Both junior Ethan Lebrija and sophomore Davin Rose represented Morris Area / Hancock / Chokio-Alberta wrestling well at the Class AA State Individual Wrestling Tournament Friday, March 26, in St. Michael-Albertville. Both took second place in their respective weight classes.
“I’m a little bummed that I didn’t win, but I’m still happy with how I did this season,” Lebrija said of falling in the 126-pound championship to senior Jaxson Rohman of Fairmont-Martin County West.
Lebrija took a major decision of Jacob Thompson of Byron in the quarterfinals then a 6-4 decision over Cash Raymond of Simley in the semifinals to reach the championship where he fell to Rohman for the third time this season. Lebrija finishes the season 36-3 with all three of his losses coming against Rohman.
“This loss will definitely motivate me for next year,” Lebrija, who would like to wrestle in college like his Hall of Fame father, former Gopher wrestler Brad Gibson.
Rose came into the 132-pound state tournament ranked first after beating No. 1-ranked Watertown Mayer / Mayer Lutheran’s Austin Gabbert in the super section Saturday, March 20, in Redwood Falls. Rose beat Nelson Anderson of Monticello by 8-2 decision in the quarterfinals and another 8-2 decision over Kaiden Schrandt of Simley in the semifinals. In the championship, Rose got the first takedown, but Gabbert avenged his super section loss to win by 4-3 decision to hand Rose his first and only loss in the 2021 season.
“It was tough, but I was ready for that. I think when I got my first takedown (against Gabbert), I changed how I was wrestling and became too confident then he took advantage,” Rose said of how the 132-pound championship match unfolded.
“I am very proud of my season as a whole, it was so fun,” added Rose, who still has a goal to go undefeated and win a state championship in the next two years. Rose finished his sophomore season with a 37-1 record.