Second place finish at districts sends Bormann to state wrestling

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Central freshman Braxton Bormann punched his ticket to the state wrestling tournament by placing second at 120 pounds at districts on Feb. 11. (Photo by Jarod Bormann)

By Willis Patenaude, Times-Register


Central wrestler Braxton Bormann is headed to the Iowa High School Athletic Association (IHSAA) state wrestling tournament. The freshman placed second at the Class 1A District 6 tournament in Monona on Feb. 11, becoming the first Warrior to qualify since Ted Hilgerson in 2017.


“It means a lot, especially since it’s my freshman year,” said Bormann. “State was one of my goals. I’ve been making it to state multiple years as a youth, and I thought it would be a good start to [high school] to make it there and see how it can go from there.” 


Competing at 120 pounds, Bormann started the tournament with two straight victories, one via fall and the other a narrow 3-2 decision.


“The first match went well, then I wrestled a tough opponent my second match,” Bormann said.


“But we didn’t give up,” stressed head coach Joe Koehn. “He got an escape in the third period, then a takedown with short time and ended up winning a close one. We toughened up there.”


Bormann ultimately lost the first place match by a razor thin 6-5 decision to Edgewood-Colesburg’s Dawson Bergan, a former state place winner. 


“It was a tough match. We were close,” Koehn said. “He improved the whole tournament. You can’t ask for anything better.”


Bormann compared districts to his season-long growth as a wrestler.


“It takes a lot of hard work. I just had to keep going to finally make it there,” he said. “I’ve had a lot of learning and experience, figuring out how everything works in high school.”


Koehn said Bormann’s considerable youth experience has helped.


“He brings quite a bit of experience to the mat and a lot of leadership to the team. He does a lot on the mat and in the room,” the coach reflected.


The state tournament will begin Feb. 15, at Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines. Bormann, who’s 38-5, is seeded 15th and will wrestle 18th-seeded Gavin Wiig from Kingsley-Pierson in the first match.


“My goal for state is to make it as far as I can and hopefully end up on the podium. Try to keep improving,” Bormann said.


In addition to Bormann, the Warriors entered districts with a few wrestlers having the potential to qualify. That included senior Nick Deitchler, who placed third at 126 pounds.


Deitchler started the meet with a 58-second fall in the quarterfinals, before suffering an equally quick loss by fall in the semifinals. He bounced back in the consolation semifinal and finished the meet by pinning Rylee Kugel of MFL MarMac in the third-place match.


Six other Central wrestlers—Jonah Burns, Collin Jaster, Preston Kulper, Jacob Cook, Sam Fettkether and Daniel Royer—did not place.


Audrey Posten contributed to this article.

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