After a full week of practice and recovery from hosting the Rock Valley Conference Tournament, the Whitewater Wrestling Team hit the road to Evansville to begin their quest for an opportunity to compete in the WIAA State Tournament. The team was placed in a very tough region seeing top teams from the conference for the 2nd week in a row.
On this first leg of the state series, individuals must finish in the top two of their weight class to advance to next week’s section tournament, and the top team advances to the team section on Tuesday night.
After the dust settled and the mats were cleared, the Whippets did not end up quite where they had hopes of being. The team qualified two individuals to compete next week, keeping their dreams alive for a state title. David Cushman bounced back in a big way defeating a young man whom he had lost to in the conference semi-finals last week. David wrestled an outstanding match from start to finish to find his way into the finals. Here he dropped the championship to a very good wrestler from Edgerton.
Carter Friend also was able to avenge his loss in the conference finals last week as he won a very tight match 3-1 in overtime. Carter continues to make adjustments for this opponent as they have met many times over the course of the season, and the winning wrestler has won by either 1 point or in overtime.
Coming in third place and missing out on qualifying for the sectional were CJ Tomomitsu, Cooper Hammond, Cody Gamble, Aaron Porras, Marcus DePorter, and Will Leibbrand. All of these young men wrestled tough, winning their third place match and will be an alternate if something happens to the competitor who placed above them in the bracket.
Although the finish is not where the Whippets expected to be at the beginning of the season, the team wrestled tough on Saturday and should not hang their heads. Nobody went out and just cashed it in, but fought to the very last second. For the 9 underclassmen who competed but did not get through, they will get back to work and set new goals for next season.
Cushman and Friend will compete on Saturday morning at 10:00 a.m. again back in Evansville.
Article and Photos Submitted by Coach John Schimming