Council Bluffs Thomas Jefferson sophomore McGwire Midkiff did not take long to advance in class 3A at the state wrestling tournament. Midkiff advanced to the quarterfinal round with a first period fall over Derick Wyatt at 106 pounds.”I want to get the first one out of the way early because I am here because I want to win a state title. I want to send a message for the tournament,”Wyatt says.
Midkiff says he felt confident coming into the tournament, and after finishing eight last year as a freshman Midkiff wants to finish this week at the top of the podium. Midkiff improved to 50-3 with the win.
Bettendorf’s Jacob Schwarm won the state title at 113 pounds last year. He opened the 120 pound weight class in 3A with a 12-0 major decision over Joseph Sibomana of Cedar Rapids Jefferson.
Schwarm says overall he was satisfied with the match, though he wanted to get a pin for the team points.
Oskaloosa senior Skylar DeJong used a cradle to record a first period pin of Conner Christensen of Ames at 126 pounds. He says he was setting up his shots and he saw the cradle move was there and decided to grab it.
DeJong says he was thrilled to get the opening round win. “Knowing you’ve done your best the first round and keeping that momentum going forward is awesome,” DeJong say. “Last year I lost my first round 2-1 and was just down in the dumps, but I came back and just kept that momentum going.” DeJong finished eighth a year ago at 120 pounds and hopes to end this tournament as a champion.
Waverly-Shell Rock 160 pounder Bryce Steiert used a second period fall over Ben Rebik of Marshalltown to advance. After winning the state crown at 145 pounds Steiert will take a 50-1 record into Friday’s 3A quarterfinals. “I truly believe I can win every match now going forward, and that’s going to help me,” Steiert says.
Steiert says the key at the tournament is to be consistent, doing the same things you’ve done from the start of the years.
The future UNI Panther says he enjoys the atmosphere of Wells Fargo Arena. “Feels like this arena gets smaller and smaller each year for some reason,” Steiert says.
Fort Dodge junior Sam Cook improved to 39-1 with a 9-2 victory over Dedrick Jordan of Waterloo West at 195 pounds. Cook finished third at 182 pounds last year and believes he can win it all this week.
“I believe I can if I wrestle 100 percent, my 100 percent is better than anybody else’s,” Cook says.
Urbandale’s Jake Heinrich will be one of the state’s top football recruits next year and he is also enjoying success on the mat. Heinrich advanced to the 3A quarterfinals at heavyweight with a 7-2 victory over Tyler Pasker from Cedar Rapids Prairie. “Feels good, last year came here and lost 2 and went 2 and out, it feels good to get that win in,” Heinrich says. Heinrich registered three takedowns to improve to 37-5 on the season.
Heinrich says the sport of wrestling benefits him on the football field, especially as a heavyweight because he says you have to stay inside and move people and be physical. “That’s real similar to the offensive line, so it’s great practice for me,” Heinrich says.