A new season has brought with it a new experience for a local wrestler.
Hudson Mann, who was born in Fort Frances but lived in International Falls, has moved to Annandale/Maple Lake, Mn. to fill out a heavyweight spot on the wrestling team there.
Most recently, Mann competed in the Outlaw Middle School Duel Championship at Luther College on Remembrance Day in Decorah, Iowa.
A total of 12 teams from Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Iowa took part.
“Originally the plan was to hop on with the Outlaws,” noted Hudson’s father, Jeremy Mann, who also is an assistant coach for the Mighty Mustang youth wrestling program in the Falls.
“The Outlaws’ coach talked to Hudson about getting more matches and filling a spot on a Minnesota team,” he remarked.
“Definitely wanting more matches, Hudson gladly moved to ANML [Annandale/Maple Lake] to fill the heavyweight spot.
“The ANML coaches and team were extremely excited and appreciative to have Hudson on the team,” Mann noted.
“Hudson has trained with some of the team members so he fit in perfectly.
“It’s pretty cool to live so far in northern Minnesota and feel so welcome on Minnesota teams,” he added.
“It really comes down to how hard Hudson has worked and the great relationships we have built over the years.”
In Mann’s first duel at the event against an Outlaws’ wrestler, he was down 32-30 in points with heavyweight being the last scoring match.
He gave up a early takedown making it 2-0, but kept working and with seconds left hit a reversal to knot the match at 2-2 going into the second period.
His opponent then decided to take bottom position to start the second period, which proved to be a big mistake.
“I knew that was a big mistake for him [as] Hudson’s top game is excellent,” his dad noted.
“He keeps much older and stronger wrestlers down every place we go to train.
“Hudson kept the pressure and working for the pin mid in the second period,” Jeremy Mann added.
“That was a big win for the team 38-32 ANML win,” he noted. “That kept the team alive for a chance to place.”
Hudson Mann went on to win three more matches by pinfall and scored 36 points for his squad.
Sporting a 4-0 record going into the last match of the day, Hudson lost his last match to a triple crown national champion as the size and strength of that wrestler was hard to overcome.
“I knew being the smallest HWT was going to have its challenges for Hudson,” Jeremy Mann conceded.
“He came in at 150 [pounds] where most of the others were 175-185.
“The ANML coaches all said Hudson wrestled great,” he added. “One coach even suggested there was a house for sale down the street from him.”
Overall, Jeremy Mann felt his son wrestled well at the Outlaws’ tourney and was happy with his effort.
“Hudson did give up a shot that he [should have] had,” he noted. “We will be working on that.
“His bottom and top both looked good.
“Our ANML team took fourth place against some tough teams,” Mann added. “It was lots of fun and a great time.”
Jeremy Mann also noted his son still will wrestle once or twice this season with the Mighty Mustangs, but mainly will be part of MN Tough, JJ Trained, and Jake Clark’s Wrestling Jiu-Jitsu.
“He will be training with all three clubs this coming year and coach Chris [Thoresen],” he noted.
“We decided not to go train with Nashwauk-Greenway,” Mann said. “Hudson gets really good training partners with all three of the clubs.
“Most of the clubs we have been training at for a few years,” he remarked. “Both myself, Mandy, and Hudson talked about it.
“We gotta do what’s best for Hudson in the long run,” he stressed.
Jeremy Mann also noted this season isn’t about wins or losses for Hudson.
“It’s about looking for the best-of-the-best, getting good tough competition,” he reasoned.
“That way we know where we need to improve to get better.
“This season, Dan [Schermerhorn] will be the head coach of the Mighty Mustangs [and] I’m just going to be assistant,” Mann added, noting that “Dan has done a great job since he has started.”
“With Hudson getting older, I’m going to place my focus more on the older wrestlers,” he explained.