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College wrestling: Stoughton's Luke Mechler to join Oklahoma State's powerhouse program
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College wrestling: Stoughton's Luke Mechler to join Oklahoma State's powerhouse program

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First day of the WIAA Individual Wrestling State Tournament

Stoughton's Luke Mechler competes against Wisconsin Rapids Lincoln's Wyler Lubeck in a 152-pound Division 1 quarterfinal match during the WIAA Individual Wrestling State Tournament at the Kohl Center in Madison, Wis., Thursday, Feb. 27, 2020. Mechler won the match. AMBER ARNOLD, STATE JOURNAL

Stoughton's Luke Mechler, a three-time WIAA Division 1 state team champion and two-time individual state runner-up, has committed to join the vaunted Oklahoma State University wrestling program.

Mechler went 152-12 over four years at Stoughton and made it to the state individual tournament three times. He earned state runner-up finishes at 145 pounds in 2019 and at 160 pounds in 2021, and took third place at 152 in 2020.

In 2021, Mechler went 17-2 in a shortened season and lost a 3-1 decision to Hartland Arrowhead’s Jack Ganos in the Division 1 individual state final at 160 pounds.

Mechler also went 11-0 in four years of WIAA state team tournaments, as Stoughton won championships in 2018, 2019 and 2020 and took second in 2021.

Overall, he went 60-3 in 2020, 57-5 in 2019 and 18-2 in 2018 — including a third-place sectional finish that left him just short of qualifying for individual state as a freshman.

At Oklahoma State, Mechler will join one of the nation’s strongest wrestling programs. Last season, coach John Smith’s Cowboys went 10-0 in dual meets, finished third in the team standings at the NCAA national tournament, crowned one NCAA individual champion (the program’s 143rd all-time) and one runner-up, and had five wrestlers earn All-American honors.


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Wisconsin State Journal prep sports editor Art Kabelowsky has traversed the state to cover sports while working for daily papers in Fort Atkinson, Racine, La Crosse, Milwaukee and Baraboo.

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