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Published March 06 2010

MN state wrestling: Erlandson hopes to snap Cowboys' drought

ST. PAUL – Following his semifinal win at the Minnesota state wrestling tournament, Stephen Erlandson let his all-business demeanor down a little bit.

But he had good reason for the yell and double fist-pumps.

The win made Erlandson just the second Breckenridge-Campbell-Tintah wrestler to make a state final.

“I got a little bit too excited there,” Erlandson said. “But to be mentioned in the same company as a Spencer Beech, and to be with these guys, it’s an honor.”

The Cowboys have never had a state champ. Beech made the 119 finals in 2007, but lost to five-time champ Zach Sanders of Wabasha-Kellogg.

Beech was one of the many well-wishers congratulating Erlandson in the tunnel of the Xcel Energy Center following Erlandson’s 10-5 decision over Belgrade-Brooten-Elrosa’s Travis Winter.

“I’ve felt confident the whole tournament, and my coaches have kept me level-headed,” Erlandson said. “We wanted this to be a takedown tournament for me, because that’s my strength.

“I’ve come out hard right away, and I’ve wanted to leave it all on the mat. I think I’ve done that.”

Erlandson, the second-ranked wrestler in his class, will take on top-ranked Cooper Moore in today’s final.

After becoming just the second state champ in West Central Area history last year, Jake Long said he wanted to become the first Knight with multiple titles.

He’ll get his shot today. Long – the top-ranked wrestler at 145 all year – survived a 6-5 decision against second-ranked Alex Cooling of Medalia-Truman to advance to the finals.

“It’s been just as tough, but I think there was a little more pressure this year,” Long said. “I’ve been pretty confident. There’s been pressure with the No. 1 ranking all year, but I feel pretty good.”

New York Mills’ Jordan Novak, the top-ranked wrestler at 135, was upended in the semifinals by Crookston’s Mariano Portillo.

Portillo controlled the whole match on the way to a 12-7 decision.

Both of Frazee’s semifinalists, Tanner Ellenberg (119) and Jake Schermerhorn (152), lost their semifinals. Mahnomen-Waubun’s Caleb Lanoue (152) also lost his semifinal.

Class 3A

Moorhead has waited 31 years since it last had a state wrestling champion. That wait continues.

Senior heavyweight Mark Wychor lost his semifinal match against Faribault’s Cole Wilson, dropping a 3-2 decision.

Wilson scored the lone takedown of the match in the second period, and it was too much for Wychor to overcome.

Wychor (38-2) was ranked fourth in the weight class. Wilson (41-3) was ranked seventh.

Steve Carr was the last state champ from Moorhead, winning at 135 in 1979.

Class 2A

Fergus Falls has two state champions in school history. The Otters have a chance to double that total tomorrow.

Dan Revering and Colton Thorson will both be wrestling for state titles today after winning their semifinals on Friday.

Thorson moved on at 215, but it took four overtimes to earn his 3-2 decision. He also needed overtime to get into the semifinals.

“I was tired, but I knew what I had to do. I knew what was at stake,” Thorson said. “This is a great feeling.”

Revering held on for a 5-3 decision over New London-Spicer’s John Nething at 160 pounds.

“He came close to rolling me at the end, but I kept thinking, ‘This is it. I’m almost there,’” Revering said. “I’ve always wanted to wrestle in a state final, and now I’m there.”

Fergus Falls’ only two state champs were Pete Campion in 1998, and Drew Ross in 2008.

Also in Class 2A, North Branch’s John Morrison beat Perham’s Jesse Hein with a 5-1 decision in the heavyweight semifinals.

Class 3A

285

Cole Wilson, Faribault, dec. Mark Wychor, Moorhead, 3-2.

Class 2A

160

Dan Revering, Fergus Falls, dec. John Nething, New London-Spicer, 5-3.

215

Colton Thorson, Fergus Falls, dec. Tyler Lewandowski, Foley, 3-2, 4OT.

285

John Morrison, North Branch, dec. Jesse Hein, Perham, 5-1.

Class 1A

119

Travis Borchert, Browerville-Eagle Valley, dec. Tanner Ellenberg, Frazee, 4-1.

135

Mariano Portillo, Crookson, dec. Jordan Novak, New York Mills, 12-7.

145

Jake Long, West Central Area, dec. Alex Cooling, Medalia-Truman, 6-5.

152

Brad Keller, Medford, dec. Jake Schermerhorn, Frazee, 10-5.

Ryan Thompson, Benson, dec. Caleb Lanoue, Mahnomen-Waubun, 9-5.

160

Stephen Erlandson, Breckenridge-CT, dec. Travis Winter, Belgrade-BE, 10-5.


Readers can reach Forum reporter Kerry Collins at (701) 241-5548