EDITOR'S NOTE: The Swnews4u.com Athlete of the Week is a web-only feature that will publish each Thursday throughout the calendar year.
Leif Bredeson, Sr., 285 pounds, Darlington/Black Hawk wrestling
LANCASTER — Senior Leif Bredeson defended his 285-pound title from a year ago at the Lancaster Invitational held on Saturday, Jan. 4. Bredeson (17–2, ranked #1 in Division 2 at 285) earned the meet’s Most Valuable Wrestler trophy with his big day ruling the heavyweight class and is this week's Mast Water Technology SWNews4U.com Athlete of the Week.
Bredeson made the final at the tournament for the second straight season with an opening round bye, a 1:25 pin of Monticello IA’s Mason Reuter and a 7–2 decision over MFL/Mar Mac’s Jacob Trudo. In the finals, the Darlington senior faced off against his old nemesis Troy Leibfried, a senior with the Cuba City/Benton/Southwestern co-op who defeated Bredeson 8–7 in a dual meet earlier this year and was fresh off winning a Bi-State Classic title. Bredeson got the upper hand this time around, earning a hard-fought 3–2 decision to claim the 285 title over Leibfried for the second year in a row.
HONORABLE MENTION (in alphabetical order):
Issac Hill, Sr., PG, Iowa–Grant boys basketball
Hill poured in a career-high 31 points on 11 of 20 shooting to lead the Iowa–Grant Panthers to a 78–66 victory over Potosi, then scored a game-high 29 points in I–G's 92–58 victory at Riverdale on Tuesday night.
Josie Nies, Sr., PG, Platteville girls basketball
Nies scored a team-high 22 points and passed out 10 assists to post a double–double in #1 Platteville's dominating 78–43 victory over previously unbeaten, #3-ranked Lake Mils last Saturday afternoon.
Aaron Ragels, Sr., 220, Fennimore wrestling
Ragels (12–3) went 6–2 last weekend to scored a team-best 60 points and finish fourth at 220 pounds at the loaded Kaukauna Cheesehead Invitational. Ragels performance helped the Golden Eagles finish sixth at the 33-team tournament, that featured five nationally-ranked teams, and teams from eight states. Ragels missed all of football season this past fall after tearing his ACL during an offseason wrestling tournament last March.
Dustin Wolf, Sr., 195, Lancaster wrestling
Wolf (20–4) notch an upset pin of previously unbeaten Zach Howe (24–1) of MFL MarMac to win the 195-pound title at last Saturday's Lancaster Invitational. Wolf, who spent much of last year on varsity reserve, before earning a spot in the varsity lineup and advancing all the way to the 2019 WIAA state tournament, scored a co-team-high 30 points to help the Flying Arrows win the Lancaster Invitational title over Iowa–Grant/Highland 220–209.