When Bismarck made its move on Saturday morning, Rapid City, S.D., Central didn't have the horsepower to go along.
And once safely in the lead, BHS hung on to capture its 18th Mandan Lions wrestling championship. The Demons won with 289.5 points to 270 for Rapid City Central.
The Demons departed the Mandan Middle School gym Friday night with a slim 89-83 lead on the Cobblers. At the completion of round-robin competition on Saturday morning the Demons led 205.5 to 195.5, and they took a 261.5 to 238 advantage into the placement matches.
"The first round (Saturday) I didn't think we were doing real well, but the second round I thought we did better and that gave us a push. We had a good semifinal round," BHS coach Jeff Schumacher observed.
Six Demons advanced to the finals and three -- Laken Boese (120 pounds), Adam DeBoer (132) and Devin Steidler (145) -- claimed championships.
Rapid City Central, Sturgis and Legacy were the only other schools with multiple titlists. Cael Larson and Kolby Kost won for the Cobblers at 106 and 170, respectively.
Chance Davis at 138 and Matthew Kaylor at 195 were Legacy's champions. Davis was voted the tournament's outstanding wrestler. His route to the championship consisted of four pins, a forfeit win and a decision.
Sturgis got first-place finishes from Bailey Brengle at 152 and Joel Carpenter at 220.
Other individual winners were Reece Barnhardt of St. Mary's (113), Kyle Burwick of Hettinger (126), Jared Franek of West Fargo (160), Dante Colicheski of Rapid City Stevens at 182 and Riley Roesler of Century at 285.
Burwick's 8-6 victory over Bismarck's Ryan Ripplinger for the 126-pound title was the centerpiece match of the tournament. Burwick is a three-time state champion and Ripplinger has won two state titles. Ripplinger edged Burwick 4-3 for the 120-pound championship at last year's Lions tournament.
Both Bismarck and Rapid City Central placed 10 men in the top five in the 12-team tournament, but the champion Demons benefited from their successful semifinal round. Rapid City advanced three men to the finals while BHS was winning six semifinals.
Rapid City Stevens scored 220.5 points for third place, followed by Sturgis with 199, Mandan with 189 and Century with 178.5.
Schumacher said finishing ahead of both Rapid City schools was no mean feat. He expects those two schools to be near the front of the pack at next week's multi-state Rapid City Invitational.
"They (Rapid City Central) have a pretty good group, and Stevens was missing a couple of kids," Schumacher said. "For us to be ahead of Stevens today was good."
DeBoer, a BHS senior, won his first Mandan Lions title. He finished second to Spencer Stockman of Stevens last season, falling 3-0 in the final. DeBoer went on to place second at the state tournament.
He said he was pleased to win at Mandan because he won some tough matches along the way.
"The two I wrestled (Saturday) morning were ranked in state and the South Dakota kid won here last year at 113," DeBoer noted.
Those wrestlers were Izaiah Bitz of Century, Ethan Fleck of Mandan and T.J. Morrison of Rapid City Central, respectively. DeBoer defeated Dickinson's Koletan Hafey 6-3 in the championship match.
DeBoer expects a lively time at the Rapid City Invitational.
"A few of those same guys will be down there and I think Stockman might be back at 132," he said.
Stockman missed the Mandan tournament due to injury.
DeBoer said winning a third straight Lions title was no shock, but satisfying nonetheless.
"We'd hoped to wrestle well, but at the same time it was rewarding to see our hard work pay off," he said.
Three wrestlers captured repeat Lions championships. Steidler, last year's 152-pound winner, claimed this year's 145-pound championship. Colicheski moved up a weight to win at 182 and Kaylor won his second straight title at 195.