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Barnesville's Tweeton knocks off undefeated state champ for wrestling title

Brady Tweeton wins the Class-1A 145-pound individual championship match of the Minnesota Wrestling Tournament on Saturday, March 3, 2018, in St. Paul. Michael Vosburg / Forum Photo Editor

ST. PAUL -- The Minnesota Class 1A state title at 145 pounds will be considered an upset to everyone but Barnesville’s Brady Tweeton. Chatfield’s Jake Mandt had been above Tweeton all season in the rankings and for good reason. Mandt was the defending state champion and he entered Saturday’s championship match 38-0.

Tweeton left him 38-1, as the Barnesville senior capped his career with a Class 1A state title via a 9-6 decision.

“I just outwrestled him I think. There’s no other way to put it,” Tweeton said. “I just wrestled better today. It was going to be a good match regardless of who won, but I just came out on top today.”

The match was tied at 4-4 with 1 minute, 25 seconds to go in regulation, but Tweeton got a late takedown and held off Mandt’s late push for the title. It’s the first for Barnesville since 2007. Tweeton shrugged off the idea of winning a championship on Friday, but that changed when his arm was raised Saturday.

“I think yesterday I was trying to focus one match at a time and not get ahead of myself,” Tweeton said. “Now that I did it it means a lot more. It was amazing. He’s been ranked ahead of me all year, hasn’t lost a match and then me beating him just made it that much better.”

The win capped a 44-1 season for Tweeton in which he never lost to a Class 1A wrestler. His last high school season ended with his first trip to the championship mat. That’s why he was on the treadmill every Saturday and Sunday during the wrestling season, and why he stayed 30 minutes after each practice for another match or more conditioning.

“It was amazing, one of the best atmospheres I’ve been a part of of,” Tweeton said. “It’s kind of sad that it’s over. It hasn’t hit me quite yet, but I’m just excited to end my career the right way.”

It may be over, but now Tweeton is excited for next week. He has all his meals planned, including his mom’s “super good” hamburger, gravy and mashed potatoes, along with a trip to Buffalo Wild Wings, and one more thing.

“I need to go eat at some kind of buffet,” Tweeton said.

Chris Murphy

Chris Murphy is a sports reporter for the Forum. He's covered high school and college sports in Chicago, North Dakota and Minnesota since 2009 and, for some reason, has been given awards for doing so.

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