Wrestling: Knights take sixth at MSHSL Class A State Team Tournament

The West Central Area-Ashby-Brandon-Evansville Knights once again had a good showing at the Class A team state tournament as they placed sixth on Thursday.

Will Rustan-DSC_0862.JPG
WCA-A-B-E's Will Rustan works for a half nelson against a New York Mills opponent during the Section 6A semifinals on Feb. 17, 2023. Rustan picked up a couple wins at the Class A team state tournament on March 2, 2023, and helped the team place sixth.
Sam Stuve / Alexandria Echo Press

The West Central Area-Ashby-Brandon-Evansville Knights built on their third place finish at the 2022 MSHSL Team State Meet with a sixth place finish at the 2023 State Team Meet at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul on Thursday

WCA-A-B-E lost its opening round dual to the eventual champion, Jackson County Central, 38-17, bounced back with a 31-29 win over Royalton-Upsala, but lost 37-33 to Medford.

Evan Dingwall picked up a pin in 37 seconds to start the dual at 106, but Medford won the next seven matches.

WCA-A-B-E won the final five out of six bouts against Medford as Hunter Gruchow earned a pin at 160 (1:08), Anthony Sykora earned a pin at 182 (0:48), Beau Robinson earned a pin at 195 (2:26), Will Rustan earned a pin at 220 (0:32) and Justin Blascyk earned a 3-2 win in an ultimate tiebreaker period.

To get to the fifth place match, the Knights needed a clutch win by Rustan at 285 against Roylaton-Upsala in the consolation semifinals.


The Knights trailed 29-28 before Rustan’s match, and with a 2-1 in a tiebreaker period, Rustan helped give the Knights at 31-29.

WCA-A-B-E won the final three out of matches in the dual as, along with Rustan’s win, Sykora earned a pin in 11 seconds, and Robinson picked up a 9-5 decision at 195.

The Knights began the dual with an 8-3 win in sudden victory period one by Dingwall at 106, while Owen Gruchow earned a pin (1:09) at 113.

Adam Lohse picked up a 12-2 major decision at 132, while Solomon Wales earned a 1-0 decision at 145. Hunter Gruchow picked up an 11-7 decision at 160.

Against WCA-A-B-E, JCC won the dual 38-17 and won 10 matches.

Owen Gruchow gave WCA-A-B-E a 5-0 lead after a 16-1 tech fall wins at 106, but JCC won the next six matches, five of which were pins.

Wales picked up a 14-12 win in tiebreaker period one at 152, while Hunter Gruchow won 8-5 at 160 and Sykora earned a pin (1:00).

Owen Gruchow, Hunter Gruchow, Wales, Sykora, Robinson, Rustan and Blascyk are all wrestling at the MSHSL state individual tournament starting at 9 a.m. on Friday

Sam Stuve covers a variety of sports in the Douglas County area. He also is assigned to do some news stories as well.
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