CONESTOGA – Conestoga wrestlers spoke volumes about their work habits Monday night with many winning actions against Omaha Gross.
The Cougars enjoyed a series of happy conversations after overwhelming Omaha Gross 66-15. Conestoga won 11 of the 14 weight classes and handled early adversity with poised attitudes. The team trailed 9-6 early in the home dual before sweeping all but one of the remaining matches.
“I thought we wrestled pretty well tonight,” Conestoga head coach Sean Trampe said. “We thought coming in that we might have some opportunities to do well in some of the matches, but we knew we couldn’t take anything for granted. Omaha Gross has a lot of good wrestlers and they would take advantage if we didn’t come prepared.
“I was happy because I thought all of our guys were prepared. Even in the matches that we lost we wrestled really well. We weren’t outclassed in any of them, so that was a good feeling. Tonight was a really good team win.”
Trampe said the Cougars were excited about competing in front of the local audience. A large group of students and community members filled seats in the CHS bleachers to watch the varsity matchup. They delivered loud cheers each time referee Chad Martinez raised the post-match hand of a Conestoga wrestler.
“We have a really knowledgeable crowd and they’re very supportive of everything we do,” Trampe said. “The guys like wrestling at home. They feed off the energy of the crowd and they have a lot of motivation to wrestle well for them.”
Conestoga senior Jacob Dragon made home fans happy when he rallied from a 2-0 deficit to defeat Owen Brennan in the first match. Dragon spun Brennan to his knees and pushed him back to the mat for a pin at the 2:32 mark.
Omaha Gross won close battles at 152 and 160 pounds before running into a brick wall of Conestoga opponents. Isaiah Parsons registered a pin in 0:54, Owen Snipes pinned his opponent in 2:58 and Gage Totilas collected a victory by forfeit. Hunter Thonen then won the 220-pound matchup in 0:53 to create a 30-9 lead on the scoreboard.
Dawson Hardesty (106), Ethan Williams (113) and Cameron Williams (132) all registered pins later in the evening, and Braden Ruffner, Keaghon Chini and Jaemes Plowman won matches by forfeit. The lone Omaha Gross points in the last half of the dual came when Gio Gomez won the 285-pound weight slot by forfeit.
Trampe said he has been happy with the effort the Cougars have shown during the initial portion of the season. He said wrestlers have been willing to take risks and have been eager to learn from their experiences. They will have another chance to put those lessons to the test Thursday during a 7 p.m. home dual against Treynor.
“We’ve been preaching to the guys about being aggressive,” Trampe said. “We want to score the first points and put ourselves in a position where we don’t give opponents any opportunities to get ahead. The guys have bought into that idea and have done a really nice job of making that happen. It’s been a good first half of the season.”
Conestoga 66, Omaha Gross 15
145 – Jacob Dragon (CHS) pinned Owen Brennan (GHS), 2:32
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152 – Nate Brennan (GHS) pinned Justin Pick (CHS), 2:40
160 – Christian Cardenas (GHS) dec. Dillon Leffler (CHS), 8-6
170 – Isaiah Parsons (CHS) pinned Brandon Kabourek (GHS), 0:54
182 – Owen Snipes (CHS) pinned Tommy Gilbert (GHS), 2:58
195 – Gage Totilas (CHS) won by forfeit
220 – Hunter Thonen (CHS) pinned Trystan Soby (GHS), 0:53
285 – Gio Gomez (GHS) won by forfeit
106 – Dawson Hardesty (CHS) pinned Rex Floerchinger (GHS), 3:18
113 – Ethan Williams (CHS) pinned Jackson Franks (GHS), 0:44
120 – Braden Ruffner (CHS) won by forfeit
126 – Keaghon Chini (CHS) won by forfeit
132 – Cameron Williams (CHS) pinned Angelo Nacarelli (GHS), 1:59
138 – Jaemes Plowman (CHS) won by forfeit