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PREP WRESTLING

28 Wiscnews-area wrestlers to know this winter

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Practice has been going on since Nov. 14 for high school wrestling in Wisconsin.

Last season was exciting and with the amount of talent returning this year, the 2022-2023 is sure to be just as exhilarating with the potential to have first meets the day after Thanksgiving.

All of them will be prepping for regionals on Feb. 11 and sectionals on Feb. 18. The individual state tournament will be held Feb. 23-25 at the Kohl Center in Madison. Team sectionals will be held Feb. 14 and the state tournament will March 3-4.

Here are the wrestlers to know about this season.

Levi Ness mug (copy)

Ness

Levi Ness, sr., Lodi

Weight class: 106 or 113.

Something to know: He’s a returning regional champion. He won 35 matches last season, 16 by pins.

Quotable: “Levi Ness had an incredible breakout season last year,” Lodi coach Cody Endres said. “Levi also won a regional title and placed near the top of many individual tournaments he competed in. Having Levi at 106 helps jumpstart our team in duals and tournaments as he gets things rolling for us right away. He has improved tremendously each year in our program and he will continue to this year as well.

Treynor Curtin mug

Curtin

Treynor Curtin, so., Reedsburg

Weight class: 106.

Something to know: Finished third at sectionals with a 38-6 record last season. Regional champion and Badger Conference champion.

Quotable: “He’s a very hard worker. He puts in the extra time in the offseason,” Reedsburg coach Rob Bautch said. “He’s a great practice partner for all of our lighter weights.”

Drake Gosda

Drake Gosda, jr., Mauston/Necedah

Weight class: 113.

Something to know: State qualifier with a 34-12 record.

Avery Femrite

Beaver Dam freshman Avery Femrite participates in the 113-pound bracket during the Badger Conference meet. 

Avery Femrite, so., Beaver Dam

Weight class: 113.

Something to know: Sectional qualifier with a 31-16 record.

Jack Nichols (copy)

Jack Nichols returns for the Wisconsin Dells wrestling team for the 2022-2023 season. 

Jack Nichols, jr., Wisconsin Dells

Weight class: 120.

Something to know: Sectional qualifier with a 28-13 record.

Payton Oberg (copy)

Baraboo's Peyton Oberg (left) competes against Portage's Jayson Kreier in their match at 120 pounds during Friday night's Badger West Conference dual meet at Portage High School.

Peyton Oberg, so., Baraboo

Weight class: 120.

Something to know: Sectional qualifier with a 32-12 record.

Camdon Schultz (copy)

Baraboo's Camdon Schultz returns for the 2022-2023 wrestling season for the Thundsrbirds. 

Camdon Schultz, sr., Baraboo

Weight class: 126.

Something to know: A four-year varsity wrestler.

Quotable: “He’s committed to ending his season on a high note,” Baraboo coach Alex Knipp said.

Ashton Meister (copy)

Poynette's Ashton Meister reacts following his overtime victory over Markesan's Carter Newton in the 126-pound finals at the Division 3 Poynette Regional last season.

Ashton Meister, so., Poynette

Weight class: 126.

Something to know: Sectional qualifier with a 33-12 record.

Owen Breunig mug (copy)

Breunig

Owen Breunig, sr, Lodi

Weight class: 132 or 138.

Something to know: Returning regional champion had 32 victories. Finished with 20 pins last season.

Quotable: “Owen Breunig really wrestled well towards the middle and the end of the season last year after a tough start to the season,” Endres said. “Owen put in a lot of extra time and hard work during the season to improve to the level in which he was at. He will be motivated after placing fourth at sectionals last season.”

Caleb Mackey, so., Pardeeville

Weight class: 132.

Something to know: Sectional qualifier with a 27-14 record.

Ethan Johnson (copy)

Horicon's Ethan Johnson (top) competes at the Wickersham Memorial Christmas Classic at Beaver Dam High School in 2021. 

Ethan Johnson, sr., Horicon

Weight class: 138.

Something to know: Third at regionals with a 19-11 record.

Joe Beavers, so., Hustisford

Weight class: 138 or 145.

Something to know: Sectional qualifier finished with a 19-11 record.

Amacher and Hockerman

Poynette's James Amacher, left, and Westfield's Holden Hockerman both try to stay off their backs during the 145-pound finals at the Division 3 Poynette Regional on Saturday.

James Amacher, sr., Poynette

Weight class: 145.

Something to know: State qualifier with a 45-7 record.

Anthony Nighbor mug (copy)

Nighbor

Anthony Nighbor, sr., Waupun

Weight class: 145.

Something to know: State qualifier finished 31-9.

Logan Olmsted mug.jpg

Logan Olmsted, jr., Rio co-op

Weight class: 152.

Something to know: Trailways Conference champion at 152 pounds and sectional qualifier who took fourth at the Greco State Meet.

Quotable: “Logan looks to build off of a strong sophomore season with an even better junior season and a trip to state,” Rio co-op coach Eric Krivanek said.

Will Becker dual

Pardeeville freshman Will Becker scrambles with Poynette senior James Amacher during a non-conference dual meet this season at Pardeeville.

William Becker, so., Pardeeville

Weight class: 152.

Something to know: Second at sectionals and a state qualifier with a 34-7 record.

Zane Licht mug (copy)

Licht

Zane Licht, sr., Lodi

Weight class: 152 or 160.

Something to know: Won a state championship, finishing 50-1. He set the program record for most team points in a single season and is committed to North Dakota State.

Quotable: “Zane has goals to break the program’s all-time single-season takedown record this upcoming season,” Endres said. “Zane is a returning team captain and the leader of this program.”

Easton Hull (copy)

Waupun's Easton Hull finishes a takedown on Seymour's Wyatt Kaczrowski during a 113-pound quarterfinal match on Day 2 of the WIAA Division 2 state tournament at the Kohl Center in Madison in 2020.

Easton Hull, sr., Waupun

Weight class: 160.

Something to know: Two-time state qualifier and two-time academic All-State.

Quotable: “Easton is a vital wrestler to our team. He is a hard worker and is a great role model for anyone else to follow in our room,” Waupun coach Brady Huenink said. “Coaching him the past three years has been a privilege and I know all the coaches will cherish the last year we have with him. We are so excited to see him compete this year and I know he is looking to build on his success last year by not only qualifying for the individual state tournament, but placing as well. We chose him as one of our captains this year through his work ethic and the good example he sets for everyone else. He has only chosen to wrestle at the collegiate level at UW-Stevens Point.”

Devin Judd mug

Judd

Devin Judd, sr., Reedsburg

Weight class: 170.

Something to know: State qualifier finished 39-12. He was third at the Badger Conference and second at both regionals and sectionals last season.

Quotable: “He’s a great overall team leader, both on the mat and in practice,” Bautch said. “His wrestling excels due to his drive for the sport.”

Mason Lane

Lodi's Mason Lane was a regional champion at last year with a 27-14 record.

Mason Lane, jr., Lodi

Weight class: 170 or 182.

Something to know: 2022 regional champion finished 27-14.

Quotable: “Mason Lane wrestled really hard for us last season as a sophomore at an upper weight. Mason also beat some ranked guys and will be looking to take a big jump this season,” Endres said. “After having a phenomenal football season, Mason will look to continue that success on the mat this season as a team leader within our program as he chases his team and individual wrestling goals.”

Dalton Hoehn, sr., Mauston/Necedah

Weight class: 182.

Something to know: Finished 36-8 and fourth at sectionals.

Alex Katers mug.jpg

Alex Katers, sr., Sauk Prairie

Weight class: 182.

Something to know: Sectional qualifier.

Quotable: “Alex is one of our captains and a great leader,” Sauk Prairie coach Matt Gaffney said. “He has set his goals high for his senior season.”

Joseph LaRoche mug.jpg

Joseph LaRoche, sr., Rio co-op

Weight class: 195.

Something to know: Trailways Conference champion at 195 pounds.

Quotable: “Joseph is the lone senior on the team,” Krivanek said. “He looks to finish his high school wrestling campaign with a trip to state.”

Luke Statz

Baraboo's Luke Statz tries for a shot against De Pere's Michael Alexander in the prelims of the WIAA Division 1 individual state wrestling tournament on Feb. 24 at the Kohl Center.

Luke Statz, sr., Baraboo

Weight class: 195.

Something to know: Qualified for state.

Quotable: “Exceptional leader on and off the mat,” Knipp said.

Jack Tarnutzer mug.jpg

Jack Tarnutzer, sr., Sauk Prairie

Weight class: 220.

Something to know: Sectional qualifier.

Quotable: “Jack is an extremely hard worker, had a great season last year, and am looking forward to seeing what he can do this year,” Gaffney said.

Pierce Kristof (copy)

Portage's Pierce Kristof, top, competes with Lodi's Wyatt Ripp in the finals at 220 pounds during a WIAA Division 2 regional last season.

Pierce Kristof, sr., Portage

Weight class: 220.

Something to know: Sectional qualifier finished seventh at the Badger Conference tournament and ended with 26 wins.

Quotable: “Pierce is a great all-around athlete that continues to grow as a wrestler,” Portage coach Mitch Beckett said. “He is primed to have a great season.”

Nolan Vils mug.jpg

Nolan Vils, sr., Sauk Prairie

Weight class: 285.

Something to know: Fourth at state last season.

Quotable: “Nolan is an important part of our lineup,” Gaffney said. “He’s strong, athletic and gifted. I can almost always count on him for a pin.”

Jesus Gonzalez mug

Gonzalez

Jesus Gonzalez, jr., Reedsburg

Weight class: 285.

Something to know: Finished with a 37-10 record, placed third at the Badger Conference tournament and was a regional champion. Took second at sectionals and was a state qualifier.

Quotable: “He’s relentless with a motor,” Bautch said. “He always puts in a full match, which helps transfer over to his teammates. He puts in a lot of offseason wrestling. He shows great leadership for an underclassman.”

Follow Mark McMullen on Twitter @mmcmull2 or contact him at 920-356-6754.

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