MADISON – Darlington/Black Hawk’s Kolbe Ubersox closed his sophomore season on the awards stand after finishing in fifth-place in the Division 3 132-pound weight class at the 2017 WIAA Individual State Wrestling Meet held at UW-Madison’s Kohl Center on Feb. 23-25.
Ubersox (43-5, ranked #5 in D3) posted a 3-2 record to earn his first career state medal his second appearance at the state meet, while junior Tyler Mosley (25-20, #12) went 1-2 on the mats in the D3 170-pound weight class in his first-ever state appearance.
“I believe Kolbe was very proud of making the awards stand and rightfully so. I also believe that he wanted to be a few steps higher and will be driven to accomplish that goal next year,” said Darlington/Black Hawk co-head coach William Chambers. “Tyler was very impressive at state, especially considering he only has two years of wrestling experience. He came out strong in his first match and made the second day. Tyler was unable to wrestleback into the placement matches, but did not give up in his efforts.”
Both WarBirds opened their tournament with wins in Thursday’s preliminary matches to advance beyond the opening day of competition.
Ubersox defeated Shiocton junior Sawyer Theobald (21-7, #9) by a 12-8 decision to make the quarterfinals at 132, and then the Darlington sophomore knocked off Horicon junior Bill Condon (36-12, #6) with a 13-7 decision on Friday morning to move onto the semifinal match on Friday evening.
Ubersox’s title hopes came to a close when he dropped a 6-0 decision to eventually runner-up Tate Murty (35-2, #2), a junior from Cochrane-Fountain City, in their semifinal showdown on Friday night. Murty lost an 8-4 decision to Deerfield senior Cal Hansen (44-1, #1) in the 132 championship match to take second.
“In his match against Theobold, he came out aggressive and kept the pace up as he did in the quarterfinals against Condon. He also held his own against Murty in the semifinals,” noted Chambers.
In his consolation semifinal match on Saturday morning, Ubersox was caught in a throw and pinned at the 1:59 mark by Stratford junior Jake Drexler (43-3, #3), who finished third in the class. Then, he closed his tournament and his season by posting a hard-fought 9-7 decision over Coleman sophomore Jake Baldwin (39-10, #8) in the fifth-place match on Saturday afternoon.
“Kolbe performed well and was able to recover from the disappointment of the losses he took to come back strong in the next matches. He showed a never quit attitude and confidence in his abilities,” added Chambers. “I was most impressed with his fifth-place match. He kept his pace up, reacted quickly when caught in a throw, and was determined to come out with the victory. Kolbe kept working to wrestle his style of wrestling even when the Coleman wrestler was forcing a tie-up looking for throws the whole match.”
Mosely’s state experience also started off on the right foot after he edged Spring Valley/Elmwood sophomore Carter Merth (34-11, #7) by a score of 7-6 in the preliminary match at 170 to advance to Friday.
Mosely moved on to face Random Lake senior Helton Vandenbush, who came in the tournament ranked number one in the weight class and he lived up to that ranking by wrestling his way to the title on Saturday night with a 5-2 decision over Iowa-Grant junior Brady Peat (42-7, #6).
Vandenbush topped Mosely with a 13-4 major decision, and then in his consolation match on Saturday morning the Darlington junior dropped a 15-1 major decision to Boyceville junior Justin Malean (32-16, #8) to finish just shy of the award stand.
“Tyler’s opening match stood out when he beat Merth, whose record of 34-11 was impressive. Tyler did not appear to let the venue or others abilities deter his efforts. He came out with the intent to win. Tyler came out with a strong effort in the second match against Vandenbush, but he was not able to overcome the experience of Vandenbush,” Chambers commented.
With both their state wrestlers returning next season along with seven of the remaining eight sectional qualifiers, Chambers has high hopes for the WarBirds next season as they build on another successful year on the mats.
“The conversations we had during and after the tournament would definitely indicate that both wrestlers intend to do their best to make it to state again next year. They discussed the potential of the team as a whole and of their individual teammates as well. It would appear they are driven to accomplish more as a team and as individuals. They believe several of their teammates have the potential of being at the state tournament next year,” stated Chambers