The Class A state champion Kenyon-Wanamingo Knights, Class AA state champion Kasson-Mantorville Komets and Class AAA state champ Apple Valley Eagles are back to defend their team titles in wrestling.

The Knights' return didn't come easily.

After winning in Kenyon on Thursday 81-0 and dispatching Westfield in the Section 2 Class A semifinals Saturday in Wells 48-16, it took overtime at heavyweight in the title match with Blue Earth Area to earn a return trip to defend their title.

After 160 pounds, it looked like the Knights were going to breeze, up 30-16 with five of the nine matches resulting in Kenyon-Wanamingo pins. But it turns out they needed all those bonus points.

The Bucs picked up four consecutive wins and had momentum heading to the 285-pound match. The Knights bumped up 220 pounder Kaya Lindell, and he delivered an 11-9 overtime win to send Kenyon-Wanamingo back to state.

Jeron Matson at 113 pounds had the quickest pin of the match for the Knights: 47 seconds. Other Knight pins were at 126 pounds Bradley Kish 1:02; at 132 pounds Seth Brossard 1:13; at 152 pounds Nathan Bauer 54 seconds; at 160 pounds Tyler Ryan 1:22.

Blue Earth Area captured eight matches and Kenyon-Wanamingo six; now you know why they needed all those bonus points.

Kasson-Mantorville breezed to the Section 1 Class AA title by crushing sixth-ranked Albert Lea Area in the championship after rolling over Byron in the semis 66-3. Last Thursday they dispatched La Crescent 81-0.

The defending state champs go into the state tournament ranked No. 1, unbeaten and nationally ranked.

In the Section 1 Class A final top seed, Zumbrota-Mazeppa and No. 2 seed Goodhue each won seven matches, but the Cougars were able to get more bonus points and win 36-23.

During the semifinal win over Dover-Eyota, the Cougars had to come from behind down 15-4 early.

Junior Hayden Stensland, 132 pounds, suffered a knee injury during his match and could not continue. But the saying is "when the going gets tough the tough get going," and that's exactly what the No. 3 ranked Zumbrota-Mazeppa team did.

Goodhue head coach Josh Grant was proud of how far his team has progressed this season, with a 24-6 record and competing against a Cougar team that dominated them earlier in the year.

In Section 2 Class AAA, No. 1 ranked Shakopee and No. 2 rated Apple Valley hooked up in the finals and the defending state champion Eagles beat the Sabres 28-19.

Next weekend will be the individual section tournaments around the state.

The Faribault Falcons made it to the section final again but ran into a focused Owatonna Huskies team, falling 37-22. The Falcons cruised by Rochester Mayo in the semis 51-10. Faribault had four pins and won two matches by forfeit in the Mayo match.

The state team tournament is Thursday, March 2, at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul. Three Hiawatha Valley League teams will be at the big show this year: Kenyon-Wanamingo and Zumbrota-Mazeppa in Class A and Kasson-Mantorville in Class AA.

Class AA and AAA start at 9AM and Class A at 11AM.

You can look at many of the section results from Saturday in detail by clicking here.

Empty Xcel Mat Configuration
Empty Xcel Mat Configuration



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