Wrestlers hit rough patch
By Kyle Salomon
Throughout a long season, sports teams can go through a rough week here and there.
For the Mustang wrestling team, they experienced that last week with a dual loss to rival Yukon on the road Jan. 7, and a tough outing in the Geary wrestling tournament last Friday and Saturday.
The Bronco grapplers fell 62-6 to Yukon in their first dual of the season. It was the first time in close to a month the Mustang wrestling team had competed in a live event. One dual competition and a tournament were postponed because of the icy weather conditions in the month of December.
There were two highlights from the weekend trip to the Geary tourney, which is the oldest wrestling tournament in the nation. The first highlight was 182-pounder David McCright taking third place in his weight class. The second was 132-pounder Gareth Ballard defeating last year’s Geary tournament champion, Broken Arrow’s Zach Edwards, in the first round in overtime.
“Gareth had a really good match against Edwards from Broken Arrow,” Mustang head coach Dave Rankin. “It was a pigtail match, meaning it was a blind draw since there were no seedings in this tournament. He beat him in overtime. Unfortunately, he got injured in his next match and wasn’t able to compete for the remainder of the tournament.”
McCright started the tourney with a bye in the first round. The 182-pounder then competed against the Berryhill grappler and fell in a second-round pin. McCright took on the 182-pounder from Tascosa High School, Amarillo, Texas, and defeated the Texas native with a first-round pin.
“David had a really great tournament,” Rankin said. “He had three falls and earned third place, which is a great finish in this tournament.”
McCright took down the wrestler from Rio Ranch High School from Amarillo in a first-round pin. He beat the Enid grappler with a third-round fall and then took the Piedmont 182-pound grappler with a second-round pin.
Mark Casteneda competed in the 195-pound weight division for Mustang. Casteneda fell to the Lawton MacArthur grappler with a first-round fall. He then had a bye before falling to Tulsa Union’s 195-pounder, 8-1.
Clay Feland wrestled in the 220-pound weight class for Mustang. Feland took down the Altus wrestler 3-2, then fell to the Edmond North 220-pounder in a third-round fall. Feland beat Duncan 1-0 in his next match-up before dropping his final match to Union’s 220-pounder, 5-3, in overtime.
Dylan Needham grappled in the 285-pound slot for the Broncos. Needham defeated Enid’s heavyweight with a third-round fall. He then fell to Union 3-0 and lost to Collinsville 7-3.
Jason Clark competed in the 106-pound weight class. Clark fell to Enid’s 106-pounder, 6-1. He then defeated Randall’s grappler in a technical fall at 12-3. Clark fell in his final match to Tascosa in a second-round pin.
Corbin Hardin competed in the 113-pound weight division. Hardin lost to Lawton MacArthur’s 113-pounder in a first-round fall. He fell in his next match to Midwest City in a second-round fall.
Bronco Gage McBride wrestled in the 126-pound weight class. McBride defeated Edmond Memorial’s 126-pounder, 7-6. He fell to Collinsville in a first-round fall in his next match. McBride beat the 126-pounder from Altus 11-3, and then fell to the wrestler from Tuttle in a second-round pin.
Ballard competed in the 132-pound weight class. He won his first match 1-0 in overtime against Edwards from Broken Arrow. Ballard defeated Enid’s 132-pounder in the next match in a third-round pin but was injured in the match and was unable to compete for the remainder of the tournament.
Jordan Kalmeyer grappled for the Broncos at the 138-pound weight class. Kalmeyer defeated Del City 8-7, then fell to Collinsville’s 138-pounder in a first-round fall, and lost to Edmond North in a third-round pin.
Robert King competed in the 145-pound weight class for Mustang. King fell to Edmond North in a third-round fall before defeating Lawton MacArthur’s 145-pounder in a disqualification. In his final match, King fell to Rio Ranch 9-5.
Redmon Wilkerson competed in the 152-pound weight class for MHS. Wilkerson fell to Duncan in a first-round fall and then fell to Tascosa 8-2.
Zach Butler wrestled in the 160-pound weight division. Butler fell to Choctaw 8-7, and then had a bye before falling to Collinsville 2-1 in his final match.
Fazon Denby wrestled in the 170-pound weight class. Denby fell to Lawton MacArthur in a second-round pin. He then had a bye before beating the Piedmont 170-pounder in a second-round fall. Denby fell in his final match to Choctaw in a first-round pin.
“We still have a lot of work to do,” Rankin said. “We are not quite clicking right now, but we hope that will come real soon.”