Mitchell-area wrestlers fill up semifinal slots at state wrestling

More than 30 wrestlers are in Friday's semifinal round after the first day of competition in Rapid City

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Winner Area's Maxton Brozik and McCook Central/Montrose's Trystan Traupel get tangled up during a quarterfinal match in the boys 113-pound division of the South Dakota state high school wrestling tournament on Thursday, Feb. 23, 2023 at Summit Arena in Rapid City.
Marcus Traxler / Mitchell Republic

RAPID CITY — Mitchell’s Jagger Tyler is among the 31 area wrestlers who are now two victories away from state high school wrestling championships at The Monument following Thursday’s quarterfinal round.

Tyler picked up his 40th win of the season with a quarterfinal win over Sioux Falls Jefferson’s Nolan Jessen. Tyler, who is going for his second-straight state title, won with two technical falls on Thursday by a combined score of 30-0. He will face Douglas/Rapid City Christian’s Kale Crowser in the semifinal round.

Chamberlain’s Noah Hutmacher is among the final four semifinalists in the 220-pound Class A division. He advanced with a pin over Brookings’ James Olson, improving to 36-1 on the year. Of note in the 220-pound bracket, No. 10-seeded Matthew Peters, of Watertown, is putting together a run in the winner’s bracket. He upset second-seeded Abraham Myers, of Sioux Falls Washington, with a quarterfinal-round pin. Myers was 43-2 entering the match.

In Class A, Brandon Valley has 88.5 points as of the completion of the quarterfinals and first round of wrestlebacks, with Pierre in second at 81.5 points, followed by Watertown (74.5), Sturgis (72) and Aberdeen Central (47) rounding out the top-five. Mitchell has 16 team points, standing in a tie for 16th place, while Chamberlain is 18th with 15 team points.

In Class B, Canton leads the team scoring with 83.5 points, followed by McCook Central/Montrose leading a tight pack of chasers for second place. The Fighting Cougars have 58.5 points, followed by Philip Area (56), Custer (55) and Kimball/White Lake/Platte-Geddes (52).


The semifinals will commence at 10 a.m. Central on Friday and the state championship round will take place at 7 p.m. Central on Friday.

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Bon Homme/Scotland/Avon's Britney Rueb closes in on a pin of Canton's Jayrn Warejcka during a quarterfinal match in the girls 120-pound division of the South Dakota state high school wrestling tournament on Thursday, Feb. 23, 2023 at Summit Arena in Rapid City.
Marcus Traxler / Mitchell Republic

Five area girls in semifinals

In the girls weight classes, Kimball/White Lake/Platte-Geddes and Bon Homme/Scotland/Avon will both send a pair of wrestlers to the semifinal round. At 106 pounds, Akane Metcalfe won her quarterfinal match over Mitchell’s Frankie Kranz, and teammate Elena Brennan had one of the upsets in the girls bracket, knocking off fourth-seeded Hattie Baldwin, of Pierre, with a second-period pin at 154 pounds. Brennan advances to face Maya Erickson, of Brookings, in the semifinals.

BHSA’s Peyton Hellman won her quarterfinal match over Lakota Tech’s Jessica Waln in 36 seconds by fall, picking up her pursuit of a second consecutive state title. Her teammate, Britney Rueb also won with a first-period pin to improve to 38-2 in the 120-pound weight class.

Also advancing at 120 is Alexis Bryant, of McCook Central/Montrose, who won with a pin over Chamberlain’s Shelby Shrake, and Bryant will match up with Rueb in the semifinals.

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McCook Central/Montrose's Alexis Bryant (top) and Chamberlain's Shelby Shrake battle for position during a quarterfinal match in the girls 120-pound division of the South Dakota state high school wrestling tournament on Thursday, Feb. 23, 2023 at Summit Arena in Rapid City.
Marcus Traxler / Mitchell Republic

Boys wrestlers moving to the Class B semifinals

A number of area wrestlers clinched spots in the Class B boys semifinals on Thursday night.

All four semifinalists in the 120-pound Class B class have area connections. Top-seeded Karstyn Lhotak, of Wagner, is advancing, as is Howard’s Conner Giedd, KWLPG’s Gavin Braun and Trystan Traupel, of MCM.


Traupel pinned Winner Area’s Maxton Brozik in the quarterfinals, moving the 113-pound champion from 2022 to the consolation bracket. In the 113-pound weight class, Jacksen Carter, of Wessington Springs/Woonsocket/Wolsey-Wessington advanced to the semifinals.

Each half of the 126-pound bracket has one area representative, with No. 1 seed Kasen Konstanz, of KWLPG, on the top. On the opposite side, Winner Area’s Karson Keiser, the No. 6 seed, upset third-seeded Chase Hanson, of Stanley County, in the quarterfinals. Hanson was the Class B 120-pound champion last year.

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From left, Wagner's Jhett Breen and Bon Homme/Avon's Tyler Tjeerdsma wrestle during a quarterfinal match in the boys 138-pound division of the South Dakota state high school wrestling tournament on Thursday, Feb. 23, 2023 at Summit Arena in Rapid City.
Marcus Traxler / Mitchell Republic

The top two seeds at 132 pounds in Class B are moving on, as Burke/Gregory’s Owen Hansen continues his undefeated quest for a third-consecutive state title and KWLPG’s Iden Myers follows another potential collision course after meeting in last week’s region championship.

Wagner’s Jhett Breen, the No. 2 seed, is the lone remaining area athlete at 138 pounds. Breen defeated Bon Homme/Avon’s Tyler Tjeerdsma to advance to the semifinals, where he’ll meet up with No. 3 seed Jace Blasius, of Philip Area.

Carter Lenz, of KWLPG, and Drew Gerlach, of Mount Vernon/Plankinton/Corsica-Stickney, continued to move through the 145-pound bracket as the No. 1 and No. 3 seeds, respectively. All top four seeds remain, with Lenz to battle Kingsbury County’s Dylan Zell and Gerlach to square off with Canton’s Ayson Rice, a two-time defending state champion.

As the top two seeds at 152 pounds, MCM’s Jackson Remmers and Parkston’s Porter Neugebauer inched toward a potential title matchup. To get there, they’ll have to dispatch of Redfield’s Mason Whitley and Philip Area’s Blair Blasius, respectively.

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Winner Area's Karson Keiser attempts to break the grasp of Stanley County's Chase Hanson during a quarterfinal match in the boys 126-pound division of the South Dakota state high school wrestling tournament on Thursday, Feb. 23, 2023 at Summit Arena in Rapid City.
Marcus Traxler / Mitchell Republic

A 160-pound semifinal pits two area athletes against one another, as top-seeded Riley Orel, of Winner Area, goes up against No. 4 seed Tance Wagner, of Lyman.

Second-seeded Gunnar Stephens, of Burke/Gregory, is into the 170-pound semi finals, where he’ll meet the No. 3 seed, Custer’s Parker Noem. Meanwhile, MCM’s Weston Remmers pulled a No. 5 over No. 4 upset in the quarters, besting Mobridge-Pollock’s Jesse Bears Heart in the quarterfinals to set up a meeting with No. 1 Burk Blasius, of Philip Area.


In the top half of the 182-pound bracket, Winner Area’s Jack Kruger brings the top seed into a semifinal against WSWWW’s Keegan Haider. On the opposite side, the No. 2 seed, BHA’s Isaac Crownover, will face third-seeded Josh Merkle, of Canton.

Third-seeded Jayden Kahler, of KWLPG, is into the 195-pound semifinals after a win over No. 6 Gunner Johnson, of Lyman. Awaiting Kahler is the division’s top seed, undefeated Tanner Meyers, of Canton.

McCook Central/Montrose is represented in the upper weight classes with Kade Grocott (220) and Austin Hoiten (285). Grocott, the No. 5 seed in his class, defeated fourth-seeded Tim Bouza of Wagner, 5-0 and will face No. 1 seed Levi Wieman of Parker in the semifinals. Hoiten, seeded second in his class, had a 59-second pin over Newell’s Colton Niles to assure a semifinal berth. He faces Redfield’s Grady Fey in the semifinal round.

Kernels battle in blood round

The MHS wrestling team continued to battle in the “blood round” on Thursday night, with the second round of wrestlebacks deciding who would reach the podium on Friday.

Mitchell’s contingent of girls wrestlers, Frankie Kranz at 106 pounds and Danny Borja at 120 pounds, each won their wrestleback match late on Thursday. Kranz won her match against Brookings’ Bailey Tekrony in a 2:04 fall. Borja won 3-2 over Olivia Kolbrek, of Sioux Falls Washington. It assures both wrestlers of a top-six finish in their weight classes.

On the boys side, Cruze Allhiser was defeated by Aberdeen Central’s Porter Lozenski by a 4-0 decision, ending Allhiser’s senior season at 26-18. Allhiser won earlier in the day in a 113-pound consolation round match 7-6 over Sisseton’s Blake Steiner.

Connor Degen wrestled at 195 pounds and finished with a 9-1 loss to Beresford/Alcester-Hudson’s Landon Schurch. Degen, who finished 19-22 on the season, won earlier in the day in a wrestleback match

Penn Long, wrestling at 126 pounds for Mitchell, finished 1-2 on Thursday. After an opening round major decision loss, Long defeated Sisseton’s Reed Gray by an 8-0 major decision, before falling 10-4 against Sioux Falls Lincoln’s Bentley Williams.

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
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