STE. GENEVIEVE – Farmington wrestlers Dalton Berg and junior Austin Wadlow understand what it takes to reach the state tournament from experience.
And while both thrived in their respective bouts Wednesday night, the Knights received additional encouraging results from a number of younger sources.
Sophomore Judd Cunningham pocketed a quality decision during the pivotal 195-pound clash, as a series of five consecutive matches favored visiting Farmington in a 37-33 victory.
Rothman Harris and Kael Krause each contributed important falls along with Wadlow, and the Knights captured seven of the 12 contested weight classes in their regular-season finale.
Clayton Vaughn, Jacob Dickens, Dalton McNeal and Gavin Gross scored falls for Ste. Genevieve, which temporarily built a 27-15 dual advantage on its Senior Night.
Cunningham (195) earned a 10-5 decision with a stellar final minute against Ty Brown, who yielded a tie-breaking escape at 4-3 after getting a reversal with about 90 seconds remaining.
Brown sought a sudden takedown on the whistle to restart, but Cunningham neatly side-stepped him into a waistlock. Another blocked attack and eventual near fall sealed the win.
Berg (220) followed with a sound 14-2 major decision over Isaac Boyd that extended a 33-27 team lead and clinched the dual triumph. Berg improved to 31-4 overall.
It was the first match in the senior campaign of Boyd – a former state qualifier in his own right – as he continues to recover from an injury suffered near the middle of football season.
Perhaps the most stunning development of the night occurred at 120 pounds, as Dragons sophomore Dalton McNeal overcame a spacious deficit with one ferocious sequence.
Kyle Crawford dominated for two periods to build a 12-1 lead, and was twice on the precipice of putting McNeal away with separate near falls.
McNeal rallied for the pin just 49 seconds into the third after starting from a neutral stance. He shifting sideways from a seated position as Crawford lost a grip on his ankle.
Jacob Dickens (132) increased the scoring margin for Ste. Genevieve with a fall in 47 seconds, and Grant Staffen (145) notched a late takedown to outlast Smokey Branch 5-3.
Colby Vinson (160) answered for Farmington with a solid 9-4 decision after charging in to lift opponent Andrew Wolk for two driving takedowns in the early moments.
That contest was halted multiple times to clean the mat, first for blood that trickled from Wolk’s nose, and later when Vinson could no longer contain an upset stomach.
The Knights kept gaining ground as Krause (170) grounded Josh Schmidt late in the first period. Krause controlled one shoulder, then used his legs to trap the torso for the fall.
Harris (182) needed less than five seconds to score his first two points, and used a leg sweep to gain control against Dale Propst before prevailing at the 3:42 mark.
Wadlow (113) finished his work in the opening minute, and freshman Drew Felker (138) outlasted Kaleb Myracle 5-1 to boost Farmington.
Gavin Gross (106) and senior heavyweight Clayton Vaughn bookended the meet for Ste. Genevieve with third-period falls.
Each team was open at one weight as Noah Ogden (152) of Ste. Genevieve and Blake Cook (126) of Farmington had their hands raised without being required to compete.
The festivities also included one girls match. Claira Wampler secured a pin for Farmington over Etta Heller after pushing her back from the edge of the circle and freeing her wrist for control.
Valle Catholic was also in attendance with two wrestlers, but neither Josh Bieser (138) nor Peyton Tucker (152) could collect a win.
Robbie Simmons of Farmington held off a Bieser comeback try 11-7, and Myracle topped him through a 12-2 major decision. Vinson and Ogden each registered falls against Tucker.
Farmington 37, Ste. Genevieve 33
106 – Gavin Gross (SG) fall Dayton Boyd, 4:57
113 – Austin Wadlow (FA) fall Kacha Pholjan, 0:45
120 – Dalton McNeal (SG) fall Kyle Crawford, 4:49
126 – Blake Cook (FA) win by forfeit
132 – Jacob Dickens (SG) fall Robbie Simmons, 0:47
138 – Drew Felker (FA) dec Kaleb Myracle, 5-1
145 – Grant Staffen (SG) dec Smokey Branch, 5-3
152 – Noah Ogden (SG) win by forfeit
160 – Colby Vinson (FA) dec Andrew Wolk, 9-4
170 – Kael Krause (FA) fall Josh Schmidt, 1:46
182 – Rothman Harris (FA) fall Dale Propst, 3:42
195 – Judd Cunningham (FA) dec Ty Brown, 10-5
220 – Dalton Berg (FA) maj dec Isaac Boyd, 14-2
285 – Clayton Vaughn (SG) fall Chase Berg, 5:30