Ayala reaches Fargo quarterfinals

Messenger photo by Britt Kudla Drake Ayala of Fort Dodge wrestles in a Class 3A semifinal match at 106 pounds this past February.

FARGO, North Dakota — Defending national champion Drake Ayala of Fort Dodge has reached the 106-pound quarterfinal round in the Cadet Freestyle bracket at the U.S. Marine Corps Fargo Nationals.

Ayala, a state runner-up last February and a sophomore-to-be for the Fort Dodge Dodgers, recorded four technical falls without being scored on during Saturday’s action. Ayala, who won a title at 98 pounds here a year ago, is currently ranked in the Top-20 nationally at 106.

Ayala will face Jack Maida of New Jersey on Sunday morning in the quarterfinals at 9 a.m.

A number of Ayala’s Dodger teammates were also in action: Carson Taylor, Triston Licht, Lane Cowell, Kody Cook and Dreyzon Phillips. Phillips went 2-2 at 120. Licht was 1-0 at 195. Cook went 1-2 at 132. Cowell was 1-2 at 100. Taylor hasn’t seen action yet.