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After falling behind for the only time in the match 15-14, 160-pounder Evan Wendt gave the Hornets the lead for good with an 11-5 decision over Patrick Glynn. Photo by Robert Williams/FOCUS

Wrestling: No. 3A Frazee upends No. 11-2A Perham

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FRAZEE -- The No. 3-A Frazee Hornets (7-0) survived a scare from No. 11-2A Perham (14-4) mid-match but pulled away in the late matches defeating the Yellowjackets 37-19 in an exciting dual.

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The match featured 11 ranked wrestlers, eight of them Hornets.

Trailing 14-3 after three matches, Perham won four straight decisions to take their only lead at 15-14 when Brady Sazama pulled off late match heroics for the second straight dual.

Last Thursday against New York Mills, Sazama trailed Kacee Skoog 2-0 before recording a takedown and near fall for five points with two seconds on the clock.

Sazama repeated the feat, this time trailing Frazee's Eric Moltzan 5-1 in the waning seconds of the 152-pound match. Sazama scored a takedown and a near fall at the third period buzzer for an incredible 6-5 comeback victory to give Perham the lead 15-14.

Sazama's win brought a loud roar from the Perham faithful and Hornet fans saw the uncommon sight of their opponents with a lead on the scoreboard. The Frazee gymnasium was jacked up the remainder of the match providing a rowdy environment for the ensuing matches.

"Brady has been keeping it real interesting," Perham Head Coach Robb Moser said. "Brady is having one of those years that it finally comes together. We have a saying that says, 'Stay and you will be a Champion,' and I think we have one wrestler every year that shows this. This year it is Brady. What a great model of perseverance. It is so easy to be a quitter in today's society--Brady has shown other athletes the value of sticking with something."

No. 10-2A Josh Werner got Perham started on the four-match win streak with a spinning takedown of No. 8A Hunter Sorenson at the closing buzzer of his 132-pound match to break a four-all tie and win 6-4 cutting into the Hornet lead at 14-6.

No. 9-2A Luke Sailer defeated No. 4A Bruce Lemon 4-1. Lemon put up an impressive fight as he wrestled with an injured right leg. Lemon limped noticeably and was down on the mat for a lengthy spell between the second and third periods with Hornet trainer Sean Degerstrom. Sailer led 2-1 after the second period and scored a late reversal for the win. Perham trailed 14-9.

"Josh and Luke continue to wrestle very well," said Moser. "Every night it seems that either 132 or 138 has the best wrestler on the opposing team. Those two have been great leaders."

Degerstrom did not elaborate on Lemon's injury other than confirming it was not a knee ailment, stating, "It's not good."

Perham sophomore Colin Neitzke scored a big win and did it in dominating fashion over Frazee senior Tyler Wacker. Neitzke put up a 5-0 lead and had Wacker on his back in the first period after a takedown and near fall. Neitzke's win pulled Perham to within a deuce and 14-12 and sent Sazama to the mat looking for the lead.

After Sazama's rousing win, the Hornets took the lead right back at the 160-pound match. Evan Wendt scored often in an 11-5 win over Perham's Patrick Glynn. Both wrestlers grappled at a fast pace flying around the mat and traded throws in an eventful dual. Wendt led 4-1 and 6-3 heading to the final two minutes. The win put Frazee up 17-15.

The final result remained in question to the 195 pound match.

Frazee's Kody Vandenykle defeated William Parks at 182 pounds by way of a 9-1 major decision to push the Hornet lead to a dozen 27-15 with three bouts to go.

Senior Brett Gildersleeve clinched the match for Frazee with an 11-2 major decision over Perham freshman Jesse Klatt bumping Frazee's lead to its largest 31-15.

The biggest matchup of ranked wrestlers was next with No. 1-A Tony Reurink taking on Perham's Cody Nylander, ranked No. 3-2A at 220 pounds. Nylander controlled the match and won by major decision 10-1. Nylander had leads of 2-0 and 4-1 at period breaks and added to it with six points in the third.

"It looks like Cody Nylander is back, Moser said. "He looked like last year's model tonight. Nice win."

The Hornets did not give up their backs as the Yellowjackets were unable to score a pin the entire match. Frazee got pins from three wrestlers. A number of Perham wrestlers had a shot at a pin but Frazee, in true Hornet fashion, is renowned for finding ways to avoid giving up big scores.

No. 6-A Tanner Reetz opened the match with a pin of Gage Paurus in 55 seconds.

Frazee senior R.J. MacKay pinned sophomore Cole Schmitz at 1:32 in the 170-pound match.

No. 9-A Heavyweight Garrett Malstrom defeated Perham's Jesse Bucholz by fall at 1:10 in a battle of sophomores.

Perham's Sam Pirrotta defeated No. 10-A Byron Byer 2-1 at 113 pounds.

"Overall, I thought our kids wrestled really hard," said Moser. "Going into that gym is tough--many teams under perform there. I thought our kids from the JV on wrestled with some guts and some attitude. Also, even though the dual means nothing in terms of section implications, it was fun to see a gym that was alive and excited for wrestling. That was good for our kids to experience."

Of the 14 matches, Frazee won eight, Perham six.

The Hornets got back-to-back wins at 120 and 126 pounds. Grant Jepson defeated Chase Curtis 7-2. No. 10-A Austin Skillings won by technical fall at the conclusion of the second period over Jacob Guehna.

Frazee's No. 8-A 170-pounder Tyler Ziegler did not wrestle.

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Robert Williams
Robert has been the Sports Editor for the Focus since 2010 covering multiple state and national championship teams and is a mainstay at state tournaments each season covering the successful, athletic programs of Perham and New York Mills High Schools.
(218) 346-5900 x223
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