Black and gold. It’s not just a color scheme that can easily be found in Iowa City.
This week, it’s those school colors of Eddyville-Blakesburg-Fremont that will easily be spotted throughout downtown Des Moines.
EBF head wrestling coach Brett Little will be quite busy this week. Not only will the Rockets be competing in the Class 1A state dual meet on Wednesday, seven EBF grapplers will also be looking to win state individual crowns after qualifying with six wrestlers claiming district titles Saturday at Pleasantville.
Little wouldn’t have it any other way. In fact, he hopes to keep the week of the state wrestling tournament as one of the buisest yearly on his calendar.
“The biggest thing is consistancy. We’ve had a great year this year, but you’ve got to keep going,” Little said.
Only one of the Rockets eight sectional qualifiers failed to advance on Saturday.
EBF wrestlers lost just three matches all day, falling short of the hopes for perfection Little has had for his squad.
“Just like last week, you want every wrestler you weigh in to advance,” Little said. “I do think we have a long weekend ahead for us. I think we can do some damage up at state.”
The Rockets first three qualifiers all came from their sophomore class. Fifth-ranked Jeren Glosser (120) and third-ranked Blake Marolf (132) each won district crowns while Cody Brown made it to his first state tournament as the 126-pound runner-up.
“It’ll be a lot more fun for all of us with Cody making it,” Marlof said after improving to 39-5 with a pin at the second period buzzer against Pleasantville’s Trey Busick.
“That’s really exciting going to state with my fellow classmates,” Glosser added after improving to 40-3 on Saturday. “It just shows we’re going to have a great program for the future as well.”
The junior class of EBF also shined Saturday as eighth-ranked Dillon Pigsley (182) and ninth-ranked Tucker Black (145) joined 220-pound runner-up Chance Wursta in qualifying for state. Black picked up his second win in as many weeks over fourth-ranked Sigourney-Keota senior Josh Yoder, who will join Black at state despite being pinned late in a match that Yoder led early 4-1.
“Nobody pushes harder than we do as a team,” Black said. “I’m pumped to get things going next week.”
S-K had three wrestlers qualify for state. Joining Yoder and heavyweight Tucker Fowler was 170-pound district champ Cole Streigle.
Moravia will have two district champs at state on opposite ends of the scale. Heavyweight district champ Dylan Conley joined Mohawk freshman teammate Briar Cochran, who upset unbeaten fifth-ranked Colfax-Mingo sophomore Jimmy Abell 9-4 in the 106-pound finals.
Cardinal also sends a pair of wrestlers to state in 1A. Junior Ryan Cale added a district title with his 113-pound section title while senior Dustin Miller pinned Belle Plaine’s Grant Bevins in a 182-pound wrestleback.
Tri-County/Montezuma, who entered the day with nine district qualifiers, will send just one wrestler. Top-ranked junior Tyler Foubert wrestled back to qualify after losing for the second time in the postseason to Lynnville-Sully’s Caden Doll.
“I’m not going to lie. It was not the day we were expecting,” TCM head wrestling coach Scott Edmundson said. “As a coach when you go into districts with nine kids, you are expecting big results. It didn’t happen that way. This was a little hard to stomach.”
Pekin senior Austyn Vogel heads to state after a pair of pins to win the 152-pound district title. Van Buren also sends a district champ in 126-pound junior Jacob Heisel.
“It means a lot to make it to state for the first time,” Heisel said. “I’ve worked hard. I’ve cut a lot of weight, but it’s all paid off in the long run.”
Joining EBF as one of 20 area qualifiers from the South Central Conference is Albia, who will send six grapplers to state. Top-five ranked brothers Shadow (120), Bryce (126) and Brett Leshen (160) with Brett shaking off his first loss at Knoxville. Seventh-ranked junior Griffin Osing and senior heavyweight Zach Davis also advanced to Des Moines for head coach Dave Wenger.
Centerville and Chariton each will send three wrestlers to state. Rated seniors Tanner Cowan (126) and Riley Denny (195) join 132-pound district champ Bradley Irwin while 10th-ranked freshman Carter Isley headlines three Chariton qualifiers after winning a 182-pound district that featured three rated grapplers.
Kody Smith was Davis County’s lone state qualifier after finishing runner-up at 113 pounds. In West Liberty, two Fairfield seniors qualified in seventh-ranked Seth Davisson (170) and 10th-ranked 220-pound district champ Jacob Mineart.