The saying goes there's no place like home for the holidays. Central wrestlers would agree with that statement as they welcomed Fridley and Mpls. Washburn to town on Tues. night. Washburn being a section opponent was a very important match for Central to come away victorious.
After watching the JV wrestlers go out and win some matches prior to wrestling Fridley, the varsity took aim at the Tigers. Josh Hendel wrestled an extremely good match but got caught going to the well one too many times and was pinned, however, that match was a good indicator of how close Josh is to really becoming and all around great wrestler. Following a couple of forfeit wins, the Raiders sent out Austin Kidrowski to get a win and that he did with an impressive display against a senior wrestler getting a fall in the 2nd period. A couple more forfeit wins followed and a couple of losses that were not indicators of the wrestlers' abilities at 171,189 brought Adam George to the mat to take a forfeit. Finally, Andrew Schmieg stepped on the mat and gave up a few pounds to his opponent, however, Andrew was able to get a nice lead and had his opponent on the ropes. However, one wrong move especially in a HWT match can be costly and it was as Andrew was pinned midway through the 2nd period. Final score in favor of the Raiders was 36-24 to move them to 7-2 on the season. Congratulations also go to Brady Buckentine and Tim Miller for posting their first career wins in wrestling in the JV portion.
In the 2nd match for the Raiders, it was much like the first, a string of forfeits gave the Raiders some points to start but the wrestling was the most important matter being looked at. Andrew Leonhardt started off the meet with a commanding JV win by fall and Zach Thon picked up his first career victory with a 6-2 win. Varsity wrestlers were looking for some wins also as Tim Swanson moved up 2 normal weights to get a pin in the 2nd and brother and fellow captain Tim picked up a first period fall as well. Cole Joos lost a maj. dec. after coming back off IR and Tim Kloempken wrestled a much improved match and got a pin at 171. Tony Hegseth saw the varsity mat and was locked in a tight match before losing by fall and Andrew Schmieg again showed how close HWT matches can be by letting a lead slip away and was pinned in the 3rd. Team Raider wins again 42-16 to move to 8-2 on the season.
"Overall it was a good night for the Raiders, we had a chance to wrestle in front of our fans who came out in impressive numbers. We had our youth wrestlers in the crowd to watch and we were able to get a lot of our younger/inexperienced kids some mat time they really need both at varsity and JV levels. We needed to contest every match that was wrestled throughout the night, we did that in some spots and in others we were very sloppy and not ready mentally to step on the mat. Those are things that will have to be improved upon in the practice room before we can start making some strides in our section" explained Coach Fox. "We want to thank everyone for coming out and we hope to see them in Jan. at some very big home meets that we will have. We will definitely need a fired up crowd to help us". Central Wrestling returns to the mat on Jan. 7th in Howard Lake and Sat. Jan. 9th is the annual Central wrestling tournament at the high school. Start time is 10 a.m. Happy H0lidays from the Central Wrestling Family to you and yours.