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Panthers rely on 18 pins to open season with two solid wins

Eleven different wrestlers registered pins as the Park Rapids wrestling team opened the season by defeating United North Central and Blackduck/Cass Lake-Bena Tuesday night at Blackduck.

Nine wrestlers had pins as the Panthers opened with a 63-18 win over UNC and nine wrestlers had pins as Park Rapids defeated BCLB 71-12.

In the win over UNC, Ben Baumgartner made his varsity debut with a first-period pin at 103 pounds.

UNC used pins by Sam Tellers at 112 and Jake Malone at 119 to take a 12-6 lead before the Panthers responded with four wins for a 30-12 advantage.

Dylan Holmer and Luke Hartig had first-period pins before Adam Branstrom received a forfeit win at 135. Zac Haugland's first-period pin at 140 helped the Panthers take control.

Max Aho recorded a pin at 145 for the Warriors, but Park Rapids responded by winning the final six matches.

Zach Steffen used a takedown and reversal for a 5-2 win at 152 before Kevin Just and Jared Nash recorded second-period pins. The Panthers ended the match with first-period pins by John Drury, Danny Pike and Kenny Weaver.

The Panthers used the same formula to defeat BCLB.

Laine Jensen's first-period pin at 103, Baumgartner's first-period pin at 112, Cameron Free's forfeit win at 119 and Holmer's second-period pin at 125 gave Park Rapids a 24-0 lead.

Branstrom and Haugland posted pins in the second period to push the lead to 36-6 after the 140-pound bout.

The Panthers ended the meet by winning the final six matches as Steffen used four nearfalls for an 18-0 technical fall win at 152, Just built a 14-9 lead before recording a third-period pin at 160, Nash received a forfeit win at 171, Drury recorded a first-period pin at 189, Pike followed with a second-period pin at 215 and Weaver closed with a first-period pin at heavyweight.

Park Rapids hosts its annual invitational tournament today (Saturday).

Park Rapids 63, UNC 18

103: Ben Baumgartner, PR, pinned Sam Bell :35. 112: Sam Tellers, UNC, pinned Laine Jensen 1:04. 119: Jake Malone, UNC, pinned Cameron Free 2:51. 125: Dylan Holmer, PR, pinned Kieler Skaro :47. 130: Luke Hartig, PR, pinned Max Pajari :32. 135: Adam Branstrom, PR, won by forfeit. 140: Zac Haugland, PR, pinned Bradley Johnson :37. 145: Max Aho, UNC, pinned Nick Schulz 1:50. 152: Zach Steffen, PR, minor decision over Taylor Carlson 5-2. 160: Kevin Just, PR, pinned Dylan Huttonen 2:22. 171: Jared Nash, PR, pinned Tyler Meech 2:24. 189: John Drury, PR, pinned Brennen Brockpahler :43. 215: Danny Pike, PR, pinned Dannon Yliniemi :22. Hwt.: Kenny Weaver, PR, pinned Bryson Vasey 1:01.

Park Rapids 71, BCLB 12

103: Laine Jensen, PR, pinned Kyle Michalek 2:55. 112: Ben Baumgartner, PR, pinned Tanner George :54. 119: Cameron Free, PR, won by forfeit. 125: Dylan Holmer, PR, pinned Aaron Geiss 2:23. 130: Nate Jablonski, BCLB, pinned Luke Hartig 4:58. 135: Adam Branstrom, PR, pinned Mihai Hawthorne 2:27. 140: Zac Haugland, PR, pinned Mishila Brown 3:35. 145: Zach Preston, BCLB, pinned Nick Schulz 3:03. 152: Zach Steffen, PR, technical fall over Butch Strand 18-0. 160: Kevin Just, PR, pinned Joe Nehl 5:51. 171: Jared Nash, PR, won by forfeit. 189: John Drury, PR, pinned Craig Brodeur :35. 215: Danny Pike, PR, pinned Alex Goodwin 2:37. Hwt.: Kenny Weaver, PR, pinned John Doe 1:24.