This past week was a rollercoaster ride for the Mustang wrestlers.
Both Damien Erickson and Sutton Pohlman competed at the 2021 Nebraska State Wrestling Tournament at the CHI Health Center in Omaha where both wrestlers came just one match shy of medaling in their respective weight classes.
Erickson competed in the 138 weight where he picked up two wins. Erickson surprised the arena in the first round of the tournament by beating Colton Pouk from Garden County by pin in just the second period to send him to the quarterfinals.
During his second round matchup, Erickson took on one of the top-ranked wrestlers in Class D with Garrett Latimer from Southwest where he fell in the first period to send him to the consolation bracket.
In his first consolation bracket match, Erickson found himself in a tight match with Reece Jones from Sumner-Eddyville-Miller. Late in the third period Erickson held a one point lead over Jones and held onto it to take the match 3-2 to send him to the heartbreak round.
In Erickson’s heartbreak he took on Clinch Kiger from Overton. In the tight match, Erickson came up just short of getting a medal, falling 4-2.
“Damien came up two points short of getting a state medal and I couldn’t be happier with him,” head coach Randy Hansen said. “He has improved so much over the past year and you can tell that just by watching him wrestle. He has another year to try and get that state medal so we just have to keep working with him to try and get there.”
Pohlman competed in the 170 weight class where he also made the heartbreak round.
In his first round matchup, Pohlman competed against Slate Micheel from Twin Loup where he was able to pick up the win with a decision and move on into the quarter finals where faced returning state champion Alizae Mejia from Plainview.
During Pohlman’s matchup against Mejia, he was unable to grab the win and fell into the consolation bracket.
In his first consolation match he took on familiar foe Sam Vortherms from Creighton. All tied up heading into the last 10 seconds of the third period, neither wrestler could gain an advantage and sent the match into overtime.
After the first overtime and neither wrestler scored, Pohlman had to ride out Vortherms. He did just that, keeping him from gaining a point which sent it into a third overtime. Pohlman escaped from Vortherms with five second left and covered him for an extra two points to send him to the heartbreak round.
In his heartbreak match, Pohlman was unable to grab the win over Christian Leonard from Bayard, falling 13-5 to end the senior’s season.
“It was really heartbreaking to have Sutton end his career without a medal,” Hansen said. “He has been a tremendous leader on and off the mat this entire season and has really brought this team together as a family. He has been great to have in the wrestling room and we are really going to miss him next year and I want to wish him the best of luck in his future endeavors at Chadron.”
Erickson finished his season with a record of 30-15 while Pohlman ended his season with a record of 38-13.
D138 - Damien Erickson (30-15), Champ. Round 1 - won by fall over Colton Pouk (Perkins County) 22-9 (Fall 3:08), Quarterfinal - Lost to Garrett Latimer (Southwest) Fall 0:28), Cons. Round 2 - won by decision over Reece Jones (Sumner-Eddyville-Miller) 30-23 (Dec 3-2), Cons. Round 3 - Lost to Cinch Kiger (Overton) (Dec 4-2)
D170 - Sutton Pohlman (38-13), Champ. Round 1 - won by decision over Slate Micheel (Twin Loup) 42-13 (Dec 6-2), Quarterfinal - Lost to Alizae Mejia (Plainview) (Fall 3:35), Cons. Round 2 - won in tie breaker - 1 over Sam Vortherms (Creighton) 37-11 (TB-1 4-1), Cons. Round 3 - Lost to Christian Leonard (Bayard) (MD 13-5)