The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

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January 7, 2013

River Kings 3rd on mats

MARION — Clinton won four of five matches Saturday and placed third at the 47th Linn-Mar Invitational wrestling tournament.

The River Kings beat Western Dubuque 55-9 in the third-place match after dropping a 45-21 match to host Linn-Mar to close Pool A action. Mediapolis, ranked third in Class 2A, defeated Linn-Mar 35-32 to claim the team title.

“I was very happy with the kids’ performance,” Clinton coach J.D. Lueders said. “Our kids are really beginning to battle every time they step on the mat. There were several good teams in the field, and it was a good measuring stick for us to see where we sit as we approach the last three weeks of the regular season.”

Clinton opened competition in Pool A by edging Mount Vernon 33-30, then routed Mount Pleasant 44-24 and Dubuque Hempstead 65-7 before facing Linn-Mar. Clinton’s Josiah Molina pinned fourth-ranked Justin Dilks in the Mount Pleasant match.

Dustin Caldwell (152 pounds) and Jake Oldaker (285) went undefeated on the day for the River Kings.

Caldwell avenged his only loss of the season by beating Western Dubuque’s Dawson Nemmers 3-2 to open that dual.

“I would say the last match of the day, a 55-9 win over the No. 11-ranked Western Dubuque team, emphasized our kids’ efforts,” Lueders said.

Clinton’s two returning state placewinners, Hunter Genco and Alex Caldwell, each suffered losses in the Linn-Mar match, but both losses came against wrestlers ranked higher than the third-ranked River Kings. Top-ranked Alijah Jeffery beat Genco 13-3, while No. 2 Joel Northrup edged Caldwell 5-4.

It was the only loss for each wrestler. Caldwell pinned his other four opponents, while Genco had two pins, a technical fall and a major decision.

Clinton’s Dillon Chase went 4-1 at 160, losing only to Mount Vernon’s Trey Ryan, who is ranked second in the state in Class 2A. Amani Larson (106) suffered his only loss against the Lions; he pinned his other four opponents.

“Dillon Chase had the No. 2-ranked kid from Mount Vernon beat 1-0 with 10 seconds left and lost on a defensive pin in a takedown scramble,” Lueders said.

Clinton senior Raf Ramirez had the toughest day, running into ranked opponents in four of his five matches. He forced overtime against No. 6 Brennan Koerperich of Western Dubuque, lost by three points to No. 9 Jacob Dilks of Mount Pleasant and suffered a four-point loss to No. 3 Justin Green of Linn-Mar.

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