MADISON – Brock Bergelin always has a jug of Fiji water with him at wrestling tournaments.
But the gulp the Denmark sophomore took on Saturday night after beating Mosinee’s Josh Ehster had a different taste to it at the Kohl Center.
That is bound to happen when you end a 22-year drought without a state champion for your team.
Bergelin’s 3-0 decision over Ehster in the 106-pound Division 2 title match at the WIAA individual state tournament gave the Vikings their first champion since 1993.
Three of the five state championship matches featuring area wrestlers were rematches of sectional finals. Bergelin’s rematch was much closer than the second-period pin he recorded last week.
“It feels pretty good,” said Bergelin, who ran into the stands to hug his father, Jim, before taking the chug of water.
“I pinned (Ehster) at sectionals, but this time he was really ready for me. You can tell he watched our video because he knew exactly what to do and kind of stayed defensive on the bottom, but I scored when I needed to.”
Bergelin (45-1) was one of 23 state medalists from the area. His championship medal will add a bright shine to the Denmark wrestling room.
“When you see a kid like that make it, and it’s been so long, it just kind of justifies what we’ve been doing in the practice room,” Denmark coach Tim Kapinos said. “It’s really going to help our program be more successful, both as a team and individually.”