Day 1 at the state tournament finished with Fremont Bergan in pretty heady territory.
Alone on top.
The second-ranked Knights put five of their eight qualifiers through to the semifinals, taking a lead in the Class D team race after the opening two rounds Thursday.
“It’s a nice place to be,” Bergan coach Curtis Marolf said.
Top-ranked Plainview finished a half-point behind, with No. 3 Amherst within striking distance.
Caden Arps (113 pounds), Zach Hamilton (120), Jacob Johnson (145), Ethan Villwok (182) and Peyton Cone (220) each had a pair of wins for Bergan to advance into Friday night’s semifinals. Four of the five registered bonus points in both victories.
“Those points are going to help us,” Marolf said. “We can’t get ahead ourselves, though. (Friday) is going to be a big moment with all the lights. We’ve got to stick to that process.”
That starts, Marolf said, with the three wrestlers not in the semifinals doing their part in the wrestleback rounds.
“Those are big points on the backside,” he said. “We’ve got to take it one point at a time.”
Three of Bergan’s semifinal matchups are against the two teams directly behind it in the team race. Second-ranked Arps will meet No. 4 Scout Ashburn of Plainview, second-ranked Johnson draws No. 3 Sam Florell of Amherst and Hamilton will square off with Amherst’s Isaiah Shields in a battle of the top two in the 120-pound ratings.
Plainview will have five in the semifinals with Amherst pushing four through.
“We can’t make any of those any bigger than they are,” Marolf said. “They’re wrestling matches.”
Bergan has never had a top-three team finish at the state tournament.
Elkhorn Valley finished Thursday in fourth place, with Central Valley rounding out the top five.
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Team scoring: Fremont Bergan 52.5, Plainview 52, Amherst 46.5, Elkhorn Valley 33, Central Valley 29, Thayer Central 26, Clearwater-Orchard 22, High Plains 22, Howells-Dodge 22, Neligh-Oakdale 21, Burwell 20, Mullen 19, Randolph 17, Weeping Water 17, Winside 17, North Central 16, Maxwell 15, Morrill 14, Sutherland 13, Arcadia-Loup City 11, Bayard 11, Overton 11, Pleasanton 11, Stapleton 11, Twin Loup 11, Friend 10, Brady 9, Elwood 9, Franklin 9, Fullerton 9, Shelton 9, Wisner-Pilger 9, Creighton 8.5, Palmer 8.5, Hitchcock County 8, Southwest 7, West Holt 7, Garden County 6, Medicine Valley 6, North Platte St. Patrick’s 6, Alma 4, Ansley-Litchfield 4, Axtell 4, Harvard 4, Laurel-Concord-Coleridge 4, Nebraska Christian 4, Tri County 4, Ainsworth 3, Anselmo-Merna 2, Dundy County-Stratton 2, Hay Springs 2, Sandhills/Thedford 2, Arapahoe 0, Clarkson-Leigh 0, Crawford 0.
106 pounds: Hunter Bennett, Elkhorn Valley, pinned Landon Klasna, NPSP, 4:18. Logan Russell, High Plains, pinned Ashton Sinn, Thayer Central, 2:26. Eli Lanham, Plainview, dec. Samuel Foster, Sutherland, 7-0. Jesse Sauceda, Shelton, dec. Dalton Hansen, Harvard, 5-1. 113: Teven Marshall, Mullen, dec. Brenner Mclaughlin, Thayer Central, 9-5. Cameron Wilkinson, Neligh-Oakdale, major dec. Cayden Ellis, Winside, 10-1. Scout Ashburn, Plainview, pinned Brock Kester, Neligh-Oakdale, 7:28. Caden Arps, Fremont Bergan, major dec. Nathaniel Murillo, Morrill, 15-3. 120: Jeremy Larson, Brady, dec. Cyrus Wells, Anselmo-Merna, 9-4. Shaye Wood, Central Valley, pinned Koby Ellis, Winside, 5:57. Isaiah Shields, Amherst, pinned Tyler Nagel, Morrill, 3:58. Zach Hamilton, Fremont Bergan, pinned Brenden Warman, DCS, 3:33. 126: Ruger Reimers, Palmer, dec. Coy Gideon, Burwell, 6-0. Nate Christensen, Plainview, major dec. Cal Janke, Fremont Bergan, 14-3. Quentyn Frank, Amherst, pinned Joel Priest, Hitchcock County, 1:54. Keegan Casey, Thayer Central, dec. Nolan Blevins, Weeping Water, 11-7. 132: Trigger Pokorny, Central Valley, pinned Dustin Klingsporn, Axtell, 5:44. Andrew Herley, Neligh-Oakdale, pinned Brady Gracey, Mullen, 1:14. Damian Stewart, Thayer Central, pinned Jared Shaw, North Central, 3:33. Tyler Pawloski, Pleasanton, pinned Clay Church, High Plains, 39-15, 1:19. 138: Cole Laible, West Holt, dec. Levi Lewis, North Central, 3-2. Joel Ostrom, Burwell, dec. Jade Lovitt, Mullen, 4-0. Connor Sonderup, Fullerton, dec. Art Escalante, Winside, 16-11. Enrique Martinez, Central Valley, pinned Brett Tryon, Southwest, 1:41. 145: Brett Riggs, Maxwell, pinned Alex Schmit, Randolph, 1:04. Will Gunning, Plainview, dec. Oren Pozehl, Ainsworth, 6-4. Samuel Florell, Amherst, dec. Kaden Guerrero, Southwest, 14-8. Jacob Johnson, Fremont Bergan, tech. fall Colton Holthus, Garden County, 17-2. 152: Austin Garcia, Morrill, major dec. Trace Ebert, North Central, 12-1. Colby Coons, Twin Loup, pinned Blake Racicky, Ansley-Litchfield, 3:43. Conner Schutz, Elwood, dec. Cole Stokebrand, Amherst, 2-1. William White, Sutherland, dec. Brandon Bloomquist, Randolph, 8-1. 160: Joshua Mcfarland, Elkhorn Valley, pinned Josh Cox, Mullen, 3:34. Dylan Soule, High Plains, major dec. Derek Gibson, Maxwell, 9-1. Seth Simants, Stapleton, pinned Alizae Mejia, Plainview, 2:14. James Polen, North Central, sudden victory Bryan Zutavern, Sandhills/Thedford, 8-7. 170: Jarin Potts, Amherst, dec. Jayden Arehart, Neligh-Oakdale, 4-2. Bryce Zimmerer, Creighton, tech. fall Talan Mcgill, North Platte St. Patrick’s, 15-0. Noah Scott, Randolph, pinned Dylan Davis-Mack, Medicine Valley, 5:20. Chase Haussermann, Franklin, pinned Sam Hollander, Amherst, 4:23. 182: Ethan Villwok, Fremont Bergan, medical forfeit Bryce Running Hawk, Hay Springs. Corey Dawe, Burwell, dec. Daylan Russell, Alma, 9-4. Edwen Baptista, Friend, major dec. Brock Schaecher, Elkhorn Valley, 17-6. Dylan Horejsi, Howells-Dodge, dec. Slater Mozena, Weeping Water, 7-4. 195: Collin Gale, Plainview, major dec. Brandon Siebolt, Tri County, 13-4. Karsen Hunter, Bayard, pinned Carter Jensen, Howells-Dodge, 0:31. Micheal Jensen, Winside, major dec. Justin Brock, Nebraska Christian, 20-8. Clay Thiele, Clearwater-Orchard, pinned Austin Wolfe, Medicine Valley, 5:13. 220: Carter Throener, Howells-Dodge, pinned Jaxon Taubenheim, Amherst, 1:01. Landon Beaver, Wisner-Pilger, dec. Clayton Hassett, Mullen, 8-6. Peyton Cone, Fremont Bergan, dec. Ethan Williams, Laurel-Concord-Coleridge, 8-7. Donaven Nolze, Clearwater-Orchard, pinned Remington Hodges, Hitchcock County, 5:21. 285: Marcus Cave, Weeping Water, pinned Gage Petersen, Hitchcock County, 2:15. Jakob Jerabek, Arcadia/Loup City, pinned Chris Sciortino, Garden County, 0:50. Christian Yaw, Elkhorn Valley, pinned Logan Kircher, Southwest, 28-10, 3:00. Kien Martin, Overton, pinned Cameron Nelson, Plainview, 3:47.