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Four Jacket wrestlers headed to state

#1 seed Luke Sailer grinds his Roseau opponent into the mat in the semi-finals. Sailer went on to the finals and won the 125 pound championship by a score of 6-2.1 / 3
Jesse Hein, ranked #2 in the state, pinned runner up Cervantes, #4, of Thief River Falls, in the third period to capture the title at heavyweight.2 / 3
Brandon Lueders finished runner up at 119 pounds after winning the true second match by a score of 13-3.3 / 3

Four Perham wrestlers are headed to the individual portion of the 2A state wrestling tournament this coming weekend.

Luke Sailer, 125 pounds, Cody Nylander, 215 pounds and heavyweight Jesse Hein all won titles at sections. Brandon Lueders, 119 pounds, finished in true second to qualify.

Hein, who has held the number two state ranking all year breezed his way to state pinning all three of his opponents.

After receiving a bye in the first round, he met Roseau's Keeren Oksanen. A minute and eight seconds later Oksanen was on his back.

Hein's semifinal match against Nick Grundmeier, of Blackduck/Cass Lake-Bena/Indus (BCLBI) lasted only 15 seconds before Hein's arm was raised.

"Hein is the prototype 285 pounder," Head Coach Robb Moser said. "He is strong, quick, and knowledgeable. He is the only undefeated wrestler in our section. The 285 class in AA is as good as it has been in 13-14 years and he still could win it."

Hein met Thief River Falls' Nick Cervantes in the final and pinned him at 5:01 of the match. The duo faced off the week prior at sections with Hein coming out on top, 5-3.

Hein enters the state tournament undefeated at 39-0 and amazingly has not given up a takedown all year.

Nylander pinned his first three opponents before taking the 215-pound title with a 6-4 decision over Garret Edelman, of Walker-Hackensack-Akeley-Nevis (WHAN).

Nylander took out Cody Drono, Staples-Motley, in his opening round match at 2:46.

"Nylander is young and aggressive," Moser said.

"His aggressiveness makes up for his lack of size. He is a small 215 pounder. He has a great future if he continues to work hard."

In the quarterfinals and semifinals, neither of his opponents would get out of the first period. Nylander pinned BCLBI's Alex Goodwin at 1:31 and Detroit Lakes' Bryce Dutton in the last ten seconds of the first at 1:53.

Nylander has a season record of 30-7.

Sailer took a similar rout to his section championship at 125 pounds.

After a first round bye, Sailer pinned his quarter and semifinal opponents, Fosston-Bagley's Gabe Hanson and Roseau's Jesse Eastman at 2:43 and 3:04 respectively.

United Clay Becker's Sam Klingfus took Sailer the distance in the finals, but Sailer took command of the 125-pound title with a 6-2 decision.

Sailer is 28-12 this year.

"Luke has had a great year even though his record is not that impressive. He has wrestled the bulk of his matches at 130 and 135. We never have any second thoughts about matching him up with the toughest opponent we can and I think it is paying off at the end of the year. He is a tireless worker in practice and we often forget that he is only a sophomore. Being a section champ as a sophomore is quite an achievement."

All three runners-up to the three Perham champions advanced to the state tournament.

Lueders needed an extra match to punch his ticket to the state tournament.

Lueders defeated BCLBI's Trevor Smith by technical fall at 3:33 of his quarterfinal match, after an opening round bye.

"Lueders has steadily improved as the year has gone on," Moser said. "He is a notorious slow starter in his matches and this season has mirrored his matches. I thought he wrestled his best matches of the year at the section tournament. He is a quiet leader who always works hard, never gets out of control, and will go anywhere the team needs him."

In the semis, Lueders went the distance taking a 6-4 decision over United Clay Becker's Mason Swegarden, before dropping a major decision to Jacoby Bergeron, 18-6, in the finals.

That loss sent Lueders to the true second place match versus DL's Zach Baker, where Lueders turned in a major decision the pack his bags for St. Paul. He defeated Baker 16-3.

Sam Pirrotta, 103 pounds, finished in fourth place after a major decision, 17-7, over Fergus Falls' Marvin Berry. He was defeated 8-0 in the semifinals by Jayfen Silorski or Roseau, before pinning East Grand Forks-Sacred Heart's (EGFSH) Eddie Bushaw at the first period buzzer, 1:59.

Pequot Lakes/Pine River-Backus' (PLPRB) Triston Rubner rubbed out his chance at a state berth by major decision, 15-1, one match shy of the true second place matchup. Rubner would go on to take second defeating Roseau' Sikorski.

At 135 pounds, Ty Haverland came away with a fourth place finish. Haverland shutout his first two opponents 12-0 and 5-0 before being pinned by TRF's Holden Nelson at 4:55.

He would reach the semifinals of the true second bracket continuing his shutout streak defeating WHAN's Devin Campbell 10-0.

Staples-Motley's Jordan Heldman pinned Haverland at 2:23.

Josh Werner finished in fifth place at 130 pounds. After an opening bye, Logan Gage of UCB moved on with a 4-2 decision.

Looking for a true second, Werner was faced with having to win five matches to advance to state.

He took out PLPRB's Nick Gravdahl by technical fall at 4:38 and WHAN's Paul Langton by fall at 1:11.

Alex Yanish (EGFSH) ended Werner's quest by major decision 9-0.

Brady Sazama finished fifth at 140 pounds. He dropped a 9-2 decision to start the day before pinning Nick Kasprowicz of Roseau, 3:56 and Tom Zoellner of Staples Motley, 1:39.

Eventual true second finisher Derek Teberg of Fergus Falls defeated Sazama 7-0 to end his day.

Senior David Langlie finished fifth at 189 pounds.

He was victorious after a bye defeating Craig Brodueur of BCLBI 8-3 before Staples-Motley's Chandler Trout, the eventual section champion, pinned him at 1:34.

Langlie lost a close 3-2 match to Ben Kucera of TRF to end his career as a Yellowjacket.

William Parks, 160 pounds, was pinned in his opening match by Collin Huckbody of WHAN at 4:53 but reeled off two matches in a row before meeting Huckbody again in the true second semifinals. Parks would go the distance this time but came out on the losing end of a close 8-6 match. Huckbody finished third.

In other Yellowjacket results, Garrett Biegler won three matches and lost two. Blake Olson of Fosston-Bagley knocked him out of contention 7-0.

Tyler Fudge, 112 pounds, went 1-2 on the day. His victory came over Daniel Stacey of WHAN 9-2,

Jacob Monson won his first match by fall at 3:57 over Trevor Johnson, PLPRB, before losing his second match versus Matt Laugon of Fergus Falls by technical fall at 2:42. Monson received a bye matching him up with Jarrett Nosal of DL. Nosal won by fall at the end of the second period and would move on to finish fifth.

At 152 pounds, Gene Schleeter finished with a record of 2-2, via two byes. Derek Braseth defeated him by tech fall at 5:00. Braseth finished fifth.

The state tournament will be held at Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul beginning Thursday, Mar. 3 running through Saturday, Mar. 5. The team portion of the tournament will be held Thursday. Individuals do battle Friday and Saturday.

Single sessions are $14 for adults and $9 for students. Day passes are $26 and $17. More state information can be found at the Minnesota State High School League's website,

Robert Williams

Sports Editor at the Detroit Lakes Tribune. Williams worked prior as the Sports Editor in Perham for the Focus, a Forum Communications newspaper, from 2010-14. 

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