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Pair of BP wrestlers look to finish strong at individual state meet

BLOOMING PRAIRIE — Two of the best Blooming Prairie wrestlers in school history will be wrapping up their careers for the Westfield Razorbacks at the Minnesota Class A State Individual Wrestling Meet at the Xcel Energy Center this Friday and Saturday.

Colton Krell, who is BP’s career wins record  holder with a record of 177-34 overall and 76 pins, will wrestle at 195 pounds and Dylan Nirk, who is 128-60 overall with 79 career pins, will wrestle at 285.

Krell passed former Blossom Steve Salinas to get to the top of the wins list at this season and he hasn’t let it distract him.

“You look at it, and it’s kind of cool to have that stat,” Krell said. “It’s nothing to blow your head up about.”

Krell, who will be wrestling in his fourth state meet, took second at 160-pounds as a sophomore and he was third at 170-pounds last year, but he’s coming into this year’s tournament a bit heavier.

“I’ve gained a lot of weight and not all of it is muscle by any means. It’ll be a little different,” Krell said of the state meet. “I have a tough bracket and it’s never easy.”

Nirk, who is now in his third state meet, is coming off of his first ever Section 1A title. He has a high level of confidence, although he’ll be one of the smaller heavyweights in the field.

“I beat them with speed and I feel like I am just as strong, if not stronger to move them,” Nirk said. “I feel like my strength and speed helps me beat those full 285 pounders at my weight.”

Nirk and Krell lined up together as linemen on the state champion BP football team this past fall and they’ve also pushed each other in wrestling over the past few years. They are excited to have one more state wrestling trip together.

“We’re best friends,” Nirk said of Krell. “He might love wrestling a little more than I do and he’s definitely drawn me to the sport. I feel like wrestling has connected us more. We practice with each other and compete in the wrestling room. That makes us better.”

OPENING MATCHES AT STATE

The Minnesota Class A Individual tournament begins at 9 a.m. Friday at Xcel Energy Center. Quarterfinals are set for 4 p.m. Friday, semifinals 9 a.m. Saturday and finals are set for 4 p.m Saturday.

106: Anthony Romero (GMLOS) is 39-3 overall and will open up with Gavin Johnson (KEWA), who is 29-10 overall.

113: Cohen Wiste (GMLOS) is 37-5 overall and will open up with Cole Holien (ACGC), who is 33-6 overall.

120: James Jaobsen (GMLOS) is 22-19 overall and will open up Zach Brown (Crookston), who is 32-9 overall.

132: Lucas Winfield (GMLOS) is 29-14 overall and will open up with Landon Gode (LBW), who is 44-3 overall.

145: Rece Voigt (GMLOS) is 39-8 overall and will open up with Payton Handevidt (JCC), who is 44-4 overall.

160: Daniel Smith (GMLOS) is 18-3 overall and will open up with Josiah Hendesten (Medford) who is 18-11 overall.

170: Noah Sayles (GMLOS) is 38-4 overall and will open up with Michael Fitzpatrick (CRIR), who is 31-14 overall.

195: Colton Krell (Westfield) is 29-3 overall on the season and will open up with Cameron Sneed (GMLOS), who is 32-9 overall.

285: Dylan Nirk (Westfield) is 31-5 overall and will open up Jude Olson (FEBE), who is 19-17 overall.