ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Class B preview: Steep climb in weights hasn't been daunting for Bon Homme/Scotland/Avon's Crownover

Isaac Crownover has top seed in chase for his first state championship

021922 Reg 3B semis 182 Crownover Stephens2.JPG
Bon Homme/Scotland/Avon's Isaac Crownover attempts to control Burke/Gregory's Gunnar Stephens during a 182-pound semifinal match at the Region 3B wrestling meet on Saturday, Feb. 18, 2022 in Wagner.
Marcus Traxler / Mitchell Republic

TYNDALL, S.D. — Bon Homme/Scotland/Avon’s Isaac Crownover is no stranger to moving up weight classes in high school wrestling.

Two seasons ago, Crownover wrestled at the Class B state wrestling tournament at 126 pounds. He took third place as a freshman.

In 2021, he wrestled at 152 pounds, moving up four weight classes as a sophomore. He was fifth at the state tournament.

Now this year, he’s the No. 1 seed in the bracket at 182 pounds, a far cry from where he was just two seasons ago. But Crownover is comfortable at the weight class and feels like it’s the perfect spot for him to potentially win his first state championship.

“I really like wrestling at this weight,” he said. “A few years ago, there were a few things you couldn’t do at 126 pounds. Wrestling is a lot different when you’re up here.”

ADVERTISEMENT

Among those differences, includes lighter wrestlers being a lot more flexible to make and defend against moves, and in the upper weight classes, a smart wrestler can use his opponent’s weight against him, Crownover said.

The climb in weight classes started to become a necessity as he grew older and added muscle in preparation for football, where Crownover is a running back and linebacker.

“I really like football and right after wrestling season last year, it was lifting all the time, through the spring and into the summer,” Crownover said. “I came in at about 195 pounds and cut down a little bit to be ready for this wrestling season.”

Crownover is 42-2 this season. His only losses this season were to Watertown’s Mac Young on Feb. 5 by 13-9 decision and Redfield’s Corbin Schwartz. Schwartz won a meeting on Dec. 31 at the McCook Central/Montrose Invitational by 6-4 decision and Crownover answered with a victory of his own at the Wagner tournament on Jan. 29, a 10-4 decision. Schwartz is the bracket’s No. 2 seed, meaning a potential meeting in a title match could be a marquee matchup.

“Coming from last year, I gained 30 pounds and I really didn’t know what to expect this season,” he said. “I was ranked third and I knew I could move up and once I got my hands on the No. 1 guy, I knew I could have some success this season.”

Crownover said he’s also learned from his past trips to state. He was the No. 2 seed at 152 pounds last year and was defeated in the quarterfinals, and expects to be much more composed this time around. Prior to the 2021 tournament, Crownover said his great-grandmother died after a battle with COVID-19, which he said was on his mind.

“I’ll be wrestling for her and my grandpa was here (at regions), and I’ll be ready,” Crownover said.

021922 Reg 3B Christensen Cassidy.JPG
Wessington Springs/Woonsocket/Wolsey-Wessington's Quinten Christensen takes down Mount Vernon/Plankinton/Corsica-Stickney's Kellan Cassidy during the 285-pound championship match at the Region 3B wrestling meet on Saturday, Feb. 18, 2022 in Wagner.
Marcus Traxler / Mitchell Republic

ADVERTISEMENT

Christensen chases dominance in Class B heavyweight bracket

WESSINGTON SPRINGS, S.D. — Quinten Christensen is expecting to dominate on the wrestling mat.

After winning the Region 3B championship last week with a 7-0 decision in the semifinals and a 5-1 decision in the championship, the Wessington Springs/Woonsocket/Wolsey-Wessington senior wrestler was happy to have won but not satisfied with how he wrestled. Being a reigning state champion, he said dominating his matches is what he expects to do.

“Winning it last year, my goal this year is to kind of dominate,” Christensen said. “I don’t think I’ve done that to my potential yet this year, so that’s my goal because there’s always room to improve.”

Needless to say, Christensen plans to be motivated at the Class B state wrestling tournament this weekend. He is the top seed in the Class B bracket at 285 pounds with a record of 39-0, with 21 pins to his name this season.

Christensen, who intends to play college football at South Dakota State in the fall, has lost only once since the start of the 2020-21 season, and that was to an Iowa wrestler at the Parkston Little B tournament. He won his next 15 matches to claim the 285-pound title and has run the winning streak to 54 matches with a 39-0 season in 2021-22.

Christensen has faced No. 2-seeded Grady Fey, of Redfield, four times this season and won all four meetings, with a pin and three decisions, including two that went to overtime.

“I’m just trying to wrestle smart,” he said. “You always have to go back to the (practice) room and work on stuff. Matches are going to get closer as the season goes on and I’m just trying to be ready for every possible scenario I might see.”

More South Dakota State Wrestling tourney coverage

Related Topics: WRESTLINGPREP SPORTS
Traxler is the assistant editor and sports editor for the Mitchell Republic. He's worked for the newspaper since 2014 and has covered a wide variety of topics. He can be reached at mtraxler@mitchellrepublic.com.
What To Read Next
Lieber poured in a game-high 29 points, including 17 in the first half in the win.
Prep basketball action from around the state for Monday, Feb. 6.
Members Only
Sizing up the GPAC playoff picture with four games to go in the season
Three classes maintained identical top fives compared to last week, as only one new team entered the rankings across all six classes.