Ozaukee seniors Ethan Brouillette and Logan Smith are headed to the WIAA state individual wrestling tournament for a combined seventh time this week.
Thatâ€™s not a typo. Brouillette qualified for the Madison finals for the fourth straight year by winning a Division 3 sectional title at 152 pounds in Cedar Grove-Belgium last Saturday, and Smith (138) earned his third consecutive state trip by placing second.
This year, the pair will be accompanied by three teammates â€” juniors Colton Kraus (113), Cole Large (120) and Kevin Beckmann (160).
Among the other local state qualifiers are Cedar Grove-Belgiumâ€™s Alex May (285) and Greg Wenzel (170).
The top three finishers in each sectional weight class advanced to the state level.
Brouillette, who missed most of this season due to a shoulder injury, shook off the rust to claim his title. He improved his season record to 17-2 by winning three matches, including a 17-5 major decision over Johnson Creekâ€™s Garret Gross in the first-place final.
Smith (38-7) won his first matches before losing to Random Lakeâ€™s Brady Schmidt, 3-1, in the first-place final. Smith won a second-place wrestleback by injury default over Princetonâ€™s Ivan Hebbe.
His loss to Schmidt evened the rivalsâ€™ head-to-head records at 2-2 this season.
Ozaukee coach Luke Gundrum was quick to sing the praises of his two seniors, calling them â€śtwo of the better kids that Iâ€™ve ever coached.â€ť
Wrestling may not even be the duoâ€™s fortĂ©. Gundrum said both are top-notch academically, well-behaved, respectful, disciplined and hard workers.
â€śTheyâ€™re pretty outstanding kids. Theyâ€™re everything you want to coach,â€ť he said.
Smith, who placed third at state at 126 pounds last year, has 125 career wins, among the most in school history. Brouillette has 116 career wins and is undefeated since returning from his injury.
Smith opened the sectional by pinning Johnson Creekâ€™s Bret Sellnow in one minute and Martin Lutherâ€™s Cody Lang in 1:13 before facing Schmidt.
On his way to the final, Brouillette scored a 15-0 technical fall over Martin Lutherâ€™s Ben Horn and a 15-5 major decision over Horiconâ€™s Justin Schmauz.
Kraus (37-7) had no trouble winning his weight class. After a first-round bye, he scored an 8-0 major decision over Oakfieldâ€™s Ross Ellison and an 11-0 major decision over Random Lakeâ€™s Kohl Sanders.
Large (36-9) won twice before losing to Random Lakeâ€™s Brandon Depies (40-10) in the first-place final, 6-4.
Large opened the day with a 5-1 win over Hustisfordâ€™s Jarred Vaughan and scored a 22-4 technical fall over Laconiaâ€™s Quinn Lasecki in the semifinals.
After losing to Schmit in the closing seconds, Large was awarded second place by rule because he already defeated the third-place finisher.
Beckmann (40-6) cruised to first place. He pinned Dodgelandâ€™s Nick Goeman in 56 seconds and Princetonâ€™s Taylor Sina in 1:10 and scored a 21-5 technical fall over Laconiaâ€™s Mason Lind (33-14). The latter win exacted some revenge after Lind pinned Beckmann in last yearâ€™s sectionals.
â€śThat was a big, emotional win for him coming back, beating the kid he got stuck by last year,â€ť Gundrum said. â€śWhen Kevin is wrestling at a high level, he can be very outstanding.â€ť
May placed second in his weight class, and Wenzel took third.
May (35-8), a senior, pinned Palmyra-Eagleâ€™s Lucas Houk in 3:12 before being pinned by Markesanâ€™s Matt Stensrud in 1:10 in the semifinals.
However, May regrouped to win his next three matches, including a 5-2 decision over Laconiaâ€™s Nick Zimmerman in the second-place wrestleback.
Wenzel (27-19), a junior, won his first two matches, including a 8-1 decision over Nathan Schettle of Lourdes Academy and an 8-6 victory over Dodgelandâ€™s Greg Oemig.
Wenzel was pinned in his next two matches, including a 3:11 fall against Random Lakeâ€™s Adam Risse in the second-place wrestleback.
Although team scores didnâ€™t matter because the meet was an individual tournament, Ozaukee finished second to Random Lake for the third straight week.
The Rams topped the 21-team standings with 174.5 points, and Ozaukee had 107.5. Cedar Grove-Belgium was 11th with 30 points.
The Division 3 state tournament at the Kohl Center in Madison will begin Thursday with preliminary matches at 7:15 p.m.
Large will face Cumberlandâ€™s Trey Lundequam (35-5), and Smith will take on Arcadiaâ€™s Spencer Bisek (34-15).
Kraus, Brouillette and Beckmann received first-round byes.
In second-round matches at 11:15 a.m. Friday, Large will face the winner of a match between Clear Lakeâ€™s Cody Shafer (38-8) and Black Hawkâ€™s Colin Novak (24-10); Brouillette will take on the winner of a match between Whitehallâ€™s Tim Ferdon (40-7) and Cody Willis of Weston/Ithaca (38-5); and Beckmann will wrestle the winner of a match between Mason McCauley of Weston/Ithaca (29-12) and Florenceâ€™s Cole Dollar (35-4).
At 7:15 p.m Thursday, Wenzel will face Lancasterâ€™s David Chadd (43-7) while May takes on Spencerâ€™s Kyle Andreae (44-2).
First-round winners will advance in the winnerâ€™s bracket to Friday morning matches. First-round losers will move into the consolation round at 2:45 p.m. Friday.
The tournament runs through Saturday night.
Image Information: ETHAN BROUILLETTE (left) was one of five Ozaukee High School wrestlers who qualified for this weekâ€™s WIAA Division 3 state
individual tournament with top-three finishes at the Cedar Grove-Belgium Sectional Saturday. Brouillette won the 152-pound title. Photo by Sam Arendt