Raiders reload after second-place finish at state

The Bertha-Hewitt-Verndale-Parkers Prairie wrestling team will have some new faces in the lineup this season after going 29-8 overall last winter.

bhvppWR GideonErvasti.jpg
BH/V/PP's Gideon Ervasti (top) maintains control on Zumbrota-Mazeppa's Ethan Kovars during the Class A 195-pound state quarterfinals on March 27, 2021 at St. Michael. Ervasti is one of the wrestlers back for the Raiders as a senior looking to lead the way this winter after he went 26-7 a year ago. Photo by Joe Brown / Forum News Service

The Bertha-Hewitt-Verndale-Parkers Prairie wrestling team had a senior-laden lineup that left its mark on the program last winter with a second-place Class A team finish at state. Now the Raiders are tasked with reloading with some good talent back and new athletes ready to step in.

Gideon Ervasti, Reese Thompson, Deagen Captain, Blake Sumstad, Bennet Arceneau, Justin Koehn, Abby Ervasti, Holden Truax, David Revering, Gauge Malone, Evan Jares and Justin Olson are the returning letter winners looking to help them do that. Head coach Bill Wagner is confident in the athletes he has in the program.

“(We) will have back seven with a great deal of experience. That includes six section place winners,” Wagner said. “If we fill in with junior varsity wrestlers and they stay healthy, we should have a very good season. The team hopes to make a strong challenge to defend their section 6A dual meet honors. The Raiders’ key leaders should include David Revering (38-7), Deagen Captain (26-9), Gideon Ervasti (26-7), Bennet Arceneau (24-12) and Reese Thompson (24-12).”

Nothing will come easy as the Raiders again face a tough schedule that includes talented teams out of Section 6A.

“Conference and section opponents will be strong,” Wagner said. “West Central Area, New York Mills and Border West are the strongest and will be a challenge to defeat. The BHVPP team goal at present is to build upon the nucleus with the moto, ‘It’s not about doing more, do what you do better.””



SENIORS - Gauge Malone, Gideon Ervasti, Reese Thompson; JUNIORS - Deagen Captain, Blake Sumstad, Bennet Arceneau, Colin Moller, Justin Koehn; SOPHOMORES - Abby Ervasti, Isaac Grabow, Holden Truax, David Revering; FRESHMEN - Cayden Kimber, Braden Shamp, Evan Jares, Hunter Strom, Orran Hart, Tanner Schulke; JUNIOR HIGH - Wyatt Jares, Tristan Hubbling, Preston Captain, Tanner Schulke, Hudson Truax, Mason Hoffman, Justin Olson, Adam Grabow, Gage Barthel, Ruger Oyster, Colby Schlosser, Tim Hinman, Lincoln Finck, Nikolai Hagen, David Veronen, Micah Stanley, Carson Sanford

COACHES - Head coach - Bill Wagner; Assistant coaches - Mike Arvidson, MIke Barthel, Kody VanDenEykel, Kyle Owings


Dec. 4 at Wadena-DC Tournament, 10 a.m.

Dec. 7 at Sebeka Tri, 5 p.m.

Dec. 10 at Bertha-Hewitt High School Tournament, 4 p.m.

Dec. 14 at Royalton Tri, 5 p.m.


Dec. 17 at Cass Lake-Bena Tournament, 10 a.m.

Dec. 18 at Cass Lake-Bena High School, 10 a.m.

Dec. 21 at Pine River-Backus Quad, 5 p.m.

Jan. 6 Parkers Prairie High School Tri, 5 p.m.

Jan. 8 Parkers Prairie Tournament, 10 a.m.

Jan. 11 at Aitkin Tri, 5 p.m.

Jan. 20 at Wadena-Deer Creek Tri, 5 p.m.

Jan. 21 at Tracy Tri, 5 p.m.


Jan. 25 at Staples-Motley Tri, 5 p.m.

Jan. 27 at Bertha-Hewitt Tri, 5 p.m.

Feb. 3 at Verndale Tri, 5 p.m.

Feb. 5 at Menahga Tournament, 10 a.m.

Feb. 8 at BBE Tri, 5 p.m.

Feb. 15 Section Tournament, TBD

Related Topics: WRESTLING
Eric Morken is a sports and outdoor editor at the Echo Press Newspaper in Alexandria, Minnesota, a property of the Forum News Service. Morken covers a variety of stories throughout the Douglas County area, as well as statewide outdoor issues.
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