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Wrestlers win 25th straight team District Championship

by Justin Scott

contributing reporter

A 35-22 loss to Caledonia in 1995 was the last time Lowell lost a district wrestling dual, and that stretch of victories continued last Thursday. 

The Red Arrows made easy work of East Grand Rapids in the district championship match, beating the Pioneers 70-6 to win their 25th straight district championship. Lowell was able to rotate in several members of their B team to get postseason experience. Wins were recorded by Bryce McCune, Dominik Peplinski, Landon Miller, Easton Lyons, Tyler Delooff, Carter Blough, Will Neeley, Jacob Cutler, Gabe Hare, Carson Crace, Case Huisman, Josh Meier, and Cole Huisman. The Arrows only loss of the night came to defending state champion from EGR, John Shelton. The Pioneers beat Ionia to advance to the district final, while Lowell had a bye.

At individual districts on Saturday at Lowell HS, LHS advanced all fourteen wrestlers they entered in the tournament to the regional round. The top four in each weight class moved on. 12 of the 14 advanced to the finals, avoiding the “blood round", the round where winning meant advancing and losing meant being eliminated from the individual tournament for the season. 

Both wrestlers who dropped to the blood round bounced back with wins to place. Grant Pratt will be wrestling above his normal weight class of 215 for the postseason, and outlasted a 30-12 senior from East Grand Rapids at 285 to advance to regionals. Ramsy Mutschler picked up a quick technical fall in his blood round match to move on. 

Keegan Nugent, James Link, Zeth Strejc, Dawson Jankowski, Will Link, Austin Boone, James Fotis, Tyler Delooff, and Jacob Lee all won district championships. Nick Korhorn, Jacob Hough, and Doak Dean all took second place. Mutschler (third) and Pratt (fourth) rounded out the 14 who all advanced to regionals. One of the Red Arrows preseason goals was to advance 14 wrestlers to state, and they will have that opportunity on Saturday as Lowell hosts the Division 2 individual regional.

Thursday, Lowell will head to Thornapple Kellogg for team regionals. There, they will look to earn their ticket to the team state tournament with the hopes of repeating as state champions for the seventh year in a row. LHS will take on Thornapple Kellogg in the regional semifinal, with the winner taking on the Holland-Byron Center matchup winner in the finals. The Red Arrows are 10-7 historically against the Trojans, and have not lost to Holland (2 duals) or Byron Center before (12 duals).

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