Hawks’ Swenson collects 7th-place medal at 170 pounds in Class 1A
Junior caps tourney with a fall; Thompson finishes one win shy of the podium
DES MOINES — The days of Lane Swenson flying under the wrestling radar are long gone.
Seriously. Not a chance in you know where of that happening again.
Not many wrestling enthusiasts may have known about the South Hamilton junior 170-pounder when the tournament began on Thursday, but by Saturday night plenty had been exposed to his talents.
Swenson became South Hamilton’s first Class 1A state medalist since 2017 and his seventh-place performance was the best by a Hawk grappler at the state tournament since 2015 when JD Rader took third at 132 pounds.
“I wish I would have placed a little higher, but coming down here for the first time and placing is good,” Swenson, who capped his campaign with a 41-5 record, said. “Knowing I have next year to improve means a lot. I just want to get right back in the weight room and start pushing more weight to get ready for next year.”
Swenson capped his three-day roller coaster ride inside Wells Fargo Arena with a dominant outing in the seventh-place match against Ty Schmidt of Northeast Goose Lake Saturday morning. Swenson led 2-0 after one period and pushed the margin to 8-0 in the second before he put Schmidt on his back for the fall in 3:51.
“It was his most complete match of the tournament,” South Hamilton head coach Dan Brodie said. “He was laser focused, he didn’t get discouraged when he wasn’t able to finish a couple early shots, and he just broke the kid in the second period.”
Following an 8-3 loss to second-ranked and eventual state runner-up Carson Tenold of Don Bosco in the quarterfinals Friday afternoon, Swenson assured himself of a medal with a pin in 3:21 over Kolby Scott of MVAO/COU in the consolation second round — affectionately known as the blood round, due to the fact that the winners medal while the losers are eliminated. Swenson ripped off a pair of early takedowns and was in control throughout.
“A new match is a new life and going into it I knew it was the blood round and what was at stake,” Swenson said. “The goal was on the line, so I just had to go out there and make a name for myself.”
Fourth-ranked Drew Venteicher of Bedford-Lenox flattened Swenson for a fall in 2:37 in the consolation third round Friday night. The loss sent Swenson into the seventh-place match, while Venteicher eventually placed fourth.
“I think he proved that he’s right there with some of the best in the state,” Brodie said of Swenson, who went 3-2 for the week. “He’s worked really hard to put himself in position and it came to fruition.”
Trevor Thompson (36-10), South Hamilton’s junior 195-pounder, was a victim of the blood round on Friday. He dropped a 7-2 decision to Damon Meyer of South Winneshiek to fall a win shy of the podium. Meyer went on to place sixth.
The bout was tied at 2 after two periods, but Meyer was able to take the lead on a reversal in the third and then padded his lead late with three near-fall points.
“Winning a match at the state tournament is a big deal for the first time down here,” Brodie said following Thompson’s 1-2 week. “He’s close and he can see now where he has to go to be at this level. He has to open some things up and if he can get to that level of consistency with the amount of work I know he’s going to put in during the offseason, I think he’ll be back to make a run at the podium (next season).”