Dallas Wanta finished off an exceptional wrestling season for West Allis Hale by claiming third place at 220 pounds in the WIAA Division 1 Individual Tournament last week in Madison.
Wanta went 4-1 at state to increase his season mark to 48-1.
He easily won his first two matches, pinning Jake Macaluso of Sussex Hamilton (27-20) in 1 minute, 38 seconds and downing Nick Somers of Beloit Memorial (35-6) by a 9-3 count.
The senior then ran into powerful Tyler Schmidt of Merrill (50-1) and lost a 12-3 major decision for his first defeat of the season. Schmidt went on to win the crown with an 11-2 major decision in the final.
Wanta went to the consolation bracket and posted a 12-3 major over Dylan Linhart of Elkhorn (39-11). He then tipped Beau Thompson of Wisconsin Rapids Lincoln (45-10) by a 2-1 count to take third place.
Senior Jake Gruichich came home with sixth place at 160 pounds.
He lost his opener to eventual champion Travis Hettinga of Wausau West (45-3) with a 19-4 technical fall.
Gruichich (38-11) then wrestled back to sixth. He beat Zach Lennon of Homestead (41-6) by a 3-1 count and topped Nate Rynish of Hortonville (40-10) by a 5-3 decision.
Gruichich lost a 12-0 major decision to Jordan Gundrum of West Bend East (49-1) and fell to Ben Hakes of Oak Creek (45-3) by a 6-4 score in the fifth-place match.
Junior John Baltz (39-10) dropped his 113-pound opener 6-4 in overtime to Manning Denk of D.C. Everest (38-10), then received a wrestleback. Baltz fell to Phillip Berge of Sun Prairie (46-8) by a 4-2 count in overtime.
The Huskies came in third in the Greater Metro Conference Tournament and in a WIAA Division 1 regional this season. They also won their own invitational and dropped just one dual in the GMC, that to champion Menomonee Falls.
— John Rech
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