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Farmington's Anderson takes third at state wrestling

Farmington's Trayton Anderson goes for a cradle on Eden Prairie's Azi Rankin during their Class AAA state quarterfinal match at the Minnesota state wrestling tournament Friday at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul. Anderson won by pin at 1:25. Joe Brown / RiverTown Multimedia1 / 3
MacAron Kukowski made his first appearance at the MSHSL state wrestling tournament last week. Alec Hamilton / RiverTown Multimedia2 / 3
Anderson poses with his medal and bracket during the award ceremony. Alec Hamilton / RiverTown Multimedia3 / 3

Farmington Tigers wrestlers Trayton Anderson, Luke Peterson and MacAron Kukowski all competed in last week's individual state tournament. Anderson, a junior, took third in his third appearance at state. While he wrestled at 126 pounds this year, he was runner-up last season at 113. Peterson, in his second trip to state, went 0-2 at 132 and Kukowski was 0-1 at 182 in his first appearance.


Anderson won his first two matches, the first by tech fall (21-6) over Chontu Lee of St. Paul Harding, and the second by fall in one minute, 25 seconds over Azi Rankin of Eden Prairie. He then lost to Zach Smith of Prior Lake in the semifinals by a 7-5 decision. Anderson then won his consolation semifinal match 5-4 over Tanner Kunshier of St. Francis and the third-place match by major decision (10-0) over Jake Johnsrud of Albert Lea Area.

With this being Anderson's third trip to the state tournament, he said it was a little different than in the past.

"I was a little more relaxed this year than the previous years because I was used to the environment and more experienced than I was the first two years I made it," he said.

He was also lukewarm on his performance.

"I wrestled good, but not my best," Anderson said. "The outcome wasn't what I wanted, but I will look to change that next year."

Anderson also said that having his teammates in Peterson and Kukowski there with him made the state tournament experience even better.

Peterson and Kukowski

Peterson, a sophomore, lost his first-round match to Trey Kruse of Stillwater by a major decision, 15-5. He then had a wrestleback opportunity in the consolation where he lost to Bret Wilson of Rogers, 4-3.

Fellow sophomore Kukowski lost his lone match of the tournament as he did not have a chance at a wrestleback. He lost to Gabe Anderson of St. Michael-Albertville by fall in 2:45.

All three will help form a core of young wrestlers for Farmington next year. This past year the Tigers were a young team with just two seniors, so they return almost all their varsity lineup next year.

Alec Hamilton

Alec Hamilton is a sports reporter and general assignment reporter at the Hastings Star Gazette. He is a journalism graduate of Drake University.

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