Liam Neitzel

Hudson’s Liam Neitzel pins La Crosse Logan/Central’s Justus Mueller as referee Dave Brandvold prepares to make the call in a 106 pound quarterfinal match at the Division 1 sectional Saturday, Feb. 18, at Eau Claire North High School. Neitzel went on to win the 106 pound title. Submitted photo

Hudson, River Falls and New Richmond will be well represented at this weekend’s WIAA Division 1 Individual State Wrestling Tournament in Madison after 12 area wrestlers advanced out of last Saturday’s D1 sectional in Eau Claire.

Hudson will send six individuals, River Falls four and New Richmond two, to the state tournament. That includes River Falls’ Jenna Lawrence and Hudson’s Natalie Klevetter, who both won sectional titles Saturday to earn spots in the first girls’ state competition in Madison.

Hudson had four boys advance as individual champions– Liam Neitzel at 106 pounds, Ethan Winkleman at 182, Ben Draveling at 195 and Ryan Rambo at 220. Noah Moltzan also qualified as runner-up at 126 pounds.

Austin Krenz

Hudson senior Austin Krenz gets LaCrosse Logan/Central’s Donovan Yang on his back before recording a pin in a first round match at 113 pounds at the Division 1 sectional Saturday, Feb. 18, at Eau Claire North High School. Krenz went on to place third in his weight class. Submitted photo

River Falls’ Travis Moelter won the boys individual title at 126 pounds and will be joined at state by sectional runner-up teammates Zack Peterson at 195 pounds and Lincoln McCarty at 285, while New Richmond’s Carter Sterba and Luke Kamish advanced as sectional runner-ups at 113 and 120 pounds, respectively.

Lawrence used a pair of pins to win the 107 pound girls’ sectional title and make River Falls wrestling history.

“She's been very committed and has worked extremely hard to earn her trip to Madison,” Wildcat coach Kevin Black said. “She has a great shot to do well down there, too.”

Klavetter made Hudson history as the first Raider place winner at last year’s inaugural girls state tournament, which was an open competition. This year the girls had to qualify and she punched her ticket in style by pinning both of her opponents in less than 1 minute, 25 seconds.

Klavetter will see plenty of her teammates in Madison, including four fellow sectional champions.

Neitzel registered three first period pins to win the boys’ 106 pound title while Winklmen’s longest match lasted just 1 minute and 6 seconds at 182. Draveling earned a hard-fought 5-4 decision over River Falls’ Peterson in the 195 pound finals, while Rambo used a pin and two decisions to take first at 220.

Moltzan lost his second round match to River Falls’ Moelter at 126 pounds before coming back to win two decisions to advance as the 126 pound runner-up.

Moelter went on to post a 9-0 major decision in the 126 pound finals to win the sectional title.

Black said Moelter has had almost a perfect postseason.

“He hasn't made any mistakes in his past six matches at regionals and sectionals and has been in control and dominant against some very good competition,” Black said. “He's practicing extremely well right now, too. He really looks poised to be at his best and perform well in Madison.”

McCarty survived a 5-3 sudden victory in his opening round match at 285 pounds and clinched his spot at state with a come-from-behind 5-2 decision in the semifinals before dropping a 4-1 decision to Marshfield’s Adrian Kruger in the finals.

“Lincoln really dug deep and sucked it up to be prepared and focused this week,” Black said. “He had a knee injury last weekend that kept him off the mat throughout the week, however, we were able to put together a game plan and execute a few adjustments that were the difference in his semi-final match.”

New Richmond’s Sterba earned an 8-6 sudden victory over Hudson’s Austin Krenz in the second place wrestleback at 113 pounds to qualify for state, while Tiger teammate reached the 120 pound finals before finishing as runner-up to advance.

St. Croix Central sending five wrestlers in D2

Owen Wasley won the sectional title at 160 pounds at Saturday’s sectional tournament in Amery to headline a list of five Panthers to advance to the WIAA Division 2 Individual State Tournament this weekend in Madison.

Wasley will be joined at state by Panther teammates Teague Holzer, Parker Shakleton, Noah Nusbaum and Emma Ocegueda. Holzer advanced with a second place finish at 126 pounds and Shakleton was runner-up at 220 while Nusbaum advanced with a third place finish at 152.

Ocegueda became the first St. Croix Central girl to qualify for state with a second place finish at 152 pounds.

The WIAA Individual State Tournament will take place this Thursday through Saturday, Feb. 23-25, at the Kohl Center in Madison.

(0) comments

Welcome to the discussion.

Thank you for taking part in our commenting section. We want this platform to be a safe and inclusive community where you can freely share ideas and opinions. Comments that are racist, hateful, sexist or attack others won’t be allowed. Just keep it clean. Do these things or you could be banned:

• Don’t name-call and attack other commenters. If you’d be in hot water for saying it in public, then don’t say it here.

• Don’t spam us.

• Don’t attack our journalists.

Let’s make this a platform that is educational, enjoyable and insightful.

Email questions to

Share your opinion


Join the conversation

Recommended for you