•  Schiffler, Wildman, Smith and Kovarik all earn third for the Lakers

The Minnewaska Area wrestling team was back in action last week, hosting the 10-team Laker Invitational, Friday.

BBE, a late entry to the tourney, placed first with 204.5 points, while Little Falls was second with 159 points and the Lakers were sixth with 80.

“We added some very tough competition with Little Falls and BBE and it was a great day of exciting wrestling action,” Laker head coach Chip Rankin said.  “I felt, overall, we did very good, especially considering coming off a long break for the holidays.”

Highlighting the Lakers’ efforts were Landon Schiffler (107 pounds), Miles Wildman (121), Chase Smith (127) and Jayce Kovarik (160), who all placed third for the Lakers with 3-1 records.

Miles Wildman, ranked fourth in state Class AA at 114 pounds, leads the Lakers with a 13-2 record.  He also earned his 75th career win during the invitational.

This week, the Lakers have a very busy schedule with meets at BOLD, Tuesday (tomorrow), at WCA, Thursday and at the Thief River Falls Invitational, Saturday, Jan. 20.

Waska Invitational

The Lakers placed sixth of 10 teams at the Minnewaska Invitational, Friday.  BBE and Little Falls, which were added late to the tournament, went on to place first and second, respectively, while Scott West was third, Canby fourth, MAHACA fifth and Minnewaska Area sixth.

The Lakers, who did not have any wrestlers at three of the 13 weight classes, had four wrestlers place third and another was fourth.

Landon Schiffler went 3-1 at 107 pounds to claim third, while Miles Wildman was 3-1 at 121 to earn third, Chase Smith was 3-1 at 127 pounds, also earning third, and Jayce Kovarik was also 3-1 at 160 pounds for another third place for the Lakers.

Schiffler, seeded second, lost his first-round match before coming back with a pin in 1:27, 7-0 decision and pin in 2:34 to place third.

Wildman, also seed second, won his first match on a fall in 3:15 before losing to a state-ranked wrestler from Scott West in the semifinals by an 8-0 major.  Wildman came back to place third with two-straight close decisions of 3-1 and 4-3 in a tiebreaker.

Smith was seeded first and won his first match with a pin in 1:40 before losing by a 6-2 decision to the fourth seed in the semifinals.  He came back with pins in 1:36 and 1:46 to place third.

Kovarik was seeded fourth and won his first match on a 12-3 major before losing by a pin to the top seed and eventual champion from Albany.  He came back with an 8-3 decision and 35-second fall to give the Lakers their fourth third-place finisher.

Earning fourth for Minnewaska Area was Myles Reichmann, who went 2-2 at 172 pounds, while Braylen Scharmer placed sixth at 152 pounds.

The Lakers’ other four entrants each went 0-2 and did not place.

•  There was also a JV Tourney and the Lakers won the JV team title.  “We did win the JV Tourney title, which bodes well for our future,” coach Rankin said. 

Winning individual titles for the JV team at the home invitational were Grady Braaten at 77-83 pounds, Alex Adams (95-104), Cole Kittelson (158-172), Zayden Johnson (196-215) and Evan Friese (280-287) while Soren Jergenson (110-114 pounds) and Austin Schuler (119-125) both placed second for the Lakers. 

Minnewaska Invite

Team scoring:

(1) BBE 204.5  (2) Little Falls 159  (3) Scott West 152  (4) Canby 130  (5) Morris Area-Hancock 101.5  (6) Minnewaska 80  (7) Albany 75  (8) Monticello 57  (9) Badger-GM-MR 56  (10) Crookston 42

Minnewaska results:

107:  Landon Schiffler 3-1 (third)

114:  No wrestler

121:  Miles Wildman 3-1 (third)

127:  Chase Smith 3-1 (third)

133:  Jude Bailey 0-2

139:  Isaiah Rosario 0-2

145:  No wrestler

152:  Braylen Scharmer 1-3 (sixth)

160:  Jayce Kovarik 3-1 (third)

172:  Myles Reichmann 2-2 (fourth)

189:  No wrestler

215:  Zayden Johnson 0-2

285:  Eric Bowen 0-2

Check out more photos in our photo gallery!