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Wrestling: Kennedy dominant en route to Christmas title

December 18, 2018

Patrick Kennedy’s approach to his wrestling career is easier said than done.

“My main goal is to some day be an Olympic and world champion, so if I know I’m working toward that every single day, then the goals in between now and then will add up,” he said. “The individual stuff will come if I’m consistent at working at the end goal.”

The Kasson-Mantorville junior continues to put in the work to go along with the words and lofty self-expectations. Kennedy’s elite work ethic has led to big things in the past year — and it has set him up for years to come.

Already a two-time state champion, Kennedy has amassed an 86-2 career record so far at K-M, including a 13-0 start to this season.

The top-ranked 182-pounder in Minnesota’s Class AA bumped down to 170 pounds and continued to add to his impressive high school resume over the weekend.

Kennedy went 6-0 at the prestigious Minnesota Christmas Tournament at UCR Regional Sports Center, winning the 170 title in dominant fashion.

He won five matches by technical fall — including a 19-4 tech. fall in 5:07 against Cade Mueller of Waconia in Saturday’s championship match. The lone match in which he didn’t record a tech. fall, he won by a 15-1 major decision.

“I feel good about how I wrestled,” Kennedy said. “I spent a lot of time this summer working on top. It feels good to get out here and work on scoring. I like it a lot better than just taking (an opponent) down and then cutting him.”

Kennedy committed to the powerhouse University of Iowa program last summer, a few months after winning the 182-pound state title.

He said he knows his time in the college — and international — spotlight will come soon enough. For now, he won’t be satisfied unless the KoMets are holding the Class AA state team championship trophy at the end of this season.

“My No. 1 goal is a team state title,” he said. “I wrote down my top three goals at the start of the season, and I didn’t even put an individual state title down.

“I really strive to make sure our team gets what it wants. If my team doesn’t get it, the season is a failure for me.”

Kennedy said the atmosphere at Iowa is “addictive.” The Hawkeyes are currently ranked No. 4 in the country by Intermat and feature K-M alum Sam Stoll — the No. 1-ranked wrestler in the nation — at heavyweight.

“That environment down there, it’s addictive,” Kennedy said. “For me, I want to do everything right. I want to live my life right in everything.

“Like (Iowa 165-pounder) Alex Marinelli said, if the Hawkeyes don’t win a national title, his season wasn’t a success. That’s how I feel. A program like Iowa and Kasson-Mantorville, they’re the same that way.”

K-M was the only southeastern Minnesota school to advance one or more wrestlers to the finals.

KoMets’ 113-pounder Logan Vaughan (ranked No. 4 in Class AA) fell to Shakopee’s Paxton Creese, who’s ranked No. 1 in Class AAA. And in the 220-pound final, K-M’s Garsen Schorr (ranked No. 2 in AA) dropped a tight 4-2 decision against Andrew Reigstad of Willmar, who is ranked No. 6 in AAA.

SIMLEY EDGES K-M FOR TITLE

The two best Class AA teams in Minnesota — who also happen to be the two best teams in Section 1AA — were the two best teams at the Christmas Tournament.

Simley, ranked No. 2 in the most recent state poll, edged No. 1-ranked K-M by just five points for the championship, 204.5-199.5. Simley had eight wrestlers place in their weight classes, while the KoMets had six place-winners — Vaughan; Robby Horsman (fifth, 120); Bennett Berge (third, 160); Kennedy; Dalton Andrist (fourth, 182); and Schorr.

MN CHRISTMAS TOURNAMENT

Team scores

1. Simley 204.5, 2. Kasson-Mantorville 199.5, 3. Shakopee 176, 4. Willmar 175.5, 5. Apple Valley 166.5, 6. Scott West 164.5, 7. Owatonna 157, 8. Fairmont/MCW 147.5, 9. Stillwater 131, 10. Waconia 127, 11. Holmen (Wis.) 125, 12. St. Michael-Albertville 120, 13. Albert Lea 118.5, 14. Luxemburg-Casco (Wis.) 109.5, 15. Anoka 106, 16. Kaukauna (Wis.) 99.5, 17. East Ridge 98, 18. Edmond (Okla.) 89, 19. Prior Lake 87, 20. Totino-Grace 86.5, 21. Forest Lake 86, 22. Mounds View 82, 23. Aurora Christian (Ill.) 79, 24. Wayzata 78, 25. Hortonville (Wis.) 75.5, 26. Ellsworth (Wis.) 69, 27. Plainview-Elgin-Millville 66, 28. St. Francis 64.5, 29. St. Rita (Ill.) 62.5, 30. Zumbrota-Mazeppa 62, 31. Cambridge-Isanti 60, 32. Byron 56.5, 33. Hastings 54, 34. Westfield 49, 35. Eagan 46, 36. Farmington 41.5, 37. Coon Rapids 38, 37t. Rochester Mayo 38, 39. Minnetonka 21, 40. Leo (Ill.) 12.

INDIVIDUAL RESULTS

(Champions and area place-winners)

106 — 1. Blake West (OWT). 113 — 1. Paxton Creese (Shakopee), 2. Logan Vaughan (KM). 120 — 1. Eric Barnett (Hortonville), 5. Robby Horsman (KM). 126 — 1. Jake Svihel (Totino-Grace). 132 — 1. Ryan Sokol (Simley), 4. Mitchel Petersen (Byron). 138 — 1. Tyler Shackle (Scott West). 145 — 1. Cael Carlson (Willmar). 152 — 1. Brady Gross (AV). 160 — 1. Colby Njos (Anoka), 3. Bennett Berge (K-M). 170 — 1. Patrick Kennedy (K-M). 182 — 1. Zach Glazier (AL), 4. Dalton Andrist (K-M), 5. Colton Krell (Westfield). 195 — 1. Calvin Sund (Prior Lake). 220 — 1. Andrew Reigstad (Willmar), 2. Garsen Schorr (K-M). 285 — 1. Calvin Menke (Scott West), 3. Tristan Rieken (Westfield); 6. Logan Wingert (PEM).

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