Defending champs pushed, but prevail

By Brian Jerzak

Wrestling fans in the south metro were treated to a highly entertaining dual meet on Thursday night. The number one ranked Apple Valley Eagles traveled about fifteen minutes south to face the fourth-ranked Farmington Tigers. Rarely are the Eagles pushed in the regular season unless they are in a tournament with teams from around the nation. Down by one point with two matches remaining, their dual with the Tigers was far from a walk in the park.

It was a back a forth duel all night. The largest lead of the night was ten – twice - for Apple Valley, but there were six lead changes with the final lead change not coming until Valley's win at 220. Obviously, Apple Valley has a number of hammers in their line-up, but Farmington has their share of ranked wrestlers as well.

It was a match without a marque match up – no single bout had ranked wrestlers on the mat at the same time, but almost every match-up featured one ranked wrestler. Obviously, the Eagles had more ranked guys, so to keep it close the Tigers had to avoid bonus points and earn bonus points when they could. They almost pulled it off.

In the end, Apple Valley had an ace in the hole. Eagles' head coach Dalen Wasmund decided to bump his number one ranked 220 pounder – Gable Steveson - up to 285.

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