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Notre Dame wrestling returns three state qualifiers as well as Lily Ahlvin

Senior Lily Ahlvin returns as one of Notre Dame's two girls wrestlers from last season. Photo by Nick McNeal

After the Notre Dame wrestling program had a total of five state qualifiers last season, the Bulldogs are bringing back three of them after the boys team took sixth place in the Class 1 District 1 Meet.

All three returning state qualifiers are on the boys team in Bulldogs senior Charlie West, junior Sam Criddle and sophomore Parker Lemmons. The only wrestler Notre Dame’s boys team graduated that made it to state last winter was 175-pounder Ethan Jackson.

West will likely continue to wrestle at 215 pounds after finishing 17-6 overall and reaching the third round of the consolation bracket at the Class 1 State Meet. He won the district championship last season to make his first-ever trip to state.

Lemmons also made it to his own district title bout at 132 pounds, but he was pinned in the first round. He finished with an overall record of 18-19.

As for Criddle, he took fourth place in the 157-pound weight class at districts and ended up finishing with a record of 15-29.
Another wrestler returning for Notre Dame’s boys team will be junior Caleb Klipfel, who fell in the third round of the consolation bracket at districts. He went 14-23 at 126 pounds.

Moving to the girls team, Notre Dame 2023 graduate Emma Steimle became the first female Bulldog wrestler to ever earn all-state honors. She was also the only wrestler for Notre Dame to bring home an all-state medal as she took fifth overall in the 190-pound weight class, finishing with an overall record of 23-5.

Additionally, Steimle won the 190-pound SEMO Conference Championship.

The lone returner from last year’s girls team will be senior Lily Ahlvin, who had to forfeit her match in the district consolation semifinals due to an injury and missed out on making state.

Ahlvin returns, though, having finished with a record of 15-7 overall and took was the SEMO Conference runner-up in the 135-pound weight class.

Nick McNeal covers high school sports, college sports and community events for The Cash-Book Journal. He graduated from Southeast Missouri State University with a degree in multimedia journalism and has lived in Cape Girardeau County for the past five years. He can be reached at cbjsports@socket. net.

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