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NYM Wrestling: Shane Novak 5th, Myrone Bell 6th at State

New York Mills 8th grader Shane Novak finished in 5th place at 103 pounds at the Class A State Tournament.1 / 2
New York Mills 8th grader Myrone Bell finished 6th at 125 pounds at the Class A State Tournament.2 / 2

By John George

At 103 pounds, Mills eighth grader Shane Novak (33-11) picked up a 3-2 upset win over No. 6 Dylan Sheridan of Paynesville in his first round match.

In the second round, he went against No. 5 Ryan Schroepfer of Red Rock Central/Westbrook-Walnut Grove. Novak pulled off another upset, advancing to the semifinals with a 8-6 win.

Novak would go against No. 1 Hayden Zillmer of Crosby-Ironton in the semi's on Friday afternoon. Zillmer (43-0) picked up a 8-1 win, knocking Novak into the consolation round.

Zillmer went on to the 103-pound championship against No. 4 Zach Keller of Medford. Zillmer would win the title with an impressive 12-5 win.

Novak, meanwhile, moved to the wrestleback round, where his first opponent was Ted Berckes of Canby. Berckes won a close match, 2-1, to move into the third place match. There, he lost to No. 2 Mitch Andrews of Border West by fall in 1:29.

Andrews beat Novak in the 103-pound title match at the Section 6A Tournament.

Novak went to the fifth place match against No. 10 Isaac Novacek of Badger/Greenbush-Middle River. Novak needed overtime, but came home with a fifth place medal after a 6-4 win.

Section 6A champ Myron Bell (26-16) won his first round match at 125 pounds against Joseph Kack of Minneota, 4-2. He had a tough match in Thursday's quarterfinals against No. 2 ranked Paul Norgren of Badger/Greenbush-Middle River. Bell pulled off an upset with, pinning Norgren in 5:19.

The road didn't get any easier for Bell, as he would face No. 1 Drew Lexvold of Kenyon-Wanamingo. Lexvold (28-3) would advance to the championship match with a 13-0 win over Bell.

In the 125-pound championship, Lexvold went on to a 10-1 win over No. 8 Curt Maas of Medford.

In the consolation semi's, Bell took on No. 5 Ethan Hildebrandt of St. James. Hildebrandt would beat Bell, 12-3, then went on to take third place after a 2-1 overtime win over Tyler Pasvogel of Sibley East. Hildebrandt was the 119-pound runner-up at State in 2008.

Bell moved into the fifth place match, where his season ended with a 5-3 loss to No. 3 Julius Stone of Browerville/Eagle Valley. Stone was the defending State champ at 119 pounds.

Mills heavyweight Landyn Saewert (22-12) had a tough first round draw, going against No. 1 Brad Wollum of Canby. Wollum (38-4) picked up a pin in 3:41. Saewert had to wait until after Thursday's quarterfinals to see if he would stay alive in the wrestleback round.

Wollum, the 2008 runner-up at heavyweight, won his next round match, keeping Saewert alive. Wollum was upset in the semifinals and would eventually finish in third place with a 16-1 victory over No. 6 Aaron Rose of Sibley East.

In his first wrestleback match, Saewert pinned Tyler Thoeny in just 45 seconds, but he would get pinned in his next match against Luke O'Reilly of Goodhue in 2:25.

O'Reilly would go on to finish in fifth place with a 9-4 win over Zach Nevala of United North Central. In the Class A heavyweight title match, No. 2 Jon Farnell beat No. 3 Jake Lee of Blue Earth Area, 5-1. Farnell, who was sixth at State last year, upset No. 1 Wollum in the semifinals.

"We really had a great tournament," Eagles head coach Eric Niemi said. "We had an outstanding individual performance. We beat some very good kids to get to where we were."