By Paul LeckerSports ReporterAUBURNDALE — The Auburndale wrestling team won six matches by pin to double up Phillips 48-24 in a Marawood Conference dual meet Thursday night at Auburndale High School.Dylan Altmann (126 pounds), Paul Willfahrt (152), Kellar Wolfe (160), Wyatt Weiler (170), Kurt Jankowski (195) and Josh Gabel (285) each won by pin for the Apaches. All but Wolfe’s pin came in the first period.Auburndale will return to action Dec. 29-30 at the Bi-State Classic in La Crosse.(Hub City Times Sports Reporter Paul Lecker is also the publisher of MarshfieldAreaSports.com.)Auburndale 48, Phillips 24106: Brad Halmstad (P) pinned Matt Leick in 1:36.113: Jasper Bushman (P) pinned Readi Meyer in 4:10.120: Double forfeit.126: Dylan Altmann (A) pinned Liam Clapero in 0:57.132: Aaron Willfahrt (A) won by forfeit.138: Double forfeit.145: Eli Larson (A) won by forfeit.152: Paul Willfahrt (A) pinned Alex Briske in 0:53.160: Kellar Wolfe (A) pinned Bryen Bushman in 3:02.170: Wyatt Weiler (A) pinned Tristan Kurth in 1:01.182: Hunter Anderson (P) won by forfeit.195: Kurt Jankowski (A) pinned Marty Peterson in 1:59.220: Kris Runnheim (P) won by forfeit.285: Josh Gabel (A) pinned Shayne Foytik in 1:15.
“He handled the pressure well and the way he gave his best for the team was very inspiring.” Amla struck 81 off 97 deliveries against Pakistan, weighed in 23 off 27 against the West Indies and 22 off 15 against India, but will no doubt be looking for more in the Proteas’ remaining matches. After a string of disappointments in major tournaments over the years, cricket’s fortunes favoured the Proteas as they advanced to a semi-finals showdown with England after a wicket off of what turned out to be the last ball of the match pulled them level with the West Indians. De Villiers has looked in excellent form, but would surely like to push on from the good results he so far produced: 68 off 72 balls against India, 31 off 31 versus Pakistan, and 37 off 26 against the West Indies. Colin Ingram and David Miller, who have in the past been more on the fringes of than in the team, have both so far played their part in helping South Africa reach the semi-finals. Ingram was man of the match in the win over the West Indies, with 73 off only 63 balls at the top of the innings, while Miller weighed in with 38 off 29 deliveries. His innings included three sixes. On that occasion Gary Kirsten was a member of the winning side and it would be a fitting way to see him off in his last duty as a very successful coach of the Proteas. Established starsHowever, for South Africa to progress to the final and win the title, established stars Hashim Amla and captain De Villiers will need to shine. India, the winners of Group B, will face Sri Lanka in the other final four match. Bottom lineThe bottom line, though, is that cricket is a team game and it will take a team effort to win. South Africa, though, are without Graeme Smith, Jacques Kallis and Morne Morkel and they deserve praise for their fortitude in performing well without the three world class players. It is doubtful any other team, if they had three players of such proven quality, would have performed as well as the Proteas have. South Africa secured a place in the semi-finals of the ICC Champions Trophy after a tie with the West Indies on Friday in Cardiff on the Duckworth/Lewis Method. The Proteas’ better net run rate saw them finish second ahead of the islanders in Group B. In the absence of Smith and Kallis, De Villiers has been more than happy with his team’s batting. “I don’t think our batting can get much better than it is now,” he told the media in Cardiff. Up against a team that includes some of the most devastating strikers in the shorter forms of the game, including Chris Gayle and Kieron Pollard, De Villiers turned to fast bowler Dale Steyn, back in the team after missing their first two matches with injury, to blunt the West Indians’ big hitting. Steyn responded well and played a major role in denying the islanders victory. “What makes me more happy is that I thought we played really good cricket most of the game today.” Just two victories stand between the Proteas and their first major ICC trophy victory in 15 years. The last (and only) one happened in 1998 in the very first Champions Trophy. The premier fast bowler of his generationHaving Steyn back is a huge plus for the Proteas ahead of their showdown with England on Wednesday at The Oval. The cricketing world is pretty much united in its belief that he is the premier fast bowler of his generation. 18 June 2013 “He is definitely an X-factor for us,” De Villiers reckoned. “I called on him a few times today, especially the last spell into the wind and he picked up a wicket. In the absence of Kallis, Ryan McLaren has done a fine job as an all-rounder. His outputs include an unbeaten 71 against India and a haul of 4 for 19 against Pakistan. JP Duminy has also delivered in the all-rounder’s role, mostly by keeping the opposition’s run rate down with his off-spin bowling. ‘A lot of strength in our batting’“We know there is a lot of strength in our batting line-up and I am looking forward to seeing that come through in the next knockout games.” ‘It feels great’It was more a case of relief than triumph for the Proteas in Cardiff. “It feels great. We’ve been on the wrong side of these kinds of matches in the past quite a few times and I have been part of a few teams that’ve been on the wrong side,” South African captain AB de Villiers said at the post-match press conference. Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo material