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The 2019-20 2A season looks to be as unpredictable as ever. Unlike Don Bosco and Lisbon in class 1A or Southeast Polk and Waverly-Shell Rock in class 3A, class 2A lacks a perennial championship contender. Union LaPorte City, Centerville, West Delaware, and Winterset will all be in the mix for the team title this season.
Union High School in LaPorte City will start the season off at the top of the rankings. They come into the season with six ranked wrestlers, including defending state champion and SDSU commit, Jack Thomsen. The Knights return three other state placers, including returning finalist and #1-ranked Adam Ahrendsen.
Centerville will be returning all of their points from last season’s state tournament. Leading the charge for the Big Reds will be two-time defending state champion Matthew Lewis. Another key leader on the Centerville team is two-time finalist Nathaniel Genobana. Both guys will start the season as the top-ranked wrestler in their respective weight class.
The defending champions, West Delaware, will start the season with the most ranked wrestlers in class 2A. The Hawks have seven wrestlers in the preseason rankings. Their highest-ranked wrestler is #1-ranked 195 pounder Wyatt Voelker. Along with Voelker, four other state placers return from last season’s team.
Winterset will be another team in the mix this season. They return three placers from last season and all four of their ranked wrestlers are ranked inside the top five to start the season. After a runner-up finish last year at 126, Bryce Hatten will start the season as the #1-ranked wrestler at 132 for the Huskies. Jack West and Kruise Kiburz are also returning state place winners for Winterset and start the year ranked fourth and second, respectively.
Other teams in the mix for a team title this year include Osage, Solon, Sergeant Bluff-Luton, and Independence. Most of these teams are fairly strong from top to bottom with a few standout guys. In a field that is as highly contested as the 2A field, backside points and bonus points will be crucial in bringing home a team title. When it’s all said and done, I think West Delaware has what it takes to defend their title and win again in 2020.
Wrestlers to Watch
While Matthew Lewis helps lead a Centerville team, he will also be looking to add to his own legacy. Lewis, a junior, is two for two at the state tournament thus far. If he can keep that pace, he will be the second four-timer from Centerville, joining Iowa legend TJ Sebolt. Lewis is one of five returning champs in class 2A.
Another is the class’s top P4P wrestler, #5 Cody Fisher. The other defending state champs include P4P #7 Hayden Taylor, #14 Jack Thomsen, and #20 Carter Fousek. All will start the season as the top-ranked guy in their respective weight classes.
Hayden Taylor and Carter Fousek both won it all in their freshman campaigns, and join Lewis as guys on pace for four titles. Taylor, who will be at 138 this season, only had two losses last season and they were to class 1A state champs Carter Happel and Robert Avila Jr.
Fousek suffered a couple of losses last season but avenged one of those in the state finals and then went 3-2 at the always tough Super 32 this offseason. There are sure to be other names who become must-watch wrestlers by the time the state tournament rolls around.