DES MOINES - Looking to better his sixth-place from a year ago, Estherville Lincoln Central's Oscar Ramirez is off to a good start.
Ramirez opened the 2013 Class 2A Wrestling Tournament Thursday with an 8-0 major decision over Aaron Schultz of Williamsburg at 132 pounds.
Ramirez scored the initial takedown in the first period and then held Schultz down the entire second period. In the third period, Ramirez started on the bottom, escaped, and then took down Schultz and got five near-fall points for the final tally.
Estherville Lincoln Central junior Blake Gjerde survived the first day of the 2013 Wrestling Tournament by winning his 145-pound consolation match on Thursday.
Photo courtesy Dan Voigt, E’burg Publishing
"We knew we needed to control the match," said ELC coach Dan Hewitt. "The other kid got underneath Oscar a couple of times, but Oscar had solid defense."
Ramirez, ranked fourth, advances to today's 2A quarterfinal against Jordan Challen (38-9) of Green County. Challen pinned his first-round opponent, Bradley Irwin of Centerville, in 3:50.
It will be a rematch for the two wrestlers who met earlier in the season. Ramirez won that first encounter 16-5.
Meanwhile, ELC's Blake Gjerde ran into the second-ranked wrestler at 145 pounds, Chase Straw (43-1) of Independence. Straw quickly built a 12-3 lead with Gjerde's highlight was a takedown early in the second period. Straw came up with the pin before the end of the second period in 3:56.
That sent Gjerde to the consolation bracket against Landon Schuessler (27-13) of North Polk. Schuessler lost his opening match to seventh-ranked Dalton Folkerts of Albia by a 10-3 decision.
Gjerde quickly went to work against Schuessler with three takedowns in the first period to build a 6-2 lead.
"Blake took the same shot three times," said Hewitt. "it was a great tournament match for him.'
He added another takedown in the second period and led 8-3 heading into the third. He finished out with a 10-3 victory.
Gjerde (31-10) awaits the loser of the quarterfinal match between sixth-ranked Jacob Holschlag (43-6) of Union and Jeremy Scheuermann (41-5) of Greene County.
The 2A quarterfinals and second-round consolation matches take place between 3:30 and 6:45. The Class 2A semifinals and third-round consolation matches will start at 9:35 p.m.