H-D juniors make a step up in state wrestling field

 

Mario Peña of Hampton-Dumont pins I-35, Truro's Bobby Heilman in the first round of the Class 2A 285-pound state wrestling meet at Des Moines. (Kristi Nixon/Hampton Chronicle)

 

DES MOINES – On the verge of wrestling in his first state title match, Hampton-Dumont junior Mario Peña reflected on the difference a year makes.

As a sophomore in his first year back in wrestling, Peña finished seventh for the Bulldogs.

After much of the season ranked No. 1, he reached the state final and wrestled hard for eight and a half minutes, only to come up short against a familiar foe whom he took three of his six losses against: Forest City senior Tyler Putney.

“I’m much more relaxed and know the atmosphere,” Peña said after his quarterfinal match...For more on this story, see the Feb. 26 print edition of the Hampton Chronicle.