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BISMARCK – If there is a special ingredient that Jacob Meyer has used in his career with the Paxton-Buckley-Loda High School wrestling team, it is a special sauce.
Duck sauce, that is.
“I’ve got to keep my duck sauce rolling," Meyer said. "It’s a team phrase. We just throw it around – duck sauce it. It’s an inside joke between some of us. It started off with a duck under, and so you sauce the opponent. Be on the lookout for the duck sauce.”
Although Meyer said he never used the duck sauce move in the third-place match that qualified him for sectionals, he said he plans on doing what he can to extend his senior season.
The season extended beyond the regional level after he pinned Prairie Central’s Tyler Keneipp 3:54 into the 170-pound third-place bout.
“I didn’t use that (duck sauce) move, but it was definitely a thought,” Meyer said.
Prior to his match with Keneipp, Meyer pinned St. Thomas More’s Jacob Schurter in the quarterfinals in 1:36, four days after a 3:07 fall over the same opponent in PBL’s 43-30 dual meet win over the Sabers.
He lost out on a chance to play for the championship by losing to the semifinals via fall to Jarod Noel of Bismarck-Henning.
“I feel like I wrestled well,” Meyer said. “My second match could have been a lot better. I didn’t wrestle in the third period as well as I should have, and it cost me. I’m just going to learn from that and improve next week.”
With the win in the third-place game, Meyer will make his second consecutive trip to sectionals this upcoming weekend hoping this meet will lead to a state appearance at Champaign’s Assembly Hall.
“I expect to have some stiff competition, but I’m going to leave it all on the mat,” Meyer said. “Every match is my last match, so I’ve got to just go out there and wrestle my heart out and leave no regrets. It’s a great feeling. I want my senior year to last as long as possible.”
Meyer was not the only PBL wrestler to advance to Stanford Olympia Sectional.
Conrad Powell took third place in the 195-pound division to claim a sectional appearance for which he has been hungry since falling one spot short last year.
“I feel very accomplished,” Powell said. “It’s definitely a goal I’ve been working for all season. I wanted to get to sectionals since I fell one spot short last year. It’s a good feeling to advance. There was a lot of adversity trying to place third last year, and now I’ve just gotten a little fire in my stomach to want to go farther in this tournament and go on to sectionals, and that’s now a goal reached.”
Powell lost his first match in the semifinals when eventual regional champion Alex Rhoda of Prairie Central pinned him in 5:39. Powell recovered by pinning Oakwood’s David Nibbe 2:20 into the third-place match.
“(Rhoda) was a good wrestler,” Powell said. “He was really strong and he knew his moves well. I felt, after the first match, I really had to stay focused and work the moves I’ve always known. I felt like the under hooks were there, and it turned out to be the best for me.”
Powell said he is looking forward to the sectional meet.
“There’s going to be a lot of talented, hard wrestlers there,” Powell said. “They’re really going to try and get after it in the first period, and I’ve just got to fight strong on my feet. I’m going to try my best and wrestle my hardest.”
As a team, PBL finished eighth among the eight teams in the Bismarck Regional with a score of 28, half the point total of seventh-place St. Thomas More.
“It’s really unfortunate that we had a few kids just miss (qualifying for sectionals),” PBL head coach Erik Ronney said. “I was hoping Will (Boman) was going to go. Wyatt (Morris) had opportunities. Colin (Sullivan) got hurt. It sucks, but we’ve got two kids going, so we’re going to definitely work toward that. Hopefully, Jacob can make some wins and make some motion out there with this last year. Conrad’s moved up in a weight class at195. I hope he makes good with what he’s got, draws a good opponent and advances as far as he can.”
Sullivan suffered an injury to his right knee in the semifinals of the 120-pound third-place bracket.
“He was beating his kid pretty well, and his knee just got tied up,” Ronney said. “The referee here didn’t call it, and his knee got tweaked. He probably hyperextended it, but we’ll see. He’s going to put some pressure on it. It’s getting better, but he had to forfeit the match. And I expected him to far today, too. It’s hard, but he’s a sophomore. He’ll mature from this experience, and hopefully he takes this as a positive influence on his wrestling career.”
Moving forward with wrestlers competing at sectionals, Ronney said he hopes Meyer will have his duck sauce ready.
"Good luck, Jacob,” Ronney said. “Duck sauce away.”
1. GCMSF 186; 2. Prairie Central 170; 3. St. Joseph-Ogden 156; 4. Fithian Oakwood 96; 5. Hoopeston Area 76.5; 6. Bismarck-Henning 76; 7. St. Thomas More 56; 8. PBL 28.
Quarterfinals – Devin Cartwight (HA) pinned Tyler Ellis (PBL), 5:07.
Third-place semifinals – Corbin Wolken (SJO) pinned Ellis, 5:30.
Quarterfinals – Dylan Pate (HA) pinned Wyatt Morris (PBL) , 4:31.
Third-place semifinals – Matt Jones (STM) pinned Morris, 3:55.
Quarterfinals – Colin Sullivan (PBL) maj. dec. Jeff Leach (PC), 21-7.
Semifinals – Dylan Donner (GCMSF) pinned Sullivan, :49.
Third-place semifinals – Isaiah Bell (HA) inj. def. Sullivan.
Quarterfinals – Tyler Pasley (BH) pinned Tanner Wood (PBL), :36.
Third-place semifinals – Skyler Pumphrey (SJO) pinned Wood, :45.
Quarterfinals – Jacob Meyer (PBL) pinned Jacob Schurter (STM), 1:36.
Semifinals – Jarod Noel (BH) pinned Meyer.
Third-place semifinals – Meyer pinned Michael Cler (GCMSF), 3:54.
Third-place match – Meyer pinned Tyler Keneipp (PC), 3:54.
Semifinals – Alex Rhoda (PC) pinned Conrad Powell (PBL), 5:39.
Third-place match – Powell pinned David Nibbe (OAK), 2:20.
Quarterfinals – Ronnie Violante (OAK) dec. Will Boman (PBL), 5-2.
Third-place semifinals – Ryan Koss (SJO) pinned Boman, 3:32.
Quarterfinals – Josh Wallick (GCMSF) pinned J.T. Grady (PBL), :20.
Third-place quarterfinals – Gevin Ashikyan (OAK) dec. Grady, 10-6.