By Brian Jerzak
By the end of the 2016 State Wrestling Tournament, there were two names on the mind of every wrestling fan in attendance. For good reason, Apple Valley's six-time champion Mark Hall – no matter what was going to be the story of the tournament, but the tournament experience of a guy who ultimately placed sixth would grab a fair share of the drama.
Brady Berge's team, the Kasson-Mantorville KoMets had already taken home the Class AA state title on day one of the tournament and the junior – hands down the favorite to win gold in the AA 160-pound weight class had rolled through the first two rounds of the individual tournament with a pin and a tech fall. As his semifinal match started, it looked like the three-time state champion was on his way to the finals again.
"Before the match, I was calm – like I usually am before matches," Berge recalled. "The first period I took him down and turned him a couple of times. I had like a 7-2 lead going into the second period. It was my choice and like I do every other match when I have choice I chose down. I stood up to get an escape, and I went to turn, and my foot caught the mat, and I came down on it. It just bent in a way it shouldn't have. There was a lot of weight going down on it too so it snapped. I knew it was broken right away."