For the first time since his freshman year, Eau Claire North senior Mason Phillips will wrestle in the state semifinals today at the WIAA wrestling individual state championships at the Kohl Center in Madison.
On Thursday, Phillips, wrestling at 138 pounds, opened with a third-period pin of Appleton North’s Brytton Goymerac and then scored a 7-1 decision over Holmen’s Tanner Schultz in the quarterfinals. Phillips placed fifth as a freshman at 106, fourth at 113 as a sophomore and fourth again as a junior last year at 126. He’ll wrestle Pewaukee’s Eric Halvorson in tonight’s Division 1 semifinals.
Schultz had previously handed Phillips a loss, one of just two on the year, in the championship match of the Bi-State Classic on Dec. 31 at the La Crosse Center. Phillips had a third-period lead before Schultz was injured on what was deemed an illegal throw.
Joining Phillips will be a pair of River Falls wrestlers — senior Mitchell Williamson and junior Nathan Fuller. At 285, Williamson scored a 39-second pin and a then a decision to advance to the semifinals. Fuller, at 152, opened with a technical fall and then advanced on a tiebreaker against Sauk Prairie’s Bryant Schaaf.
At 170, Eau Claire Memorial junior Levi Smith dropped a 7-5 decision to Pewaukee’s Jacob Sklenar in the preliminaries, but Sklenar’s quarterfinal sent Smith to the consolation bracket. He’ll face Wilmot Union’s Hunter Valach this morning.
At 182, Chippewa Falls’ Jared Woodhull lost a decision and saw his state tournament come to an end.
In Division 2 preliminaries, Daniel Chuchwar (182) and Justis Knutson (220) both advanced to today’s quarterfinals for Chetek-Weyerhaeuser, as did Barron’s Tristan Massie (145) and Baldwin-Woodville’s Alex McCray (126).
In Division 3, the Cadott trio of Bailey Gillett (132), Andrew Gunderson (138) and Brady Spaeth (152) all moved on to the quarterfinals.
Reid Olson (132) and Gio Torres (195) both advanced for Cumberland, as did Boyceille’s Walker Retz (113).
Sectional winners in Divisions 2 and 3 will hit the mat for the first time this morning.