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Wrestling: Johnson finishes national meet with 4-2 record

VIRGINIA BEACH, VA. -- Kade Johnson continued his success at the National High School Coaches Association wrestling tournament here Saturday as the Bemidji senior recorded three pins in the consolation rounds of the 182 pound senior division before seeing his tournament end with an overtime loss in the wrestleback quarterfinals.

After splitting a pair of championship bracket matches Friday, Johnson dropped into Saturday’s wrestlebacks. In his first consolation match Johnson pinned Josh Spangler of Tennessee in 22 seconds.

His next victim was Collin Flannery who was the runner-up in the Connecticut State High School meet. Johnson didn’t have much trouble with Flannery, pinning his foe in 42 seconds.

In the third round of consolation action Johnson drew Seth Nonnenmacher who was the two-time state champion of Oregon.

Nonnenmacher forged an 8-2 lead in the match but Johnson was able to turn the tables and pin Nonnenmacher 29 seconds into the second period.

That pin was his fourth of the tournament. During the winter Johnson collected 41 pins to set a Bemidji High School record. His 44-1 overall record also tied the school standard for most victories in a season.

In the consolation quarterfinals Johnson’s tournament came to a close as he dropped a 13-11 overtime decision to Malik McDonald who was the state champion of North Carolina.

“Kade just couldn’t keep going in the match,” said BHS coach Rance Bahr. “He wrestled four times Saturday and that’s a lot of wrestling in one day.”

Teammate Brian Maas won both of his 113 pound Junior Division matches at the national tournament but he sustained a shoulder injury during Friday’s 19-6 win over Jacob Martin of Connecticut and he could not continue.

As a result Maas had to forfeit Friday’s third-round championship match and also Saturday’s consolation bout.

Also wrestling in the tournament was Daven Staples of Blackduck-Cass Lake-Bena in the 170 pound weight of the Senior Division.

Staples dropped his opener 18-1 to Austin Rake of Alaska and his tournament ended Saturday morning when he fell 7-6 to Martin Chobanyan of Connecticut.

Pat Miller

Pat Miller is the sports editor at the Pioneer.

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