A trio of Stevens Point wrestlers are now gunning for bronze.
Stevens Point Area Senior High wrestlers Fritz Schierl and Billy Duffert and Almond-Bancroft/Pacelli’s Jack Lawlis all dropped semifinal matches at the WIAA state individual tournament Friday night at the Kohl Center.
All three will finish on the podium. Which step is up to each individual.
In the Division 1 competitions, Schierl lost a 10-5 decision to West Allis Central senior Mark Choinski in the 138-pound semifinal.
Choinski took Schierl down four times, including twice in the first period, forcing the SPASH wrestler to try and use throws in an attempt to make up the points.
“Fritz wrestled a big, strong boy,” SPASH coach Duane Groshek said. “No one’s been able to snap Fritz down like he did. It’s tough to come back in any match at this level if you get down a couple points.
“Fritz will be ready to go tomorrow. After the initial disappointment of losing, I could tell that he’s focused again and ready to get back at it.”
Schierl’s consolation semifinal is against Derek Dowd of New Richmond.
Duffert (43-10) had the dubious task of taking on Hartford’s Beau Breske, last year’s 152-pound champion, and lost 5-0 in his 170-pound semifinal.
“He’s good, no doubt about that,” Duffert said. “I don’t think it’s matter of who I’m wrestling, but how I wrestle and he performed better tonight. I’m not going to let this affect my mindset. I’m going go stay positive and take care of what I can do tomorrow.”
Duffert’s consolation semifinal match is against Izaak Simar of Kenosha Indian Trail.
“Billy wrestled a defending state champion and a three-time national champion this summer,” Groshek said. “We were hoping to go upstairs and make it a sudo-greco match, but Beau had other ideas.
“Both boys can build off tonight and they should be shooting for nothing less than third place tomorrow.”
Lawlis (29-14) was edged 1-0 in his 220-pound semifinal match and wrestles Sparta senior Logan Degenhardt (39-10) in the consolation round to determine what place match he will wrestle for tomorrow.