State Champs - Again - 193 pts.
SEP finished the 2015 season in the same way it began - in the driver's seat with the pedal to the floor. As a result, this year's Rams solidified itself as one of the greatest teams in the history of Iowa.
The boys had another undefeated dual season and set scoring records at nearly every tournament it entered (Gardner-Edgerton, Ed Winger, CIML), despite typically having 1-3 Varsity members out of the line-up throughout the year, showcasing the program's depth.
By the time the post-season rolled around, the Rams were firing on all cylinders for the first time since Week 1 - and it showed. The Rams tied the state record with 13 State Qualifiers, 11 of which eventually placed at the Traditional State Tournament.
Prior to the big tournament, the Rams ran through the competition and into the State Dual Finals, where they met their back-and-forth rivals, (and fellow Nationally ranked team) Bettendorf. Despite starting in the teeth of Bettendorf's daunting middle-weight line-up, the Rams quickly caught up and blew past Bettendorf with hard fought wins at 170, 182, and 195 before consecutive pins at 220, 285, and 106. Ultimately, the Rams bested Bettendorf 34-28 for their 2nd State Dual Title (2013 & 2015).
With the momentum of the Dual Tournament behind them, the Rams charged into the Traditional Tournament lead and never looked back, opening the gap with Bettendorf nearly every session. By Tournament's end, the Rams amassed a ridiculous 193 points (2nd All-Time in 3A) on the strength of 11 Placewinners and 3 State Champions to win the Rams' 2nd Traditional State Title, and a National Ranking of #7:
106 - Guage Perrien - 6th (Frosh)
113 - Nathan Lendt - 3rd (Frosh)
120 - Adam Brown - 8th (Soph)
126 - Nolan Hellickson - Champion (Senior)
132 - Zach Barnes - Qualifier (Soph)
138 - Keegan Shaw - 4th (Senior)
145 - Aaron Meyer - 2nd (Senior)
152 - Briar Dittmer - 2nd (Senior)
160 - Brady Buchhiet - 7th (Senior)
182 - Kameron Padavich - Qualifier (Junior)
195 - Deion Mikesell - 2nd (Senior)
220 - Ethan Andersen - Champion (Junior)
285 - Jacob "Turbo" Marnin - Champion (Senior)
Despite graduating a strong Senior Class, the Rams still return the 2nd most State Tournament points (behind Fort Dodge) and return 7 State Qualifiers and 8 returning Varsity members, including 2 x State Champion Ethan Andersen. As for the rest of the weights, only time will tell who will step up for the Rams to compete for another title.
2014: Andersen dominates - Rams 2nd
The Rams capped of another stellar season, winning the Gardner-Edgerton Invite, Ed Winger Classic, CIML Invite, placing 4th at Cheesehead, and falling just 4 points out of 1st at the State Traditional Tournament with 158 points (the most ever for 2nd place team). The Rams qualified 12 for State, includingBatterson (Soph. - 113), Williams (Sr. - 126) and Buchheit (Jr. - 152). SEP earned 9 place winners (Brown (Fr. - 5th @ 106), Hellickson (Jr. - 3rd @ 120), Shaw (Jr. - 3rd @ 132), Kerr (Jr. - 7th @ 170), Mikesell (Jr. - 5th @ 195)) with 4 finalists (Meyer (Jr. @ 138), Dittmer (Jr. @ 145), Marnin (Jr. @ HWT)) and a Champion in Ethan Andersen (Soph. @ 220). Andersen dominated his way through year, going 49-0, winning GE Invite, Cheesehead, Ed Winger, CIML, while racking up a SEP single-season record of 37 pins. Andersen's domination continued through the State Tournament, where he pinned his first three opponents (including the #17 Nationally Ranked Wrestler) , before piling up an 18-7 win in the Championship match. Andersen's win makes it 3 SEP Wrestlers (Miklus, Fisher, Andersen), 3 Champs, at 220 lbs.
In 2015, the Rams plan to charge for another title, returning 12 starters, 11 state qualifiers, 9 state place winners, 4 state finalists, and 1 state champion. Until then, its Freestyle / Greco season!
2013 - EVERYTHING CHAMPS
No one expected that the encore to the 2011-2012 wrestling season would surpass everyone's wildest dreams. As the State Championship shirts say, the 2012-2013 Rams were simply "Everything Champs".
The Rams dominated every competition they entered with a rare balance of super stars power and total team effort. The Rams won the Blazers Invitational in Gardner Edgerton HS, Kansas, the prestigious Cheesehead Tournament in Kaukana, Wisconsin, set records at the Winger Classic in Urbandale, Iowa, and CIML Conference Tournament. The Rams qualified 13 of 14 guys at the District Tournament before winning the SEP High School's first Men's State Title, in its 50-year history, by dominating the State Dual Tournament.
The Rams topped that performance just days later in scoring 180.5 points, the 3rd highest in 3A history, with individual State Champions in Tim Miklus (160 lbs.), Dylan Blackford (170 lbs.), and Bryce Fisher (220 lbs.). The Rams placed 11 of 13 qualifiers including Nolan Hellickson (3rd - 106 lbs. (soph.), Aaron Meyer (8th - 120 lbs. (soph.), Keegan Shaw (5th - 126 lbs. (soph.), Briar Dittmer (4th - 132 lbs. (soph.), Colin Strickland (4th - 145 lbs. (senior), Luke Sargent (4th - 182 lbs. (senior), Ethan Andersen (6th - 195 lbs. (frosh.), and Jake Scanlan (4th - HWT (Junior). The Rams finished the season with a National Ranking of #12.
The Rams will lose 7 Seniors from their starting line-up next year, but the boys are hungry to turn a good run into a repeat performance .
Blackford, - Fisher - Miklus Claim Individual State titles
Dylan Blackford (170 lbs.), Bryce Fisher (220 lbs.), and Tim Miklus (160 lbs.) celebrate following their State Title victories. The Ram seniors went 3-for-3 in the Finals, capping off the SEP State Traditional Title that was locked up during the morning's placing rounds. Welcome Dylan, Bryce, and Tim to the SEP Athletics Hall of Fame.
With a clinched victory over Bettendorf coming by pin from Sam Jones (152 lbs.), the SEP Wrestling Rams win the 1st Boys' State Championship in the 50-year history of Southeast Polk High School. The Drought is over. The Curse is broken. Free at last.
2011 - 2012 Season
The completion of the Rams' 2011-2012 season marked the most successful single season in the history of the program. Coached by Jason Christenson, the Rams had an undefeated regular dual season, 11 State Qualifiers, 7 State Place Winners, 5 State finalists (including Bud Smith and Dylan Blackford), and 3 State Champions (pictured) in Willie Miklus (4 x Finalist, 2 x Champion), Alex Meyer, and Cory Clark (4 x Champion). The team finished in 2nd place with 156.5 points (9th highest point total of all time) in a season remembered for gaudy takedown and pin statistics, as well as the controversial decision to withhold all State Qualifiers from competing in the State Dual Tournament, the day before the Traditional Tournament, to allow individual wrestlers to focus on their individual goals. Southeast Polk finished the season ranked #13 in the National polls.