Bahr, Hemauer: Badger ‘verbals’ competing at high level
Devin Bahr and Jackson Hemauer compete in freestyle in WWF and USA Wrestling events summer of 2016
Bahr, Hemauer: Badger ‘verbals’ continue to compete at high level!
Justin Bystrom – September 17, 2016
Wisconsin Badger recruits Jackson Hemauer and Devin Bahr are common names for those that follow not only the Wisconsin high school folkstyle season but also the (Olympic Style) summer circuit.
Hemauer (Senior – DeForest Class of 2017) earned his first WIAA Division 1 160-pound title this year for the Norskies (2015 enrollment 1,058) and carries a 129-17 record into his final high school year. One might think with a college commitment to a Division 1 Big 10 team would allow the returning champion to back off on his goals; however, he has actually raised the bar. In addition to wrestling Jackson is an avid fall hunter and truly appreciates spending downtime with friends. Some of those friends are helping him reach his goals through extra training. Hemauer credits UW alum Cole Schmidt as being his absolute go-to training partner. Hemauer admits this year’s goals are lofty; however, that doesn’t’ mean you can’t step outside of your comfort zone. On this year’s path to the state championship podium and a potential 2nd title, he is working towards many smaller goals such as dominating every match, not giving up any points, going undefeated and simply working to be better than himself – every day, every move, every shot, and every match. Tyler Rawls and Cole Schmidt have also been critical to Hemauer’s success. Tyler works with Jackson often and spends time going over film and technique. DeForest alum Mason Geary has known and worked with Jackson since youth wrestling. Jackson credits the extra time, extra training, extra studying and the extra preparation in his own previous success and progress towards future goals. The coaching staff at DeForest along and great support from Brad Owens at Advanced School of Wrestling can never be given as much credit as they deserve.
Hemauer has also supplemented Advance School of Wrestling with time spent at the Wisconsin Badgers Regional Training Center (RTC) working with the Badger staff and other recruits.
After the spring state high school tournament season Hemauer continued training to further his development.
Devin Bahr (Senior – West Salem Class of 2017) earned his second WIAA state championship this past season compiling a 50-0 record (Division 2 152-lb) with the West Salem / Bangor (2015 combined enrollment 540 + 180) team. Going into his final high school folkstyle season, he brings a 123-1 record and is a favorite to repeat. His lone high school loss came via an ACL injury default suffered during the Bi-State Classic Tournament in December 2014. Bahr enters this season with a highly decorated history. Entering his freshman year in 2013, he won the Preseason Nationals tournament. That season Devin went on to take the Bi-State Classic, a WIAA individual championship, a Cadet Folkstyle National title, a Wisconsin Greco-Roman title, a Northern Plains championship, a National Greco-Roman runner up finish and a National Freestyle 3rd place finish. In that year he became an All-American in Folkstyle, Freestyle and Greco-Roman styles. Bahr was a Preseason Nationals champion in 2012, 2013 and 2014. After winning the FILA National Tournament as an 8th grader, he earned a spot on the US Cadet World Team in Greco-Roman in 2013 traveling to Serbia to compete.
This summer the two future Badgers had similar goals and paths to get to USA Wrestling Nationals in Fargo, ND. They attended all required training sessions fully aware of the high expectations of all participants at this epic event called simply ‘Fargo’. With the largest number of participants at any wrestling tournament in the world, one may make the conclusion there are more participants than spectators at Fargo. That may be an exaggeration however, what can’t be denied is that for those that do attend (including a virtual who’s who of college coaching staffs), this tournament is a preview of dozens of wrestlers that will eventually end up in the NCAA finals, on world teams and in Olympic contests. Some kids are peaking at this tournament, for others it is a brutal and effective gauge to determine areas to focus training and development as they continue either to college or to their next high school season.
This summer Bahr went 5-2 at Fargo (145lb. – Junior Freestyle Division). Devin started out strong, going 3-0 and suffering a 4th round loss to Connecticut’s Charlie Kane. He then went back to work, earning two impressive technical fall wins (12-2 and 10-0). A loss to Alexander Lloyd (Minnesota) in consolations would close the book on this chapter of Bahr’s exemplary pedigree.
Hemauer (170lb. Junior Freestyle Division) took a long, tough road to All American status. After a loss by technical fall in the 2nd round to Josh Ramirez (Louisiana) Hemauer rattled off 10 consecutive wins wrestling back to a 3rd place finish. After his 10-0 opening match, he scored a total of 106 additional points while yielding only 11.
The wrestling coaches and were all watching; now the fans get a chance to see these two exciting wrestlers enter their final high school year as the gateway to a hopeful college wrestling experience.
Photo Credit: Justin Bystrom