CORALVILLE — Jasmine Luedtke wasn't sure what to expect this season.
Don't be fooled, Luedtke expected to contend for a state championship during the first year of sanctioned Iowa High School girls wrestling. The Ottumwa junior, however, wasn't sure what the season and postseason would look like.
"I thought we might have started at a smaller level. We didn't know regionals would be held at places like Hy-Vee Hall or the Iowa Events Center," Luedtke said. "I didn't realize it would be this big this year."
Luedtke continued her perfect pursuit of her first state championship on Thursday, scoring a pair of first-period falls during the opening session of the inaugural IGHSAU girls state wrestling tournament. After pinning Iowa Falls-Alden senior Emma Ites in just 30 seconds, Luedtke pinned Independence freshman Morgan Krall in 1:43 improving to 30-0 on the season while moving within three wins of the state title.
Luedtke, the second seed at 110 pounds, continued her pursuit of the 110-pound IGHSAU state title. On the opposite side of the bracket, unbeaten top-ranked Jalynn Goodale of Osage spent less than a minute on the mat in the first session of the state tournament pinning her first opponent in 20 seconds and followed that up with a 21-second pin.
"I've got a lot of confidence right now being able to go out and wrestle how I'm capable," Luedtke said. "We're at that point of the season where I have enough confidence to do what I really want to do. I feel like I have a real chance to win a state title, but anything can happen. Wrestling is a competitive sport. There's a 50-50 chance that anybody can get beat."
Every top-seeded wrestler advanced and all but two pinned both opponents. Moravia sophomore Layla Ewing, the top-ranked wrestler at 120 pounds, improved to 39-2 pinning West Delaware freshman Anna O'Rear in 1:54 before holding off Ames freshman Lexa Rozevink in round two, earning a 12-7 decision scoring seven nearfall points in the second period advancing to a quarterfinal-round match against Southeast Polk freshman Addie Nelson.
Sarah Lewis, the second seed at 140 pounds, improved to 30-2 as part of a perfect opening session at state for a pair of Centerville teammates. Lewis, the younger sister of four-time state champion Matthew Lewis, scored a first-round fall in 39 seconds over Bellevue senior Ryanne Dunn before pinning Missouri Valley sophomore Preslee Maas in 1:18.
Fellow Centerville senior Audrianna Rosol also opened the state tournament with a pair of falls, advancing to a quarterfinal-round showdown with fourth-ranked Ankeny junior Dana Cleveland at 135 pounds. After securing a first-round win with eight seconds left in the second period against Wilton senior Kiley Langley, Rosol (22-6) pinned Glenwood freshman Maya Rivas in 2:54 to close out Thursday afternoon's opening session.
Cleveland advanced on Thursday, pinning Pekin freshman Lila Miller in 2:19 to open the state tournament. Miller lost by fall in 54 seconds to Denison-Schleswig freshman Angie Rivera in the consolation round, ending her first season of wrestling for the Panthers with an overall record of 24-14.
Six days after pinning Liv Halfpap in the Region 4 semifinals, clinching the state berth, Abbott was pinned by Halfpap with 53 seconds left in the state tournament opener for both wrestlers, suffering an injury that prevented the Fairfield freshman from continuing in the tournament.
"The thing I take away from this season has a lot to with mindset," said Abbott, who ends her first season of varsity wrestling with a record of 20-9. "You can't afford to get in your head too much about the people you have to wrestle before you wrestle them."
Ottumwa freshman Delilah Subsin lost by fall to Charles City sophomore Leah Stewart in 4:25 and Mason City freshman Taryn Boehmer in 3:28, ending her run in the 190-pound bracket at state. Having never wrestled before this season, Subsin finished her freshman season with an 18-9 record and high hopes for the future.
"I think I made it pretty far from where I started," Subsin said. "This is all new for me. I've never been a very sporty person in the past. I didn't think I'd make it too far this season. I wasn't sure I'd develop that competitive mindset, but I'm going to continue to work really hard and continue to learn from everybody else."
For Ottumwa head girls wrestling coach Isaiah Cox, those type of strides are as big for the Bulldog girls wrestling program as a potential state championship would be.
"Delilah went out there and never gave up. For her to go out there and to keep wrestling when she was down is what it's all about," Cox said. "The girls know the feeling now. They've competed at regionals. I just can't wait for next season. We've still got a few more matches (with Luedtke) to get through, but I can't wait to go again next this year. This has been awesome."
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