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Morrisons wrestle their way to Districts

February 7, 2019
CJ Eilers - Editor ( , Traer Star-Clipper

The North Tama wrestling program will send Chase and Tyler Morrison to Districts at Denver on Saturday, Feb. 9 as the program fell short of sending additional wrestlers in their first year as an independent program.

"We came in expecting to compete for District spots with some highly ranked guys like Chase, Cory [Isenhower] and Zade [Podhajsky]," coach Andrew Knaack said. "I felt we could get five or six guys to advance, but I'm happy for Chase and Tyler to advance."

The Redhawks got off to a rough start in the first round of matches as unexpected loss mounted, preventing North Tama from advancing District qualifiers as they must finish top two in their weights.

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Chase Morrison stood atop the 195 lbs podium as a Sectional Champion and will move on to Districts at Denver on Saturday, Feb. 9.

"Those two weeks off hurt us," Knaack said. "Some guys responded to losing some matches and practices, others did not. We lost matches we should have in that first round. I'm not sure if it was nerves or overconfidence."

The second round was more favorable as they won five of their next six to compete while the Morrisons advanced to the championship rounds. Isenhower, Noah Weber, Zane Nelson and Podhajsky continued in lower placing rounds as North Tama hoped to potentially keep a team dual berth alive.

"They knew we could accomplish this goal and kept battling that second round," Knaack said. "This is a fun team that came in with very few expectations from the outside and won 13 duals despite some cancellations."

As the final matches went underway, losses by Isenhower and Podhajsky kept the Redhawks from placing higher as a team. Cale Bradley would take third in the 106 lbs class, Isenhower third at 145 lbs, Weber third at 160 lbs to give North Tama a fourth place finish on the day. All three will return next year seeking higher placings next season.

But the day belonged to the Morrisons as Tyler took second place at 182 lbs to advance to Districts. Chase took the 195 lbs championship and will join his cousin as they compete for a spot at the State Wrestling Tournament in Des Moines beginning on February 14.

"Tyler didn't wrestle much this season, but he's been practicing and has wrestled for many years, so seeing him go on is great," Knaack said. "Chase has been a stalwart of this team and responds well to challenge. He wasn't sure he could be a sectional champion as the season started, but as his confidence grew his ability also jumped for us."

Check back with the Traer Star-Clipper for results from District wrestling and if the Morrison cousins advance to State.



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