Wrestling: Elks 6th in home tournament, inexperience shows

Mitch Beadry (right), Elk 195-pounder, tries to grasp Brainerd's Casey Beiver in the finals. Beiver won 5-3. (Photo by Bruce Strand)


by Bruce Strand, Sports editor

This has been a humbling, start-over kind of a season for the Elk River wrestlers with a lineup far younger than they anticipated when last season ended.

The Elks are 2-10 in duals, and placed sixth among 10 teams Saturday in the Elk River Invitational, with no champions but three runners-up.

Brainerd was team champion with Stillwater second, each garnering four individual titles.

Evan Caldon (black) tries to fend off a takedown by Royalton-Upsala's Andy Poster in the finals. Poster won 8-6. (Photo by Bruce Strand)

“We didn’t get any firsts, but it was nice to see Evan, Mitch and Kyle get second,” said coach Paul Nelson. “Overall we wrestled well, and we had a good week.”

The Elks won 34-29 at Andover on Thursday, just their second win.

At the tournament, Evan Caldon had two first-period pins before losing to Royalton-Upsala’s unbeaten Andy Poster  8-6 in the 126-pound finals.

Kyle Wiemann at 285 also had two quick pins before losing to an unbeaten, in his case Dassel-Cokato’s Brent Pokornowski 5-2.

Beaudry reached the 195 finals with a tech fall and pin, and lost to Brainerd’s Casey Beiver 5-3

Elk heavyweight Kyle Wiemann (bottom) tries to topple D-C's Brent Pokornowski in the finals, won by Pokornowski 5-2. (Photo by Bruce Strand)

Those are the only three returning starters for the Elks, who anticipated eight returning from last year’s conference runner-up team, before one moved away, one went PSEO to St. Cloud, two are injured all season, and one didn’t come out this year.

“It’s a very young team, very inexperienced,” said Larson. “A lot of our varsity kids should still be wrestling on JV. They are working hard, and growing up.”

Next for the Elks is a conference dual against Blaine on Friday at home.

Team scoring

1. Brainerd 214
2. Stillwater 168.5
3. Dassel-Cokato 146
4. Royalton-Upsala 118.5
5. Osseo 118
6. Elk River 110.5
7. St. Paul Harding 80
8. Zimmerman 64
9. St. Paul Highland Park 22
10. Granite City Baptist 2

Individual champions

106 – Ben Kollaja, Stillwater
113 – Wade Hall, Stillwater
120 – Austin Jordan, Stillwater
126 – Andy Poster, Royalton-Upsala
132 – Dan Babineau, Brainerd
138 – Andrew Hammer, Osseo
145 – Branden Madsen, Stillwater
152 – Nate Adams, Brainerd
160 – Mitch Lange, Royalton-Upsala
171 – Levi Rubin, Brainerd
182 – Andrew Madson, Dassel-Cokato
195 – Casey Beiver, Brainerd
220 – Cory Wensmann, Royalton-Upsala
285 –  Brent Pokornowski, Dassel-Cokato

How Elks fared

106 – Garrett Caldon (8-10) was 3-1, 3rd place
113 – no entry
120 – Andrew Perry (5-15) was 0-2
126 – Evan Caldon (21-6) was 2-1, with 2 pins, 2nd place
132 – no entry
138 – Trevor Brink (2-17) was 1-2, with 1 pin
145 – Ryan Osberg (5-12) was 1-2, with 1 pin
152 – Aaron Hannan (3-10) was 1-3, with 1 pin, 6th place
160 – Kevin Weeks (6-16) was 3-2 with 1 pin, 5th place
170 – Robert Schmitz (3-10) was 0-2
182 – Justin Gagnon (5-9) was 2-2, 1 pin, 4th place
195 – Mitch Beaudry (18-9) was 2-1, tech fall, pin, 2nd place
220 – Zach Brown (6-16) was 2-3, 6th place
285 – Kyle Weimann (18-10) was 2-1, 2 pins, 2nd place

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