By Chip Mundy
Special to Second Half
BATTLE CREEK – A “cement job” by Ryan Heiserman of the Dundee wrestling team on Saturday paved the way to the MHSAA Division 3 team wrestling championship at Kellogg Arena.
Heiserman used what the team calls a “cement job” to pin his opponent at 160 pounds, and it sparked Dundee to its second consecutive Division 3 title with a 34-24 victory over Richmond. It was a rematch of last year’s championship match, which also went to Dundee, 35-26.
“That pin was huge,” Dundee coach Tim Roberts said. “Over the head and under the arm and take it to the back – we call it a cement job.
“I call it a state championship.”
Heiserman, a senior who had never wrestled in an MHSAA championship match, was not a heavy favorite despite a 32-9 record.
He trailed 1-0 into the second period but suddenly took control and pinned his opponent with the “cement job” 3 minutes and 5 seconds into the match. The “cement job” seemingly happened in a matter of seconds.
“I just went out there, and I didn’t think I was going to get it,” Heiserman said. “I didn’t even know who the kid was, and it kind of scared me getting sent out there. It was really exciting when I got it, but it was a tough one to get.
“I’m surprised. My body just flew right over the top and sunk right in on top of him. It’s probably one of the best feelings I’ve ever had in my life.”
Richmond had won the first three matches by decisions to grab a 9-0 lead, but back-to-back technical falls by Zach Blevins (119) and Brendan O’Connor (125) gave the Vikings a one-point lead. Richmond regained the lead with back-to-back decisions before Dundee senior Doug Rojem won by decision at 140 to cut the deficit to 15-13.
At that point, there had not been a pin in the Final, but Dundee senior Sean Marogen changed that just 53 seconds into his match to give the Vikings a lead they would never relinquish.
“It’s my senior year,” Marogen said. “I just really wanted to do something big for my team. We worked hard all season, and we just wanted it more.”
Last year, Marogen lost his match in the Final and watched his brother John close out his dual-meet career with a win. He wanted to match his brother in that regard.
“He’s inspired me a lot, and we all push each other,” Marogen said. “It’s just awesome.”
Marogen’s pin gave Dundee a 19-15 lead going into Heiserman’s pivotal match, and the Vikings had strong wrestlers Tye Thompson and Teddy Warren ready in the next two. Heiserman’s victory clinched the championship in the eyes of many Dundee wrestlers and fans.
“I felt pretty good,” Roberts said. “I knew with Tye Thompson coming that we were in good shape – and we won the toss, so I knew they had to put their guy out at 189, which gave us the right guy to put on the right guy.
“It was the right matchup, and once we won at 160 with a pin, we were in good shape. I knew that.”
After Heiserman’s win, Thompson and Warren did what was expected of them. Thompson won with a 9-2 decision, setting the stage for Warren, who only needed a decision to clinch the win for his team. But with the crowd chanting, “Ted-EEE, Ted-EEE, Ted-EEE,” Warren wanted to end his dual-meet career at Dundee with a pin to clinch.
He picked up the pin in 3:37 while holding a 4-0 lead.
“You can’t really think of a better situation for a senior,” Warren said. “I’m glad I got to help out and seal the deal, but it really was a team effort. A lot of kids helped keep their matches close, and that’s really what won us the dual.
“Right after our 171-pounder won, I knew we were going to win because I knew there was no way I was going to get pinned or give up any bonus points.”
Dundee (25-1) breezed to the championship match by defeating Lake Fenton 53-12 in the Quarterfinal and Saginaw Swan Valley 58-9 in the semi. Blevins (41-7), Rojem (42-4), Thompson (37-6) and Warren (19-3) each went 3-0 on the weekend. Rojem is the defending individual champion at 140, and Warren is the defending individual champion at 189.
Adam Boyd (29-10), Austin Vannatter (31-9) and Devin Skatzka (33-3) each went 3-0 for Richmond (23-5), which had won three consecutive Division 3 championships before Dundee ended the run last year.
Skatzka is the defending individual champion at 145.
“Last year, we just had a lot of pressure because we wanted to overcome, and this year it was just fun,” Marogen said. “We just came to wrestle; that’s all we wanted to do.”
Dundee has been in the Finals in seven of the past eight seasons and won three times during that span.
Dundee and Richmond have met in the Finals in four of the past five seasons.
“I have a ton of respect for them because they do such a good job, and every time to beat them at all, it’s a big deal because they’re so good, and they are at their best here,” Roberts said. “People will beat them during the season and say, ‘Ah, Richmond isn’t that good this year,’ and I say, ‘Try to wrestle them at the end of February and see what you think.’ They have it together.”
Richmond coach Brandon Day praised the Dundee program, too.
“I think we have a ton of mutual respect between each other,” he said. “Tim Roberts, he does what it takes to win. He puts the time in just like we do. The kids decide it; it is what it is.
“If we’re going to lose to someone, I want to lose to someone who does things the right way.”
PHOTOS: (Top) A Dundee wrestler lets out a celebratory yell during Saturday's Division 3 championship match. (Middle) Richmond and Dundee wrestlers do battle in the third straight MHSAA Final match between the teams. (Click to see more at HighSchoolSportsScene.com.)
Shayna Hruska ♦ Iron Mountain
Junior ♦ Wrestling
With an 8-2 decision win in the 106-pound final Saturday, Hruska became the first female champion at the annual Upper Peninsula Championships, and she then was selected the event’s “Outstanding Wrestler” for going 3-0 also with pins in her first two matches of the tournament. Those victories improved her record to 18-6 this season.
Hruska began wrestling in third grade and finished fourth at 97 pounds as a freshman at the 2021 Michigan Wrestling Association Girls Championships. She then finished second at her District to reach Regionals competing in the bracket with the boys last season. She entered last week’s U.P. Championships title coming off a runner-up finish at the Escanaba Elks Invitational on Jan. 7 and the championship at 106 at Kingsford’s Ray Mariucci Wrestling Invitational on Jan. 14.
@mhsaasports 🤼♀️POW: Shayna Hruska #performanceoftheweek #wrestling #upchampionship #outstandingwrestler #congrats #meetchamp #uppower #mountaineers #ironmountain #MHSAA #highschoolsports #tiktalk #interview #TikTok #mistudentaid #fyp @shaynahruska ♬ Beat Automotivo Tan Tan Tan Viral - WZ Beat
Follow the MHSAA on TikTok.
MHSAA.com's "Performance of the Week" features are powered by MI Student Aid, a part of the Office of Postsecondary Financial Planning located within the Michigan Department of Treasury. MI Student Aid encourages students to pursue postsecondary education by providing access to student financial resources and information. MI Student Aid administers the state’s 529 college savings programs (MET/MESP), as well as scholarship and grant programs that help make college Accessible, Affordable and Attainable for you. Connect with MI Student Aid at www.michigan.gov/mistudentaid and find more information on Facebook and Twitter @mistudentaid.
Jan. 19: Kayla Tafanelli, Warren Woods-Tower bowling - Report
Dec. 20: Brenden Paden, Riverview Gabriel Richard hockey - Report
Dec. 16: Tuff Scott, Holton bowling - Report
Dec. 9: Macey Fegan, Standish-Sterling basketball - Report
Dec. 2: Treyton Siegert, Gladwin football - Report
Nov. 24: Lily Witte, Dexter diving - Report
Nov. 17: Navea Gauthier, Shelby volleyball - Report
Nov. 10: Derek Huisman, Holland Christian soccer - Report
Nov. 3: Thomas Westphal, New Baltimore Anchor Bay cross country - Report
Oct. 27: Justin Wickey, Colon football - Report
Oct. 20: Owen DeMuth, Bloomfield Hills Cranbrook Kingswood tennis - Report
Oct. 13: Mia Melendez, Ann Arbor Greenhills golf - Report
Oct. 6: Shawn Foster, Grand Ledge football - Report
Sept. 30: Hannah Smith, Temperance Bedford swimming - Report
Sept. 22: Helen Sachs, Holland West Ottawa cross country - Report
Sept. 15: Nina Horning, Lake Orion volleyball - Report
Sept 8: Arturo Romero, Muskegon Oakridge soccer - Report
Sept. 1: Austin King, Midland Dow tennis - Report
Aug. 25: Olivia Hemmila, Troy Athens golf - Report
(Photos courtesy of the Iron Mountain High School athletic department.)