Hartford — You can't count the Muskego Warriors out just yet.
They proved that and more as the Warriors wrestlers completed a difficult two-week stretch to begin the season by winning the title at the 34th annual Hartford Team Tournament on Saturday.
Muskego, ranked No. 2 in the area, defeated No. 4-ranked Hartford, 43-30, in the fifth round to complete a 5-0 day and improve to 9-3. Hartford finished 4-1 and fell to 10-2. Kenosha Tremper finished third at 3-2.
It was a much-needed boost of confidence for Muskego, which opened the season with three losses at Oconomowoc and barely survived a Southeast Conference dual against Kenosha Tremper last week. Muskego needed three consecutive pins over the final three matches to pull out a 36-34 victory with a depleted squad against Tremper.
"Yeah, it was good," Muskego coach Ted Price said of the team title. "Especially for some of our younger guys. They got a chance to go out and get some wins. So it was definitely a very productive day."
Muskego won both matches that swung the dual in favor of the Warriors and against Hartford.
Hartford coach Steve Best bumped 152-pound sophomore Weston Klink up to 160 to start the dual, and Muskego junior Jordan Lau was able to pull out a 15-10 victory in overtime. Lau caught Klink with a defensive throw in the overtime period for the takedown and the three-point nearfall to win the crucial match.
The 135-pound match, probably the most anticipated of the day, also went Muskego's way - barely.
Muskego junior Tyler Quartullo cradled Hartford sophomore Nick Becker to open the third period and held on for a 3-0 victory in a battle between two returning state place-winners.
"Both of those guys are good on their feet and they both ride well," said Price. "It was basically a one-move match and Tyler cradled (Becker) and that was the match."
Muskego won nine of the 14 matches and picked up four pins. Senior Jordan Sowinski posted a 7-2 victory over Hartford junior Casey Kenealy at 145, sealing the victory for Muskego.
"They are a quality outfit," said Best. "We worked hard but we had some technical errors and they cost us. The 135 match and the overtime loss, those were big matches."
Muskego defeated Tremper, 48-27, in the third round, but Tremper was without four starters who were taking the ACT exam.
"It's OK," Tremper coach Joel Dutton said. "February is more important than right now. We're fine with third."
Tremper come out on top in another marquee matchup as sophomore Dominic Garcia defeated Waukesha West senior Tyler Semrad by a 7-2 decision at 119 in Tremper's 46-24 victory over West in the fourth round.
Team results - 1, Muskego, 5-0; 2, Hartford, 4-1; 3, Kenosha Tremper, 3-2; 4, Waukesha North, 2-3; 5, Waukesha West, 2-3; 6, Brookfield East, 2-3; 7, Plymouth, 1-4; 8, Sheboygan North, 0-5.
First round - HAR 65, PLY 9; MUS 56, WW 18; KT 58, WN 21; BE 42, SN 27. Second round - HAR 46, KT 24; MUS 65, SN 12; WN 40, PLY 33; WW 39, BE 27. Third round - HAR 54, WN 24; MUS 65, BE 12; KT 67, PLY 12; WW 35, SN 13. Fourth round: HAR 52, WW 21; MUS 48, KT 27; WN 39, SN 33; BE 52, PLY 18. Fifth round - MUS 43, HAR 30; KT 46, WW 24; BE 44, WN 36; PLY 40, SN 28.
5-0 wrestlers - HAR: Bobby Nachreiner, 103; Zach Durante, HAR, 125; Jarid Baumgartner, 140; Zach Schenk, 160. SN: Tony Perl, 112; Aaron Rothwell, 171; WN: Cody Ybarra, 215. WW: Breyon Cosey, 285. KT: Tyler Rice, 112; Trevor Mongeau, 130; Dan Neives, 171. BE: Justin Wolfender, 130; Andy Wanta, 140. MUS: Tyler Sinda, 103; Justin Scherkenbach, 119; Tyler Quartullo, 135; Jordan Sowinski, 145; Derek Olson, 152; Jordan Lau, 160; Jordan Gruettner, 189; Al Kehoe, 215.
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