Craig’s Furseth may get shot to avenge last year’s defeat
Furseth, a Janesville Craig High School junior, and Boernke, a Marshfield junior, met in the title bout of the Division 1 title bout for 112 pounds on the WIAA state individual wrestling tournament last year. Boernke led 3-2 after two periods but scored five points late in the match in pulling away for a 10-3 victory.
Now at 130 pounds, Furseth and Boernke are the top two seeds and in opposite brackets heading into today’s preliminary matches of the state tournament at the Kohl Center in Madison.
Furseth has been untouchable, and nearly unscored upon, most of the season. He is 36-0 and has not allowed a takedown.
If Furseth can win four matches, including a likely title bout against Boernke on Saturday night, he will become the first Craig wrestler to win state.
Furseth wrestles sophomore Kyle Berchem (35-10) of Manitowoc in a preliminary bout at approximately 3:30 this afternoon.
Although he’s not looking past Berchem, Furseth would like nothing more than another shot at Boernke.
“I would love to face him again because I know I can beat him,” Furseth said. “I got lazy last year against him, and that won’t happen again.”
The 130-pound bracket has plenty of talent besides Furseth and Boernke. Wisconsin Rapids sophomore Kasey Einerson finished third in Division 2 at 112 pounds last year for Lodi and has handed Boernke his only two losses this season.
Pulaski’s Jonathan Enderby is 44-2, and Muskego’s Tyler Quartullo—Furseth’s likely quarterfinal opponent tonight—is 36-4.
“It’s a very strong bracket, but I still think Siven is the favorite going in,” Craig coach Jeff Kaster said. “Every match is going to be tough, but like I’ve said all year, somebody is going to have wrestle awfully well to beat him.
“He’s been on a mission all season. Last year, he got a taste of what it’s like to wrestle on Saturday night for a state title, and now he’s the hunter in search of one. He’s determined to be the first wrestler from Craig to win state.”
Furseth will be joined at state by teammate Jamie Kumlien. The junior is 29-10 at 125 pounds and faces Chad Stuiber (37-4) of Ashwaubenon in his preliminary match.
Kumlien has flown under the radar most of the season, but Kaster said the Cougar standout is peaking at the right time.
“Jamie has wrestled some of the state’s best very tough this year,” Kaster said. “I think he has made it into the finals of every tournament we’ve been in. He lost 13-11 to the defending state champion from Cuba City (Jarod Donar), and has really wrestled well the last two weeks.
“He’s long and lengthy, and has great leverage on the mat,” Kaster said of Kumlien. “From the bottom, Jamie is very tough. I wouldn’t be surprised if he won a couple of matches at state.”