Murty leaves it all on the mat

Conner Murty (right) stands with Iowa Black teammates Easton Fleshman and Tanner Harvey after the AAU squad captured a fourth place finish at the AAU Scholastic Duals in Orlando. Contributed photo

Gladbrook’s Conner Murty ended his wrestling career with a bang this summer as he traveled to Florida with the Iowa AAU wrestling program to compete in the International Scholastic Duals June 22-24.

Murty entered the competition following a successful senior high school campaign with the East Marshall-GMG wrestling team.

The 220-pounder finished fourth in the 2A state tournament this year, a marked improvement over his junior season where he qualified for the state tournament but missed the podium.

Though he spent the spring throwing for the GMG track and field team, Murty said it wasn’t difficult switching gears back to wrestling as he was able to stay in shape during track and maintained a wrestling practice schedule with teammate Samuel Bandstra in the evenings.

At the AAU tournament, Murty was a member of the Iowa Black squad which was composed of wrestlers who had finished in the top three at the state tournament.

Murty helped Iowa Black to a fourth place finish in the duals tournament, winning five matches and taking no losses against competition from around the country.

“I had never done something like this before I went but I’m glad I got the experience,” Murty said. “The most enjoyable part of the trip was meeting and getting to know all of these wrestlers that I’ve seen at state and just never talked to. On top of that, placing fourth was pretty fun too.”

Murty scored valuable points for the Iowa Black squad, earning three victories by fall and two decision wins.

There were three teams competing at the tournament from the state of Iowa and Murty said the competition he was used to at the state high school level was comparable, if not better than what he found at the AAU duals.

“I was able to wrestle a Kentucky state champ and a kid that got third in Michigan and compared to the Iowa state tournament, those kids may not have placed,” Murty said.

Iowa Black team members included Gavin Jensen (106-Williamsburg), Aime Mukiza (113-Des Moines), Marcel Lopez (120-New London), Blaine Fraizer (126-WB Notre Dame), Kolten Crawford (132-Union), Grant Kress (138-Linn-Mar), Dominic Lopez (145-New London), Hunter Worthen (152-Union), Daniel Magayna (160-Waterloo Columbus), Clinton Walrath (170-WB Notre Dame), Tanner Harvey (182-Boone), Matthew Wirtz (195-Emmetsburg), Conner Murty (220-GMG), Easton Fleshman (285-West Lyon).

Although the AAU tournament marked the end of Murty’s wrestling career, he was pleased with how things ended.

“I ended my wrestling season this year with a win and didn’t lose any matches down in Florida, so I couldn’t be happier,” Murty said. “I don’t plan on wrestling in college but I was happy to get to wrestle with a team full of hammers.”

Murty will soon begin classes at Iowa State University where plans to study Animal Science.