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Jeff Kolpack, Published October 18 2010

Crosby-Ironton standout commits to Bison wrestling team

Crosby-Ironton head wrestling coach Champ Hesch has mentored Hayden Zillmer since the kid was 5 years old. He’s coached him to two Minnesota individual state championships with a good chance this season for at third.

“If he keeps his head on straight and does what he’s supposed to do,” Hesch said.

Zillmer verbally committed to North Dakota State giving the Bison one of the top area recruits for 2011. The school, located in Crosby, is located 150 miles east of Fargo.

Zillmer won titles at 103 pounds as a sophomore and 112 last year as a junior.

He finished sixth at 119 pounds in the USA Wrestling Junior Greco-Roman tournament this summer to earn All-American status.

He was one match from placing in the freestyle tournament. But don’t expect him to be at those lower weights in high school this year.

A growth spurt will probably take him to 125 or 130 pounds this year, Hesch said. It could take him all the way to 149 pounds as a college freshman.

“He was undersized but now he’ll never come close to 119 again,” Hesch said. “He’s a real late bloomer. He’s just now starting to grow pretty good.”

Zillmer took a visit to Minnesota and checked out Northern Iowa.

“He’s a small-town type of kid so NDSU happens to be a pretty darn good fit for his situation,” Hesch said.

Forum reporter Jeff Kolpack can be reached at (701) 241-5546.