Mark Hall out early; Chaska’s Andy Bisek gets spot

IOWA CITY, Iowa — The effort exhausted Mark Hall II, the six-time individual state wrestling champion from Apple Valley High.

He dropped to one knee and paused a few seconds before rising and walking to the center of the ring, where the referee raised opponent Adam Hall’s arm in victory.

Hall wrestled four times Sunday at his first Olympic team trials without causing much of a stir. He beat former Michigan club teammate Logan Massa, 13-11, to reach the quarterfinals at 74 KG/163 pounds, where No. 2 seed Andrew Howe — seven years older and significantly more experienced — shut him out while winning on a 10-point technical fall. Continue reading at

Jordan Holm’s 2016 Olympic dream stalls at U.S. Olympic Team Trials

IOWA CITY, Iowa − Jordan Holm’s quest for a spot on the U.S. Olympic team ended Saturday in the semifinals of the 2016 Olympic Team Trials in a stunning 3-0 loss to Ben Provisor at Carver Hawkeye Arena.

Provisor competed at the 2012 Olympics and wrestled last year at 80-kilograms. The Stevens Point, Wisconsin, wrestler who competed at Northern Michigan University, capitalized on Holm’s aggressiveness to pick up a reversal and pounced again after Holm got caught on a turn attempt.

Provisor, ranked fourth, won the U.S. Open in 2013 and knocked off No. 1 seed Aaron Sieracki at the 2012 Olympic Trials. Continue reading at

Minnesota club wrestler Rau one step closer to Rio

Joe Rau won a provisional spot on the U.S. team for the Rio Olympics.

IOWA CITY – The night before he wrestled at the Olympic trials, Joe Rau did a little reading while fighting with his nerves. “It was a sports psychology book,’’ said Rau, who trains with the Minnesota Storm. “It said when something bad happens, don’t dwell on it. Get your focus back.’’

That turned out to be the perfect lesson for Saturday’s championship series. Rau was thrown to his back and pinned by Caylor Williams to end the first match of their best-of-three series in the Greco-Roman 98-kilogram class. After winning the second, Rau trailed by a point as the clock ticked down in the final match.

A late two-point move gave Rau the victory, making him the first wrestler with Minnesota ties to win a provisional place on the U.S. team for the Rio Olympics. Three members of the Storm club made the finals on the first day of the trials at Carver-Hawkeye Arena. But Chaska native and former Gopher Pat Smith fell 2-1 to RaVaughn Perkins in the Greco-Roman 66 kg class, and Greco veteran Jake Clark was swept by Ben Provisor at 85 kg. Continue reading at