Pelican Rapids multisport athlete Matt “Matty Z” Ziebell is a standout wrestler for Pelican Rapids known for his smothering style and strong clinch game. With the postseason fast approaching, as a multiple state entrant, Ziebell will be one of Pelican Rapids’ best chances at bringing home a state title this season.
Parents: Michael and Rachel Ziebell.
Field of study: Nursing.
Plans after graduation: NDSCS.
Sports: Football, wrestling.
Hobbies: Video games, socializing.
Q: How do you feel your wrestling season is going?
A: Pretty decent, I’m starting to wrestle a whole lot better than I did at the start of the season.
Q: You’re a multiple-year state wrestling entrant starting when you were a sophomore, what have you learned from competing at state?
A: It’s definitely taught me a lot, like to fine-tune some of the moves, technique and that’s what I’ve been really working on. Taking shots is my thing that I haven’t been doing the past years but now I’ve been working on getting those down.
Q: What’s it like wrestling at state?
A: You have to go a whole lot harder because it could be one match you wrestle down there or it could be four, you know? Like if you lose one and the guy that beat you loses your done. So you just have to give it all you got.
Q: Wrestlers that make it to state young sometimes get targets on their back, how did you deal with the added pressure?
A: You always know people watch your name since you’ve been there but once you go out on the mat my head clears and all that I have is those six minutes and you just have to give it your all.
Q: Being that you’ve been to state multiple times this year if you make it back and you don’t win it all do you feel like you’ll always have unfinished business, or can you be happy just reaching the podium?
A: I’d be happy to podium, that’s the goal but everybody’s always chasing that state championship title and that’s something that I’ve always wanted but I’ll be happy if I make the podium.
Q: What do you see for the future of the wrestling program after you graduate?
A: Well, they’re moving in a good direction, we got the fourth seed this section for team, and we’re only losing two people so, we have a lot of good people coming up and talent should be pretty good.
Q: One memory from your sports career that stands out more than others?
A: Probably when we went to the Fargodome this year for football because that’s something that I haven’t done since I was a freshman and it was just really nice to go back there.
Q: As an athlete how would you like to be remembered here at Pelican Rapids?
A: As one of those people that brings energy into the room, a hard worker. I like to keep the team motivated, keep them going, get the energy going.