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Wrestling: ‘23 Husker Commits and its Top Target Excelling This Summer

Commits Kael Lauridsen and Alan Koehler, along with top target Joel Adams, impress at Junior Duals and Pan American Championships

Nebraska Head Coach Mark Manning (middle), volunteer assistant Tervel Dlagnev (right), and assistant coach Robert Kokesh (left) look on during a dual against Illinois on Feb. 13, 2022 at the Bob Devaney Sports Center.
Husker assistant coach Robert Kokesh (left), head coach Mark Manning (center), and volunteer assistant Tervel Dlagnev look on during a dual against Illinois in February.
Dylan Guenther / CORN NATION

Over the past few weeks, Nebraska has seen its top recruits in the class of 2023 put together some dominant performances. Both Kael Lauridsen of Bennington, Neb. and Alan Koehler of Minnesota competed at the Junior National Duals while Lauridsen also traveled to Buenos Aires, Argentina to compete for Team USA at the U17 Pan American Championships for the second year in a row.

Also competing at the Junior National Duals and the U17 Pan American Championships was Nebraska’s top remaining target Joel Adams. The senior-to-be for Millard South is uncommitted at this point, but with him being the state of Nebraska’s top-ranked wrestler as well as being projected at Nebraska’s biggest weight of need (149 pounds), Adams would be a great addition to this class.

Let’s break down how this trio did.

2023 Husker Commits

Kael Lauridsen

Ranked No. 39 overall in the class of 2023, Lauridsen had himself an impressive couple weeks as he dominated at Junior Duals before an impressive showing in Argentina.

At Junior Duals, Lauridsen competed in both freestyle and Greco-Roman at 120 pounds. He showed he’s world class in both disciplines in going undefeated on the weekend.

In Greco, Lauridsen went 8-0 in dual matchups with none of his matches even close. He pinned his first opponent in under two minutes before earning a forfeit win. He then strung together six straight wins via technical superiority (In Greco, winning by eight or more). In those six wins by tech, Lauridsen outscored his opponents 51-0.

Then in freestyle, Lauridsen was just as impressive. He went an astonishing 9-0 with eight wins by tech (in freestyle, winning by 10 or more) and another via pinfall in just 39 seconds. Lauridsen outscored his opponents 96-4 in those eight wins via tech.

Lauridsen, who is ranked No. 6 in the high school rankings at 120 pounds, then went on to compete at the U17 Pan American Championships just six days later in both Greco and freestyle at 55 kg (just over 121 pounds). Last year, he won gold medals at Pan Ams for Team USA in both disciplines.

This year, Lauridsen started off with a dominant streak to the finals in Greco, winning his first three matches via first-period pinfalls. Then in the final, Lauridsen lost a high-scoring 13-11 decision to Peru’s Abel Juarez to earn the silver medal.

Then in freestyle, Lauridsen went undefeated in earning the gold medal. After a 12-1 win in the quarters, Lauridsen then exacted revenge on Juarez in the semis with a 10-0 tech in 1:39. Then in the final, Lauridsen beat Roger Ramalhete of Brazil 12-0 in 42 seconds.

Lauridsen very much looks to be the future at 125 pounds for the Huskers, but he’ll at least have to compete with this next guy.

Alan Koehler

Also a projected 125-pounder in college, Koehler wrestled for Minnesota Gold at the Junior National Duals in Greco-Roman.

Koehler was excellent on the weekend as he went 6-0 with four wins via tech and two more wins by pinfall. In his matches where he didn’t stick his opponent on their back, Koehler outscored them 35-2.

Koehler is ranked No. 43 on the class of 2023 Big Board by FloWrestling and currently sits as the No. 14-ranked 120-pounder in the country. He’ll get every shot at that 125-pound spot once he gets to campus in 2023.


Joel Adams

Just down the road at Millard South is Joel Adams, one of the best high school wrestlers in the country. He also competed at the Junior National Duals and the Pan American Championships.

At Junior Duals, Adams went 4-0 in freestyle while outscoring his opponents 47-4. Then in Greco, he also went 4-0 while outscoring his opponents 38-0.

At Pan Ams, Adams was simply dominant. In freestyle, he went 4-0 and wasn’t scored upon. He outscored his opposition 43-0 on the way to gold. In Greco, Adams also went 4-0 to earn double-gold medals. He outscored his opponents 39-3 on his way to the top of the podium.