pins and major decisions, which give more points than decisions. Those little differences in points add up over the course of a whole dual.
Next, the team has a busy week with duals at McCook Central on Thursday, in Philip on Friday and then to Hot Springs for Black Hills Conference on Saturday.
“It’s going to be a brutal one, but hopefully we can get some rest after this week,” said Webster.

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