Highland wrestling advances to regionals

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With a second-place team finish at the Class 1A-Section 3 meet Saturday in Mediapolis, the Highland wrestling squad earned a place in the Class 1A regional duals Tuesday against No. 2 Don Bosco in Gilbertville.

The Huskies also advanced five wrestlers to the district meet Saturday in North English.

New London won the team competition Saturday with 206.5 points. Highland scored 164.5 points, nine ahead of third-place Pekin’s total of 155.5.

Two first-place performances and three second-place finishers highlighted Highland’s day on the mat. Bryce Thompson only had to wrestle one opponent at 106 pounds and he made his time count. He pinned Mak Kennedy of Mediapolis with a 43-second fall. Cael Yeggy gave Highland their other first-place nod at 182 pounds. He earned fall wins in both matches to advance to districts beginning with a 26-second fall over Trevor VanBrocklin of Pekin and ending with a 2:17 fall victory over Gavin Holmes of New London in the first-place match.

Easton Schlabaugh at 113 pounds, Carlos Valenzuela at 120 pounds, and Eli Slaymaker at 195 pounds each fought back to win their second-place matches after falling in their respective first-place bouts.

Schlabaugh went 2-1 on the day, including a 31-second fall win over Logan Baker of Pekin in the semifinal. Valenzuela moved on to districts with a tech fall win (18-2) over Dan McLaughlin of Sigourney in the second-place match. Slaymaker’s day included a 1:13 fall win over Ryan Doud of Pekin on the semifinal.

Contributing to the Highland team score were a trio of third-place performances. At 126 pounds, Ethan Paisley earned a fall win 1:00 into his third-place bout with Chloe Curtis of Van Buren County. Logan Bonebrake earned third place at 132 pounds. His day included a win with a 1:08 fall over Evan Dawson of Sigourney. At 170 pounds, Caedon Harbison earned third with major decision win over Isaiah Johnson of Waco-Wayland.

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