Humboldt’s Coyle takes home silver

CORALVILLE — For Rylee Coyle, the state wrestling tournament saw her journey on the mat go from dream to reality.

The Humboldt sophomore decided to try something new and focus on a sport which allowed her to put all the pressure on her own shoulders.

Little did Coyle know her efforts would go from untested rookie to state runner-up in a very short period of time.

“Finishing second at state means a lot to me,” Coyle said. “It shows me that if you put in the work, it’s going to pay off.

“It shows me that I can do it.”

In her first match as Wildcat, Coyle had to face third-ranked (285) Ava Thompson of Charles City. Coyle lost that time around, and it wouldn’t be the only meeting.

“My season started out a little rough; I was nervous for my first few matches,” Coyle said. “I started to work a lot harder, and I started winning from there.”

Once the state brackets came out, Coyle was lined up to face Thompson again in the first round.

This time around, Coyle showed her growth, pinning Thompson in 3:04 to advance to the semifinals.

“I lost a few matches (late in the season), then it was time for state,” Coyle said. “I found out I had to wrestle Ava first match down at state. I love that opportunity, because I knew I could beat her and I did.”

Coyle, ranked seventh, would then upset No. 2 Addison Hershberger in 3:09.

The sophomore nearly completed an unheralded run to the top, facing top-ranked Olivia Huckfelt of Spencer (14-0) for the title. Coyle wasn’t able to pull off her third straight upset, losing by fall in 2:35.

“This season was one of the best,” Coyle said. “I thank my coaches for pushing me and always having me stay in a good mindset, because they knew I could do it. And my family for being by my side.”

Coyle was joined by senior teammate and fourth-ranked Maria Elizondo on the medal stand. Elizondo placed seventh at 170 pounds after reaching the quarterfinals. She lost in the quarterfinals to No. 8 Katie Schlosser of Colfax-Mingo by fall (1:20).

Elizondo (18-3) bounced back with a fall before losing a tight 5-3 decision to Osage’s fifth-rated Leah Grimm.

The Wildcat senior pinned Jessie Hutchinson of Newton in 3:04 to place seventh.

The Wildcats were 13th in the team race with 74 points.

Algona’s eighth-ranked Sophie Degner (5-2) also turned in a seventh-place performance.

Degner lost by fall to second-ranked Keeley Kehrli (26-3) of East Buchanan. She earned a fall in the sixth round of consolations before losing by pin in the first placement match.

Degner finished the tournament with a fall in two minutes over Josie Jecklin of Western Dubuque to take seventh.


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