Charles City’s Lilly Luft and Osage’s Gable Hemann have advanced to the title matches in their respective weight classes at the first-ever sanctioned Iowa Girls State Wrestling Tournament.
Luft, the Comets senior who will wrestle at the University of Iowa next fall, ran her season record to 39-0 with a 9-1 victory over Colbie Tenborg of Saydel in the semi-finals, earning her a spot in the 130-pound championship match Friday night. Luft is seeking her third straight state title.
Hemann, just a sophomore, will represent the Green Devils in the 100-pound championship match after she scored her fourth pin in as many matches at the X-Treme Arena in Coralville. Hemann is 44-2 after beating Waukon’s Mia Kurth in the semi-finals to advance to Friday night’s finals.
Hemann’s teammate, senior Jaylin Goodale, was upset in the 110-pound semi-finals by Bree Swenson of Vinton-Shellsburg. The fourth-seeded Swenson handed the top-seeded Goodale just her second loss of the season. Goodale is still alive on the consolation side of the bracket with a chance to finish third.
New Hampton-Turkey Valley’s Ali Russler also has a chance to place third after she was defeated 4-3 by Waverly-Shell Rock’s Haiden Snyder in the semi-finals at 145-pounds. Other Go-Hawks reaching title matches Friday night include Kiara Djoumessi at 140 pounds and Madison Hinrichs at 235.
In other semi-finals action Friday morning, Sumner-Fredericksburg’s Hillary Trainor’s bid for a state title at 105 pounds was ended by Jillian Worthen of LaPorte City Union, ranked among the top 25 wrestlers in the nation in her weight class. Trainor will have a chance to wrestle for a third-place finish.
Decorah’s Naomi Simon’s quest for another state championship is also still alive after she won her semi-final match at 170-pounds, running her record to 36-0.
The final round of the tournament begins at 6 pm Friday. Coverage can be heard on 95.9 KCHA.