Two sports for Thompson at Augsburg

Thompson semis.JPG
Detroit Lakes’ Isaiah Thompson wrestles Waconia’s Mitch Garnatz in their Class 2A 170-pound championship semifinal match of the Minnesota Wrestling Tournament on Saturday, March 2, 2019, in St. Paul. Michael Vosburg / Forum News Service

There wasn't much that could stop Isaiah Thompson.

He'll go down as one of Detroit Lakes High School's most accomplished athletes.

His 3,743 yards on the ground ranks second all-time in the football program's history. He won the school's first state wrestling championship in 2018, then won a second straight title in 2019. The list grew when he qualified for the state track meet in 2019 in the hurdles.

Thompson was on his way to potentially breaking the football rushing record in his senior year when everything came a screeching halt on October 11th against Fergus Falls. He took a hit that bent his knee in an awkward position.

"This is not going to be good," Thompson thought at the time.


He was proven right. His right ACL was torn, and his high school career ended.

"It was devastating," he said. "I remember as soon, as I got hurt, I was laying on the ground, the whole stadium just went quiet. All I could hear was the wind blowing."

Before the injury, he decided that he would just play football over wrestling and track.

Then once the injury happened, his path was changed.

"I was kind of upset that this injury took away my last wrestling season, so I wanted to make up for it. "

Questions into his mind about how colleges may start to change their recruiting of him. Luckily, he had a long-lasting relationship with the wrestling staff at Augsburg.

"My 8th grade year, I did Fargo, the national tournament," Thompson said. "I kind of knew the wrestling coach, so we already had a relationship there."


That played pivotal, and it grew to the football coaches too.

"I seemed to really enjoy the football coach, so made up my mind right then and there, that's where I wanted to go," Thompson said, who announced his commitment to the Auggies on June 23rd.

It's a big adjustment to make, especially in two sports that require a lot of physicality. For his part, Thompson knows it will be tough but he isn't stressing too much about it.

"Just not thinking about it too much, just think I got the opportunity to do this," he said.

While the ACL injury was a stunner in the moment, it's helped set Thompson on a path he feels even more comfortable in now.

"It'll be pretty difficult but I think I can keep myself content to do it," Thompson said.

Thompson is projected to wrestle at 165 or 174 pounds for the Auggies; both of his state titles came at 170 pounds. He posted 45-win seasons in both his junior and senior seasons against a combined nine losses in that time.

Even missing his senior season at DLHS, Thompson's success was a beacon for kids to want to join head coach Rob Ullyott's program. Wrestling is not for everyone. It requires an all-around toughness. Thompson helped create a program atmosphere that kept participation numbers at the required level to succeed. That was evident, even in his absence, as the team posted a program-best third place finish at state in 2020.

Zach Staton joined WDAY as a sports reporter in 2018. He grew up in Salem, Virginia loving any sport he could play or watch. Staton graduated from Bridgewater College with a degree in Communication Studies before getting his Master's in Broadcast and Digital Journalism with a Sports Communication Emphasis from Syracuse University.
What To Read Next
Get Local