By Alex Strouf, The Denmark News
Both Denmark wrestlers will live to see another day.
A silent afternoon led to an exciting evening for Denmark High School fans at the 74th annual Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association individual wrestling state tournament.
Junior Joshua Frerk of Denmark made quick work of Tennessee Hatfield of River Valley, winning via pinfall after only 1 minute, 17 seconds. The pinfall followed a quick wrap-up and takedown by Frerk, which immediately led the Hatfield falling on his back, which eventually led to the fall.
As Frerk simply put it following the match, “Onto the next one.”
In the first round of Friday’s action, Frerk will match up with sophomore Logan Zschernitz of Spencer/Columbus, who has an impressive record of 37-3. The second ranked wrestler in division two at 285 pounds has put on an impressive showing as just a sophomore.
However, one of Zschernitz’s three losses came at the hands of Frerk earlier this season. On Jan 17 at the Freedom High School Invitational, the two powerhouses matched up in the finals, which Frerk won via decision, 7-3.
Finally, if Frerk can repeat the past, he has a high chance of matching up with the top ranked heavyweight in division two with a trip to the state finals on the line. Senior Cody Jacobson of Ripon has a record of 42-2. If an upset occurs in Jacobson’s first match of the tournament, he’ll face Dan Ausloos of Oconto Falls, who has never beaten Frerk.
On early Thursday evening, Denmark senior Brock Bergelin found out who his opponent would be in his first match of the weekend. Bergelin, 34-1, will face off with senior Abel Brockman, 37-6, of Cedar Grove-Belgium. According to WIWrestling.com, Brockman is the ninth ranked 120 pound wrestler in division two. Brockman knocked off the seventh ranked wrestler, Trey Bivens of Turner High School, on Thursday night to advance. Brockman and Bergelin will go at it with a trip to the semifinal match on the line.
If Bergelin advances to the semifinal match, his likely opponent is the second ranked wrestler at 120 pounds in division two, Sawyer Strom of Ellsworth. The senior is 36-8 this season and has been the heavy favorite as the only wrestler with the ability to knock Bergelin from his throne.
Updates from Friday can be found of The Denmark News’ Alex Strouf’s Twitter, @Alex_Strouf.