Wrestling - History

Wrestling History

The WIAA goes back to 1940 to determine the beginning of its wrestling tournament program.

Milwaukee Washington won the first State Meet that was held at Appleton. The next year the tournament was held at West Milwaukee before moving to Neenah for 1942. Then, because of World War II, there were no more State Meets until 1947 when it was held at West Milwaukee. Racine Park hosted the 1948 meet.

The State Tournament moved to the UW Field House in 1949 and was held at that site through 1997. In 1998, the State Individual Tournament moved to the Kohl Center in Madison. The tournament followed the open class format through the years until 1980 when team champions were determined by A-B-C classes. Individual champions continued being determined by an open class through 1980 and thereafter on a three-class basis. Classes were renamed divisions beginning in 1990.

Until 1991-92, team championships were decided on the basis of a point system for individuals finishing first, second, etc., at the State (Individual) Tournament. Beginning in 1991-92, the team champion was determined in a separate team tournament series involving dual meets among the regional champions. The first two such State Team Tournaments were held at UW-Stevens Point. In 1994, the team tournament moved to West Allis Central High School where it remained through 2004 when it then moved to the UW Field House in Madison in 2005.

Wisconsin Rapids Lincoln has appeared in the State Team Tournament 18 times since its inception, the most of any member school. Ellsworth and Luxemburg-Casco have appeared in 16 team tournaments with Kaukauna and Lodi appearing in 15. Coleman is next on the list with 13, and Mineral Point has 10.

There have been 54 different programs that have won State team championships. Wisconsin Rapids has the most titles with 21. Luxemburg-Casco and Mineral Point have won 11 titles, and Coleman has 10. Ellsworth is next on the list with eight, and Milwaukee South and Stoughton have won seven team titles. Athens has won the team title six times.

Wisconsin Rapids Lincoln won seven consecutive titles from 1995 through 2001. Five of Milwaukee South's titles came in succession from 1950-54. Wisconsin Rapids Lincoln has also strung together five straight titles from 2003-07, as well as four straight from 2009-2012. Four of Mineral Point's titles came in succession from 1980-83, as was Kaukauna's from 2014-17 . Winning three times in a row were Milwaukee Washington (1940-42), Coleman (1962-64 and 2010-12), Stoughton (1975-77), East Troy (1986-88), Athens (1993-95), Luxemburg Casco (2001-03) and Mineral Point (2007-09).

Matt Hanutke of Pittsville, Kraig Underwood of Athens, Brian Slater of New Lisbon, Scott Hady of North Crawford, Kevin Black of River Falls, Josh Miller of Arcadia and Cole Wunnicke of Ithaca, Bobby Wunnicke of Dodgeville, Zac Cibula of Luxemburg-Casco, Nick Hagar of Tomahawk, Jesse Thielke of Germantown, Jarod Donar of Cuba City/Southwestern, Jens Lantz of Ellsworth and Hunter Marko of Amery are the only 14 wrestlers that have won four State individual titles.
Hanutke won at 98 in 1987, 105 in 1988, 112 in 1989, and 119 in 1990. Underwood won at 103 in 1992, 112 in 1993, 119 in 1994, and 125 in 1995. Slater won at 103 in 1993 and 1994, and 112 in 1995 and 1996. Hady won at 112 in 1994, 119 in 1995, 125 in 1996 and at 135 in 1997. Black won at 103 in 1995, 112 in 1996 and 1997, and 119 in 1998. Miller won at 103 in 1999, 112 in 2000 and 2001, and at 119 in 2002. Cole Wunnicke won at 119 in 1999, 125 in 2000, and at 135 in 2001 and 2002. Bobby Wunnicke won at 103 in 2005, by forfeit at 112 in 2006, at 119 in 2007 and at 125 in 2008. Zac Cibula won at 130 in 2005, 140 in 2006, 145 in 2007 and 152 in 2008. Nick Hagar won at 125 in 2006, 135 in 2007 and at 140 in 2008-09.  Jesse Thielke won at 112 in 2008, at 125 in 2009-10, and at 130 in 2011. Jarod Donar won at 119 in 2009, 125 in 2010, 135 in 2011 and at 138 in 2012. Jens Lantz won at 103 in 2011, 113 in 2012, 130 in 2013 and 126 in 2014. Hunter Marko won at 106 in 2013, 113 in 2014, 126 in 2015 and in 138 in 2016.

Sixty-three other wrestlers have won three individual championships and 234 others who have captured two titles.

Mineral Point has produced the most individual State titles with 50. Stoughton has produced 48 individual champions, and Wisconsin Rapids Lincoln has produced 44, while 39 championships have been claimed by Milwaukee South, 38 by Luxemburg-Casco and 32 by Athens, Coleman and Ellsworth.

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Wisconsin Interscholastic
Athletic Association
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