The Farmington Tigers wrestling team had to overcome being far from full strength this past weekend at the annual Minnesota Christmas Tournament held at Rochester Community Technical College. The Tigers, according to head coaches Chad Olson and Henry Gerten, were missing several wrestlers due to illness and injury heading into the weekend, which opened up opportunities for several young wrestlers.
The highlight of the weekend for the Tigers was junior Trayton Anderson taking third at 126 pounds. Anderson went 5-1 on the weekend, his only loss coming once again to state and nationally ranked Patrick Mckee of St. Michael-Albertville in the semifinals. Anderson beat Michael Suda of Pipestone in the third-place match by a 10-7 decision. Suda is a two-time defending state champion in class A.
Outside of Anderson, several other wrestlers stood out with their efforts in Rochester.
"We had a couple younger guys make it to the second day in freshmen Austin Hamel and Zac Janz," Gerten said. "Both had exciting matches to make it to the second day of competition."
Eighth-grader Hunter Frost went 0-2 at 106 pounds. Freshman Noah Kendall received a first-round bye before losing his first two matches at 113 pounds. Fellow freshman Chase Vought made it to the third consolation round before losing by an 8-6 decision to finish the tournament 2-2 including a bye. Hamel (138 pounds) made it to the fifth consolation round after receiving a bye in the first round and going 2-2 after.
Freshman Parker Venz went 1-2 in matches wrestled at 145 pounds while Janz went 4-2 with two byes in the 152-pound weight class. Sophomore Luke Weierke went 1-2 at 160 pounds with a win by pinfall. Junior Will Buffington wrestled at 170 pounds and went 3-2 including two byes. Sophomore Seth Goodreau (182 pounds) junior Matt Reed (195 pounds) went 0-2, Reed with two byes. Seniors Nick Hawkins (220 pounds) and Luke Kreisel (285 pounds) also both went 0-2.
Olson said that they were very pleased with how their young wrestlers performed and will focus on getting healthy over the next few weeks. The Tigers travel to Eagan on Thursday, Dec. 21, for a triangular against Eagan and East Ridge.