MADISON – Fond du Lac’s Jason Toshner was sick of being one-and-done.
So the Cardinal senior, who lost in the opening round each of the last two years at the WIAA individual wrestling state tournament, turned in quite the performance this weekend at the Kohl Center.
Toshner made it all the way to the Division 1 finals at 195 pounds, where he eventually lost to Menomonie’s Mason Stokke, earning a runner-up finish.
Toshner lost the match on a 6-0 decision to a wrestler who finished the season undefeated.
“Right now I feel a little down because I thought I could have gotten it but I just wasn’t able to,” Toshner said. “At first with my slide by I was getting to him and then I was on the edge of the match and missed the opportunity then he had the opportunity to get me and I wasn’t able to counter that.”
The senior trailed 2-0 after the first, but then Stokke got four more in the second before a scoreless third period.
Toshner finished the season with a 44-3 record.
It was quite the experience for Toshner, who never experienced the hype of the finals. Between the opening grand march and the packed Kohl Center, it was a bit overwhelming.
“It was pretty thrilling but I knew I had a job to do so I kept my mind off it and tried to wrestle my own match,” he said.
It’s been an amazing year for Toshner, who helped anchor the Cardinal football team to a deep playoff run, and now has a second-place finish at state wrestling to add to his resume.
“Just the amount of time in the weight room, practice room and out on the field and everything extra I can do, just so I can achieve one step further than anyone else,” Toshner said.
Toshner recorded a 4-0 decision over Marshfield’s Josh Lang in the state semifinals, earning him a trip in Saturday’s title match.
“It’s been my whole life dream to just be here right now,” an enthusiastic Toshner said following the semifinal match. “I was thinking to myself if I get the first takedown, I should be able to hold him down and that’s what I did.”
Toshner did just that, getting a takedown early in the match and eventually took a 2-0 lead going into the second period. Toshner got two more in the second and held him scoreless in the third to clinch the win.
A three-year qualifier, Toshner finally got over the hump after losing the first round match the last two years.
“For me I have been focusing on preparation and the mindset, and focusing on the match,” Toshner said. “With the help of my cousin, he was really the main help for me.”