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NR wrestlers frustrated another MBC opponent

New Richmond's wrestlers continue to frustrate their Middle Border Conference opponents.

The Tigers improved their MBC dual meet record to 5-1 and their overall dual meet record to 6-1 with a 46-23 win over Amery last Thursday.

Like several other MBC opponents, Amery came into Thursday's dual thinking it could beat the Tigers. But the Tigers have succeeded in dual matches this season by winning the close matches. That was the case again against Amery.

The Tigers got off to a 22-6 lead, thanks to two forfeits and three close wins. Brandon Merkt got the wins started, winning his first match of the season, in the 119-pound bout, 10-0.

Jake Dalton then faced one of Amery's best wrestlers, Mark Zinda. Dalton got the early advantage and wrestled smartly to win the 125-pound match 7-3.

Trevor Gartner then came through with an important win, using his physical style to score a 6-2 win at 130 pounds.

Amery got wins at 135 and 140 pounds, but these were two matches the Warriors were hoping to get six points from. Instead they got three in each match. Mike Tarman gave Jake Lewis, who finished second at state last year, all he could handle, losing 10-5. Chris Parker gave Brad Malum a battle at 140, losing 5-0.

"Both Mike and Chris showed they can wrestle with those guys," said Tiger coach Mark Neumann. "They need to believe in themselves and pick up the pace."

The Tigers got one more win, but it was important. Dan Talmage's pin at 160 pounds locked up the win. If Amery had won at 160, they would have had a slightly injured wrestler compete at 171 pounds in an attempt to win the team dual. Instead, Amery forfeited the final three weights to the Tigers.

Neumann said the Tigers are proving to be a better dual team than most people expected this year.

The Tigers also showed they can do okay as a tournament team too, when they competed in the Shell Lake Invitational on Saturday. The Tigers finished in third place in the tournament behind Cumberland and Shell Lake. Shell Lake edged out the Tigers for second place in the last match of the tournament.

Ten Tigers finished in the top three places in their weight class. Mike Tarman was the only Tiger to win his class, taking the championship at 135 pounds.

Finishing in second place in their weights were Zac Wolff, Brandon Merkt, Trevor Gartner, Brian Volkert and Jeremy Leverty. Finishing in third place were Guy Carlson, Nick Neudecker, Chris Parker and Aaron Praschak.

The Tigers complete their Middle Border Conference dual meet season this Thursday with a match at Osceola. These two teams are currently tied for second place in the conference standings.

New Richmond 46, Amery 23

275 - Jeremy Leverty (NR) won by forfeit. 103 - Nick Neudecker (NR) won by forfeit. 112 - Mike Bump (A) pinned Guy Carlson 3:58. 119 - Brandon Merkt (NR) def. Tyler Mullenbach 10-0. 125 - Jake Dalton (NR) dec. Mark Zinda 7-3. 130 - Trevor Gartner (NR) dec. Wade Prindle 6-2. 135 - Jake Lewis (A) dec. Mike Tarman 10-5. 140 - Brad Malum (A) dec. Chris Parker 5-0. 145 - Kevin Prindle (A) pinned Colin Melby 5:11. 152 - Dustin Coleman (A) pinned Jeremy Tainter :47. 160 - Dan Talmage (NR) pinned Jordan Morfitt 2:56. 171 - Josh Svenningsen (NR) won by forfeit. 189 - Mike Powers (NR) won by forfeit. 215 - Aaron Praschak (NR) won by forfeit.

Dave Newman
Dave Newman has been the sports editor at the New Richmond News since 1988. He has covered the action in the Middle Border Conference, Dunn-St. Croix Conference and Big Rivers Conference for nearly 30 years.
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