On Tuesday, Feb. 10, the Bulldogs started off the section tournament at Litchfield. Since Paynesville was rated third in the section, they had a bye the first round.
In the second round of the tournament, Paynesville faced Sauk Centre, who just got done handing Melrose a loss. Paynesville was the favorite in this match, and they proved to be just that. No one on Paynesvilleís team lost until 160 pounds, and that match was against a wrestler rated first in state.
Paynesville only lost three matches in the whole match, recording six pins and a forfeit. The final result of the match was Paynesville-54, Sauk Centre-14.
On Friday, Feb. 13, Paynesville travelled to Rocori to finish off the team competition. Litchfield was the first match for Paynesville. With Paynesville wanting to avenge an earlier loss against Litchfield, the Bulldogs were pumped up for the match.
At 103 and 112 Litchfield pinned both of the Paynesville wrestlers. The Bulldogs rebounded by winning the next eight of the 11 matches. Paynesville had four pins in the match, and one of them resulted at 160. Jona Welle lost to his opponent 10-12 last time they wrestled, but in this match Welle reversed that with a pin. That was the match that put it away for Paynesville. Paynesville won 35-24.
The final round of the tournament was for the Section 5AA championship and the right to go on to state competition. This brought Paynesville up against Dassel-Cokato.
Paynesville beat Dassel by two points the last time they met, but Paynesville knew they were much tougher this time.
Paynesville won seven of the 13 matches in the dual, but with only one pin and the rest decisions, D-C received more bonus points and defeated Paynesville by only two points, 26-24.
One of the key matches in this dual was again with Jona Welle at 152. Welle was behind 8-4 when he caught his opponent and pinned him. This redeemed Paynesville a little but it wasnít enough. D-C was going to the state tournament.
Return to Sports Archives