Pembina County North's Hinkle wins state Class B title
Grand Forks Central ends with four state placers
Trevor Hinkle came into the North Dakota state Class B wrestling tournament as the No. 1 seed.
He lived up to the billing.
Hinkle captured the state 126-pound championship on Friday at the Fargodome, downing Carrington’s Matthew Duchscherer 6-3 in the finals. Duchscherer came in as the No. 2 seed. Hinkle, a junior, ended the season at 27-2.
“Trevor dominated the match,” said PCN coach Shon Horgan. “It was a nerve-wracking match. Both are quality wrestlers. And it’s tough beating someone two or three times a season. They wrestled each other three times this season.
“Trevor kept a level head, just kept confident. You can’t look past any match because crazy things can happen at state. He certainly didn’t overlook anybody.”
PCN had one other finalist, No. 3 seed Jayce Horgan at 145 pounds. No. 1 seed Brecken Lura of Carrington downed Horgan in the finals in 2:42.
PCN finished sixth as a team with 157 points. Lisbon won the title with 246 points, while Carrington was second with 209.5. New Salem-Almont (188.5), South Border (171.5) and Velva (169.5) rounded out the top five.
“We always set our goal for the top five,” said Horgan. “This year, it was a tough tournament. But we can’t shake our heads with a sixth-place finish.”
Horgan said he will retire as the PCN head coach after Saturday’s dual portion of the tournament. He’s been coaching for 25 years, 22 as the head coach at PCN.
“I announced it to the team in the middle of January,” he said. “They stepped it up for me. We won the region dual title and the region individual title. That was nice.”
PCN, the No. 5 seed in the team tournament, will wrestle No. 4 Velva on Saturday morning.
Bicker paces Central wrestlers: Grand Forks Central senior Austin Bicker finished in fourth place at 182 pounds to lead the Knights in the individual portion of the North Dakota Class A tournament.
Central sent 17 wrestlers to the tournament and 13 of those won matches.
“We had a great final day of the state tournament,” Central coach Jeff Welsh. “We were hopeful to get two state placers and we got four, with three of them being seniors. The guys all wrestled their hearts out starting with the blood round this morning. It was a great ending to an unusual and sometimes difficult season that COVID created.”
Central wrestlers Braydon Williams and Mike Erickson met for fifth place at 152 pounds, with Williams winning the matchup.
It was the first time placing at state for Erickson, who wrestled with a broken nose and wore a face mask during the event.
“He just had a gutsy performance,” Welsh said.
Central’s Justin Kerr finished eighth at 220 pounds.
“Overall, it was a good feeling today, even looking ahead to next year,” Welsh said.