OFAFC wrestlers Kostka, Fischer to compete in Sectionals

Bret Kostka qualified for the WIAA State High School Wrestling Tournament last season and he hopes to do so again despite a late start at this weekend's Division 2 individual sectional meet held at Osceola High School. Wrestling begins at 10:30 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 22.

Kostka, a senior for the Osseo-Fairchild/Augusta/Fall Creek prep co-op team spent much of the season recovering from injury and didn't start wrestling until late January. But he finished second at the Cloverbelt Conference meet earlier this month in Stanley and was second again in the D-2 regional meet at Arcadia last week to qualify for sectionals.

Kostka, 5-2 overall, will be wrestling in the 182-pound weight class which has a good number of ranked wrestlers in it. His first round opponent, Medford senior Clay Bowe is 35-7. The winner could face Maple Northwesterm senior Isaac Nichols (16-4) or Baldwin-Woodville' junior Blaine Guthrie (33-6) who is ranked No. 7, dropping down a spot in the ranklngs as Kostka has fell in at No. 6 thanks to reputations he's earned for placing at the state tournament last season.

One other ranked wrestler at 182 is regional champion, senior Jacob Summers of Melrose-Mindoro/Gale-Ettrick-Trempealeau (37-8) at No. 5. Two honorable mention all-state wrestlers are in the field, Spooner/Webster junior Carter Melton (31-8) and St. Croix Central freshman Parker Shackelton (29-10).

OFAFC has a second wrestler competing in sectionals and its junior Luke Fischer (32-8). He faces No. 4 ranked Kale Hopke of Amery, a sophomore with a 32-4 record. The winners faces either junior Dalton Krug of Medford (25-18) or No. 11 ranked Calvin Mansheim, a Hayward/Minong Northwood co-op team sophomore with a 31-9 record. Other ranked wrestlers in the weight class is regional champion Bryce Burns (41-2), the Mel-Min./G-E-T senior ranked No. 2 in the state, No. 7 ranked sophomore Carter Grewe (22-4) from Abbotsford/Colby and No. 5 Nick Carlson, junior from Osceola (32-8).

Like Kostka, Fischer popped into the state rankings this week in at No. 12.

The top three wrestlers in each weight class qualify for the state meet next weekend in Madison at the Kohl Center.

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