Buchman seals victory with pin
By Erik Buchinger
Hortonville wrestler Brady Buchman’s pin in the 220-pound match sealed the Polar Bears’ victory over Oshkosh West 37-32 on Thursday, Dec. 7.
Hortonville led 31-25 going into the second-to-last match of the night when Buchman took control over Avery Martell for the pin in 1:51.
“I’m at a loss for words, it’s awesome,” Buchman said. “I was getting flashbacks to last year against Oshkosh North when it came down to the last match with me and their 220, and I couldn’t quite get it done there. I said I can’t do that again, and I’ve got to come up clutch and win it for us, and it worked out in the end.”
Buchman said stayed calm prior to the match.
“I’ve just got to have a level head and go into it thinking it’s another match,” Buchman said. “You‘ve just got to be relaxed, calm and go out there and give it all I got.”
Hortonville head coach Chris Gennrich said the mental aspect of wrestling is something the team has focused on.
“We’ve really been working the mental side of things in preparing to battle and going in with the right mental approach to give yourself a chance to win,” Gennrich said. “Even if you physically have the tools but you don’t have the right outlook or the right mental mind frame, this sport is tough to win at. We made a huge turn in regards to that. I think with our wrestling ability, hopefully the mental thing is turned around. We should take off and go on a good little run here.”
The Polar Bears had decision wins from Landon Thern (126), Colin Schuler (160) and Kirkland Hills (170) with pins from Buchman (220), Austin Wasmund (113), Eric Barnett (120) and Bryce Gerner (138).
“The boys came out and wrestled hard,” Gennrich said. “Honestly, on paper, [Oshkosh West] was the favorite coming in. They were 6-0. They had huge wins this past weekend against really good teams. We knew we were going to have to wrestle our best matches, and some guys were going to have to save team points that were big underdogs, and our guys did that.”
Buchman said it was nice to get a win in the Polar Bears’ first home match of the season.
“We had a rough start against Kaukauna and at Pulaski in the tournament, but we’ve been fighting back,” Buchman said. “We had a hard week of practice, and it feels great to start the season off at home with a win.”
Hortonville wrestling home events feature wrestlers competing under a spotlight in the center of the gym with the other lights turned off as well as music prior to each match. Gennrich said he hopes the large attendance from the Teacher Appreciation Night promotion will continue to attend wrestling matches.
“It was a great atmosphere here tonight for Teacher Appreciation Night, so we had a lot of teachers in the stands that wouldn’t normally come,” Gennrich said. “The stands were full, and I think we not only put on a good show beforehand with the music and the lights, but our style of wrestling is pretty exciting, so it’s fun to get out here in front of the home crowd and pick up a big win like this in an exciting dual at every weight class. It was fun, and hopefully we made some wrestling fans out of some people who had never been in the stands before.”