Farmington wrestlers team up for first bid at state title

Farmington is attempting to win a wrestling state team championship for the first time in school history.

Farmington’s wrestling program has had its sights set on one goal since the beginning of the season, and one goal only — making the Class 3A state tournament field of eight teams. Goal accomplished.

The Tigers earned their first state tournament berth with back-to-back thrilling victories in the Section 1 tournament. They defeated Hastings 35-27 in the finals after edging Owatonna 34-30 in the semifinals.

“They definitely put their best effort to date out on the mat against Owatonna and Hastings,” Tigers coach Chad Olson said. “I’m not sure I can put into words on how proud, excited and relieved I am for our wrestlers, coaches, parents and fans.” Continue reading at

Totino-Grace wrestling stacked with big guns for state meet

Four upper weight-class stalwarts lead Totino-Grace into the wrestling state meet.

Cypress Hill’s “Insane In The Membrane” blasted through the speakers of the Totino-Grace wrestling room last Thursday. That’s when heavyweight Sam Anderson decided to have some fun.

Between practice matches against teammate Kez Flomo, Anderson bobbed his head and danced to the beat at the center of the mat. Anderson endured a serious injury last season and now embraces fun with his group of experienced teammates while searching for state titles.

“Sam’s the goofball on the team,” Flomo said. “When we’re down, Sam makes us laugh. He just has that smile that makes you want to laugh.” Continue reading at

North-metro wrestling well-represented at state

The north metro’s finest wrestlers compete this week in the state tournament at Xcel Energy Center.

The north metro’s finest wrestlers compete this week in the state tournament at Xcel Energy Center. The team portion, which includes Totino-Grace (seeded No. 4 in Class 2A) and Centennial (3A), takes place Thursday. The individual portion takes place Friday and Saturday.

Totino-Grace senior Lance Benick, with a 39-0 record at 195 pounds, will seek his fourth state title. Benick is ranked as the nation’s top wrestler at his weight. Continue reading at

Golden era of Moorhead wrestling becoming reborn

Moorhead – Moorhead wrestling coach Skip Toops hears about the ’70s and ’80s when people speak about the golden era of high school wrestling in Moorhead.

He wants to change the subject.

“Everybody associated with Moorhead wrestling always talks about the ’70s and ’80s when Moorhead was a wrestling dynasty,” Toops said. “This team cemented this generation’s legacy, and now when people talk about Moorhead wrestling, they can talk about the teams of 2013, 2014 and 2015.” Continue reading at

Apple Valley wrestler takes hold of his future

Apple Valley’s Mark Hall, seeking his fifth wrestling title, has his eyes on much more.

Mark Hall blends in casually in the halls of Apple Valley High School. He’s popular, the result of his stature as a wrestler of uncommon ability, but he moves with humility, never approaching cockiness or arrogance.

To most of his classmates, Hall is just another student in a sea of many. It’s when Hall steps on the mat that he becomes the closest thing high school wrestling has to a rock star. Continue reading at

Pioneer Press wrestler of the year: Mark Hall of Apple Valley

Suspicion and hard feelings followed Mark Hall whenever he took the mat for the Apple Valley wrestling team as a seventh-grader.

That was five years ago, and feelings ran hot among opposing fans and teams when it came to Hall and the Eagles.

Fast forward to today, and Hall draws praise from fans around the state, many of whom tell him they hope he sticks around after high school to wrestle for the University of Minnesota. Continue reading at