RAPID CITY-Mitchell High School knew it was imperative to start the Class A state wrestling tournament with a bang on Friday at the Rushmore Civic Center.
The Kernels went 7-5 in the first round, including a pair of wins from double-digit seeds Ryan McGinnis and Tucker Vilhauer. Unfortunately, they could not maintain the momentum heading into the second session, going 4-8 overall and 2-5 in quarterfinal matches. Four wrestlers advancing to the second day and two-Carter Max and Beau Foote-moved on to the semifinals.
"It was a great start," MHS head coach Travis Carpenter said. "I thought we had a chance to win three or four more of those matches that we lost and unfortunately it didn't work out. We've got chance to punch a bunch of these guys through to get on the podium. If we can do that, our goal is still there."
Foote and Max have been bright spots. Foote pinned both of his opponents at 285, while Max also pinned both of his opponents in a combined total of 1:43.
"(Max) is doing exactly what I expect from him and he's having fun doing it," Carpenter said.
Brock Sparks went 2-1 on the day at 106, bouncing back from a quarterfinal loss to Chamberlain's Trey Neilan in 2:13 of the second consolation round. Max Schoenfelder won his second consolation match at 182 with a first-round pin to stay in contention for third place.
McGinnis, however, may have pulled off the biggest upset of the day, taking down the No. 2 seed at 132 pounds-Lennox's Jaetin DeCou-with 8-6 win in overtime.
The junior couldn't capitalize and dropped his quarterfinal match to Spearfish's Max Sailor by major decision, before falling to Sioux Falls O'Gorman's Aaron Ideker in overtime of the second consolation round.
Vilhauer made the most of his first career state tournament match by by pinning 152-pound seventh-seed Brayden Burrus of Rapid City Central in 2:23. The freshman would eventually surrender a lead to Huron's Tyson Lien in the quarterfinals and lose by fall to Pierre's Lee Snyder in the consolation round.
"It comes down to position and knowing what you are going to do at every point in time," Carpenter said. "Unfortunately we got out of position, dug ourselves a whole and couldn't get out of it."
Chamberlain defending state champions Max Donovan (113) and Nash Hutmacher (285) moved to the semifinals pinning their opponents by a combined 1:15 and 1:10, respectively. Collin Powell also advanced to the semifinals at 126 with two wins by decision.
Fourth-seeded Gabe Skustad was pinned in his quarterfinal match, but picked up a win in the second consolation round to stay alive for third.
The semifinals and third round consolation matches begin at 10 a.m. today.