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Cardinals survive Little Falls to win fifth-straight section title

Members of the Willmar wrestling team pose for a photo after topping Little Falls 34-30 in the finals of Saturday's Section 8AAA Wrestling meet. It was the Cardinals' fifth section title in a row. (Photo by Clay Cunningham - Tribune)

WILLMAR -- After jumping out to a 31-9 lead, Willmar narrowly survived Little Falls' comeback attempt, holding on for a 34-30 win in the championship round of Saturday's Section 8AAA Wrestling meet.

Following three pins and a decision, the Flyers had trimmed Willmar's lead to 31-30 heading into the heavyweight match.

Luckily for the Cardinals, Brady Reigstad, the state's second-ranked wrestler in the heavyweight class, was there to finish the job, as he topped Gage Blechinger 4-1 for the decisive win.

The victory secured a fifth-consecutive section crown for the Cardinals. Willmar reached the finals with a 42-34 win over Sartell-St. Stephen and a 41-24 victory over Brainerd earlier in the day.

A full recap and photo gallery will be available in the Monday, Feb. 15 edition of the West Central Tribune.