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Give KMS its due

February 22, 2009 - Per Peterson
Since 1975, the Canby Lancers have been to the state wrestling tournament a mind-blowing 27 times, missing out only in 1993, ’96, ’99, 2001, ’02 and ’03 — only Class AA/AAA Apple Valley (also 27) has been to state as many times in that span. The Lancers went to state every single year in the 1980s — part of a run that saw them go for 18 straight years. They’ve also fared pretty well once they got there, winning eight state titles and finishing runner-up five times in the last 30-plus years. When you say Canby in these parts, you think wrestling, I don’t care if you know anything about high school sports or not. If you feel the need to slap a defining tag on the Lancers, you would be safe, I think, in calling them a dynasty. They have been the Goliaths to everyone’s David. But this year, Goliath ran into a group that’s not your average, run-of-the-mill David — Kerkhoven-Murdock-Sunburg, which was ranked No. 1 in Class A going into sections. KMS defeated the Lancers, 35-21, in one of Saturday’s section semifinal matches, and then downed Yellow Medicine East, which defeated Minneota, 34-21, in their semifinal bout. You’d be hard-pressed to find a section tournament that had a final four group THIS tough. You’d also be hard-pressed not to find a Canby presence at this year’s state tournament — in the form of individual wrestlers. This is still a solid team with many tough wrestlers, and they’ll rebound — same goes for YME and Minneota. It will be strange, however, to not have any of these teams representing southwest Minnesota at state.


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