Readers’ Choice: Wrestling Rivalries

One of my favorite things about athletics is the rivalries. The Vikings against the Packers, enormous in my baseball-crazed house, the Twins vs. the White Sox, the Gophers against Iowa – in any sport but for my money, football and wrestling, and some personal favorites from my youth that still gets my blood boiling: Minnesota-Duluth and Minnesota in hockey (go Bulldogs), Milaca against Foley in anything, but especially wrestling, and Milaca against Princeton regardless of the sport.

As noted a few times, wrestling is saturated with great rivalries. A few months ago, I thought it would be fun to ask you – the reader – who you thought were the best high school wrestling rivalries in Minnesota. I decided to post a question on my Twitter page. What is the best high school wrestling rivalry in Minnesota? The rivalry that got the most votes would be the subject of my next story for The Guillotine. I got a great response from across the state. Here are the results:

1 Simley vs. Kasson-Mantorville
2 Albert Lea vs. Owatonna (tie)
2 Minneota vs. Canby (tie)

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Kasson-Mantorville grabs second straight Section 1AA team wrestling title, advances to state

After being down by as many as 10 points to No. 2 Zumbrota-Mazeppa, the top-seeded KoMets rode the performances of three seniors to secure the section wrestling title.

ROCHESTER — Cole Glazier’s preparation for Saturday’s Section 1AA team wrestling tournament included not thinking about wrestling.

Really, that’s Glazier’s routine before every dual — even the ones that determine a team state berth.

“I put more effort into staying calm,” he said. “Before (a dual), I’m sitting down, just taking deep breaths, just hanging out.”

Then, the Kasson-Mantorville senior star steps on the mat with his plan in his head, ready to execute. There were no extra nerves Saturday during the championship dual, even though his top-seeded KoMets team was down 23-16 to Zumbrota-Mazeppa. Continue reading at →

Why the transition to a new head coach has been smooth for Kasson-Mantorville wrestling team

Hill was picked by longtime legendary coach Jamie Heidt to take over the perennial powerhouse program this year after spending the past decade as his assistant.

KASSON — The year was 2012.

Ryan Hill had just moved to southeastern Minnesota when out of the blue, he received a call from an unknown number.

It was Jamie Heidt.

The then-Kasson-Mantorville co-coach and fellow Iowa native had heard Hill was living close by. Heidt had a proposition for Hill, a former Wartburg College wrestler. It involved coming to the K-M wrestling room once a week to help with the team. Continue reading at →

Glazier finally gets his elusive Santa hat with dominant effort

ROCHESTER — Cole Glazier finally has his Santa hat.

After years of coming so close, including a second-place finish at last year’s Minnesota Christmas Tournament, the Kasson-Mantorville senior snagged the long-awaited prize given out to the winners of the prestigious tournament with what assistant coach Jamie Heidt called a “dominant performance” in the title 170-pound title match.

Glazier controlled throughout, securing a quick takedown, before showing off his skills by riding out a 5-3 victory by decision over three-time state medalist Jed Wester of St. Michael-Albertville on Saturday at the Mayo Civic Center.

Although Glazier admits he would have loved for this to have been his second or third Minnesota Christmas Tournament title, he’s more than proud to bring home another Santa hat to the Glazier household. Continue reading at →

Glazier using state runner-up finish as fuel in pursuit of elusive title

Cole Glazier, a standout Kasson-Mantorville senior, came so close a year ago, falling 4-2 by sudden victory in overtime in a state championship match. He thinks about that match every day.

KASSON — Rarely do 24 hours go by that Cole Glazier doesn’t think about the 2022 Class AA wrestling 170-pound state championship match.

That day, a large portion of the extremely loud Xcel Energy Center crowd was glued to mat No. 3 where the then-Kasson-Mantorville junior and Pequot Lakes/Pine River-Backus senior Connor Tulenchik — the top two ranked wrestlers in Class AA in their weight class — were caught in a classic.

Glazier took a 1-0 advantage with an escape in the second period, and seemed in control.

But Tulenchik used a reversal to grab a 2-1 lead.

Glazier responded again. Fifteen seconds later, he secured a one point-escape with about 15 seconds left to force overtime. Continue reading at →

Berge earns silver at U20 World Championships

SOFIA, Bulgaria — Incoming South Dakota State wrestler Bennett Berge earned a silver medal in the 86-kilogram weight class Wednesday at the 2022 U20 World Championships.

A native of Mantorville, Minnesota, and a member of the Pinnacle Wrestling Club, Berge posted a 4-1 record over two days of competition. He won his first three matches all by technical fall Tuesday, outscoring his opponents by a 32-2 margin. In Tuesday night’s semifinals, Berge recorded a come-from-behind, 9-7 victory over Ismail Kucuksolak of Turkey.

In Wednesday’s championship bout against Rakhim Magamadov of France, Berge lost a 10-5 decision.

Continue reading →