Alex wrestling: Cards down Apollo in regular-season finale
In a battle of state-ranked wrestlers, Alexandria's Justin Cumberbatch (No. 4) defeated Bryce Kirchner (No. 10) at 220 pounds, using a 9-3 decision and helping to boost the Cardinal wrestlers to a 43-24 win over St. Cloud Apollo Tuesday night.
That win also moved the Cards into second place in the final Central Lakes Conference standings with a 6-2 record, trailing undefeated Sartell at 7-0.
Alexandria opened the night as eighth grader Ben Bogart battled ninth-ranked Peter Nelson to overtime before falling 5-3, but saw Dylan Kriese even the score with a decision win at 113 pounds.
Trent Piepenburg, ranked No. 5, then pinned his opponent in 50 seconds to earn his 50th career pin, and Blake Olhausen extended Alexandria's lead on a decision victory at 126 pounds.
At 132 pounds, St. Cloud Apollo's Matt Braun, ranked No. 10, won by technical fall over Tristan Johnson, but Jacob Schiltgen used a major decision to give Alexandria a 16-8 lead.
From there, the Eagles began to surge to the forefront as top-ranked Mitch Bengtson earned a pin in 2:45 over Jake Nienaber at 145 pounds and Dustin Neu lost by pin.
Tony Hubbard, ranked No. 8, pinned Nick Graham at 0:47 to put Alexandria up 22-20, but the Eagles came back with a major decision win as Quinton Kluver fell, giving Apollo a 24-22 lead.
Alexandria closed out the match strong as Mike Schluter, Shawn Nelson and Dan Oberg all won by fall at their weight classes, and Cumberbatch won by decision.
Alexandria will now begin Section 8AAA team tournament competition on Saturday, February 16 at Little Falls, with the individual competition on the following weekend at Brainerd.
ALEXANDRIA 43, ST. CLOUD APOLLO 24
106 - Peter Nelson, SCA, dec Ben Bogart 5-3 OT, 113 - Dylan Kriese, Alex, dec Ryan Sok, SCA, 7-0, 120 - Trent Piepenburg, Alex, pinned Sam Hance 0:50, 126 - Blake Olhausen, Alex, dec Drew Vanvleet 7-2, 132 - Matt Braun, SCA, tech fall Tristan Johnson 21-4, 138 - Jacob Schiltgen, Alex, maj dec Brandon Karolus 16-4, 145 - Mitch Bengston, SCA, pinned Jake Nienaber 2:45, 152 - Grant Nehring, SCA, pinned Dustin Neu 3:46, 160 - Tony Hubbard, Alex, pinned Nick Graham 0:47, 170 - Dylan Mehr, SCA, maj dec Quinton Kluver 9-1, 182 - Mike Schluter, Alex, pinned Kevin Cao 1:18, 195 - Shawn Nelson, Alex, pinned Trevor Beuning 1:27, 220 - Justin Cumberbatch, Alex, dec Bryce Kirchner 9-3, 285 - Dan Oberg, Alex, pinned Derek Biendara 3:36.