For the first time in school history, Tea Area High School has a State Wrestling Champion.
Quincy Hulverson became the school’s first State Champion, claiming the 2020 Class A title at 106 pounds this past weekend at the Denny Sanford Premier Center in Sioux Falls.
Hulverson began his State title run, winning by technical fall over Kale Crowser of Douglas in the opening round. He then won by decision, 11-5, over Watertown’s Weston Everson to advance to the semi-finals. In the semi-finals, Hulverson defeated Rapid City Steven’s Jack Schoenhard by decision, 5-2 to reach the finals. Facing him in the fight for the title was Brandon Valley’s Trason Oehme.
“The finals match was a bit personal for Q, as Trason is a tremendous competitor and the only person to beat Quincy twice in his entire varsity career,” said Titan head coach John Niesen.
Hulverson was able to grab the victory, winning by decision, 3-2 over Oehme to take the State A Title.
This was a big accomplishment for Hulverson who had a rocky start to the season.
“He began the wrestling season battling mono, and took most of the first half to fully recover and get back to himself. He put in a ton of work in the weight room and extra cardio sessions along with practice to help get his lungs back into shape,” said Niesen. “Quincy also wrestled all over the place in the offseason, including a trip to the Disney Duals in Florida, in pursuit of a title after last year’s runner-up finish.”
Besides adding a State title to his season, Hulverson also broke multiple school records including consecutive wins with 29 this season, team points with 304, and takedowns with 124 on the season. Hulverson also tied the school record for wins in a season, finishing with a 45-3 record.
Hulverson wasn’t the only Titan finding success at State held Feb. 27-29.
Tea Area’s Wyatt Stuntebeck captured third place at 113 pounds, Connor Eimers took fourth at 120 pounds and JT Panning also finished fourth, medaling at 195 pounds.
Coach Niesen has been very proud of Stuntebeck’s freshman season wrestling at 113 pounds, .
“Wyatt took a tough loss to the eventual state champion in the semi-finals, but refocused and finished strong,” said Niesen. “His laser-like focus and intensity help him to power through even the toughest matches. His aggressive wrestling style allows him to break opponents and score points late.”
In his quarter-finals match, Stuntebeck found himself down 5-0 against Madison’s Stoller Truman before battling back to get the 7-5 decision. Stuntebeck fell in the semi-final matchup to eventual State Champion, Aberdeen Central’s Brenden Salfrank. In the third/fourth place match, Stuntebeck once again faced off against Madison’s Truman. He was able to get the 5-0 decision, to win the match and claim third place at State.
Stuntebeck enjoyed a successful season as he broke the team record for pins in a season (along with JT Panning), recording 26 falls along the way.
Niesen was pleased with the outstanding tournament Eimers had at 120 pounds, capturing fourth place in his weight class. Eimers upset the 3-seed in the quarter finals, defeating Madison’s Sam Olson by decision, 2-1 to advance to the semi-finals where he fell to the eventual State Champion, Rapid City Central’s Cael Larson by fall in 4:46.
“He had the eventual state champion on the ropes before falling in the final seconds,” said Niesen. “Connor closed the gap on some of those ‘next-level’ opponents and avenged some losses from earlier in the season. Connor’s tremendous work ethic, trust in the process, and mindset allow him to compete with anyone in the state and we’re so proud of his growth throughout the year.”
In the third fourth place match, Eimers had a rematch with Madison’s Olson, but this time Olson got the win, defeating Eimers by decision 2-1, giving Eimers fourth place.
Also claiming fourth place for the Titans was Panning. Panning recorded two pins to start the tournament, elevating himself to the school record at 26 (tied with Stuntebeck).
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