Wisconsin Senior Class of ’17 Top Ten Preview (2016-2017)
The senior class of 2017 comes in as talented group without a distinct number one. This group is deep with guys who have made waves on a national level, whereas 2016 had a Beau Breske jumping off the page. With that said, we feel all 10 listed here can wrestle at the top NCAA level as witnessed by the fact 6 of them are already committed to Division 1 college programs.
Connor Williams (La Crosse Central)
Billy Pitzner (Milton)
Dalton Hahn (Reedsburg)
Lucius Rinehart (Evansville)
Josh Depies (Random Lake)
Garrett Model (Stoughton)
Jaden Winchel (Sparta)
Blaze Beltran (Pewaukee)
10. Nate Trepanier (Oconto Fall) – Unranked at end of 15-16 season
Trepanier leapt forward junior year and finished the season undefeated with a state title. Although he has not made a big splash nationally he has since won Dominate in the Dells, Freestyle State and AWA Preseason State. Look for another solid year out of Trepanier. His only challenge may come if he and Devin Bahr come in at the same weight.
9. Kamren Bornbach (Stratford) – Previously No. 7
Bornbach won his 2nd state title defeating a tough Garrett Joles (Boyceville). It is hard determine where Kamren stands in the mix as he doesn’t compete in the off season. Bornbach should have another great year. It is yet to be determined if he has interest in wrestling at the collegiate level.
8. Brady Koontz (Stevens Point) – Previously Honorable Mention
Koontz and his brother Dylan ran the table winning state titles last year. Brady won big matches over Eric Barnett (sophomore class No. 1) and Dominic Dentino. Koontz followed up with a Greco and Freestyle state title, but struggled at the national level as in past years.
7. Mason Kauffman (Stratford) – Previously No. 5 – Headed to Eastern Michigan
Mason is the 5th and final Stratford wrestler in the Top Ten preseason rankings. Kauffman, similar to Bornbach, is difficult to accurately rank. Mason has yet to lose in high school competition. Due to a hand injury freshman year and a heart condition late last season, he has one state title so far. Recovery time resulted in sitting out the majority of the off season. He recently place at Preseason nationals in Iowa. We are hoping for and expect a healthy, strong finish to his high school career.
6. Jackson Hemauer (Deforest) -Previously HM- Headed to University of Wisconsin
Hemauer broke through nationally this summer. After a round two defeat at Fargo Jackson reeled off 10 straight victories against some highly ranked athletes to fight all the way back to 3rd place. Jackson earned a high school state title in a hotly contested 170lb weight class. He will wrestle for the Badgers next season.
5. Brock Bergelin (Denmark) – Previously No. 4- Headed to Central Michigan
Bergelin won a second state title as a junior and had a busy successful off season. Brock finished 3rd at United World Wrestling Greco nationals and garnered his first major All-American honor on the freestyle side placing 8th at Junior Nationals in Fargo. Bergelin will look for his 3rd state title this year and continue his career at Central Michigan.
4. Dylan Koontz (Stevens Point) – Previously HM- Not committed
Koontz moves in at No. 4 on the strength of a high school state title and winning Freestyle and Greco state titles over Brock Bergelin. Dylan placed in the Greco at the Junior National tournament in Fargo. We do not know where the Koontz’s are headed to college, but they just visited Ohio State.
3. Devin Bahr (West Salem/Bangor) – Previously No. 1- Headed to Wisconsin
Bahr returned from injury and won another high school state title. His off season success was a mixed bag. Devin started with a good 5th place finish at Flonationals, dropped a match to Jose Acosta (Manitowoc) at Freestyle State and then had a really deep run at Fargo but missed the podium. Bahr will continue his career with the Badgers next year.
2. Jaden Van Maanen (La Crosse Central) – Previously No. 3- Headed to North Dakota State
Van Maanen won his first state title getting revenge over Nathan Smith (Mukwonago) and had a good off season. The performance that caught a lot of coaches’ eyes was a 4th place finish at UWW Cadets where he beat 3 ranked wrestlers in the process.
1. Jacob Raschka (Pewaukee) – Previously No. 2- Headed to Missouri
Like Bahr and Van Maanen, Raschka had solid performances in the off season and had some subpar tournaments. The high school state champion started the off season with a 5th at Flonationals, followed with a Freestyle State title and a Northern Plains title. Raschka continued with a 3rd place finish at UWW Cadets, but had a disappointing DNP at Fargo. Jacob placed at the Super 32.