Garret Griffin and Casey Johnson paced the Manawa Wolves wrestling team with third place finishes at the Charger Invite on Saturady, Jan. 7. Christian Bertram and Joe Vande Vrede finished fourth in their respective weight classes, while Cody Wildenberg finished sixth.
Griffin, wrestling in the 152-pound weight class, won his quarterfinal match by pinning Dominic Littleton of Rhinelander two minutes and 47 seconds into the match. Griffin was then pinned by Brandon Tousey of Oconto in the semifinal match. In the third place match, Griffin won by decision over Cody Kreitzer of Wittenberg-Birnamwood.
Wrestling in the 182-pound weight class, Johnson pinned Brandon Trout of Tri-County/Almond-Bancroft in two minutes and 21 seconds to win his quarterfinal match. Johnson was then pinned in his semifinal match by Taylor Okerlund of Wittenberg-Birnamwood. In the third place match Johnson pinned Tyler Michel of Rhinelander in three minutes and 45 seconds.
Bertram, wrestling in the 138-pound weight class, received a bye in the first round and then pinned Devan Barnes of Wittenberg-Birnamwood in two minutes and 26 seconds in the quarterfinals. Bertram then lost by decision in the semifinals, and was then pinned in the consolation round three match and the third place match.
Vande Vrede pinned Brett Labrasca of Rhinelander in 51 seconds in the first round in the 170-pound weight class. In the quarterfinals, Vande Vrede won by pin in two minutes and 13 seconds. Vande Vrede was then pinned in the next three matches to finish fourth.
On Thursday, Jan. 5 the Manawa Wolves won its wrestling meet over Markesan 30-28. Bertram and Griffin each won their matches by decision, while Johnson, Nick Swenson and Cole Thompson won by forfeit. Jacob Frenche pinned his opponent in four minutes and 28 seconds.
“It was a meet with a lot of forfeits, but offered a night of intense and fun wrestling to watch,” said John Peterson, head coach of the Manawa wrestling team. “Jacob Frenche got his first win as a Wolf with a pin in the second to last match to put us up by eight to secure a team win, also our first of the year. Garret Griffin had a tough match against Caleb Doctor but came out victorous, and Christiam Bertram had a close win by one point over Markesan’s Allan Burch. Both these teams are young and low in numbers but are showing maturity through the season and giving hope for more wrestlers and more wins this year and in following years.”