On the mat

-Messenger photo by Britt Kudla Conner Allison of St. Edmond wrestles against Clear Lakes Braxton Doebel on Thursday

Matthew Petsinger knows there are going to be outings like Thursday night.

With just five wrestlers in the lineup, St. Edmond struggled in its home finale, dropping three duals.

The Gaels lost to Clear Lake (70-0), Mason City Newman (78-6) and Lake Mills (81-0).

“It’s tough when you are forfeiting so many weights before you even have a match to get pumped up and go out there and perform,” Petsinger said. “As a coach, I’ve got to do something about (the openings in the lineup).

“I’ve got to get more kids out.”

Between the duals, St. Edmond did honor seniors Cole and Connor Allison. Cole Allison, a two-time state placewinner, is currently sidelined with an elbow injury.

“Hopefully, we’ll get Cole back (for sectionals),” Petsinger said. “I’d say it is 50-50 at the moment, but he’s a tough kid and I know he wants to give it a go.”

Connor Allison had the lone win on the night for the Gaels, pinning Blake Martinez of Mason City Newman in 47 seconds. He also had a pair of tough decision losses, falling to Clear Lake’s Braxton Doebel (5-3) and Lake Mills’ Cael Boehmer (15-8).

“We’re going to have some big shoes to fill with Cole and Connor leaving,” Petsinger said. “I’m hoping we can send both of them out with strong finishes to the season.”

Katie Julius, Sam Brown, Noah Carlson and Ty Smith all went 0-3 on the night. Smith dropped a hard-fought 11-8 decision to Rhys Glidden of Clear Lake to begin the night.

“I know the scoreboard might not read what we want, but the kids are getting better,” Petsinger said. “They continue to work hard and I’m seeing plenty of progress from everyone.”

In other dual action inside the SEHS gym, Lake Mills went unbeaten, besting Clear Lake, 50-21, and Mason City Newman, 53-14.

Clear Lake defeated Mason City Newman, 33-28.

St. Edmond heads to Lake City Saturday for the South Central Calhoun Duals. Along with the Gaels and host Titans, Gilbert, Lawton-Brons and West Monana comprise the field.