Rob Kirner the Westby Varsity Wrestling Head Coach is pleased with the early season progress of the Norsemen grapplers. The team picked up a 63-0 win at its season opener in Cashton on Nov. 30 and placed third in the Reedsburg Invitational on Saturday, Dec. 2.
Kirner and assistant coach and Westby alum, Jason Raasch, are teaching Westby athlete’s to “Embrace the Grind” and uphold a longtime Norsemen wrestling tradition filled with championship success. The Norsemen coaches have plenty of returning talent, including eight returning sectional qualifiers and one state qualifier in Austin Mowery.
‘You have to work hard to be successful. The harder you have to work for something, the better the rewards feel,” Kirner said.
Westby 63; Cashton 0
A lack of wrestlers to compete at numerous weight classes resulted in many forfeits. Of the14 weight classes, Cashton forfeited six at weights, 126, 160, 170, 182, 220, and 120 pounds. Both the Eagles and the Norsemen had three double forfeits at 106, 195 and 285 pounds.
Westby wins by forfeit included: 126, Dakota Geier; 160, Justin Erdman; 170, Jack Lipski ; 182, Conor Vatland; 220, Weston Kabat; and 120, Logan Turben.
The Norsemen picked up wins at: 132, Dakota Bakkestuen (W) over Matthew Harter (C) (Dec 8-4); 138, John Lucas (W) over Paul Kilfoyle (C) (Fall 1:00); 145, Austin Mowery (W) over Tristin Grant (C) (Fall 4:30); 152, Ryan Knight (W) over Zach Harris (C) (Fall 1:25); 113, Trevor Lemke (W) over Kenneth Letterly (C) (Fall 5:00).
Westby grapplers headed to Reedsburg on Saturday where they finished third out of a field of eight teams. River Valley won the Dual, Reedsburg finished second and Westby placed third.
Westby defeated Logan/Central 51-27 in the third-place match. The Norsemen finished the day 3-2 and were led by: 120 pounds, Gus Klum (4-1); 138/145 pounds, Austin Mowery (4-1); and 220 pounds, Weston Kabat (4-1).
River Valley 54, Westby 24
The first round highlights for Westby: 160, Grant Fremstad over Caden Krueger (Fall 2:12); and 220, Weston Kabat over Ben Muhr (Fall 1:07). Bjorn Leum (152) and Justin Erdman (170) both won by forfeit.
Westby 42, Mauston 24
The second round highlights for Westby: 113, Trevor Lemke over Tanner Wheeler (Fall 1:35); 126, Dakota Geier over Jarric Winders (Dec 6-5); 132, Dakota Bakkestuen over Austin Werner (Fall 2:50);
138, Austin Mowery over Hayden Goodman (Fall 2:53); 145, Ryan Knight over Josiah Ziebell (Fall 0:52); 182, Conor Vatland over Dakota Barix in a hard fought match with Vatland picking up the 9-7 decision. Glum (120) and Kabat (220) both won by forfeit.
Westby 47, Monona Grove/McFarland 36
The third round highlights for Westby: 106, Trevor Lemke over Caleb Cage (Fall 1:32); 132, John Lucas over Aiden Irwin (Fall 2:43);
138, Austin Mowery over Isaac Becker (Technical Fall 17-0); 160, Grant Fremstad over Aiden Burkeland (Fall 0:20); and 195, Conor Vatland over Connor Fraiser (Fall 1:22). Westby’s Jack Lipski (182) Ryan Knight (152) and Gus Klum (120) all won by forfeit.
Reedsburg 51, Westby 21
In the championship bracket, Reedsburg defeated Westby 51-21. Highlights for Westby against a solid Reedsburg team included: 106, Trevor Lemke over Kaiden Otto (Fall 1:35); 145, Austin Mowery over Angelo Willey (Dec 8-3); and 220, Weston Kabat over Tristan Honer (Fall 1:18). Klum (120) won by forfeit.
Westby 51, Logan 27
Battling for the third place spot were Westby and la Crosse Logan. The Norsemen defeated the Rangers 51-27. Highlights for Westby:
106, Trevor Lemke over Kailix Roe (Fall 1:53); 120, Gus Klum over Isaac Thompson (Fall 1:03); 126, Dakota Geier over Noah Moline (Fall 3:29); 132, Dakota Bakkestuen over Mason Sather (Fall 1:27);
138, Austin Mowery over David Krause (Fall 1:36); 145, Ryan Knight over Dallas Kapanke (Dec 7-2); 170, Justin Erdman over Austin Sather (Fall 12:00); 182, Conor Vatland over Alex Gavrilos (Fall 3:53); and 220, Weston Kabat over Justin Lund (Fall 1:26). Westby forfeited at 113, 195 and 285.
“Our wins were a total team effort, with guys willing to bump up a weight class to give us our strongest line ups possible. We still have plenty to work on, but this is a great start to our season and all of us are excited to keep it rolling,” Head Coach Rob Kirner said.
On Thursday, Dec. 7, Westby hosted Weston/Ithaca and travel to Tomah on Dec. 9.