Ripon High School head wrestling coach Jared Esala was optimistic entering last week Saturday’s Milwaukee Lutheran Sectional.

“I would like to get all six sectional qualifiers to the state tournament,” he said last week. “They made it this far, and somebody is going to win those weight classes. Why not the guys from Ripon?”

It turns out that he had good reason to believe in his wrestlers.

While the Tigers did not qualify all six, they came pretty close.

Ripon advanced five to this weekend’s competition in Madison: Bradley Gabrielski

(106-pound weight class), Zach Beck (113), Ryan Cody (132), Tucker Bender (220) and Cody Jacobson (285).

Beck and Jacobson won their respective weight classes, while Cody finished second, and Gabrielski and Bender placed third.

“Our performance at the sectional tournament was top-notch,” Esala said. “We saw peak performances from nearly every wrestler entered in the tournament. I couldn’t be more proud of the effort shown [last week] Saturday.”

He added that he thinks the five wrestlers making it to Madison are the most in the program’s history.

Read the full story, which includes information about each of the qualifiers, in the Feb. 23, 2017 edition of the Ripon Commonwealth Press.

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