Five months after winning its third consecutive traditional Iowa High School Athletic Association Class 3A traditional team state championship, Waverly-Shell Rock had a strong showing on an even bigger stage.
Aiden Riggins, McCrae Hagarty, Jake Walker and Ryder Block competed at the under-16 men’s freestyle national championships this week at the FargoDome in Fargo, North Dakota.
Riggins, Hagarty and Walker earned All-American status. Riggins placed second at 160 pounds, while Walker was runner-up at 220, Hagarty took third at 195. Block advanced to the top 16.
Riggins, a senior-to-be and defending 3A state champion at 152, lost to Michigan’s Josh Barr, 4-4 on criteria, in the final. Riggins trailed Nebraska’s Antrell Taylor, 6-0, after the first period in a semifinal match. Riggins responded with an 18-6 tech fall to reach the final.
Hagarty, a junior-to-be and defending 3A state champ at 182, pinned Ohio’s Carter Neves in the third-place match.
Walker, also a junior-to-be, fell 10-0 to Wisconsin’s Koy Hopke in the championship match.
Iowa placed fifth in the men’s junior freestyle team standings with 98 points. Illinois won the team title at 130, followed by Pennsylvania (111), Michigan (107) and Wisconsin (103).