The Manawa Wolves wrestling team hosted Almond-Bancroft/Pacelli, Thursday, Dec. 12.
The Wolves welcomed in an AB-P team that filled only seven weight classes and marched out opponents in 5 of them. Manawa found hard fought wins out of Daryn Claussen 11-5, Garret Griffin 10-3, and Casey Johnson 11-2.
Both Remington Reeck and Cole Thompson found defeat on this night but battled hard. Reeck lost his first ever wrestling match after having a lead in the second period.
“His inexperience placed him in a few positions he has no knowledge of and cost him a victory,” said Coach Dan Kundinger.
Thompson’s fate was a bit different. He found himself against an opponent that is ranked in Division III and battled in a match he should have won.
“If Cole doesn’t force that head throw in the second period he comes out with a victory over a great kid; none-the-less Cole needed this. This kid is the real deal and Cole is proving he is too.” said Head Coach Brad Johnson.
Collecting wins via forfeits for Manawa were Gage Griffin, Dalton Timm, Justin Wentworth, Zach Kreklow, Andy Bristow and Dylan Schneider-Blank. The Wolves finished their third dual victory of the season 46-21.
The team travel to Horicon on Saturday, Dec. 14 to compete in the Horicon Invitational. This dual team tournament was not friendly to the Wolves and left them with a 0-5 record at the end of the day.
The Wolves started off by falling to Horicon 48-24, as well as rival Menominee 48-22 in a dual where the matches were split at 4 wins per team. The Wolves won five matches and lost three against Waterloo, but fell 40-30. The Wolves finished the day by falling to Elkhart Lake 40-30, and 47-24 to Markesan.
“Forfeits killed us today, not much you can do with no wrestlers and on top of that not having Garret [Griffin] able to wrestle is devastating. We probably win two of those duals if we have him,” said Coach Shae Coyle.
The Wolves did find some success throughout the day. Timm went 4-1 on the day with two pins at the 126 pound weight class.
“Dalton has been turning up the heat. He is putting pressure on his opponent which is leaving him in favorable positions he is comfortable with. The wins prove it,” said Kundinger.
Claussen went 3-2 on the day at 138 pounds.
“Daryn had a tough day but was able to battle his way back into matches and continue fighting until he got the job done. This is no surprise though to us because that is the kind of kid he is,” said Coyle.
In the 195 pound class Jake Kaczorowski found success as well. He fought all day and finished with a 3-2 record.
“The 195 [weight class] is a tough class and this was a tough tournament for all the kids. This speaks volumes for Jake and how hard he has worked to get to this point,” said Brad Johnson.
Kaczorowski added, “I am just so happy to not be wrestling heavy weights, I have a legitimate chance every time I step on the mat now.”
At the 220 pound class Casey Johnson battled to a 5-0 record.
“Casey didn’t wrestle great today but once again he went out and got the job done. This is something we have come to expect from him,” said Kundinger,
Thompson worked to a 4-1 record on the day.
“’Worked’ is an understatement when you think about what Cole did today,” said Coyle. “He wrestled hard and pretty smart all day.”
Cole faced the No. 3 ranked wrestler in all of Division III against Markesan and came up on the wrong end of the stick.
“I know he would like another crack at him but he will have to wait until we dual them again on January 28,” said Coach Johnson.
Also for Manawa, Garret Griffin went 1-0, Reeck and Kreklow were winless. Wentworth and Bristow went 1-4. Damien Kitowski won his lone JV bout.
“I know it’s becoming a reoccurring theme already but these kids are busting their humps and progress is being made. All of them are battling something and winning those battles; whether it is illness, injury, inexperience, or whatever. They just keep coming to work and that is all I can ask. Today was no different and I left being the proudest 0-5 coach today,” said Coach Johnson.
The Wolves travel to Amherst for dual action Thursday, Dec. 19. They then head to the Badger Invite in Madison, Saturday, Dec. 20.