Wrestling team owns the mat

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Emma Sneden

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The 2018-2019 wrestling season is underway and has paved a path for the state. The team hopes to make it back to state, after going for the past two years and placing the top six in their weight groups.

The team has set goals for the season and plan on meeting all of them. The list of goals includes winning Conference Championships, 4AAA Sections, winning a match at state, achieving 200 pins and to get 100 more take-downs than their opposing teams.

In order to achieve their goals, head coach Tim Hartung is working them hard and improving their skills one day at a time. Each member of the team is determined to grow throughout the season and advance to state.

“These guys are doing a great job of staying focused and working hard on the skills, but also the condintioning and the mentality that goes into the sport,” Hartung said.

We have a lot of guys that really like to wrestle on top and turn people over and pin them. So, from a team standpoint, getting pins is a very important part of winning.”

— Tim Hartung

For the team, their biggest competition will be Mounds View. In order to get to state, they must give it their all and beat them.

“They have some guys that are older guys that have wrestled for a long time. They were our main competition last year as well and they didn’t graduate as many people. So they got some good leadership and they wrestle a certain style that mimics ours,” Hartung said.

Some of the team’s biggest strengths that they are relying on is to beat Mounds View and other tough teams are their strong, determined wrestlers that have past experience and, more specifically, their advantage when it comes to pinning.

“We have a lot of guys that really like to wrestle on top and turn people over and pin them. So, from a team standpoint, getting pins is a very important part of winning,” Hartung added.

“We have pretty good wrestlers this year; we have a lot of experience this year. Our coach is pretty good,” junior and co-captain Josh Piechowski added.

Having multiple strengths comes with a few weaknesses at the beginning of the season, including inexperienced younger wrestlers and the lack of connection between the athletes. Members of the team hope to grow throughout the season and get to know each other better.

“If our young kids and inexperienced guys can develop throughout the course of three months, we’re going to be right where we want to be,” Hartung said.

“Connecting with the team, that’ll grow throughout the year, but at the beginning, it’s harder,” Piechowski added.

During most of their meets, the team notices how the more they wrestle, the stronger they get and the more wins they take.

The team starts to dominate their opponents as the meet goes on by having multiple strengths in their higher weight groups. Their points start to increase “usually up towards the top part,” junior and co-captain Trey Kruse added.

So far, the team has been wrestling well and have dominated strong teams. With this start, many believe that the team can make it to state.

“The guys are wrestling with a lot of excitement, enthusiasm, and attitude and our goal is to get better every day this year,” Hartung said about the team’s performance so far.

The team plans to continue with their growth and hopefully reach their goals.


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