The Sauk Prairie wrestling team took a big step toward its eighth straight Badger North Conference title by beating Waunakee on Friday.

The host Eagles pulled out a 34-30 win over the Warriors in a matchup of teams that were previously unbeaten in Badger North duals.

It came down to the final match of the night, when Waunakee’s Alan Olkowski earned a 3-0 decision over Sauk Prairie’s Chase Bierstaker in the 285-pound match. Despite the loss, Bierstaker did enough to help Sauk Prairie hold on and improve to 13-2 in duals this season.

Sauk Prairie wrestled with a lead for much of the night.

Waunakee held an early advantage when Sam Lorenz opened the meet with a pin at 106 pounds. Sauk Prairie answered immediately, as Zeke Smith (113 pounds) won by a 19-3 technical fall, Dylan Herbrand (120) won by an 11-2 major decision, Gavin Lankey (126) won by a 6-4 decision, and Adam Nolden (132) pinned Kyle Wilcox in 3 minutes, 46 seconds.

Waunakee began to chip away from there, starting with Tristan Scott’s 6-2 decision at 138 pounds. The Warriors went on to win five of six matches, with Sauk Prairie’s only win coming when Bryant Schaaf recorded a 12-4 major decision at 152 pounds.

Sauk Prairie trailed when Marcus Hankins stepped on the mat for the 195-pound match against Luke Laufenberg. Hankins gave the Eagles exactly what they needed, recording a pin in 1:55. Sauk Prairie also received a forfeit at 220 pounds before the decisive 285-pound match.

Sauk Prairie improved to 5-0 in Badger North duals to take control of the conference race. The Eagles have also notched wins over Reedsburg, Portage, Mount Horeb and Baraboo.

Eagles place second at home invitational

Smith and Herbrand won individual titles to lead host Sauk Prairie to a runner-up finish at the Sauk Prairie Eagle Invite on Saturday.

Sauk Prairie used a team score of 248 to place second behind Holmen (336), while De Pere (237.5) took third, River Valley (185) took fourth and Cedarburg (163.5) finished fifth.

Smith won the 113-pound title. The senior received a bye before starting his day with a 2:25 pin of Pecatonica-Argyle’s Noah Krahenbuhl. Smith followed it up with a 7-0 decision over Cedarburg’s Bryce Jankowski in the semifinals, then came back and pulled out a 3-2 decision over De Pere’s Sam Bruss in the championship match.

Herbrand took a similar path to the 120-pound championship. After a first-round bye, the senior won by technical fall over Wisconsin Dells’ Jordon Kosterman in the quarterfinals. Herbrand advanced to the finals with a 3-1 decision over De Pere’s Andrew Lopez, then recorded a 6-0 decision over Holmen’s Rylee Rensberry in the first-place match.

A pair of Eagles — Jesse Huerth and Schaaf — placed second in their respective weight classes.

Huerth cruised his way through the early rounds of the 138-pound bracket, pinning Seymour’s Max Sadler in 1:40 and Holmen’s Gage Anderson in 3:19 to reach the finals. Huerth ran into Cedarburg’s Sam Boerner in the first-place match, dropping a 10-2 major decision and settling for second.

Schaaf won three matches to reach the 152-pound finals — a 5-4 decision over Greenfield’s Mateo Arteaga, a 19-6 major decision over De Pere’s Hunter Mashl and a 3-2 decision over Cedarburg’s Max Grudzinski. Schaaf eventually fell to Mauston’s Jarrett Dolata by a 10-1 major decision.

Hankins (195), Lankey (126) and Dawson Enge (106) each fell in the third-place match to take fourth. Bierstaker (220), Nolden (132) and Jacob Pape (170) each took fifth, while Simon Patterson (160) placed sixth and Colby Elsing (182) finished seventh.

Sauk Prairie will get more than a week off before visiting DeForest on Friday, Jan. 19 for a Badger North Conference dual meet.

SAUK PRAIRIE 34, WAUNAKEE 30

*106: Lorenz, W, pinned Enge, 3:13. 113: Smith, SP, tfall. Schweitzer, 19-3. 120: Herbrand, SP, mdec. Statz, 11-2. 126: Lankey, SP, dec. Ellis, 6-4. 132: Nolden, SP, pinned Wilcox, 3:46. 138: Scott, W, dec. Elizondo, 6-2. 145: Miller, W, dec. Huerth, 7-1. 152: Schaaf, SP, mdec. Grindle, 12-4. 160: Marek, W, pinned Patterson, 5:45. 170: Statz, W, pined Pape, 1:58. 182: Hooker, W, dec. Rider, 10-5. 195: Hankins, SP, pinned Laufenberg, 1:55. 285: Olkowski, W,dec. Bierstaker, 3-0. 220: Sauk Prairie received forfeit.

EAGLE INVITATIONAL

Team scores — Holmen 336, Sauk Prairie 248, De Pere 237.5, River Valley 185, Cedarburg 163.5, Seymour 132, Dodgeville 120, Mauston 118, Wisconsin Dells 94, Greenfield 87, Belleville co-op 86, Beloit Memorial 77.5, Madison La Follette 65.5, Ithaca/Weston 61, Columbus 57.5, Mount Horeb 41, Pecatonica/Argyle 25, Poynette 18, Cambria-Friesland co-op 1.

Championship matches

106: Pellowski, Hol, def. Linsmeyer, Sey, 6-4. 113: Smith, Sauk, def. S. Bruss, DP, 3-2. 120: Herbrand, Sauk, def. Rensberry, Hol, 6-0. 126: Lopez, DP, def. Radtke, RV, 5-2. 132: Licht, RV, pinned Gerner, Bel, 0:24. 138: Boerner, Ced, mdec. Huerth, Sauk, 10-2. 145: Miller, Maus, def. M. Bruss, DP, 7-4. 152: Dolata, Maus, mdec. Schaaf, Sauk, 10-1. 160: Williams, Hol, mdec. Pollack, GF, 9-1. 170: Liegel, RV, def. Jahn, Hol, 6-4. 182: Lahr, Hol, mdec. Hudack, WD, 11-2. 195: Hooyman, DP, def. Burks, BM, 6-5. 220: Westcott, Hol, def. Olinger, MH, 4-3. 285: Jones, Dod, def. Fiers, Hol, 1-0.

Third-place matches

106: Quaglia, Bel, def. Enge, Sauk, 4-3. 113: Jankowski, Ced, def. Klonecki, Hol, 4-2. 120: Lopez, DP, pinned Genco, Col, 2:37. 126: Wipperfurth, RV, def. Lankey, Sauk, 3-2. 132: Esser, DP, def. Baranczyk, Sey, 9-3. 138: Alt, RV, def. Anderson, Hol, 8-3. 145: Burch, IW, pinned Crook, Dod, 3:38. 152: Gordon, Hol, def. Grudzinski, Ced, 7-5. 160: Roche, Col, def. Phelan, Dod, medical forf. 170: Peters, Sey, pinned Recob, Dod, 4:25. 182: Kratz, DP, def. Eick, Sey, 8-2. 195: Mahoney, RV, def. Hankins, Sauk, inj. def. 220: Temmer, Ced, def. Lindley, Jr., BM, 9-3. 285: Miller, Ced, pinned Meurett, Maus, 2:18.

Follow Brock Fritz on Twitter @BrockFritz

Capital Newspapers Regional Sports Reporter