Starting today, five area wrestlers will begin competing at the 2013 Iowa High School Athletic Association's annual state wrestling tournament.
Moravia's Briar Cochran and Dylan Conley will begin the day bright and early with the 9 a.m. session this morning.
Centerville's Tanner Cowan, Brad Irwin and Riley Denny will begin competing in Class 2-A in the third session this evening, starting at 7 p.m.
The Daily Iowegian will be participating in a collaborative effort with the five sister newspapers we have in Iowa — the Ottumwa Courier, the Clinton Herald, the Knoxville Journal-Express, the Pella Chronicle and the Oskaloosa Herald — in covering this year's state wrestling tournament.
Coverage will include information on the five wrestlers from the Iowegianland, as well as information on much of the wrestlers from southeast Iowa.
Log on to sports.dailyiowegian.com starting today through the end of the tournaments for a live blog, photo galleries and videos updated throughout each day.
Cowan returns from injury
Tanner Cowan has only been back for three weeks after suffering a knee injury in the past football season. However, that's been long enough for the senior wrestler to climb to seventh in the latest Predicament rankings in Class 2-A at 126 pounds and earn a district title and a runner-up sectional title.
Cowan will begin wrestling in the third session today — which runs from 7-10:15 p.m. — against Wakon's Adam Benzing.
Cowan is competing in the top half of the 126 pound bracket. He joins fourth ranked Kyle White, of Central Springs, as the two ranked wrestlers in the top half of the bracket. The bottom half of the bracket is filled with wrestlers ranked by the Predicament. All but one wrestler in the bottom half is ranked in the top 10 at the 126 pound weight class.
Irwin qualifies for first time
Today will be the first time sophomore Brad Irwin has competed at the IAHSAA state wrestling tournament.
Irwin narrowly missed qualifying for the tournament last year. He won his sectional tournament that was held in Centerville in 2012, but finished third at the PCM, Monroe district meet. Only the top-two finishers in each weight class earn state tournament berths.
However, it's a different year. This year, Irwin has claimed both the sectional and district title. He comes into the state tournament with a 36-8 record.
Irwin will begin his tournament journey with Jordan Challen of Greene County. Challen, also a sophomore, is 37-9 coming into the season.
Denny qualifies for fourth state meet
Centerville's Riley Denny is a four-time state meet qualifier. Two of those meet qualifications came when Denny was a freshman and sophomore in Kansas. The other two are as a Big Red in his junior and senior season.
Denny, who comes into the tournament with a 40-7 record and as The Predicament's number four ranked wrestler at 195 pounds, will begin with Cale Stork of Harlan. Stork is ranked ninth by The Predicament and carries in a 41-5 record as a junior.
Moravia sends a freshman and senior to tournament
Moravia's Briar Cochran, a freshman at 106 pounds, will start his state tournament with English Valley's Sheldon Ealy. Cochran is a freshman who boasts a 35-6 record after beating fifth ranked Jimmy Abell for the district title at Pleasantville last Saturday. Ealy comes in as a sophomore with a 26-4 record.
Senior Dylan Conley carries a 37-68 record into the tournament. Maple Valley-Anthon-Oto's Cole Jensen, a freshman with a 31-14, will be Conley's first opponent at 285 pounds.
Both wrestlers will look to bring home Moravia's first state individual wrestling title.
Win record in jepordy at tournament
The state’s all-time wrestling career win record will be in jepordy at this year’s state wrestling tournament.
Brandon Sorensen of Denver-Tripolis, comes into the state wrestling tournament with 204 wins.
That total is just three wins behind tying the current state record set by former Centerville Big Reds wrestling T.J. Sebolt.
Sebolt was a four-time state champion, going his entire career with 207 wins and just one defeat. Sebolt’s rein was from 2003-2006.
Sebolt also holds the record for longest winning streak at 192 matches and is now fourth all time for the most falls with 136.
Sebolt wrestled at 106 pounds for his first two years before moving up to 119 pounds his junior year and 130 pounds his senior year.
Sorenson is a three-time state wrestling champion. He won the title at 119 pounds his freshman year, 130 pounds his sophomore year and 132 pounds last year in his junior year. He is wrestling at 145 pounds this year.
DES MOINES —