EV-W’s Bret Mattice was named Central Minnesota Conference male athlete of the week for the last week of December. The junior guard scored 87 points, grabbed 23 rebounds and had 14 assists to help the Eagles capture the championship of the St. John’s Prep Christmas Tournament. Mattice also scored his 1,000th career point in the opening game of the tournament.
EV-W Eagles’ junior Bret Mattice (#5). Submitted photo.
Ringing in the New Year in style, the Eden Valley-Watkins Lady Eagles invited the Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City Falcons to a party on Thursday, Jan. 2. But the only ones enjoying the get-together were the Eagles, who cruised past the opposition, 60-35. Juniors Greta Stommes and Bella Perlberg-Cromwell combined for 30 points to help lead Eden Valley-Watkins to the runaway decision. The victory moves the Eagles to 2-0 in the Central Minnesota Conference and 6-2 overall.
The Eden Valley-Watkins wrestlers showed up at the Norwood-Young America Tournament Saturday, Jan. 4, and finished tied for runners-up in the team competition. Eagles’ coach Dan Berg sees good things for 2014. “As coaches, we thought we wrestled very well, until the final round when we went a combined 3-7. A little rust and conditioning had a lot to do with that, but it was a good tournament to start out the fresh year, with all of our kids having some success.” Hunter Mathies and Cain Renner wrestled a great tournament and came away with championships. “Good to see Hunter get that first championship and it’s well deserved because the kid works very hard, and Cain did what he had to do to get another one,” Berg said.
Summary: 120 Tyler Donnay second place; 126 Hunter Mathies first place; 132 Logan Donnay fourth place; 138 Tyler Dockendorf fourth place; 152 John Salzl second place; 160 Grant Winter fourth place; 160 Carter Phillipp fifth place; 170 Luke Kuechle second place; 182 Cain Renner first place; 195 Lyle Miller second place.
The Eden Valley-Watkins wrestlers hosted a quadrangular Friday, Dec. 20, and matched up with some formidable opponents. EV-W took the B-B-E match, 42-22. “We wrestled very well against B-B-E,
ran into a great team in ACGC, and I thought we needed more effort in the Osakis match, to have a chance, but we unfortunately fell short,” explained coach Dan Berg. The Eagles displayed their best team effort thus far of the early season. “We got big pins from John Unterberger, John Salzl, Grant Winter, and Carter Phillipp. Those under-the-radar guys came up huge for us; especially John Salzl, with a first-period fall against one of their better wrestlers,” added Berg. Facing a senior-dominated, very experienced ACGC bunch, the Eagles fell short, 53-12. “We didn’t back down but they had way more fire power. I was still proud of the effort we gave,” Berg said. The Milaca match, according to coach Berg, was one of the Eagles’ worst efforts of the year, losing 53-21. “They do have a balanced team and will be one of the top teams in the section finals, but these are the guys that we will have to beat at year’s end, in order to accomplish our goals.” The Eagles are off until Jan. 5, when they head to Norwood-Young America with the varsity and to Rocori for a junior high session.
Saturday, Dec. 21, the Eden Valley-Watkins wrestling program hosted its first ever Elementary Tournament. Varsity head coach Dan Berg was overwhelmed with the turnout. “We hosted our very first elementary wrestling tournament and I thought it was a success. There were 227 kids that attended, which is a great starting number. I would like to thank all who volunteered their time to make this tournament a great success and hopefully it is something we can do every year around this time. It was great to look around and see all these kids wrestling and to finally have the facilities to do so. Again, I extend a huge thank you to all who took time out of their busy schedules to make this tournament a success!”