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Ryan wrestling pushes forward, defeats DLB 43-25

Jimmy Lafakis/MDN Des Lacs-Burlington senior Coy Spooner (left) and Bishop Ryan senior Corbin Okeson (right) grapple during Thursday night's 195-pound match at Bishop Ryan. Spooner earned a 5-0 victory via decision.

As Bishop Ryan’s Bram Johannsen tangled with Des Lacs-Burlington’s Brenden Hedges, the Lions’ Den rose into an uproar.

The dramatic contest ended in Johannsen’s favor, as Ryan’s 182-pound sophomore earned a 8-3 decision over Hedges. The Lions (9-1) eventually earned a 43-25 victory over the Lakers (3-3) on Thursday night.

“I was really keeping up the intensity,” Johannsen said after the match. “I knew (Hedges) was getting tired. Pushing the pace a lot and working on myself a lot. I didn’t really want to let him get into his ties. That was the main thing.”

Ryan received contributions from all areas during Thursday’s senior night match. Underclassmen and upperclassmen alike chipped in for the win.

Noah Swegarden won the match’s first six points by forfeit, giving Ryan an early 6-0 lead. At the 285 spot, Keegan Henjum pinned DLB’s Jordan Robbins in 1:59.

After Lane Cooper won by forfeit, Ryan kept its winning streak alive as Gattlin Ledoux pinned DLB’s Cooper Bredahl in 59 seconds.

“Our lightweights really came through,” Ryan head coach Brock Nagel said. “Most people look at our team and see our upperweights as our power. Our lightweights really shined tonight, so that was good to see.”

Ryan’s Octavio Alvarez and DLB’s Harrison Schwartz went toe-to-toe in a dramatic match. Alvarez consistently wiggled out of Schwartz’s traps and captured a 14-0 major decision at 120.

With the momentum squarely in Ryan’s favor, Gannon Ledoux pinned Kaden Eaton in 1:29. Ledoux’s win at 126 granted the Lions a 34-0 lead.

“They’re a good team,” Nagel said of the Lakers. “They’ve always been a really good team and a close rival in all sports, it doesn’t matter. It’s always fun wrestling those guys, and we got a couple of really good matches out of the deal, too. That was fun.”

DLB’s Grayson Pease put the Lakers on the board with an 8-0 major decision victory over Ryan’s Drew Zwak at 132. The match’s momentum seesaw constantly teetered, but Pease brought the Lakers their first four points.

After Ryan’s Wesley Harvey received the Lions’ third forfeit victory, the 145-pound match was ruled a double forfeit. Cale Ibach earned a 44-second pin over Ryan’s Chuka Osuala at 152, giving DLB six additional points.

“I think we’ve got a group of guys that is working hard and is following leadership,” DLB head coach Kellan Zietz said. “We’re struggling as a dual team a little bit based on numbers and inexperience in some of our weight classes. Our older guys are wrestling well, they’re keeping our younger guys improving and setting a pretty good example.”

From there, DLB tacked some more points on the board. Walter Winkler gave the Lakers six more points at 152, pinning Jaeger Lundeen in 3:31.

The upper hand shifted between Winkler and Lundeen, but Winkler eventually used ground control to his advantage late in the match. Weston Wahus won by forfeit, granting DLB an additional six points.

Johannsen and Hedges struggled to find momentum at 182. Johannsen’s headguard gave him some trouble, but he eventually settled in and earned the decision.

Throughout the match, Nagel and the Lions encouraged Johannsen to find his rhythm.

“The atmosphere in here is unreal,” Johannsen said. “You’re in the depth of the match and everybody is on your side, cheering for you. It’s sweet.”

The evening’s final matchup proved to be a true treat for fans from both schools. Ryan’s Corbin Okeson moved up to the 195-pound weight class to battle against DLB’s Coy Spooner.

Both wrestlers are No. 1 seeds in their respective weight classes. Spooner mounted himself on top of Okeson early on, gaining a quick advantage.

Although Okeson fought valiantly, Spooner eventually earned a 5-0 decision. The Lakers earned three points, but Ryan captured the senior night victory.

“We’ve been talking about it all season,” said Nagel of the evening’s last match. “We planned on bumping up, and I’m glad they were willing to keep (Spooner) at 195 so we could wrestle. Not very often do you get two No. 1 seeds five miles apart. To get that opportunity for them to wrestle was a lot of fun.”

Ryan will travel to the Central Cass Letterman’s Tournament today, while DLB will participate in the Rugby Panther Booster Tournament next weekend.

Ryan wins

51-27 over

Williams County

The Lions also won the evening’s first competition. Ryan earned a 51-27 victory over Williams County (4-2) to kick off the senior night festivities.

After Williams County’s Cameron Johnson won by forfeit, Okeson pinned Keaton Brunelle in just 39 seconds at 195.

With the score tied at 6-6, Swegarden pinned Williams County’s Chris Garcia in 1:08 at 220. Henjum earned another fall victory over Luis Borja in 1:09 at 285.

Cooper captured his first victory of the day at 106, pinning Aaron Brimhall in 50 seconds. Ryan’s streak continued, as Gattlin Ledoux took a 7-5 decision over Tyson Durfee at 113.

The Lions, firmly affixed in the driver’s seat, kept the momentum going. Alvarez took a dramatic victory in 5:11 over Canvas Sanders at 120.

That match went back and forth, but Alvarez sent the arena into a frenzy after his pin. Ethan Wonser picked up six points for Williams County, pinning Gannon Ledoux in 1:12 at 126.

Cristian Lagunes gave the Firestorm six additional points at 132, earning a pin in 3:55 over Zwak. A pair of Harvey pins got the Lions back on track.

Connor Harvey pinned Leyton Brunelle in 2:59 at 138, while Wesley Harvey took a victory at 145 after his 4:50 pin of Hugo Garcia.

Angel Guerrero gave the Firestorm six more points at 152, pinning Osuala in 4:59. Lundeen showed his flair for the dramatic, taking down Dylan Tabbert in 4:55 at 160.

In the final contest, Williams County’s Parker Sandstrom earned a 7-0 decision over Johannsen at 170.

Williams County bounces back, defeats DLB 49-27

The Firestorm showed a resilient attitude in their 49-27 victory over the Lakers. Although DLB started off with some early leads, a strong mid-match run granted Williams County the victory.

Spooner pinned Brunelle in 3:16 at 195, giving DLB its first six points of the evening. Garcia pinned Nathan Robbins in just 41 seconds at the 220 spot, tying the match at 6-6.

Jordan Robbins defeated William Borja at 285. Borja injured his finger and could not continue.

After Brimhall won by forfeit, Durfee defeated Bredahl via a 13-4 major decision at 113.

Sanders pinned Schwartz in 1:32 at 120, giving the Firestorm six additional points. Wonser pinned Eaton in 1:37 at 126.

At 132, Lagunes earned a 6-0 decision over Pease. The Firestorm racked up six more points after Brunelle won by forfeit.

Ibach gave the Lakers three points with a 7-0 decision over Garcia at 145, while Winkler pinned Guerrero in 53 seconds at 152.

Wahus added another pin, taking down Tabbert at 160 in 1:17. Cameron Johnson earned six more points for Williams County, pinning Hedges in 1:30 at 170.

Sandstrom sealed the 49-27 win with a forfeit. Williams County went 1-1 on the evening, while DLB finished 0-2.

Jimmy Lafakis covers Minot High School sports and Class B high school sports. Follow him on Twitter @JJLII30.

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