Friday Night showdown with Knights

All on the line for host Bluejacket Wrestlers when 2nd-ranked St. Michael-Albertville comes to town Jan. 21

Greg Hunt

The big wrestling showdown between Cambridge-Isanti and St. Michael-Albertville comes this Friday to CIHS. The Bluejackets need to pull off a victory to stay in the Mississippi 8 title race, along with getting a shot at the top seed for the Section 7AAA tourney.

“This will be the best dual match in Minnesota Friday night,” forecast C-I Coach Neil Jennissen. “Both teams have guys that can earn pins, so there should be much for fans to get excited about that evening.”

The Knights come in ranked 2nd and the Jackets 7th in Class AAA. St. Michael-Albertville is in control of the conference race with a 5-0 record, while the Jackets are 3-1 (C-I lost to Monticello and SMA beat the Magic back in December).

The Knights have nine wrestlers ranked in the top 10 at their weights, opening with No. 1 ranked Tommy Thorn at 103 and closing with Shaun Little, Nick Edling and Parker Betts ranked in the top 3 at 189, 215 and 285. The Bluejackets counter with eight grapplers ranked in the top 10: Tyler Tischer (7th at 125), Ty Torgerson (10th at 130), Travis Holt (4th at 135), Cody Skog (4th at 140), Adam Kelling (9th at 145), Mark Volker 7th at 160), Clayton Jennissen (3rd at 171) and Derek Swanson (4th at 189).

On paper, the Knights would be favored at 7 weights and the Jackets favored in 6, with perhaps a draw at 130.

“It’s always exciting to anticipate what will happen on paper, but all that doesn’t matter when the kids get out on the mats,” said Coach Jennissen. “We’ve got a good shot to win eight matches. As always, it comes down to our guys earning bonus points when they get the chance while giving up the least amount of bonus points in the other matches.”

Jan. 21 is also “Youth Wrestling Night” for wrestlers in the C-I system. Coach Jennissen is hopeful a huge crowd is on hand for the marquis dual of the season.

• On Saturday, the Bluejackets will host their annual Cambridge-Isanti Duals with 5th-ranked Forest Lake, 10th-ranked Prior Lake, Mora, North Branch and SC Apollo competing.

Bluejackets 5th at Kiffmeyer Duals
The C-I boys went 2-1 to take the consolation championship at the Jan. 15 Kiffmeyer Duals hosted at St. Cloud Tech. 6th-ranked Albert Lea caught the Jackets 31-30 in the quarterfinals, getting a gift stalling DQ in the decisive 285 match. Swing matches in the battle were the Tigers posting a major and decision at 152 and 160 from their 3rd-ranked guys Dalton Westerlund and Cory Hanson.

C-I points in the match came from Ty Tischer (fall at 125), Landon Chumley (4-2 at 130), Ty Torgerson (fall at 135), Cody Skog (8-5 at 145), Clayton Jennissen (6-3 over 7th-ranked Carter Kortan) and Derek Swanson (7-2 over 10th-ranked Caleb Gaudian).

The Bluejackets then blitzed Sauk Rapids 60-18 before finishing with a 53-18 win over St. Cloud Apollo in the consolation finals. Tischer finished the day with 3 falls for C-I.

St. Michael-Albertville finished 2nd to Hastings at the Kiffmeyers, a week after the Knights beat Hastings in another dual. Albert Lea defeated Foley in the 3rd-place match.

M-8 Wrestling
St. Michael-Alb. 5-0, 11-4; Monticello 4-1, 10-2; Cambridge-Isanti 3-1, 10-2; Becker 4-1, 7-5; Rogers 1-3, 1-3; Zimmerman 1-4, 4-8; Big Lake 1-2, 1-4; Princeton 0-3, 5-5; Buffalo 0-4, 4-5.