Rader joins elite company with 100th victory

MONROE – It wasn’t a question of if, but when?

The when came last night.

Third-ranked (Class 1A) 132-pounder JD Rader, a junior, became the seventh wrestler in the history of the South Hamilton program to reach 100 career victories when he decked PCM’s Branen Pace in 1:33 in the opening bout of the Heart of Iowa Conference dual won by the Mustangs, 50-24.

Rader (26-0) shares sixth place on the school’s all-time leaderboard with Cameron Olson, who won his 100th match to become the school’s only state champion in 2008.

“It felt really good to get it out on the mat and now it’s kind of out of the way,” Rader, who will vie for his third straight league title on Saturday, said. “I for sure would have liked to do it at home, but I’ll take it whenever I can get it.”

“He’s in an elite fraternity at our school,” South Hamilton head coach Dan Brodie said of Rader. “Some of the best don’t even get there, so we’re excited for him.”

Rader – a staggering 100-12 in his career – is now chasing the Hawks’ all-time wins leader Heath Johnson, who was 130-15 from 1997-2001.

“It’s definitely on the radar,” Rader said of the record. “It’s something I want to accomplish, but it’s down the road a little bit.”

South Hamilton and PCM split 10 matches, but the Mustangs prevailed on the strength of 24 free points from four forfeits.

“The forfeits hurt us dual wise, but we wrestled well in the matches we won,” Brodie said. “We really jumped out of the gate well.”

Luke Peters (138) and Austin Roys (145) followed Rader with wins to put the Hawks ahead 15-0 early. Peters pinned James Maggard in 2:39 and Roys dominated Ian Reed, 13-6.

Max Reiter (160) decisioned Jade Coleman, 9-5, to give South Hamilton an 18-6 edge. PCM then took the next four weights to jump ahead for good.

Josh Lutter (285) was also a winner for the Hawks; he stuck Glenn Gillespie in 2:38.

South Hamilton will host Saturday’s HOIC tournament. Wrestling will get underway at 10 a.m.