MALCOLM — Two Cedar Catholic wrestlers punched their tickets to state during last weekend’s two-day District C-1 Wrestling tournament here.
Eric Hoesing improved to 41-5 on the year with his third-place finish.
Hoesing will now head to state for the second straight year.
The Nebraska State Wrestling Tournament runs Feb. 20-22 in Omaha.
Conner Hochstein improved to 23-15 with his fourth-place finish.
Kerby Hochstein was going for a second straight trip to State, but lost out in the Heartbreak Round.
Archbishop Bergan won the team title with 164.5 points, beating out Fillmore Central (130) and Tri-County. Cedar Catholic finished with 57 points on the weekend.
Hoesing earned his way onto the medal stand in the 170-pound class with a quick 26-second pin over Mason Touring of Fort Calhoun in his first match of the day.
He then won his quarterfinal match with a 59-second pin over Kanin Baker of Tri County to advance to the semifinals.
Hoesing came up short in his next match, dropping an 8-3 decision in the semifinals to Dylan Zoucha of Malcolm to move into the third-place match. This marked only the third time since Dec. 14 that Hoesing had tasted defeat on the mat.
He then got back on the winning track by pinning Archbishop Bergan’s Koa McIntrye early in the second frame to earn the bronze medal and advance to State.
He has notched quite a few accomplishments so far this season. He became the school’s all-time wins leader and also cracked the 100-win total. He defended his MidState Conference title, and has now advanced to State again. He has one goal left in his high school career.
“My objective is to focus on getting that title,” he said. “I have a chance at taking it all – you have to have that mindset that you have that ability.”
Conner Hochstein earned a pair of pins in his first two matches in the 152-pound class to advance to the semifinal round match.
He then fell to Gavin Zoucha of Malcolm in the second period in his semifinals match, dropping him into the consolation finals with the winner headed to the third-place match and a trip to State.
He defeated Jesse Keiser of Yutan with just 32 seconds left in the second period to advance to the medal round.
Tri County’s Bailey Waltke pinned Hochstein late in the first period to earn the bronze, but Hochstein’s fourth-place finish was still good enough to make it to State.
Despite missing out on State, several local wrestlers turned in excellent outings over the weekend.
Keegan Carl earned a hard-fought 13-11 decision over Ladanian Free of Winnebago in his opening match at 106.
Carl then fell in a first-period pin in his second match. He bounced back with a pair of wins, defeating James Watts of Malcolm just 14 seconds from the conclusion of the first period.
Carl then earned a quick :37 pin over Clayton Christensen of Norfolk Catholic to advance to the Consolation semifinals, but lost that match to Barrett Brandt of Syracuse to end his day.
Nash Albers also started off well. Albers earned a second-period pin over Mathew McDonald of Winnebago in his 132-pound opener.
Albers then fell to Sean Henkel of Yutan in the quarterfinals. He bounced back with a 9-3 decision over Ponca’s Sam Taylor in his first consolation match of the day. Albers’ day came to an end in the next match when Braxton Walz of Syracuse earned the pin.
Kerby Hochstein started out strong with a quick 26-second pin over Marcus Bratrsovsky of Humboldt-Table Rock-Steinauer.
Seth Fairbanks of Wahoo Neumann pushed him into the consolation round with a secondperiod pin. Hochstein then earned a quick 50-second pin over Malachi Bassette of Winnebago to stay alive.
His day ended in the next round, however, when Aiden Hinrichs of Fillmore Central came out on top of a 7-2 decision.
Cole Steffensen also competed in the District match for Cedar Catholic. He lost both of his matches, however, and was not able to advance to Saturday’s competition.