Two podium finishes highlight the wrestling team’s trip to Fargo

Northfield Raiders Graber and Engel placed at the Rumble on the Red.
Caley Graber and Zane Engels stand on the podium after a successful weekend.

By Colin Staab and Keith Harner

The wrestling team finished off their first full month of the season at the Rumble on the Red tournament at the NDSU Fargodome in Fargo, ND.

Caley Graber was ready to wrestle at the Fargo dome. She started things off at 107 pounds with a 10-0 defeat over Gage Factor from TCU. Graber followed up with a 11-2 major decision over Eli Olson from DBLQ. She continued her dominance on the first day with a fall in 1:27 against St. Peter’s Elijah Mercado. The next day, Graber continued with a bang in her 6-0 victory in the semifinals match over senior David Llamas from Minot. Graber finished in the final match against the sixth ranked wrestler in class AAA Anthony Heim from Shakopee resulting in a 1-3 overtime loss. Northfield’s 107 pounder finished the tournament in second place.

Caley Graber locked up a tight armbar half to turn her opponent.

Zane Engels was the only other wrestler to make it to the second day for the Raiders finishing 5-2 and in fourth place in the tournament. The freshman started off the tournament fast with a technical fall over Jeremy Linn from Detroit Lakes; followed by a fall against Jonah Coffey of Woodbury. Things slowed down for Engels in a 14-7 loss to second ranked Parker Lyden from Forest Lake. Engels had a close encounter in his first consolation match against Ethan Maier from New Salem, ND resulting in a 4-3 decision. Next, Engels won by fall against Zach Palmer of LCWM. Then followed that with a dominant victory over Nathan Nelson from Mora with a major decision of 11-2. Northfield’s 139 pounder finished up the tournament against the opponent who sent him to the consolation: Parker Lyden. Zane lost 9-3 to finish in fourth place. 

Zane Engels locked up a body lock to score a takedown and win his match.

Caden Staab wrestled five matches on the first day. First, Caden majored Brock Guth from St. Peter 11-3. The Raider’s 127 pounder faced Logan Davis, the third ranked wrestler in class AAA from Albert Lea, resulting in a 19-7 loss. Caden avenged his loss from last year by beating Brayden Collins from Rapid City 5-2. After that, he won 8-3 against Koltyn Grebel from Valley City. Caden’s tournament came to a close against second ranked wrestler in class AAA Tegan Sherk of St. Francis, who finished third in the tournament. 

Owen Murphy also wrestled five matches throughout the tournament starting with a 4-2 decision against Emery Slater from Mandan. Murphy, who wrestled the tournament at 172 pounds, had a second hard match resulting in a close loss 5-3 against Steven Cruz of Willmar who is ranked fourth in AAA. Murphy battled back with a 7-2 defeat against Jeff Ritter from Delano. Next, Murphy took on John Mueller from Minnetonka defeating him 8-0. Murphy’s tournament stopped after a loss 2-4 overtime loss to Daunte Sasse-Doering from Elk River. 

Sam Harner, Jamison Baker and Colin Staab wrestled hard against great opponents going 0-2 for the tournament.

As for the rest of the wrestlers who usually wrestle on varsity; Keith Harner and Ryan Kuyper did not wrestle due to injury, and Charlie Johnson, Drew Pribyl and Noah Ackerman wrestled in the junior varsity tournament. 

Caley Graber and Zane Engels stand on the podium after a successful weekend.
Northfields varsity, junior varsity and girls team assembled and ready to wrestle in the Fargodome.

The Raiders had wrestlers in both the girls (32-person brackets) and JV tournament (64-person brackets). But did not have any that advanced to the placing rounds.

Next up for the wrestling team is a dual in Mankato East immediately followed by one of the biggest high school team tournaments in the United States, The Clash in La Crosse Wisc..