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Please celebrate the accomplishments of our Elk River Wrestlers!

*Current or Past Coach at Elk River High School
+ER Sports Hall of Fame

State Champions

Year Weight Name Champions
1975 98 +Craig Jordan Elk River State Champion
1978 119 *+Gary LeFebvre Elk River State Champion
1981 98 Jim Jorgenson Elk River State Champion
1986 167 *Paul Nelson Elk River State Champion
1989 145 Gary Kroells Elk River State Champion
1993 152 *Brett Svendsen Elk River State Champion
1998 135 Lance Martin Elk River State Champion
1998 171 Jason Waln Elk River State Champion
1999 135 Clint Martin Elk River State Champion
1999 125 Chris McAlpine Elk River State Champion
2000 130 Chris McAlpine Elk River State Champion
2002 135 Thomas McAlpine Elk River State Champion

State Place Winners

Year Name Place
1976 *+Gary Lefebvre 2nd Place
1976 *Ken Jordan 2nd Place
1976 Tim Smith 3rd Place
1977 *Ken Jordan 2nd Place
1977 *+Gary Lefebvre 3rd Place
1980 Leon Ebner 4th place
1981 Jeff Vasseur  3rd Place
1981 *Loren Ebner 4th place
1981 Jim Hirt 4th place
1982 Jim Jorgenson 2nd Place
1983 Jim Clark 3rd Place
1983 *Matt Leshovsky 4th place
1984 *Matt Leshovsky 4th place
1985 *Matt Leshovsky 4th place
1991 *Brett Svendsen 3rd Place
1991 Mike Parent 6th Place
1994 Derek Enderle 3rd Place
1996 Heath Martin 3rd Place
1996 Lance Martin 4th place
1996 Cassidy Strong 6th Place
1996 Marty Kirk 6th Place
1997 Lance Martin 2nd Place
1997 Chris McAlpine 6th Place
1997 Heath Martin 6th Place
1997 Matt McAlpine 6th Place
1999 Tony Davis 5th Place
2000 Thomas McAlpine 3rd Place
2001 Brian Hackenmueller 2nd Place
2001 Thomas McAlpine 2nd Place
2001 Jeff Johnson 4th place
2002 Alan Erickson 6th Place
2003 Alan Erickson 2nd Place
2003 Jason Kohl 3rd Place
2004 Lukas Lynch 5th Place
2004 Tyler Hemmesch 6th Place
2005 Tyler Hemmesch 3rd Place
2005 Lukas Lynch 6th Place
2006 Lukas Lynch 2nd Place
2006 Tyler Hemmesch 2nd Place
2007 Tyler Hemmesch 2nd Place
2008 Mitch Hauge 6th Place
2010 Tyler Stevens 5th Place
2012 Evan Caldon 6th Place
2016 Sam Gibas 4th Place
2016 Brendan Simmonds 5th Place
2020 Seth Hopkins 5th Place

State Entrants

Year Name Place
1973 George Curtis State Entrant
1976 Gregg Barrett State Entrant
1976 Pat Bakos State Entrant
1978 Brian Kopesky State Entrant
1978 Rick Dalbec State Entrant
1979 Steve Bakos State Entrant
1980 Greg Hemmesch State Entrant
1980 Jim Hirt State Entrant
1980 Steve Bakos State Entrant
1981 Jeff Vasseur State Entrant
1981 Jim Hirt State Entrant
1981 Leon Ebner State Entrant
1982 Bob Temple State Entrant
1982 Mike Jorgenson State Entrant
1982 Rick Roche State Entrant
1983 Mike Jorgenson State Entrant
1983 Rick Roche State Entrant
1984 Brad Johnson State Entrant
1984 Lee Walz State Entrant
1985 *Paul Nelson State Entrant
1986 Joel Greenberg State Entrant
1987 John Hemmerich State Entrant
1987 Nathan Vevea State Entrant
1988 Lee Corben State Entrant
1988 Nathan Vevea State Entrant
1988 Scott Ramsdell State Entrant
1990 *Brad Olson State Entrant
1990 *Brett Svendsen State Entrant
1991 Jamie Hilyar State Entrant
1993 Derek Enderlie State Entrant
1993 Heath Martin State Entrant
1993 John Kiesling State Entrant
1994 Heath Martin State Entrant
1995 Heath Martin State Entrant
1995 Marty Kirk State Entrant
1995 Matt McAlpine State Entrant
1997 John Ramert State Entrant
1997 Marty Kirk State Entrant
1997 Vince Hackenmueller State Entrant
1998 Phil Scharber State Entrant
1998 Ryan Donnay State Entrant
1998 Thomas McAlpine State Entrant
1999 Brian Hackenmueller State Entrant
2000 Brian Hackenmueller State Entrant
2002 John Kolar State Entrant
2003 Lukas Lynch State Entrant
2004 Adam Fedie State Entrant
2005 Kyle Muetzel State Entrant
2007 Joe Kolar State Entrant
2007 Mitch Hauge State Entrant
2007 Tyler Stevens State Entrant
2008 Wade Forde State Entrant
2009 Tyler Stevens State Entrant
2010 Tyler Stevens State Entrant
2010 Eric Stevens State Entrant
2011 Holtan Lubinski State Entrant
2012 Evan Caldon State Entrant
2013 Evan Caldon State Entrant
2014 Garrett Caldon State Entrant
2014 Aaron Hannan State Entrant
2015 Garrett Caldon State Entrant
2015 Anthony Meister State Entrant
2016 Ben Gibas State Entrant
2016 Sam Gibas State Entrant
2016 Anthony Meister State Entrant
2016 Brennan Simmonds State Entrant
2017 Casey Schilz State Entrant
2018 LaFayette Bade State Entrant
2018 Colton Pool State Entrant
2019 LaFayette Bade State Entrant
2019 Tyler Benson State Entrant
2019 Seth Hopkins State Entrant
2019 Colton Pool State Entrant
2020 Seth Hopkins State Entrant


Elk River Wrestling's Community Impact Night at Pizza Ranch was a success!  Eight of the team's wrestlers participated by helping customers and busing tables. A total of $678.00 was earned to support all levels of Elk River Wrestling (K-12)!

Thank you to all who came out to support the event as well as the wrestlers for your hard work:  Tyler Benson, Colton Pool, Alex Sanborn, Eli Williams, Seth Hopkins, Lafayette Bade, Hunter Larson and Loser Wuanti (not pictured).  Also pictured is Coach Gregg Brass.

Congratulations to Our Youth Wrestlers at the NYWA State Tournament!

Elk River was well represented at the 2019 NYWA State Wrestling Tournament this year. The tournament took place at the Rochester Convention Center on April 5-7.

  • Eli Holker, a 2nd Grader, wrestled in the 57 lb weight class. Eli scored a 6-2 decision over Pine Island's Chase Hoffman in the first round. After dropping his quarter final match, Eli picked up two more wins against opponents from Worthington and Shakopee. Eli finished the tournament with a 6th place medal.
  • Walker Gaulrapp, a 4th grader, won his first round match and then fell to the wrestle back with a quarter final loss. Walker battled his way back to the podium after going 3-1 with wins over opponents from Willmar, Rochester Mayo, and Park. Walker finished this year's state tournament with 5th place honors.
  • Wrestling at 155 for the Elks was Logan Hopkins, a 4th Grader. Logan marched his way to the finals of his bracket with back-to-back falls over Ruben Mendoza of LPGE/B and Kane Akkerman of Luverne and a 9-4 decision over Eddie Pino of Faribault. In the championship match, Logan battled but fell just short giving up a 4-6 decision to his opponent from ANML. Logan's efforts earned him 2nd place in a tough State Tournament.
  • Carter Galante, an eighth grader, who also competed at the middle school and the high school junior varsity this season, wrestled for the Elks in the 100lb weight class. This was Carter's 6th trip to the NYWA State Tournament.


Elks Wrestling

Takes Down


Congratulations to Our 2019 State Entrants!

2019 State Entrants:  Seth Hopkins (Jr)-HWT, Laffayette Bade (Sr)-220, Tyler Benson (Sr)-160 and Colton Pool (Jr)-120.



Congratulations Elk River Varsity Wrestling for taking 3rd place at the Osseo dual meet on Saturday, January 19!

Malecek Camp - Summer 2018


Nice Work!


The Community Impact Night at the Elk River Pizza Ranch was a success raising $503.00 for Elk River Wrestling!

THANK YOU to everyone who took part -- whether you came to dine, donated money or worked a shift, it all helped out!

It's great to be an Elk!








The Elk River Wrestling club would like to invite anyone who wants to try wrestling to attend a FREE camp!

Why wrestle?  Wrestling is such an amazing sport that provides youth an opportunity to learn things that will help them throughout their lifetime. It helps to develop strong minds and strong bodies. It helps youth to learn to set and work to achieve goals.  

High School:  Nov 4-7, 2:30-3:30, ERHS Wrestling Room. 
Middle School:  Nov 18-21, 3:30-5:00, Salk Middle School Upper Gym.
Youth:  Bring a Friend Night! Nov 12 & 14, 6:00-7:30 ERHS Wrestling Room. Questions? Contact Christy Christopherson at

Questions for HS & MS can be directed to the email address listed below.

What to wear:  T-shirt, shorts and tennis shoes (or wrestling shoes if you have them). No buttons or zippers, please.

The Waiver Liability form below MUST BE completed before you can step on the mat for all levels.

Athlete of the Week: Lafayette Bade, Elk River wrestling

ER Star News Athlete of the Week

by Jake Andersen
Sports Reporter
ER Star News

Lafayette Bade remembers watching practice partner Casey Schilz compete at the state tournament last season.

While he was thrilled for his teammate, he couldn’t help but think about how close he was to joining him. Wrestling in the 285-pound third-place match of the Section 7AAA tournament, Bade fell to Blaine’s Dylan Krump by fall. This marked a disappointing finish to his sophomore season, considering a win would have advanced him to face Tim Mandyck of Coon Rapids in a true-second match, with a trip to state on the line. Instead, Krump sent him home early, which didn’t sit well with the Elk River heavyweight.

“All I could think about was being successful and being on top and that I wouldn’t stop until I get there,” he said.

To prevent last year’s disappointment from happening again, Bade put the work in during the offseason. Preferring to hit the gym when no one was there, Bade and teammate Tyler Benson spent countless summer nights working out at The Gym 365 in Elk River until the wee hours of the morning. The workout habits continued into football and wrestling season with Bade being the first one to the school gym in the mornings, asking coaches to open the doors early. On top of that, he’d spend time working out after practices.

Furthermore, Bade saw a better opportunity for himself and the wrestling team by competing in the 220-pound weight class, meaning he’d have to cut 20-30 pounds following football season. This presented quite the challenge for the big man, considering he’d have to maintain a weight around 250 pounds as an offensive and defensive lineman on the football team.

Even so, Bade was up for the challenge. As matter of fact, he didn’t need anyone else to motivate him, but himself.

“With football, wrestling, track, school and anything in life, there’s always someone trying to get better than me, trying to beat me in life and that just bugs me a lot,” Bade said. “I can’t let that happen, so my brain works differently. I just want to work out and be better than everyone else. Not in a cocky or bad way, but in a way that drives me and makes me successful in life.”

With the football team making another state championship game, Bade got off to a late start with the wrestling team, but after taking two weeks off, he set out to cut the weight.

In a matter of a week, Bade lost over 20 pounds by going through intense workouts and practices, while managing a consistent diet. Normally, he’d eat whatever was put on the table, but this time around, he kept his portion sizes small, while eating leaner meats and a ton of fruit. Of course, drinking plenty of water and cutting out sugary drinks like pop was key to losing weight as well.

Bade told role model and Elks assistant coach Gary Clem about his plans to wrestle at 220 first and he wasn’t the least bit surprised to see him transform his body so quickly.

“He worked every day after practice and cleaned up his diet with one goal in mind: making the state tournament,” said Clem, who’s coached Lafayette since first grade. “He has to be told to go home from practice. He just works that hard (to accomplish what he sets his mind to).”

Initially, Bade had a tough time adjusting to a new weight class, losing his first two matches, but he said that things started to click when he took second place at the Cambridge-Isanti invitational on Jan. 6.

“It was a struggle right away. I was hard on myself because I wasn’t getting it. The speed was bad for me. I just wasn’t wrestling well because I wasn’t moving my feet (against quicker wrestlers) and wasn’t myself after losing all that weight. After busting my butt in practice and getting quicker, it started to come together, though,” Bade said.






Kyle Brehm and Nate Dahl are organizing this fundraiser on behalf of American Cancer Society. 

Several years back, Kyle and Nate decided to enter the Old Timers Tournament with some friends. Last year, they decided to wrestle for a cause, and raise some money. They ultimately raised $3,400 to benefit St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital! 

Kyle and Nate will be back again this year, and will be wrestling to benefit The American Cancer Society.  In addition to donations, they would love for other participants and/or teams to help in the fundraising effort.

Can you help the cause?  Visit the web page link to the left to enter your donation, or contact Kyle at to join in the fundraising effort! 

Thank you!

The Elks Took Down Cancer in 2020!

The Elk River wrestling team took their shot at raising money for the Randy Shaver Cancer Research & Community Fund at their dual meet on February 7th against Champlin Park High School. A total of $761.16 will be donated.

March 9, 2020

Randy Shaver Cancer Research and Community Fund
1660 South Highway 100
Suite 335
St. Louis Park, MN 55416

Re: Takedown Cancer Event

To whom this may concern,

Please accept the enclosed check for $761.16. This is the amount that the Elk River Wrestling team raised during our Takedown Cancer night that was held Friday, February 7, 2020 when we faced Champlin Park in our final dual of the year.

It was a great week of participation from our Varsity and Junior Varsity wrestlers. During the week, they sold $1.00 name cards to family, faculty and classmates in the days leading up to that Friday night. On the name card, the buyer could write a name of someone they were memorializing that lost their fight to cancer and/or a name of someone that they were honoring who is winning their battle with cancer. Each team member was given a goal to sell five. They all reached their goal and we are very proud of their accomplishment. On the night of the event prior to the varsity dual, I explained the fundraiser to all in attendance and made an announcement that for the next two minutes (the time of one wrestling period) we would be going up in the crowd to collect any donations. So, with assistance from our three captains and the three captains from Champlin Park; they went into the crowd and collected over $400.00 in two minutes!

Thus, from the sale of the name cards, the two-minute fundraiser and a $250.00 donation from us, we are very proud to donate the enclosed check. We plan to continue this as an annual event. In the seven years that we have been participating, we have raised $5,781.63. On behalf of the Booster Club and the entire Elk River wrestling family, we appreciate what you do for the community and your efforts to Takedown Cancer!


Elk River Wrestling Boosters
Tom Osberg

Congratulations Seth Hopkins - 5th Place State Winner!









Eligible to kids in grades 2-12.

WHEN:  Every Monday, March 16 - May 11 from 6:00-8:00 pm. Schedule may depend on State Freestyle and Greco weekend competition.

PRACTICES:  A total of 7-8 practices with 4-5 of them hosting a Clinician from SCSU, Augsburg or U of M. Practices will consist of fun agility time, drilling time, and live wrestling. 

WHERE: Elk River HS Wrestling Room

COST: $50.00 per athlete with a signed waiver before they can step on the mat.

PURPOSE & GOAL: To give wrestlers a house spring program that will focus mainly on wrestling on their feet. Focusing on setups, movement, defensive and offensive scoring.

This will be an opportunity to get extra mat time and still compete for a few extra months. The goal is to offer a program for those that want more mat time but are not yet ready to attend specialized training sites or regional spring training sites.

Contact Gary Ebner with questions at 763-200-0014.

Congratulations Seth Hopkins
ER Star News Athlete of the Week!

Congratulations Seth Hopkins - ER Star News Athlete of the Week!

Elk River senior Seth Hopkins can thank a teammate’s father for his career as a varsity wrestler.

When Hopkins was in fourth grade, Gary Clem, the father of Hopkins’ teammate Gage Clem, saw Hopkins’ strength on the football field and contacted his father, Josh, telling him to sign his son up for wrestling.

After watching one of his cousin’s wrestling practice, Seth Hopkins confirmed that he wanted to wrestle in high school.

“I knew it would help me in football,” Hopkins said. “I always loved football. That was my main priority. Initially, I wrestled so I could get better at football, but as the years went on, I grew to love the sport of wrestling. That’s why I continue to do it to this day.”

Head coach Bryan Kulm said Hopkins is a hard worker who comes prepared for each meet and practice.

“If I could have another 20 guys like Seth with his attitude and his work ethic and what a nice, kind person he is, I’d take that in an instant,” Kulm said. “He leads by doing the right things. That’s something that you don’t find every day.”

Hopkins played on Elk River football’s Team 128 that made it to the Class 5A state semifinal in November. He was an offensive lineman and a defensive lineman. Hopkins recorded three sacks in 2019—two in the regular season and one in the Class 5A quarterfinal against Moorhead on Nov. 9.

Senior Colton Pool said Hopkins made every wrestling practice when there wasn’t a football game, practice or scrimmage.

“He was in here right away and got right into it,” Pool said. “[He] sets the tone and sets the pace for other wrestlers to follow. He’ll motivate the guys and sets the tone pretty high and sets a good example to follow. If he’s working hard, you see other people working hard and busting their butts and going at it with their teammates, you’re going to do the same thing.”

With the Summer Olympics in Tokyo only six months away, Hopkins said he didn’t watch any 2016 Olympic wrestling matches on television and wasn’t inspired by any Team USA wrestlers. Instead, his wrestling hero is former Minnesota Golden Gophers heavyweight Tony Nelson. Nelson wrestled for the Gophers from 2010-14, winning the NCAA heavyweight championship in both 2012-13 and 2013-14 as well as three Big Ten championships.

“He was just a big guy and he’s so athletic,” Hopkins said. “It just amazes me how good he was at the collegiate level for the Gophers.”

When he’s not pinning down opponents or preparing for football season, Hopkins is busy studying math, which is his favorite school subject. Hopkins is planning on majoring in a math-related field, where the possibilities, from algebra to calculus, are endless.

Hopkins said people who understand math are needed in society in order to solve humankind’s most challenging problems. 

“You always need these people to solve these problems,” Hopkins said. “More math problems keep coming out every day and you need people to figure those out in every aspect.”

Elk River hasn’t had a state champion at the individual level since 2002. Hopkins’ goal for this season is to end that 17-plus year drought by winning the heavyweight title in February at Xcel Energy Center.

“I think it’s an achievable goal,” Hopkins said. “I’ve always wanted to be the best in everything. This year, I really want to get that state title, look back and [say] all that hard work paid off. I’m going to keep grinding in the room. I’m going to listen to my coaches. They’re going to give me great advice and I’m going to work harder than I have ever before.”


Becky Lassila has been busy taking photos of our wrestlers this year! She has made her website available with TEAM photos as well as RANDOM photos from duals and tournaments.

Go to Click on Albums, then Elk River Wrestling (dual and tournament photos) or Team Photos (individual, coach and team photos).

A couple notes:
     * Any picture from the Elk River Wrestling link can be downloaded for free.
     * Pictures from the Team Photo link are available for purchase. The document to the left can be submitted to Coach Kulm with payment NO LATER THAN JANUARY 15. Becky's contact information is listed on the form should you have questions.

............  ALSO AVAILABLE ..........

Hunter Larson and family hired Dan Dawson from Prime Photographers to take Hunter's senior photos. Dan was at our Parent Night and took many photos, including those of the parents and their wrestler. The photos can be found on the Photo tab (ERW Home Page>Teams>High School>Photos) and are free to download. Thank you to the Larson family for making this available.