Egan headed back to state wrestling tournament

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MFL MarMac junior Michael Egan, wrestling at 138 pounds, is headed back to the state tournament for the third time. (NIT file photo)

By Audrey Posten, North Iowa Times

MFL MarMac junior Michael Egan has advanced to the state wrestling tournament after placing second at 138 pounds at the Class 1A District 6 meet in Decorah on Feb. 10. This will be Egan’s third trip to the state tournament.

“It’s a challenge to get there,” said head coach Chet Bachman, who noted it’s rare for a wrestler to make it to state every year. “At this point, you’ve gotta go get it. You’ve gotta take guys down. He’s done a good job of that this year.”

Egan began the season wrestling at 132 pounds, but later moved up to the 138 weight class.

“We felt there was more of an opportunity there,”  Bachman said, “and it worked for him.”

Both the conference and sectional champ this year, Egan kicked off districts with a 6-3 victory over Trevor Johnson, from Rockford. In the championship match, he lost 12-8 to Denver’s Riley Wright.

Bachman said Egan’s finish is indicative of the hard work he’s put in all year, whether it’s in practice, before school or at home.

“The end result is the culmination of what you do throughout the entire season,” he shared.

Egan will wrestle at the state tournament, held at Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines, starting on Thursday, Feb. 15. Class 1A first round action will kick off at 6 p.m.

Three other Bulldogs—sophomore Ethan Stubbs (113), senior Brady Olson (145) and junior Nathan Johanningmeier (160)—also competed at districts, but fell short of advancing to state.

Stubbs lost a 10-2 major decision to Nashua-Plainfield’s Jakob Whitinger in his opening match, taking him out of contention. He rebounded in match number two, however, pinning Tripoli’s Brandon Busch to take third place.

Johanningmeier also came in third after suffering an uncharacteristic 13-4 major decision loss to John Ebaugh, of Denver, in his first match. He ended the day with a 5-2 victory over Jason Even, from Wapsie Valley.

Olson finished in fourth place after losing both his matches: 6-2 to Nashua-Plainfield’s Tristen Brase and 4-0 to Riceville’s Chance Throndson.

“This district was tough. It was way more challenging than last year,” Bachman said. “But it is what it is. You have to be ready for it. I feel like we left some takedowns on the table, and maybe held back a bit.”

Although Olson will graduate this year, Bachman is confident there will be more good things to come from Johanningmeier and Stubbs.

“The kids have good stuff,” he remarked, “and they’re still young. They still have opportunities. I hope they learn from it.”

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