PREP WRESTLING: Grand Forks Central's upset bid comes up short

BISMARCK -- Grand Forks Central's upset bid came up short. The Knights dropped a narrow 36-30 decision Thursday in the quarterfinals of the North Dakota Class A dual high school wrestling tournament. The loss closed the dual season for the Knight...


BISMARCK - Grand Forks Central’s upset bid came up short.

The Knights dropped a narrow 36-30 decision Thursday in the quarterfinals of the North Dakota Class A dual high school wrestling tournament. The loss closed the dual season for the Knights with an 18-10 record.

Century was ranked third in the final Class A state coaches’ poll. Central wasn’t ranked in the top 10.

“If we could have won one more match, we would have won on criteria,” Central coach Matt Berglund said. “We almost got them. It was a good dual.”


Central had to make a big comeback to get close. Century jumped to a 21-0 lead in winning the first five matches.

Central rallied, but could never pull even. Garrett Litzinger got the Knights on the scoreboard with a decision. Spencer Oen, Nick Escobar, Brady Terrill and Dylan Jenkins won by pins, while Kyle Terrill also won a decision.

“We dug ourselves into a big hole,” Berglund said. “We lost some matches early that we thought were toss-ups. But we came back with some big pins.”

Three from GF reach semis

Three Grand Forks wrestlers went 2-0 in the individual tournament to advance into today’s semifinals.

Tyler Keener at 113 pounds and Spencer Oen at 152 reached the semis for Grand Forks Central. Keener had an overtime win in the quarterfinals against Dickinson’s Caden Haugen, who had pinned Keener twice during the season. Keener and Oen both are No. 5 seeds.

Red River’s Sean Murphy also reached the semifinals. Murphy is the No. 1 seed at 126.

West Fargo starts strong


After dropping the opening two bouts of its team dual quarterfinals match with Dickinson, West Fargo put on a display of dominance.

West Fargo, the East Region’s top seed, defeated Dickinson 63-9.

The Packers (25-3) rattled off 12 straight decisions in the dual and scored six pins.

“The goal is to dominate,” said West Fargo’s 106-pound, eighth-grader Jared Franek said. “We wanted to set the tone for the rest of the state tournament.”

Franek wrapped up the dual with a 16-0 technical fall over Dickinson’s Todd Irwin.

“Our goal was to come out and gain control,” West Fargo head coach Kayle Dangerud said. “I think we did a good job of that in this first dual match.”

West Fargo advances to meet Bismarck Century in the semifinals at 1 p.m. today. The Class A team dual championship is set for 7:15 p.m.

“We have to continue to wrestle our matches and be proactive,” Dangerud said. “If we do a good job of getting those things done, we should be in good position to do well the rest of the tournament.”


Dickinson freshman Caden Haugen scored a pin at 113 pounds and junior Austin Hutzenbiler posted a decision at 120 pounds for the Midgets (10-5).

West Fargo senior Reed Cronin got the Packers on the scoreboard with a pin at 126 pounds.

Jordan Shearer (132), Anjelo Shepherd (145), Jesse Shearer (152), Kollin Kragnes (170), Tanner Kuznia (195) also picked up pins for West Fargo.

“We came out aggressive and we were focused,” Shepherd said. “We warmed up as a team, and we wrestled as a team.”

Fargo Davies dropped its quarterfinals matchup with Turtle Mountain-Belcourt 45-32.

“We wrestled (Turtle Mountain) the first dual of the season and they beat us by 24 points, so we did a little better this time around,” Fargo Davies head coach Keenan Spiess said. “We are building still, and Turtle Mountain is a good team. If anything, this gave our guys a good hard match to start the tournament before we start individuals.”

West Region top-seeded Bismarck defeated Wahpeton 63-5 and will meet Turtle Mountain-Belcourt in the semifinals.

Five inducted into wrestling Hall of Fame


The North Dakota Wrestling Hall of Fame is inducting five new members this weekend in Bismarck. The inductees are Lynn Forde, Ryan Kringlie, Ben Berogan, James Belohlavek (posthumously) and Kirk Zink.

Forde coached at Fargo South from 1978 to 2011 and guided the Bruins to 304 dual wins. Under Forde, South won the 1997 Class A team individual championship and had a total of 23 individual state champions.

Kringlie and Berogan each won two state championships with Bismarck in 1991 and 1992. Berogan is an assistant coach with West Fargo.

Zink wrestled on two state championship teams at Carrington (1991, 92) and had an 89-7 career record winning the 152-pound state title in 1992. Zink coaches boys and girls country at Hillsboro-Central Valley.

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