Hounds take 5th in tough FM Invite field

FM junior Matthew Steffensmeier has Liberty Wentzville's Aidan Kelly wrapped up in his first match at the Bloodhound Invitational Saturday. Steffensmeier would finish 7th overall on the day. The Hounds took 5th place overall. Photo by Chuck Vandenberg/PCC

BY CHUCK VANDENBERG
PCC EDITOR

FORT MADISON – It was a weird day Saturday.

The Hound Dome was packed with wrestlers, but spectators were at a minimum and only coaches were yelling TWO from their chairs at the side of the mat.

But it was a day filled with great wrestling that is the tradition of the Fort Madison Invitational – a field with some of the top wrestlers in the state from all classes.

Writers from state wrestling publications around the state were at media tables as Tom Walljasper bellowed match assignments from the head table, and the “family” that is Fort Madison wrestling put on another storied event.

Oh…and Fort Madison placed 5th out of 15 teams just five points out of the top three. The Bloodhounds earned medals from Owen Kruse (126-3rd place), Gavin Wiseman (145 – 3rd), Brock Califf (132 – 3rd), Austin Ensminger at (182- 3rd), Austin Miller (138-4th), and Teague Smith (152-5th), Aiden Pennock (145 – 5th).

Also placing were Henry Wiseman (106-6th), Emmett Kruse (113 – 6th), Matthew Steffensmeier (120 – 7th), Mason Schau (160 – 7th), Isaac Thacher (160 – 6th), Brandt Booten (170 – 7th), and Landon Rudd (182 – 6th).

Califf, a senior is wrestling in his first year ever and has had success including a 3-2 day last week in a tough Liberty Dual Invitational. He also finished 3rd at the loaded Jeremy Fulk Classic in New London to start the year – wrestling up a class at 138.

Fort Madison’s Brock Califf picks up Cedar Rapids Kennedy’s Tyler Bartels in the quarterfinals of Saturday’s Bloodhound Invitational. Califf went 3-1 on the day at 132 lbs and captured 3rd place for the Bloodhounds. Photo by Chuck Vandenberg/PCC

Califf, a Class 3A 1st Team All-State return specialist this past football season, said he just loves to compete. A childhood injury kept him from wrestling until this year.

“I had an accident when I was younger and broke my am and wasn’t able to wrestle until now,” Califf said.

“But the coaches are really good here and that shows because Coach (Ryan) Smith won Coach of the Year like two years ago. Having an athletic background is good, too, and Coach (Derek) Doherty in the weight room is awesome.”

Califf’s strength was on full display in his final match of the day where he picked up Dubuque Hempstead sophomore Landon Reisen four times in the match and hurled him to the mat scoring regularly before getting the fall with a minute left in the third period.

“I’m just really competitive and I like winning,” Califf said with a smile. “It doesn’t really bother me if someone is beating me, I just keep trying my best.”

Smith said he was compelled a few days back to ask Califf if he was sure he hadn’t wrestled before.

“You would never believe this is the frist time he’s wrestled,” Smith said. “It’s pretty impressive what he’s doing at the varsity level his athletic ability and his strength. As I’ve said before, that’s a lot of horsepower for a 132lb kid.”

2020 State qualifier Owen Kruse said his draw in the 15-team event was the toughest he’s seen this year.

The Hounds’ Emmett Kruse tries to bring Muscatine’s Gavin McLeod’s shoulders over in second round consolation action Saturday at the Hound Dome. Kruse would get the pin over the Muskie shortly after. Photo by Chuck Vandenberg/PCC

“It was a tough tournament for sure. Probably one of the toughest we’ve been too,” he said. “The match I lost, I could have done some things better. That was a tough loss.”

Kruse’s loss came to Class 3A No. 3 Chad Bellis (120) by fall 20 seconds into the third period. Kruse would go on to defeat Cedar Rapids Kennedy’s Jonah Hallam in just 13 seconds for 3rd place to go 2-1 on the day.

The senior is currently ranked No. 10 in the state at 126.

Junior Gavin Wiseman’s only loss was in the semifinals to Class 1A No. 3 Dominique Lopez at 145. Lopez secured a pin in the second period. Lopez would score a 10-4 decision over Burlington Notre Dame’s Sam West for the 145 title.

“I thought Gavin wrestled really well today, That 145 was a tough bracket.

Smith said the fact that the Hounds wrestled all the way through the medal round shows that they aren’t letting earlier losses get into their heads.

“That whole last round was my takeway. The kids were finishing for a place whether third, fifth or etc.,” Smith said. “And they did it by pinning and that showed me they were finishing strong. They knew they weren’t going for first and we didn’t let that loss deflate us.”

Dubuque Hempstead won the team title going away with 248.5 points. Cedar Rapids Kennedy was 2nd with 169.5, followed by Burlington Notre Dame 149.5 and Solon with 141.5. Fort Madison took 5th with 141 points.

Complete results for the Bloodhounds are listed below.

106: Henry Wiseman (Fort Madison) – 6th
Varsity – Champ. Round 1 – Henry Wiseman (Fort Madison) received a bye
Varsity – Quarterfinals – Ty Scorpil (Columbus Community/WMU) over Henry Wiseman (Fort Madison) (Dec 6-0)
Varsity – Cons. Round 2 – Henry Wiseman (Fort Madison) received a bye
Varsity – Cons. Semis – Henry Wiseman (Fort Madison) over Mak Kennedy  (Mediapolis) (Fall 0:43)
Varsity – 5th Place Match – Easton Schlabaugh (Highland, Riverside) over Henry Wiseman (Fort Madison) (Fall 0:32)

113: Emmett Kruse (Fort Madison) – 6th
Varsity – Champ. Round 1 – Emmett Kruse (Fort Madison) over Skyler Beck (Louisa-Muscatine) (Fall 1:27)
Varsity – Quarterfinals – Dawson Fish (Dubuque Hempstead) over Emmett Kruse (Fort Madison) (TF 16-0 5:01)
Varsity – Cons. Round 2 – Emmett Kruse (Fort Madison) over Gavin McLeod (Muscatine) (Fall 3:55)
Varsity – Cons. Semis – Emmett Kruse (Fort Madison) over Brendan Kelly (Liberty (Wentzville)) (Fall 2:24)
Varsity – 5th Place Match – Grady Gunn (Mediapolis) over Emmett Kruse (Fort Madison) (Dec 6-0)

120: Ace Meierotto (Fort Madison) – DNP
Varsity – Champ. Round 1 – Jayden Massey (Clear Creek-Amana) over Ace Meierotto (Fort Madison) (Fall 0:33)
Varsity – Cons. Round 1 – Maxx Novak (Cedar Rapids Kennedy) over Ace Meierotto (Fort Madison) (Fall 0:55)

120: Matthew Steffensmeier (Fort Madison) – 7th
Varsity – Champ. Round 1 – Matthew Steffensmeier (Fort Madison) received a bye
Varsity – Quarterfinals – Aidan Kelly (Liberty (Wentzville)) over Matthew Steffensmeier (Fort Madison) (Fall 3:11)
Varsity – Cons. Round 2 – Matthew Steffensmeier (Fort Madison) over Maxx Novak (Cedar Rapids Kennedy) (Fall 0:32)
Varsity – Cons. Semis – Lawson Sinnwell (Solon) over Matthew Steffensmeier (Fort Madison) (Fall 1:48)
Varsity – 7th Place Match – Matthew Steffensmeier (Fort Madison) over Jack Peiffer (Highland, Riverside) (Fall 0:28)

126: Owen Kruse (Fort Madison) – 3rd
Varsity – Champ. Round 1 – Owen Kruse (Fort Madison) over Gunner Sparks (Cedar Rapids Kennedy) (Fall 1:24)
Varsity – Quarterfinals – Owen Kruse (Fort Madison) over Milo Ashbacker (Solon) (Fall 1:20)
Varsity – Semifinals – Chad Bellis (Dubuque Hempstead) over Owen Kruse (Fort Madison) (Fall 4:23)
Varsity – 3rd Place Match – Owen Kruse (Fort Madison) over Jonah Hallam (Cedar Rapids Kennedy) (Fall 0:13)

132: Brock Califf (Fort Madison) – 3rd
Varsity – Champ. Round 1 – Brock Califf (Fort Madison) over Collin Zellmer (Muscatine) (Fall 1:25)
Varsity – Quarterfinals – Brock Califf (Fort Madison) over Tyler Bartels (Cedar Rapids Kennedy) (Fall 1:06)
Varsity – Semifinals – Quinten Aney (Mediapolis) over Brock Califf (Fort Madison) (Fall 2:45)
Varsity – 3rd Place Match – Brock Califf (Fort Madison) over Landon Reisen (Dubuque Hempstead) (Fall 4:57)

138: Austin Miller (Fort Madison) – 4th
Varsity – Champ. Round 1 – Austin Miller (Fort Madison) received a bye
Varsity – Quarterfinals – Austin Miller (Fort Madison) over Kaden Lamm (Solon) (Fall 0:35)
Varsity – Semifinals – Adler  Kramer (Dubuque Hempstead) over Austin Miller (Fort Madison) (Fall 1:06)
Varsity – 3rd Place Match – Ashtin Falck (Cedar Rapids Kennedy) over Austin Miller (Fort Madison) (Fall 2:59)

138: Macaden Rhoer (Fort Madison) – DNP
Varsity – Champ. Round 1 – Ashtin Falck (Cedar Rapids Kennedy) over Macaden Rhoer (Fort Madison) (Fall 0:58)
Varsity – Cons. Round 1 – Macaden Rhoer (Fort Madison) received a bye
Varsity – Cons. Round 2 – Kaden Lamm (Solon) over Macaden Rhoer (Fort Madison) (Fall 1:53)

145: Aidan Pennock (Fort Madison) – 5th
Varsity – Champ. Round 1 – Aidan Pennock (Fort Madison) over Christopher Hammock (Liberty (Wentzville)) (Fall 3:13)
Varsity – Quarterfinals – Dominic  Lopez (New London) over Aidan Pennock (Fort Madison) (Fall 2:25)
Varsity – Cons. Round 2 – Aidan Pennock (Fort Madison) over Garrett  Palmer (Columbus Community/WMU) (Fall 3:38)
Varsity – Cons. Semis – Aidan Pennock (Fort Madison) over Levi Boudewyn (Keokuk) (Fall 3:34)
Varsity – 5th Place Match – Aidan Pennock (Fort Madison) over Jackson Vanderheyden (Dubuque Hempstead) (Fall 1:49)

145: Gavin Wiseman (Fort Madison) – 3rd
Varsity – Champ. Round 1 – Gavin Wiseman (Fort Madison) received a bye
Varsity – Quarterfinals – Gavin Wiseman (Fort Madison) over Levi Boudewyn (Keokuk) (Fall 1:27)
Varsity – Semifinals – Dominic  Lopez (New London) over Gavin Wiseman (Fort Madison) (Fall 3:06)
Varsity – 3rd Place Match – Gavin Wiseman (Fort Madison) over Mason  Crabtree (Muscatine) (Dec 7-5)

152: Teague Smith (Fort Madison) – 5th
Varsity – Champ. Round 1 – Teague Smith (Fort Madison) over Rashon Jennings (Cedar Rapids Kennedy) (Fall 1:23)
Varsity – Quarterfinals – Caleb  Ebert (Solon) over Teague Smith (Fort Madison) (MD 9-0)
Varsity – Cons. Round 2 – Teague Smith (Fort Madison) over Darrin Coffman (Van Buren County) (Fall 2:37)
Varsity – Cons. Semis – Teague Smith (Fort Madison) over Connor Beck (Muscatine) (Dec 7-0)
Varsity – 5th Place Match – Teague Smith (Fort Madison) over Jakobe Lahr (Solon) (Fall 0:58)

160: Mason Schau (Fort Madison) – 7th
Varsity – Champ. Round 1 – Mason Schau (Fort Madison) received a bye
Varsity – Quarterfinals – Jett Fridley (Muscatine) over Mason Schau (Fort Madison) (Dec 5-2)
Varsity – Cons. Round 2 – Mason Schau (Fort Madison) over Alyas Krieger (New London) (Fall 1:36)
Varsity – Cons. Semis – Collin Flannagan (Cedar Rapids Kennedy) over Mason Schau (Fort Madison) (Fall 5:36)
Varsity – 7th Place Match – Mason Schau (Fort Madison) over Chase Greiner (Washington) (Fall 4:46)

170: Brandt Booten (Fort Madison) – 7th
Varsity – Champ. Round 1 – Alex Koch (Cedar Rapids Kennedy) over Brandt Booten (Fort Madison) (Fall 2:38)
Varsity – Cons. Round 1 – Brandt Booten (Fort Madison) received a bye
Varsity – Cons. Round 2 – Brandt Booten (Fort Madison) over Christian Vincent (Fort Madison) (Fall 1:51)
Varsity – Cons. Semis – Isaac Thacher (Fort Madison) over Brandt Booten (Fort Madison) (Fall 1:16)
Varsity – 7th Place Match – Brandt Booten (Fort Madison) over Carson Nash (Clear Creek-Amana) (Fall 4:38)

170: Isaac Thacher (Fort Madison) – 6th
Varsity – Champ. Round 1 – Isaac Thacher (Fort Madison) received a bye
Varsity – Quarterfinals – Boden Pickle (New London) over Isaac Thacher (Fort Madison) (Fall 0:40)
Varsity – Cons. Round 2 – Isaac Thacher (Fort Madison) over Cole Thill (Dubuque Hempstead) (Fall 3:35)
Varsity – Cons. Semis – Isaac Thacher (Fort Madison) over Brandt Booten (Fort Madison) (Fall 1:16)
Varsity – 5th Place Match – Will Hotzz (Columbus Community/WMU) over Isaac Thacher (Fort Madison) (Dec 6-2)

170: Christian Vincent (Fort Madison) – DNP
Varsity – Champ. Round 1 – Christian Vincent (Fort Madison) received a bye
Varsity – Quarterfinals – CJ Walrath (Notre Dame, Burlington) over Christian Vincent (Fort Madison) (Fall 1:03)
Varsity – Cons. Round 2 – Brandt Booten (Fort Madison) over Christian Vincent (Fort Madison) (Fall 1:51)

182: Austin Ensminger (Fort Madison) – 3rd
Varsity – Champ. Round 1 – Austin Ensminger (Fort Madison) received a bye
Varsity – Quarterfinals – Austin Ensminger (Fort Madison) over Preston Buss (Van Buren County) (Fall 1:47)
Varsity – Semifinals – Aidan Dunne (Dubuque Hempstead) over Austin Ensminger (Fort Madison) (Fall 2:33)
Varsity – 3rd Place Match – Austin Ensminger (Fort Madison) over Cole Wolfe (Liberty (Wentzville)) (Fall 1:09)

182: Landon Rudd (Fort Madison) – 6th
Varsity – Champ. Round 1 – Landon Rudd (Fort Madison) over Kaleb Spurgeon (Keokuk) (Fall 5:27)
Varsity – Quarterfinals – Cole Wolfe (Liberty (Wentzville)) over Landon Rudd (Fort Madison) (Fall 1:06)
Varsity – Cons. Round 2 – Landon Rudd (Fort Madison) received a bye
Varsity – Cons. Semis – Landon Rudd (Fort Madison) over Trent  Wilkerson (Columbus Community/WMU) (Fall 2:32)
Varsity – 5th Place Match – Jacob Hill (Washington) over Landon Rudd (Fort Madison) (Fall 1:37)

195: Daniel Sokolik (Fort Madison) – DNP
Varsity – Champ. Round 1 – Daniel Sokolik (Fort Madison) received a bye
Varsity – Quarterfinals – jackson Ward (Liberty (Wentzville)) over Daniel Sokolik (Fort Madison) (Fall 2:00)
Varsity – Cons. Round 2 – Dade Altman (Solon) over Daniel Sokolik (Fort Madison) (Dec 7-4)

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