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Top 10 Class D Meet Teams
1. Amherst
2. Plainview
3. Burwell
4. North Platte St. Pats
5. Palmer
6. High Plains
7. Sutherland
8. Creighton
9. Elkhorn Valley
10. East Butler
Co-Raters: Zach Kliment Creighton
Jason Freudenberg Madison

As I looked across the state this weekend there were some quality tournaments to start the year. The Creighton, Friend, Mullen, and Ravenna Invites all featured Top 10 teams and several rated wrestlers. It was great to see the high school wrestling season finally begin across the state. These first seasonal ratings could see big changes over the next couple weeks as wrestlers move down descent plans and preseason injuries heal. I assigned a point system based on potential placers and projected districts. From what I could gather initially, it seems like a three-way race at the top with Amherst, Plainview, & Burwell all having enough talent to get them a championship. Amherst and Burwell fill weights, but Plainview, with only 10 wrestlers can keep pace. Palmer and North Platte SP lack full line-ups but have the potential to score very well in Omaha. Both have a lot of talent within a few weights that they will rely on to score their points. High Plains, Sutherland, and Creighton all look to have three big contributors toward their state points. Elkhorn Valley and East Butler also have the potential to score well down in Omaha. There are definitely a few quality teams that were very close, but sit outside the ratings. Again, I can see these moving quite a bit as athletes descend to their weights and heal.

1. Ryan Patrick, Sutherland
2. Logan Russell, High Plains
3. Breckin Ratkovec, East Butler
4. Cameron Wilkinson, Neligh-Oakdale
5. Isiah Shields, Amherst
6. Preston Acton, Southern

COMMENTS: The four carryovers from 106 last year state tournament fill the top spots. All had great starts even with Ratkovec and Wilkinson dropping finals matches to rated wrestlers from other classes. Shields impressed in his debut at Friend. Lots of potential just outside of the top six as well.
Edwin Aguirre, Arapahoe
Nate Christiansen, Plainview
Koby Ellis, Winside

1. Connor Hazen, Creighton
2. Trevor Nelson, Crawford
3. Sal Aguirre, Amherst
4. Dillon Steward, Elkhorn Valley
5. Zak Olson, Twin Loup
6. Charlie Gale, North Central

COMMENTS: Both Hazen and Nelson have started their years off on pinning streaks. Steward was ill, but am told will figure in here. Aguirre and Olson went to overtime this weekend with Aguirre getting the win. Gale won the Mullen Invite. Again there are several wrestlers right on the bubble that could be rated as well.
Tate Phillips, Burwell
Tate Coss, Garden County
John Tenbensel, Cambridge

1. Alejandro Martinez, Elkhorn Valley
2. Dominique Rickard, Plainview
3. Alex Araujo, Bayard
4. Breidyn Cumpston, Amherst
5. Coy Gideon, Burwell
6. Drew Goosic, Franklin

COMMENTS: Martinez and Rickard wrestled another entertaining match with Martinez earning the win late in the match. These two go back and forth each time. Araujo started his season pinning his way through. Cumpston and Goosic also clashed with Cumpston edging him out 9-8. Burwell was idle.
Garrett Neumeister, Weeping Water
Clay Church, High Plains
Usama Erikson, Superior

1. Tyler Pawloski, Pleasanton
2. Zac Hazen, Creighton
3. Mitch McKibbin, Bayard
4. Keagan Casey, Thayer Central
5. Joel Ostrom, Burwell
6. Adrian Gerkin, Eustis-Farnam

Pawloski and Hazen both dropped finals matches but still look like they are at the top. McKibbin, Casey, and Gerkin all are off to great starts and we will see where Kansas medalist Ostrom figures in when Burwell competes.
Jacob Lantis, Sutherland
Luke Henn, Elgin Public/Pope John
Brady Gracey, Mullen

1. Cameron Riggs, North Platte SP
2. Trent Steinkraus, Plainview
3. Kaden Guerrero, Southwest
4. RJ Tutlam-Hazen, Medicine Valley
5. Darren Steward, Elkhorn Valley
6. William White, Sutherland

COMMENTS:Riggs tops 132 and has dominated so far to get to 8-0. Steinkraus looked to be in form with an 11-2 finals win over Steward. Guerrero placed 3rd at Ravenna. Tutlam-Hazen defeated White at Elwood 7-2.
Jefferson McNeill, Oakland- Craig
Andrew Herley, Neligh-Oakdale
Kale Fishler, Harvard

1. Christian Miller, Plainview
2. Brody Lewis, Franklin
3. Brett Riggs, North Platte SP
4. Ryley Spatz, East Butler
5. Ben Bogle, Elwood
6. Peter Spilker, Tri County

COMMENTS: Christian Miller coasted through the Creighton Invite. Looked very polished with all the work he has put in this past offseason. Lewis, Riggs, and Bogle have jumped out to undefeated starts in dominant fashion as well. Spatz and Spilker both dropped a match, but look very competitive here.
Sam Florell, Amherst
Jacob Johnson, Archbishop Bergan
Terry Stephens, Pleasanton

1. Cole Aschoff, Plainview
2. Spencer Wichmann, Palmer
3. Jake Judge, West Holt
4. Trace Baasch, Amherst
5. Riley Nichols, Elm Creek
6. Seth Simants, Stapleton

This weight is filled with medalists and qualifiers from last year. Aschoff looked to be in good form early on. Wichmann and Nichols both won championships also. With the depth at this weight it will be interesting to see what results we’ll see over the next couple of weeks.
Bryce Zimmerer, Creighton
Joshua McFarland, Elkorn Valley
Dalton Bohac, East Butler

1. Jaydon Elge, Nebraska Christian
2. Aaron Allison, North Platte SP
3. Edwen Baptista, Friend
4. Connor Donscheski, Palmer
5. Zach Morris, Winside
6. Konner Banzhaf, Cambridge

COMMENTS: I have Elge listed here, but did not see or hear anything on Elge going 145 or 152 as he was not in action this weekend. Those in action Allison, Baptista, Morris, and Banzhaf all remain undefeated. Donscheski’s only loss so far came from Baptista 5-3. Several other quality wrestlers could fit into this very competitive weight.
Riley Racicky, Pleasanton
JT Bradley, Sandhills/Thedford
Colby Ensz, Tri County
Miles Kulhanek, Howells-Dodge
Devon Walker, Elm Creek INJ

1. Drew Loberg, Randolph
2. Chandler Donscheski, Palmer
3. Cole Egge, Amherst
4. Leland Bowder, Pender
5. Justus Monette, Mullen
6. James Schroll, North Platte SP

COMMENTS: Loberg looks like the favorite after this weekend. Very impressive to watch. Donscheski and Egge dropped tough finals matches. All others also dropped at least one match this weekend in what seems to be a weight class lacking depth. Waiting to see if new faces come up or down.
Brady Wortman, Creighton
Chad Samuelson, Palmer

1. Kalen Klingelhoefer, Amherst
2. Braydon Mlady, West Holt
3. Kyle Stevens, High Plains
4. Hunter Reimers, Palmer
5. Colby Collier, Sandhills/Thedford
6. John Sullivan, Superior

COMMENTS: Klinglelhoefer dominated at Ravenna only one time wrestling over a minute.
Collier is the only other to open the weekend undefeated. All others lost to quality opponents. High Plains were idle after their quad.
Keighton Moore, Friend
Dalton Shimmin, Arapahoe
Layne Heese, Pender
Ryan Dawe, Burwell

1. Tori Huffman, Burwell
2. Payton Stevens, High Plains
3. Cooper Smith, Tri County
4. Dietric Kenning, Thayer Central
5. Lane Morris, Superior
6. Collin Gale, Plainview

COMMENTS: Huffman and Stevens are the only returning medalists. Those below them all competed and dropped at least one match. Seems like there is not a lot of depth here so we will see how results go moving forward. Collin Gale looks like a promising freshman for Plainview’s program.
Shawn Klinetobe, Elkhorn Valley

1. Dane Bogard, Amherst
2. Travis Likens, Tri County
3. Brandon Rezac, East Butler
4. Hunter Stratman, Axtell
5. Beau Wood, Perkins County
6. Scott Taylor, Medicine Valley

COMMENTS: Another weight that I didn’t find much depth. Bogard is the only medalist returning and opened his season 4-0. Likens and Rezac lost tough matches to start the year. Stratman and Wood start undefeated. Wood and Taylor went the distance ending with Wood winning 2-1.
Jarod Nichelson, Sutherland

1. Tyler Gideon, Burwell
2. Robert Muench, Sutherland
3. Trent Christiancy, Franklin
4. Will Atkeson, St. Mary’s
5. Darik Holt, Superior
6. Seth Wentworth, West Holt

COMMENTS: Gideon and Muench both return as the top two contenders for a state title here. Atkeson and Holt had unblemished opening weekends while Christiancy and Wentworth dropped a match a piece to rated wrestlers in other classes. Definitely some wrestlers not in this first top 6 that could find their way in soon.
Jacob Durflinger, Meridian
Gabe VanEngen, Freeman
Jesse Thompson, Pender
Robert Gardner, Arapahoe

1. Thomas Hughes, Burwell
2. Jacob Peterson, Amherst
3. AJ Skaggs, Axtell
4. Cole Rosenkrans, St. Mary’s
5. Levi Henderson, Medicine Valley
6. Rome Lerma, Minatare

COMMENTS: Outside of Hughes, 285 looks very open. Peterson, Rosenkrans, Henderson, and Lerma all won their brackets this weekend. Skaggs dropped on match, but finished others quickly. Many heavyweights potentially could move into the top 6 moving forward.
Kole Prososki, Fullerton INJ.
Benton Gustafson, Tri County
Jade Buss, West Holt
Cade Payne, Hemmingford

Class D Top 10 Dual Teams
1. Amherst 12
2. Burwell 13
3. Plainview 10
4. Creighton 11
5. High Plains 10
6. Mullen 10
7. Superior 11
8. Sutherland 10
9. Elm Creek 9
10. North Platte St. Pats 8
(Number denotes projected filled weights for duals)

In order to qualify for the state dual tournament, a team has to either win their district (regardless of weight classes filled) or earn enough wild card points having at least 10 weights filled. As I looked through the line-ups of people across the state, the number of teams that will be eligible for the state dual tournament is down from years past. I did my best to see if a team could potentially move a junior varsity wrestler into a varsity spot to help fill rosters, but even that was difficult. Amherst and Burwell look like they should qualify out of their districts. Outside of those two, others will have to score high at districts and/or find a way to fill line-ups. D1 will see Plainview try to outlast Creighton and Superior. Without enough competitors, St. Pats will compete with Mullen and Sutherland to earn an automatic spot out of D4. Will be interesting as the year goes on if teams will be able to fill the weights necessary to qualify from districts.

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