DES MOINES– People who do not know Solon 195-pound wrestler Lance Evans would have given him little chance of even qualifying for this year’s state wrestling meet, let alone placing in the tournament.
He sustained a severe knee injury this past summer, which required surgery, and was only cleared to start practicing during the week prior to the sectional tournament.
Evans went on to win both sectional and district championships in qualifying for the state wrestling tournament in Des Moines and won four matches, bringing home a fifth-place medal.
His match results were as follows:
• Defeated Reed Dreyer, Humboldt, 6-2;
• Lost by fall to Ryan Denny (second place finisher), Centerville;
• Pinned Jose Cruz, Roland Story, 3:51;
• Defeated Nearoth Peterschmidt, Mid-Prairie, 1-0;
• Lost to Luke Johnson (third place finisher), Charles City, 7-5 in overtime;
• Defeated Dreyer, Humboldt, 9-7 in overtime for fifth place.
Solon’s two other state qualifiers each won one match at state.
Sophomore Louis Gnida, wrestling at 113 pounds, lost to Colton Milosevich, Woodward Granger, 9-4 in the first round, then defeated Kyle Zender, Humboldt, 3-1. Gnida then fell to Johnny Etherington, Charles City, 9-0.
Sophomore Heavyweight Logan Linderbaum lost his opening match by fall to fourth-place finisher Sean Easler, Assumption. Linderbaum went on to defeat Jordan Siebert, Harlan, 6-3, before losing by fall to fifth-place finisher Carl Burnett, Carlisle.
With all three state qualifiers forming a strong nucleus for next year’s team, the Spartans will be looking forward to a very successful season.
The wrestlers and coaches would like to thank everyone who supported the team this year, especially those who made the trip to Des Moines.