Emptying the notebook from the state wrestling meet …
After the Class 2-A smoke cleared Saturday night, Mediapolis emerged on top of the hottest team race in 17 years.
The Bulldogs went from third to first on the tournament’s final day, reaching the 89-point mark to finish three ahead of Union of LaPorte City and Creston/Orient-Macksburg, which tied for second. Crestwood of Cresco finished fourth with 81.5.
It was the tightest race since 1998 when Bondurant-Farrar (64) edged Columbus Junction (63), Wilton (63) and Postville (58) for the Class 1-A title.
Here’s the breakdown of the top three:
Overall record: Mediapolis 24-13, Creston/Orient-Macksburg 18-14, Union 15-11
Record in matches determined by two points or less: Mediapolis 7-5, Creston/Orient-Macksburg 6-7, Union 0-4
Bonus points: Union 18, Mediapolis 13, Creston/Orient-Macksburg 10
Advancement points: Mediapolis 30, Creston/Orient-Macksburg 29, Union 22
Placement points: Mediapolis 46, Union 46, Creston/Orient-Macksburg 45
STATE WRESTLING TOURNAMENT BRACKET: Complete results
BEST CHAMPIONSHIP MATCH — Class 1-A, 132 pounds: Joel Haberman (Clarion-Goldfield-Dows) dec. Hunter Washburn (Alburnett) 3-1 OT
Haberman fought off a shot to end the first period. Washburn fended off Haberman in the second. Washburn had a takedown waved off at the end of regulation and came close to scoring twice in overtime before Haberman scrambled for the winning points with one tick remaining. The title run for Haberman included a first-round pin and victories over wrestlers ranked second, fourth and first.
BEST CHAMPIONSHIP COMEBACK — Class 1-A, 145 pounds: Blake Meyer (Sumner-Fredericksburg) dec. Conner Shulista (Alburnett) 8-7
Meyer trailed 5-0 in the third period of the title bout when he started a scoring barrage by taking Shulista to his back for a four-point move. He tacked on two more takedowns — the last came with 23 seconds remaining — to complete the rally.
BEST POLITICAL CANDIDATE PROSPECT — Bryce Steiert, Waverly-Shell Rock
After downing Bettendorf’s Dayton Racer — a 2013 Minnesota state champion — with an overtime takedown in a clash of two of the top seven 160-pounders in the national rankings, Steiert pointed to fans in every corner of Wells Fargo Arena while yelling: “This is Iowa!” Later, he said: “We own this as our state. These are our gold medals.”
Ethan Andersen (Southeast Polk): Two-time champ rolled through bracket with three nationally ranked wrestlers.
Jake Marnin (Southeast Polk): Pinned his way through the 3-A heavyweight bracket.
Jacob Schwarm (Bettendorf): Scored bonus points in every round and faced opponents ranked Nos. 2, 3 and 4 along the way.
Bryce Steiert (Waverly-Shell Rock): Registered two pins and a major before beating Dayton Racer in a slugfest of nationally ranked 160-pounders.
Fredy Stroker (Bettendorf): Three-time champ finished his career with three pins and a major decision.
Jacob Holschlag (Union of LaPorte City): Registered three pins and a major decision to finish 55-0.
Michael Millage (Crestwood of Cresco): Stuck two opponents and outscored the other two 20-4.
Brock Rathbun (Center Point-Urbana): Outscored three opponents 48-11 and pinned the other en route to his second title.
Chase Straw (Independence): Scored pins in the last three rounds on his way to a title at 152.
Max Thomsen (Union of LaPorte City): Capped one of the most prolific careers in Iowa prep history with 199 straight wins.
Carter Happel (Lisbon): Pinned his first-round opponent and outscored the next three 52-15 to win his third 1-A title.
Dale Hilleman (West Marshall): Decked all four of his opponents at 170.
Josh Portillo (Clarion-Goldfield-Dows): Notched two major decisions, a technical fall and pinned a defending state champ on his way to the 1-A title at 126.
Justin Portillo (Clarion-Goldfield-Dows): Rolled through the Nos. 2, 3 and 4 opponents and scored two pins and a technical fall.
Alex Thomsen (Underwood): Freshman topped defending champ Drew West in the quarters and blasted his other three opponents.
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Andy Hamilton is the Register’s wrestling writer. Follow him on Twitter:@Andy_Hamilton