PREP WRESTLING: Martin makes Marshall history at MNGWL state

CHAMPLIN PARK – Marshall’s Wyatt Martin placed sixth at 145 pounds during the Minnesota Ninth Grade Wrestling League Individual State Tournament on Saturday.

Martin is the first eighth-grader from Marshall to compete in MNGWL individual state tournament.

“I was very excited to be the first eighth-grader to wrestle at ninth grade state,” Martin said. “I want to thank the coaches and the whole Marshall wrestling family for supporting me.”

Marshall/Lakeview head coach Justin Bouwman has seen Martin develop as a grappler since he switched from playing hockey to wrestling during the 2010-11 season.

“Wyatt is a young kid who has grown a lot for us and doing a lot for us,” Bouwman said. “He has been filling in for us (at the varsity level) at 152 (pounds) and he should be wrestling a weight down at 145 because that is more his body size. He was able to take advantage of that at the ninth grade individual state tournament.”

In the first round, Martin pinned Peter Ojeda in 1:42. Eventual 145-pound champion, Luverne’s Solomon Nielsen, pinned Martin in 4:09 during the quarterfinals.

But Martin rebounded during the wrestleback rounds by pinning Hastings’ Anthony Cristofferson in 2:27 and pinning New Prague’s Nick Arguedas in 34 seconds.

That put Martin in the fifth-place match, where Fosston/Bagley’s Jake Ubert defeated him with a 12-8 decision.

Martin, who went 3-2 at the state tournament, compiled an overall postseason record of 10-2. He was an undefeated champion at the region and section levels.

“Wyatt is the kind of wrestler who likes to create as he goes, which is kind of fun to watch,” Bouwman said. “It can be a great thing because it keeps his opponents guessing. It can also be a bad thing that gets him into trouble. But Wyatt still has four varsity years to improve at that.”

Minneota won the MNGWL team title at the individual state tournament over St. Michael-Alberyville 80-78.

The Vikings had four wrestlers who placed at the meet, including Austin Devlaemnick (first at 100), Alec Bueltel (first at 160) Brant Buysse (fourth at 94) and Brendan Reiss (fifth at 120).