Dakota wrestled hard against the number one ranked Lena-Winslow-Stockton co-op, piling up enough points throughout the night to win, 36-33, in front of a packed gym at Lena-Winslow High School.
The PantherHawks started strong with a Hunter Luke pin, but Dakota weathered the storm, trailing just 9-6 after four matches. Rahveon Valentine earned a pin for Lena-Winslow-Stockton at 170 pounds, but Dakota's Grant Gallagher responded at 182 pounds with a pin of his own, a key turning point in the match to cut it to 15-12 after wrestling Elijah Rowe to a 7-7 score after two periods.
The pin parade continued at 195 pounds, as Gabe Ertmer put the PantherHawks ahead, 21-12. Dakota's Maverick McPeek notched a pin to keep his team in it, but Lena-Winslow-Stockton's Ian Kuehl pinned his man at heavyweight for a 27-18 lead. The little guys led the charge for Dakota, as the Indians roared back to win in dramatic fashion.
Dakota and Lena-Winslow-Stockton have combined to win the past five 1-A dual team state championships, and both have aspirations to do that this season, so this match was a good measuring stick for both programs.