“I expect a lot of our guys. I don’t think we wrestled to our potential today.”
Those were strong words from Chadron Coach Jamie Slingsby following Alliance’s 54-16 win over the Cardinals in a dual last Thursday.
They were strong words, but an accurate, concise message to his team who wouldn’t have much time to hang their heads as they traveled the next day to Douglas, Wyo., for the 2018 Shane Shatto Memorial Tournament, a huge event that draws teams from all over Wyoming as well as Nebraska, and even one team from Colorado.
Without much turnaround time to work on technique, the Cardinals made it clear that they expected more fight from their wrestlers. “The Shane Shatto tournament is a tough tournament,” said Slingsby post-dual on Thursday, “I told the guys all week we’ve got January before we get ready for February, so we’ve just gotta keep pushing and getting better, pushing the pace.
According to Slingsby, though, there’s still time for the group to improve ahead of district and state competitions and the group will use the upcoming meets to hone their skills and effort.
In Douglas the Cardinals finished 19 overall in a field of 26 teams, placing only one varsity wrestler, but got a significant showing from their junior varsity which placed five.
Leading the JV squad was Herny Bien who won all four of his matches and winning top honors at 113 pounds.
Kade Waggener, Zac Haug, and Aieden Vaughn all placed third; Waggener at 126, haug at 152, and Vaughn at 195. Haug had a 4-1 record while Waggener and Vaughn were 3-2.
Rounding out the JV placing was Paige Denke who finished sixth at 106 and managed to defeat Alliance’s Armando Valdez, who had pinned Denke in Thursday night’s dual, in a 7-1 decision.
The varsity group’s lone placer was Jake Lemmon who finished fourth at 145 pounds with a 4-2 record. Teammates Clark Riesen and Lance Cattin were both 2-2, and Daniel Wellnitz and Isaiah Beye were 1-2.
Alliance’s Paul Ruff and Lane Applegarth, who each had wins Thursday night against Chadron, both finished first in their weight class, Ruff at 106, and Applegarth at 160.
The Chadron wrestlers will travel to Kearney Friday for the UNK Midwest Duals before hosting the Chadron Invite January 19 and 20, and the Chadron Triangular January 25.