Pine River wrestling advances to state semifinals

MT. PLEASANT – The Pine River wrestling program moved one step closer to its first state championship with a 35-34 win over Decatur in a Division 4 state quarterfinal Friday at Central Michigan’s McGuirk Arena.

Following a pair of Decatur wins via pinfall, the Bucks (26-4) trailed 34-32 entering the final match at 152 pounds, with Pine River’s Joe Rigling securing a 4-2 decision over Elijah Luth.

The Bucks registered seven wins on the day, including four via pinfall by Raden Holmes (171), Bryan McCurry (189), Dylan Stephens (103) and Jacob Roberts (125).

Josh Jackson (215) and Tucker Fansler (135) both tallied major decisions.

"There were some real key matches at 171, 189 and 215 that we needed to have go our way, and we knew that,” Pine River coach Tim Jones said. “The boys there did a superb job, sealing those three wins. Then we just had to stay close the rest of the whole the match to make it happen in the end.

“It’s just really good to see this group of kids get what they deserve.”

Pine River now advances to Saturday’s 10 a.m. semifinal against third-seeded Hudson. Hudson posted a 33-30 win over Manchester in a quarterfinal earlier Friday.

The winner of Saturday’s semifinal will face either New Lothrop or Springport for the state championship at 3:30 p.m.

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