DE SOTO — Buoyed by first-place performances from the Rogers brothers, New Lisbon brought home some hardware with a second-place finish at its conference meet.
The Rockets placed second out of the 12 teams competing at the Scenic Ridge and Rivers conference meet Saturday, Feb. 2 in De Soto. The 12 teams at the tournament come from a trio of conferences: the Scenic Bluffs, Six Rivers and Ridge and Valley.
New Lisbon got a whole of strong finishes across the board, but none better than the championship-winning performances courtesy of senior Sam Rogers and junior Jake Rogers.
For a second straight year, Jake Rogers won an individual conference title. Last year it was in the 132-pound weight class. This year, it was at 138 pounds. He pinned Brookwood’s Jimmy Barlow in the quarterfinals and Cashton’s Matthew Harter in the semifinals to advance to the championship match, where he defeated Ithaca/Weston’s Logan Clary by an 11-4 decision.
Though Rogers was in firm control of the match late, there was drama when he needed to take a medical timeout in third period after tweaking his knee. However, he was able to continue and milked off the final minute to secure the win.
“He tweaked his knee a little bit and you’ve got to fight through it,” Slater said. “At this time of the year, not much you can do, so he fought through it. We’ll take care of it this week and be ready for Saturday.”
His older brother, Sam Rogers, won a conference title of his own at 170 pounds.
After receiving a bye, Rogers pinned Hillsboro’s Mac Verbsky in just 34 seconds in their semifinal matchup. In the championship match, he pinned Ithaca/Weston’s Sawyer Willis at 4:37.
“Jake’s been looking good all year and Sam really turned it on today,” Slater said. “He was impressive in the final match. He controlled the whole match and wrestled very well. I’m looking for those boys to continue to wrestle the way they have been.”
In addition, the Rockets finished with four second-place showings: freshman Marcus Forsythe at 106 pounds, sophomore Devon Lee at 113 pounds, junior Kaleb Baumgart at 152 pounds and senior Joshua Woggon at 285 pounds. Senior Dalton Lee placed third at 120 pounds.
Freshman Riley Sloan (126 pounds), sophomore Cael Slater (145 pounds) and sophomore Davin Bollig (195) each took sixth in their respective weight classes. Sophomore Ethan Baumgart also competed at 160 pounds for the Rockets, but lost in the consolation semifinals and didn’t place.
In total, New Lisbon finished with 160.5 team points. Only Ithaca/Weston did better with 196 points.
“I think overall, we wrestled well,” Slater said. “We could’ve done a little better, but overall, as a team, we wrestled well and scored some good bonus points. In an individual tournament, we can score more points versus a dual when we have forfeits. The guys went out and competed.”
For Royall, sophomore Nolan McKittrick led the way with his second straight conference championship at 106 pounds.
After receiving a bye, McKittrick hardly had to break a sweat on his way to a first-place finish. In the semifinals, he pinned Cashton’s Damian Mellen in 45 seconds. In the championship match, he pinned New Lisbon’s Forsythe in 48 seconds.
Junior Luke Wohlrab also made it to a championship match, but lost to Ithaca/Weston’s Riley Astle to come in second.
The Panthers had a trio of fourth-place finishers: freshman Dalton Pasch at 113 pounds, sophomore Ashton Roach at 145 pounds and sophomore Mason McCluskey at 220 pounds. Senior Laredo Benson took fifth in the 195-pound weight class.
Sophomore Michael Lincoln (120 pounds), junior Harvey Leverenz (132), sophomore Jameson Bender (160), freshman Evan Palamaruk (170) and freshman Cody Melteson (285) each placed sixth in their weight classes. Freshman Ethan Palamaruk (138) and sophomore Josh Palamaruk (152) also wrestled for Royall but did not place.
As a team, the Panthers notched 96 points to finish in fifth.
Necedah had three wrestlers compete at the meet and came in 11th with 20 team points.
Sophomore Shayne Sparby and junior Lane Melteson placed fourth at 126 and 152 pounds, respectively. Senior Cole Parrish wrestled at 145 pounds but did not place.
Necedah, New Lisbon and Royall will all compete at the WIAA Division 3 regional meet Saturday, Feb. 9 at Brookwood High School in Ontario. The meet is set to begin around 10:30 a.m.