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|1/29/2014 ||Email this article Print this article |
|Kagemann shines as Sabers battle the best at Bob Lueders|
By Ross Eberhart
There proved to be no shortage of tough competition for the Central wrestling team, as it was one of 18 teams to take part in Saturday's Bob Lueders Invitational in Clinton.
The field included four ranked squads from Iowa, one from Illinois and one from Wisconsin and that is before considering the sheer number of ranked wrestlers (the meet featured eight different grapplers ranked number one).
That did not stop the Sabers from putting together a strong performance as Central took 11th in the team race with 93.5 points.
That was more points that the Sabers scored last year and that Central group finished ninth in the team standings.
Linn-Mar - ranked fourth in class 3A - brought home the team title with 191.5 points, while the host River Kings (ranked 10th in 3A) and Davenport Assumption (ranked third in 2A) tied for second with 171.
Mount Vernon and Wilton rounded out the top-five with scores of 167 and 165 respectively.
"It is the toughest regular season tournament we attend and I think it gets our mindset ready for the conference tournament and the postseason," Central head coach Ed Vance said. "We scored 93.5 points, which is our highest score in four years of attending the (tournament)."
Leading the way for the Sabers was senior Jake Kagemann, who became the first Central grappler to reach the finals of the tournament.
Kagemann picked up bonus points in his opening match - a 14-6 major decision over Western Dubuque's Jacob Burds - and then advanced right into the semifinals with a victory by the exact same score against Sean Cory of Lena-Winslow (Ill.).
Waiting for the Saber senior in the semifinals was top-seeded Daniel Abresch of Mount Vernon.
The two wrestlers had already met twice this season with Abresch taking both matches by decision.
Saturday's match was also close, but this time it was Kagemann who came out on top with a 10-8 decision to reach the finals.
"Having seen him twice before, we were able to put together a gameplan and Jake executed it well," Vance said.
Unfortunately, Kagemann's run ended there as the senior fell to fifth-ranked Shea Hartzler of Linn-Mar, 6-2.
Also reaching the semifinals for the Sabers was junior 132-pounder Walker Wegener, who finished fourth.
Making his 2014 debut, Wegener opened his day with a fall in 3:07 to set-up a rematch with Cedar Rapids Washington's Trey Schuler.
The two met in the semifinals of the Saber Invitational with Schuler coming out on top, but the second meeting was much different as Wegener scored a measure of revenge with a fall in 5:47.
Wegener's journey to the finals was cut just short in the semifinals by Linn-Mar's Matt Wempen (who would ultimately win the championship) and the Saber junior took fourth after falling 8-6 in a close match with Western Dubuque's Austin Hosch.
"He's been out quite a bit this season with injuries and I think he's taking that frustration out on his opponents," Vance said of Wegener.
Adding a fifth for Central was senior Drew Schroeder.
The 170-pounder dropped a tight quarterfinal match in overtime to Davenport Assumption's Joe Argo, but then did not lose again.
Schroeder knocked off Muscatine's Ryan Broderson by a 12-6 margin and then toppled Tyler Burkle of Cedar Rapids Washington 6-3 to advance to the fifth-place match where he dominated Dubuque Hempstead's Kevin Pape for an 11-3 major decision.
Senior 285-pounder Doug Hayen added a sixth-place finish. The Saber dropped his quarterfinal match with eventual champion Hunter Nelson of Milton (Wisc.), but then won two-straight matches (including one by fall in just 40 seconds) to advance to the fifth-place match where he dropped a close 3-2 decision to Jacob Giese of Wilton.
Another Saber senior, 195-pounder Chase Kraklio, added a seventh-place finish, while senior 145-pounder Carter Cahill and sophomore 106-pounder Bryant Woodford finished things off with eighths.
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