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    16 Remaining in Best Midlands Wrestler of All-Time Contest



    Dec. 14, 2012

    With the 50th Ken Kraft Midlands Championships just a few weeks away, we wanted to find out who you thought was the best wrestler in Midlands history. For that reason, we'd like to introduce the "Midlands All-Time Greatest Bracket Challenge". We've taken 32 of the best wrestlers in Midlands history, put them in a bracket, and are asking you to vote on who will be named the "All-Time Greatest".

    After more than 1,000 votes, we've narrowed the 32 down to 16 and you can vote in the next round by clicking here.

    Here is how the first round played out

    Small Weight Class:
    Tom Brands over Nick Simmons, 78-22
    Mark Ironside over Tim Cysewski, 71-29
    Terry Brands over John Fisher, 77-23
    Randy Lewis over Chris Bono, 71-29

    Easy victories for both Brands brothers, Ironside and Lewis. No surprises here as Brands has a grand slam, and the other three winners also have very decorated careers. This gives us an all-Iowa Hawkeye final four in the small weight class division.

    Medium Weight Class:
    Dan Gable over Jason Robinson, 96-4
    Lee Kemp over Wade Schalles, 75-25
    Dave Schultz over Jim Heffernan, 82-18
    Kenny Monday over David Lee, 90-10

    We had four very one-sided contests in the medium weights, which wasn’t surprising. This sets up four titans as the final four in this class, three of whom have won Olympic gold medals, NCAA titles and World championships to go along with their Midlands credentials, while the other (Kemp), has 3 world titles and 3 NCAA titles as well.

    Large Weight Class:
    Cael Sanderson over Dan St. John, 96-4
    Ed Banach over John Peterson 61-39
    Joe Williams over Jake Herbert 87-13
    Chris Campbell over Jim Scherr, 60-40

    Sanderson wins very easily over St. John while Ed Banach topped John Peterson in one of the closer votes to win the right to face Sanderson in the second round. Ten-time Midlands Champion Joe Williams took out the home-school hero decisively, while Chirs Campbell advanced over six-time champion Jim Scherr.

    XL Weight Class:
    Bruce Baumgartner over Tom Erikson, 97-3
    Bill Scherr over Melvin Douglas, 56-44
    Ben Peterson over Larry Kristoff, 93-7
    Steve Neal over Russ Hellickson, 88-12

    This weight class had both the closest and most one-sided match-ups of the first round.  Bruce Baumgartner tallied the most decisive victory of the tournament while his second-round opponent, Bill Scherr, beat his opponent by just 12 points. The other two matches were quite decisive as well with Ben Peterson and Steve Neal winning easily, Peterson beating one of the original Midlands champions, Larry Kristoff.

    And with that, the first round is in the books. Now it is time to vote for round two! All eight second-round matches are listed on the same sheet this time around. Voting will end Tuesday, December 18.  Make sure to vote for your favorites.

    Click here to vote.

    And remember, tickets are on sale NOW for the 50th Ken Kraft Midlands Championships, hosted by Northwestern on December 29th and 30th. To order tickets call 888-GO-PURPLE.




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